To look at her you wouldn’t believe it, but Skin Renu clinic owner Sally Mahony is turning 70 next year. So naturally we had to ask her secrets to finding the fountain of youth. 

At just shy of 70 years old, Sally Mahony (Sheehan) defies the conventional perception of ageing, proving that 70 might well be the new 50. As a registered nurse and co-owner of Skin Renu skin and laser clinic in Balmain, Sydney, Sally has spent her career helping others discover their best selves, while simultaneously embracing a lifestyle that emphasises looking and feeling great at any age. 

Sally’s approach to ageing is holistic: non-surgical treatments for helping to keep her skin smooth and firm, as well as an active lifestyle, a healthy diet and regular exercise for maintaining her overall wellbeing. Her belief in the powerful synergy of these elements becomes evident upon seeing her – after all, Sally is living proof of their effectiveness.

‘I’ve always been active. I represented my school in hockey, athletics and tennis back in the day, and I still play tennis once a week, do Pilates twice a week, walk the dog each day and enjoy a busy social life,’ she says. 

‘Ageing well can come down to genetics, but we also have a role to play in determining how we age. It takes a conscious effort to look after yourself, but this is your body and you should look after it. I do enjoy a G&T, glass of champagne and fine food, but I balance it with watching what I eat for the rest of the week.’ 

As Sally attests to, when we invest in ourselves, both inside and out, and truly feel confident in the skin we’re in, we are re-imagining the possibilities of entering our ‘golden years’ and proving that age is, indeed, just a number.

Thermage FLX: the non-surgical treatment Sally swears by 

Of course, Sally’s secrets for a youthful appearance aren’t just limited to a healthy lifestyle. First and foremost, she credits her annual Thermage FLX treatments for contributing to her smooth and radiant skin. 

‘For me, personally, Thermage FLX has probably allowed me to age more slowly,’ she shares. ‘It has maintained my skin quality and helped with my “ageing years”. For someone of my age, people constantly say “your skin looks good” or “you haven’t aged one bit”.’ 

Thermage FLX is a non-invasive treatment that uses radiofrequency energy to heat the deep, collagen-rich layers of skin. This stimulates existing collagen and promotes new collagen growth, offering both instant and long-lasting, natural-looking skin tightening for the face, eyes and
even body. 

For me personally, Thermage FLX has probably allowed me to age more slowly than I would have otherwise.

Thermage FLX is the pioneer of radiofrequency-based skin tightening. At the time of writing, there have been more than 2.5 million Thermage treatments performed around the world, 50+ published studies attesting to its safety and efficacy, and more than 70 patents issued.

The beauty of Thermage FLX is that in just one treatment, just once a year, it can deliver noticeable yet natural-looking skin tightening, with no needles, no surgery and minimal to
no downtime.

‘We’ve been treating patients with Thermage at Skin Renu for 15 years. We purchased Thermage soon after we opened the clinic and have upgraded along the way to its current iteration of Thermage FLX,’ Sally explains.

‘When we first used Thermage, I was amazed how well it did. I treated a friend as a model when we purchased Thermage and when I saw her a couple of months later, I noticed her nasolabial folds had reduced. She looked more youthful and brighter. I have never used fillers on her. The results can be amazing.

‘We chose Thermage as it was the gold standard of radiofrequency technology at the time and it still is. There are other devices on the market now, but why change when we know it works?

How Thermage works

Thermage FLX produces both instant and long-lasting results. There is an immediate noticeable improvement in the texture and tone of the skin, with a reduction in fine lines, wrinkles and sagging, as the existing collagen fibres tighten and contract.

However, the most significant and long-lasting results from Thermage come from the stimulation of new collagen production. Over the next several months, as new collagen is produced, the skin continues to become tighter and smoother.

Sally says she personally notices a difference 2 months after the treatment, with full results taking up to 6 months.

She says Thermage is an important tool for Skin Renu clinic. ‘Thermage FLX is popular with our patients, with many requesting the treatment annually. Halfway during treatment we invite patients to sit up and look at the one side treated. It shows what to expect. This should settle as any immediate swelling subsides, but it gives a good indication of the expected result.’

‘It also has no downtime, which is huge for the working woman,’ she says. ‘I have personally had a Thermage treatment and gone out that night without a worry of any noticeable changes to my face.’

Skin Renu turns 15

Skin Renu is a modern, light-filled laser and skin rejuvenation clinic in the heart of Balmain, Sydney. The clinic, which celebrated its 15th year this August, is known for its advanced skin treatments  and cutting-edge technology, which are designed to help patients achieve a youthful and radiant complexion they can feel confident about.

Skin Renu offers a wide range of services to suit a myriad of skin concerns and skin types, including anti-wrinkle and filler treatments, acne treatments, skin rejuvenation, skin resurfacing, vascular and pigment treatments, non-surgical skin tightening, and more.

‘Skin needs to be actively looked after to keep it healthy,’ says Sally. ‘And, as every skin is different to the next, the right treatment can only be determined after proper assessment. At Skin Renu, we treat the skin as needed. This might be improving fine lines from ageing, sun damage or lifestyle, or addressing rosacea or pigmentation.

Sally explains that while Thermage works on the skin by tightening and rejuvenating, fillers, anti-wrinkle treatments and laser treatments are needed for other concerns such as dynamic wrinkles, volume depletion, asymmetry, pigmentation and vascular conditions, and acne scarring. Thermage works synergistically with most other modalities and can usually be performed before or after other treatments.

‘It does not stop the muscles from creasing the skin, so anti-wrinkle treatments complement Thermage nicely; fillers can be used for symmetry, enhancing lips and filling in marionette lines, etc; more superficial fine lines and pores can be treated with Infini, another radiofrequency device; sun damage can be treated with Fraxel or Laser Genesis; pigmentation can be addressed with Pico Genesis; vascular lesions can be treated with Laser Genesis / Excel V+; and peels, skin needling and topical cosmeceuticals can be used for overall skin rejuvenation,’ she says.

Sally stresses that Thermage is not a replacement for a facelift. ‘We are very upfront with our patients and emphasise that Thermage is not a facelift; it is an improvement in skin laxity. Thermage is not for everyone. If a person has heavy jowls, they would not be a suitable candidate. The best results are typically on those aged between 40 and 60.

‘I have not had a facelift, but at a certain age sometimes surgery is the best option,’ she cautions. ‘However, by looking after our skin and empowering ourselves with knowledge about the benefits of laser or radiofrequency treatments, we can certainly postpone the need for a facelift or not need one at all.’

And Sally’s final words of wisdom? ‘It’s never too late to start turning back the clock. You can always improve the quality of your skin and, for the right candidate, energy-based devices such as Thermage can go a long way in helping to lessen the signs of ageing.’