At Vie Institute our promise to you is to offer you the very best and most effective treatments in surgical and non -surgical modalities. Dr McGovern is  not only an excellent and highly regarded surgeon  but he also spends  time researching the best available products for our skin and the best supplements for our health. This research is ongoing and supports their view of a holistic approach to health and longevity.

For years we have known the benefit of topically applied Vitamins A, B and C, alpha-hydroxy acids and anti-oxidants. The secret here is to choose medical grade products which are only available through medical practitioners. Over the counter products are not bad for you, but simply are not strong enough to have much benefit, which in turn means visible result. Think about your skin, do you really notice a difference when you change products? Regardless of how much money you’ve spent and the promises they give? Medical grade products deliver because they actually impact on the nucleus of each cell, repairing damaged DNA and protecting against future free radicals.

More and more people are realizing that we have to think holistically about our health, and this includes the health of our skin. Supplements such as Resveratrol, Co-Enzyme Q10, High potency anti inflammatory anti oxidants and vitamins and minerals have been added to our “must have” list if we want our skin to be truly healthy.

We also know that protecting our skin is the most important thing we can do to keep it looking great and to minimize the visible signs of ageing. We have researched to find the best physical block sunscreens to protect you. We also recommend daily use of mineral make up with sun protection 25 SPF (the maximum the Australian government will allow a mineral makeup to be labelled) for added protection from UVA and UVB damage. There are so many products out there – how do you choose? Leave the hard work to us, we do the research and the comparisons and offer only the very best, and the best value for money.

We are fabulous problem solvers and have found answers to most of our most commonly asked questions. For those with problematic (red or raised) scars we can offer a topically applied silicone cream called Kelocote. Our philosophy is to always try a non-surgical method before surgery.

Our surgeons look for scientific validation of each and every product that we recommend. You can feel safe knowing that every product we recommend has been thoroughly researched and will offer you the safest, most effective results. 

We also realise that getting to our practice can be difficult as everyone is so time poor these days. For your convenience you can call us to re-order products and we can send these to you, or you can use the shopping cart on our website

24 Good Reasons Why You May Need Nutritional Supplements

Many people believe that eating a well balanced diet provides all the vitamins and minerals necessary for good health. In ideal circumstances, this is the case, but in reality there are many reasons why you may need vitamin supplements to cope with living in the twentieth century environment. Taking vitamins when required is a safe method of optimising your dietary sources of nutrients, providing you fllow the instructions on product labels.

1. Poor Digestion

Even when your food intake is good, inefficient digestion can limit your body’s uptake of vitamins. Some common causes of inefficient digestion are not chewing well enough and eating too fast. Both of these result in larger than normal food particle size, too large to allow complete action of digestive enzymes. Many people with dentures are unable to chew as efficiently as those with a full set of original teeth.

2. Hot Coffee, Tea and Spices

Habitual drinking of liquids that are too hot, or consuming an excess of irritants such as coffee, tea or pickles and spices can cause inflammation of the digestive linings, resulting in a drop in secretion of digestive fluids and poorer extraction of vitamins and minerals from food.

3. Alcohol

Drinking too much alcohol is known to damage the liver and pancreas, which are vital to digestion and metabolism. It can also damage the lining of the intestinal tract and adversely affect the absorption of nutrients, leading to sub-clinical malnutrition. Regular heavy use of alcohol increases the body’s need for the B-group vitamins, particularly thiamine, niacin, pyridoxine, folic acid and vitamins B12 and C as well as the minerals zinc, magnesium and calcium. Alcohol affects availability, absorption and metabolism of nutrients.

4. Smoking

Smoking too much tobacco is also an irritant to the digestive tract and increases the metabolic requirements of Vitamin C, all else being equal, by at least 30 per cent more than the typical requirements of a non-smoker. Vitamin C, which is normally present in such foods as paw paws, oranges and capsicums, oxidises rapidly once these fruits are cut, juiced, cooked or stored in direct light or near heat. Vitamin C is important for good immune function.

5. Laxatives

Overuse of laxatives can result in poor absorption of vitamins and minerals from food, by hastening the intestinal transit time. Paraffin and other mineral oils increase losses of fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. Other laxatives used to excess can cause large losses of minerals such as potassium, sodium and magnesium.

6. Fad Diets

Bizarre diets that miss out on whole groups of foods can be seriously lacking in vitamins. Even the popular low fat diets, if taken to an extreme, can be deficient in vitamins A, D and E. Vegetarian diets, which exclude meat and other animal sources, must be very skilfully planned to avoid vitamin B12 deficiency, which may lead to anaemia.

7. Overcooking

Lengthy cooking or reheating of meat and vegetables can oxidise and destroy heat susceptible vitamins such as the B-group, C and E. Boiling vegetables leaches the water soluble vitamins B-group and C as well as many minerals. Light steaming is preferable. Some vitamins, such as vitamin B6 can be destroyed by irradiation from microwaves.

8. Food Storage

Freezing food containing vitamin E can significantly reduce its levels once defrosted. Foods containing vitamin E exposed to heat and air can turn rancid

. Many common sources of vitamin E, such as bread and oils are nowadays highly processed, so that the vitamin E content is significantly reduced or missing totally, which increases storage life but can lower nutrient levels. Vitamin E is an antioxidant which defensively inhibits oxidative damage to all tissues. Other vitamin losses from food preserving can include vitamin B1 and C.

9. Convenience Foods

A diet overly dependent on highly refined carbohydrates, such as sugar, white flour and white rice places greater demand on additional sources of B-group vitamins to process these carbohydrates. An unbalanced diet contributes to such conditions as irritability, lethargy and sleep disorders.

10. Antibiotics

Some antibiotics although valuable in fighting infection, also kill off friendly bacteria in the gut, which would normally be producing B-group vitamins to be absorbed through the intestinal walls. Such deficiencies can result in a variety of nervous conditions, therefore it may be advisable to supplement with B-group vitamins when on a lengthy course of broad-spectrum antibiotics, and/or use pure Lactobacillus powders.

11. Food Allergies

The omission of whole food groups from the diet, as in the case of individuals allergic to gluten or lactose, can mean the loss of significant dietary sources of nutrients such as thiamine, riboflavin or calcium.

12. Crop Nutrient Losses

Some agricultural soils are deficient in trace elements. Decades of intensive agriculture can overwork and deplete soils, unless all the soil nutrients, including trace elements, are regularly replaced. In one US Government survey, levels of essential minerals in crops were found to have declined by up to 68 per cent over a four-year period in the 1970s.

13. Accidents and Illnesses

Burns lead to a loss of protein and essential trace nutrients such as vitamins and minerals. Surgery increases the need for zinc, vitamin E and other nutrients involved in the cellular repair mechanism. The repair of broken bones will be retarded by an inadequate supply of calcium and vitamin C and conversely enhanced by a full dietary supply. The challenge of infection places high demand on the nutritional resources of zinc, magnesium and vitamins B5 and B6 .

14. Stress

Chemical, physical and emotional stresses can increase the body’s requirements for vitamins B2, B5, B6 and C. Air pollution increases the requirements for Vitamin E.

15. P.M.T.

Research has demonstrated that up to 60 per cent of women suffering from symptoms of premenstrual tension, such as headaches, irritability, bloatedness, breast tenderness, lethargy and depression can benefit from supplementation with Vitamin B6.

16. Teenagers

Rapid growth spurts such as in the teenage years, particularly in girls, place high demands on nutritional resources to underwrite the accelerated physical, biochemical and emotional development in this age group. Data from the USA Ten State Nutritional Survey (in 1968-70 covering a total of 24,000 families and 86,000 individuals) showed that between 30 to 50 per cent of adolescents aged 12 to 16 had dietary intakes below two-thirds of the recommended daily averages for Vitamin A, C, calcium and iron.

17. Pregnant Women

Pregnancy creates higher than average demands for nutrients, to ensure healthy growth of the baby and comfortable confinement for the mother. Nutrients which typically require increase during pregnancy are the B-group, especially B1, B2, B3, B6, folic acid and B12, A, D, E and the minerals calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc and phosphorous. The Ten State Nutrition Survey in the USA in 1968-70 showed that as many as 80 per cent of the pregnant women surveyed had dietary intakes below two thirds of recommended daily allowances. Professional assessment of nutrient requirements during pregnancy should be sought.

18. Oral Contraceptives

Oral contraceptives can decrease absorption of folic acid and increase the need for vitamin B6, and possibly vitamin C, zinc and riboflavin. Approximately 22 per cent of Australian women aged 15 to 44 are believed to be on “the pill” at any one time.

19. Light Eaters

Some people eat very sparingly, even without weight reduction goals. U.S. dietary surveys have shown that an average woman maintains her weight on 7560 kilojoules per day, at which level her diet is likely to be low in thiamine, calcium and iron.

20. The Elderly

The aged have been shown to have a low intake of vitamins and minerals, particularly iron, calcium and zinc. Folic acid deficiency is often found, in conjunction with vitamin C deficiency. Fibre intake is often low. Riboflavin (B2) and pyridoxine (B6) deficiencies have also been observed. Possible causes include impaired sense of taste and smell, reduced secretion of digestive enzymes, chronic disease and maybe, physical impairment.

21. Lack of Sunlight

Invalids, shift workers and people whose exposure to sunlight may be minimal can suffer from insufficient amounts of vitamin D which is required for calcium metabolism, without which rickets and osteoporosis (bone thinning) has been observed. Ultraviolet light is the stimulus to vitamin D formation in skin. It is blocked by cloud, fog, smog, ordinary window glass, curtains and clothing. The maximum recommended daily supplemental intake of vitamin D is 400 IU.

22. Bio-Individuality

Wide fluctuations in individual nutrient requirements from the official recommended average vitamin and mineral intakes are common, particularly for those in high physical demand vocations, such as athletes and manual labour, taking into account body weight and physical type. Protein intake influences the need for vitamin B6 and vitamin B1 is linked to kilojoule intake.

23. Low Body Reserves

Although the body is able to store reserves of certain vitamins such as A and E, Canadian autopsy data has shown that up to thirty per cent of the population have reserves of vitamin A so low as to be judged “at risk”. Vitamin A is important to healthy skin and mucous membranes (including the sinus and lungs) and eyesight.

24. Athletes

Athletes consume large amounts of food and experience considerable stress. These factors affect their needs for B-group vitamins, vitamin C and iron in particular. Tests on Australian Olympic athletes and A-grade football players, for example, have shown wide-ranging vitamin deficiencies.

Throughout human history, deadly outbreaks of scurvy have often befallen cities emerging from long winters, armies living on limited rations and mariners confined to sea for extended journeys. Scurvy’s grisly symptoms and frequent occurrence made the isolation of ascorbic acid, the dietary substance that prevents and cures this terrible disease, one of history’s greatest medical discoveries.

In 1928, Dr Albert Szent-Gyorgi isolated vitamin C from adrenal tissue, orange and cabbage, and called it hexuronic acid. In one of the most controversial research races of the century, Dr C Glenn King at the University of Pittsburgh simultaneously isolated the compound from lemons, realized his compound was identical to Szent-Gyorgi’s, identified it as responsible for preventing and scuring scurvy in guinea pigs, and labeled it vitamin C. Vitamin C’s correct chemical composition, C6H806 was soon discovered and its accepted name became ascorbic acid.

Because of the drama of this discovery, research surrounding vitamin C for the first few decades after its discovery understandably focused on its relationship to scurvy. Ascorbic acid facilitates many of the body’s metabolic processes as a nutritional cofactor. It can be easily oxidized (losing two hydrogen atoms to become dehydroascorbic acid) and then converted back to its original form.

This ability to lose and take on hydrogen gives ascorbic acid an essential role in metabolism, particularly in the formation of the amino acid hydroxyproline, which is used by the body to produce the connective tissue protein, collagen.

Collagen is the cement which binds animal tissue together. Without a constant supply of ascorbic acid, joint and connective tissue weaken and the total symptoms of scurvy appear1.

Vitamin C, therefore, is necessary for the proper healing of wounds, bruises, fractures and capillary damage, and for the formation of bones, teeth and cartilage. It is also necessary for the production of numerous brain chemicals and the adrenal hormones noradrenaline and hydrocortisone and is an essential part of the metabolism of amino acids, cholesterol and steroid hormones such as oestrogen1.

Recent research shows vitamin C is involved in more than the prevention of a deficiency disease. Many researchers now recognize that the absence of scurvy is not equivalent to the presence of optimal Vitamin C nutritional status. Vitamin C is anti-viral and anti-bacterial; it helps maintain a strong immune system, normalizes blood cholesterol, prevents periodontal disease, colds and influenza. Intakes of vitamin C far above those required to prevent scurvy are required for such benefits1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9.

Besides helping to maintain good health, vitamin C, in higher than preventative doses, may help cure many chronic diseases. Championed by such eminent researchers as Drs Stone, Klenner, Pauling, Cameron and Levine, the therapeutic potential of vitamin C is controversial and is not universally accepted by the medical community. But the therapeutic potential of vitamin C is one of the most exciting areas of nutrition research today.

The Benefits Of Ascorbate

When vitamin C was thought only to prevent scurvy, simple ascorbic acid was the only substance manufactured. With the discovery of benefits to be gained from taking larger doses of ascorbic acid came unpleasant intestinal side effects. Ascorbic acid is, obviously, acidic. When it reaches the alkaline environment of the lower intestinal tract, it can cause inflammation of the intestinal tissue, gas, diarrhea and discomfort. This acid rejection syndrome usually results from very large doses of vitamin C, and it can limit vitamin C’s absorption.

Buffering vitamin C with a mineral moderates this rejection. Combining calcium, magnesium or sodium with ascorbic acid helps to improve its delivery to the body while providing additional amounts of mineral nutrients.

Accentuating The Positive Effects Of Vitamin C

Dr Szent-Gyorgi made one other important observation when working with natural products with antiscorbutic properties. He found that there were synergistic substances in these foods that tended to potentiate the action of vitamin C. These substances, which were extracted from red pepper and lemons, were shown by later chemical analysis to be members of a class of compounds called flavonoids. When tested, they were found to decrease the breakage of small blood vessels, to prolong life in guinea pigs that had been deprived of vitamin C and to overcome small haemorrhages in human subjects who were vitamin C deficient10.

This group of substances was later called vitamin P, referring to their effect on preventing small vessel or capillary permeability. None of them was later shown to have a true vitamin effect, however, in that deficiencies of them in the diet did not lead to an overt or diagnosable deficiency disease, and the designation of vitamin P was dropped in 1950.

Since that time, these substances – citrin, quercetin, rutin, flavones, flavonoids and bioflavonoids have been termed flavonoids and have been found by a number of investigators, including Dr Z Zioch of Charles University in Czechoslovakia, to enhance the antiscorbutic activity of ascorbic acid11.

The term flavonoid is a generic term which refers to a large group of chemical compounds characterised by a C6C3C6 carbon skeleton where the C6 compounds are aromatic rings.

Bioflavonoids are a subgroup of flavonoids. The classification, structure, biosynthesis and distribution of the flavonoids has been extensively documented in recent years. Bioflavonoids are water soluble substances associated with coloured materials that often but not always appear in fruits and vegetable as companions to vitamin C. Bioflavonoids were first found in the white covering of citrus fruit segments 12,13,14,15,16,17,18,19,20.

According to Zioch, when bioflavonoids are administered with Vitamin C, there is an increased uptake of the vitamin into the liver, kidney and adrenal glands, and protection of the vitamin C, by the bioflavonoids. Bioflavonoids seem to work as anti-oxidants – that is, preventing the destruction of C by its conversion to a less active form called dehydroascorbate. The anti-oxidant activity of bioflavonoids which protects vitamin C seems to result from their unique chemical structure; they act as reducing agents which are transported to the site where vitamin C is to be stored in the cell 11,12.


  1. Bland J. 1989. The Key to the Power of Vitamin C and its Metabolites, New Canaan, Connecticut, Keats Publishing.
  2. Terezhalmy GT et al. 1978. The Use of Water-Soluble Bioflavonoid- Ascorbic Acid Complex in the Treatment of Recurrent Herpes Labialis. Oral Surgery, Oral Medicine, Oral Pathology January; 45(1):56-62.
  3. Anderson RA. 1987, Wellness Medicine, American Health Press, p262.
  4. Greene M. Wilson CWM. Effect of Aspirin on Ascorbic Acid Metabolism During Colds. British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology; 2:369.
  5. Thomas WR, Holt RG, 1978. Vitamin C and Immunity; An assessment of the Evidence. Clinical Experimental Immunology, 32:370-379.
  6. Shi-Hsin L et al. Urinary Excretion of N-Nitrosamino Acid and Nitrate by inhabitants of High and Low Risk Areas for Esophageal Cancer in Northern China; Endogenous Formation of Nitrosoproline and its inhibition by Vitamin C. Cancer Research, 46:1485-1491.
  7. Ginter E et al. Effects of Ascorbic Acid on Plasma Cholesterol in Humans in Long-Term Experiment. InternationalJournal of Vitamin Nutrition Research; 47(2):123-34.
  8. Ginter E et al. Vitamin C in the control of Hypercholesterolaemia in Man. In vitamin C; New clinical Application in Immunology, Lipid metabolism and cancer; p137-152.
  9. Chope HD, Breslow L. Nutritional Status of the Aging, American Journal of Public Health; 46:6107.
  10. Armentuno P, Bentasath M, Beres B and Szent-Gyorgi A. 1936. Deutische Medizinische Wochen-Schrift; 62:1325.
  11. Zioch A. 1969. International Journal of Vitamin Research; 9:269.
  12. Vitamin P. British Medical Journal 1969 January; 235 -37.
  13. Hughes RE, Wilson HK. 1977. Flavonoids some physiological and nutritional considerations. In Progress in Medicinal Chemistry; vol 14 North-Holland Biomedical Press, 285-99.
  14. Fairbairn JW. 1959. The pharmacology of plant phenotics, London; Academic Press.
  15. Horowitz RM. 1961. The orange; its biochemistry and physiology, in Sinclair WB, ed, Berkeley, California.
  16. De Eds. F. 1968. In Florkin M, Stotz EH, eds. Comprehensive Biochemistry. Amsterdam; Elsevier. 127.
  17. Kefford JF, Chandler BV. 1970. The Chemical Constituents of Citrus Plants. New York; Academic Press.
  18. Harbourne JB, Mabry TJ, Mabry M. 1975. The Flavonoids. London; Chapman and Hall.
  19. Bland J. 1984. Bioflavonoids; The Friend and Helpers of Vitamin C in Many Hard-To-Treat Ailments. A good Health Guide. Connecticut; Keats Publishing.
  20. Scarborough S and Bacharach T. 1949. Vitamins and Hormones, 8:1.

Medical Grade Skincare


Vie Institute – A holistic approach

At Vie Institute our promise is to offer you the very best and most effective treatments in surgical and non-surgical modalities, but did you know that our main focus is on prevention of problems occurring in the first place?

Dr McGovern is passionate about anti-ageing medicine and preventing health problems through supplementation and a healthy lifestyle. We are constantly researching the very best products for your health, including the health of your skin! This research is ongoing and supports our view of a holistic approach to health and longevity.


Medical grade skincare:

  • For years we have known the benefit of topically applied Vitamins A, B and C, alpha-hydroxy acids, peptides and growth factors.
  • Most people don’t understand the difference between medical grade skincare and OTC’s (over the counter products) purchased from pharmacies, beauty salons or supermarkets.
  • Medical grade products are only available through medical practitioners. They deliver results because they actually work at a cellular level, repairing and reversing the damage that has been done.
  • Over the counter products are simply not strong enough to have much benefit or visible result. Think about your skin, do you really notice a difference when you change products, regardless of how much money you’ve spent and the promises they make?


Supplements for skin health:

More and more people are realising that we have to think holistically about our health, including the health of our skin. It is not just a matter of what creams we put on our skin, but also what we put into our bodies that will make a diffence to our skin.
Supplements such as Fish oil , Resveratrol, Co-Enzyme Q10, High potency anti-inflammatories, anti-oxidants and vitamins and minerals have been added to our “must have” list if we want our skin to be truly healthy.


The importance of sun protection:

-Protecting our skin is the most important thing we can do to keep it looking great and to minimise the visible signs of ageing.

– Sunscreen is the number one anti-ageing product that we have in skincare, it is also plays a very important role in helping to prevent skin cancer.

– We have researched to find the best physical sunscreens to protect you on a daily basis.

– We also have a safe to use chemical sunscreen for times when you are sweating or swimming.

– For ladies we recommend daily use of mineral makeup with physical sun protection SPF 50  (the maximum the Australian government will allow a mineral makeup to be labelled) for added protection from UVA and UVB damage.

– There are so many products out there – how do you choose? Leave the hard work to us, we do the research and the comparisons and offer only the very best, and the best value for money.


What can I do for a problematic red or raised scar?

  • If you have a red or raised scar, we will recommend a topically applied silicone gel called Kelo-cote.
  • Numerous well-conducted scientific studies have shown that silicone in contact with your skin as much as possible, can help to reduce redness and flatten scars.
  • We also recommend laser treatment to improve scar quality. Our philosophy is to always try a non-surgical method before surgery.
  • If the scar does not respond as well as you would like, and remains raised, you may require a series of steroid injection treatments.

Our helpful staff can help you to choose the treatment that will suit you best.


Scientific validation:

  • Dr McGovern looks for scientific validation of each and every product that we recommend.
  • You can feel safe knowing that every product we recommend has been thoroughly researched and will offer you the safest, most effective results.


Mail order skincare products:

We also realise that getting to our practice can be difficult as everyone is so time poor these days. For your convenience you can call us to re-order products and we can post these to you, or you can use the shopping cart on our website.


What is Medical-Grade skincare?

  • Medical-Grade skincare products are only available from a medical clinic and cannot be purchased OTC (over the counter) through pharmacies, department stores or beauty salons.
  • They contain a high concentration of active ingredients whereas ‘over the counter’ products are limited by government regulations.
  • Medical grade products have superior delivery systems allowing the active ingredients to penetrate the waterproof barrier of the skin and target areas of concern deep within the skin.
  • Medical grade skincare will physically change and correct the skin on a cellular level. OTC products, on the other hand, typically sit on the surface of the skin and are ineffective in treating concerns. These products usually feel nice and smell nice due to the artificial fragrances present, however it is these artificial chemicals which are often responsible for irritating the skin.


What ingredients are found in medical skincare?

Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs)

  • These are naturally occurring substances which, when applied to the skin, breakdown the intracellular ‘cement’ or glue-like substance which binds the outer layer of dead skin cells together.
  • AHAs assist the skin to let go of unwanted dead cells. This in turn increases exfoliation and stimulates a quicker production of new cells at the basement membrane.
  • This helps to increase cell turnover and skin texture and colour improves, pores are unclogged and other topical products can better penetrate the skin.


Beta hydroxy acids (BHA’s)

  • These play a similar role to AHA’s, however BHA’s are oil soluble and can therefore penetrate the oil that’s clogging pores.
  • BHA’s can normalise the lining of the misshapen pore that contributes to acne and congestion.


Vitamin A

  • In 1996 it was conclusively proven that retinoic acid (a form of vitamin A) is capable of reprogramming genetically mutated cells, and thereby reversing damage done to the cell by UV or the sun.
  • Specific forms of vitamin A will increase cell renewal, exfoliate superficial dead cells, regulate oil flow, improve pigmentation, reduce photo damage and stimulate collagen and elastin.
  • Not all vitamin A’s are equal and clever marketing with over the counter products can mislead the consumer.
  • Our skin therapists will discuss these differences and utilise the correct vitamin A to physically change and correct your concerns.


Vitamin B (Niacinamide)

  • Is a potent cell-communicating ingredient offering multiple benefits for the skin.
  • Improves skin’s elasticity, dramatically enhances its barrier function, helps erase discolourations, revives skin’s tone and texture and supports immunity in the epidermis.
  • Topical niacinamide is of the utmost importance in Queensland, the skin cancer capital of the world, because it restores part of the UV damaged epidermal immunity in the skin and reduces incidences of skin cancer.
  • Helping to prevent skin cancer is one of the most important roles of niacinamide and hence why everybody should be using it.


Vitamin C

  • There are many different forms of vitamin C. L-ascorbic acid, sodium ascorbyl phosphate, magnesium ascorbyl phosphate and ascorbyl glucoside are used in our vitamin C serums at Vie Institute.
  • These forms of vitamin C are potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents and can improve the appearance of wrinkles, uneven skin tone, and brown spots.


Growth Factors

  • These are naturally occurring proteins through which all skin cells communicate. They play a critical role in every stage of skin repair and remodelling.
  • Through normal ageing the production and levels of growth factors rapidly decrease.
  • Replenishing growth factors in the skin through skincare can induce remodelling and age reversal.
  • Collagen is stimulated, fine lines are reduced and skin texture and tone are improved.



  • These are proteins that are messenger molecules capable of regulation cell activities.
  • With age these peptide mechanisms become progressively weaker. When applied topically peptides stimulate collagen synthesis and improve fine lines and wrinkles.



  • The number 1 anti-ageing skincare product in the world.
  • 90% of ageing is caused by the sun, and UV damage is responsible for most skin cancers. UV damage causes the destruction of collagen and elastin, brown spots and redness within the skin and skin cancers.
  • In our professional opinion, sunscreen should be worn everyday whether you are inside or not.


Skin Consultations at Vie Institute

  • The team at Vie Institute is serious about skin health. If your skin is radiant, you feel fabulous.
  • Most people have been burned by expensive products making absolutely no difference to their skin. The medical grade products that we recommend WILL change your skin and you will never look back!
  • To help you to understand, we provide  detailed 60 minute consultation discussing your skincare concerns and what you would like to achieve.
  • You will receive expert advice on a skin regime to suit you, including integrating this with your current products.
  • We will follow up with regular complimentary skin reviews to ensure you are getting the most from your products, because we care about your results!


The skin is the body’s largest organ. It provides protection from the environment and in this capacity is highly vulnerable to damage from trauma, sunlight, environmental carcinogens and infection. The skin also reflects our general state of health.

Acne is a commonly experienced condition which affects the sebaceous (or oil) glands. A number of factors contribute to the development of acne. These include hormonal changes, diet, environmental factors, skin and hair care products used and certain vitamin deficiencies.

There is new evidence supporting the theory that acne has a genetic hereditary link. This theory is based on the knowledge of differentiating basal epidermal cells. These cells form the basement membrane between the epidermis and dermis and are continuous with the pilo sebaceous duct ( hair follicle with attached sebaceous gland).Under normal conditions these cells divide and are pushed up out of the duct to continue the usual process of differentiation and desquamation at the surface. In an acne patient there is a problem with the DNA of these epidermal cells which causes them to remain stuck on the inside of the duct, combining with sebum from the sebaceous gland and forming a small “plug.”

As the skin is subject to both internal and external influences, both must be addressed in any effective treatment programme. Skin needs support with adequate nutrition – for example vitamins A and E, zinc and the essential fatty acids EPA and DHA are all helpful. Consider a multi-vitamin / mineral with 400 – 800 IU of mixed tocopherols (vitamin E), and 30 – 90mg of zinc picolinate or citrate. Fish oil supplements (1 – 3 gms daily) will provide omega- 3 essential fatty acids, as will flaxseed oil. Acne sufferers are often deficient in certain vitamins and minerals, and supplementation along with dietary changes can help reduce acne. Zinc has an anti-inflammatory effect on acne lesions. Vitamin A reduces sebum production and the build up of keratin that contributes to the formation of acne. Vitamin E ensures proper functioning of Vitamin A and a deficiency of Vitamin E keeps levels of Vitamin A low despite supplementation. Therefore Vitamin A supplementation may be effective at a lower dose if combined with Vitamin E. Vitamin B5 is important in fat metabolism and supplementation decreases sebum production. Supplementation with selenium may be beneficial, as acne patients have low levels of glutathione peroxidase, a selenium containing enzyme that is important in detoxification.

Acne sufferers generally do not metabolise sugars properly. Refined carbohydrate or sugar intake correlates with an increase in active acne. Effective treatment for acne relies on approaching the problem from all angles. A change in diet is an easy and inexpensive way to help control or minimize acne. So start by reducing the amount of simple sugars and carbohydrates from your diet. This means limiting bread, rice and pasta (particularly white varieties: multigrains and wholemeal are better). Biscuits, cakes and sweets should be completely avoided.

The majority of acne that occurs after adolescence is caused by cosmetic and hair care products. Plastics and plant oils can plug pores, particularly the larger pores of the chin and around the nose. Acne is caused by anaerobic bacteria. These bacteria prefer to live in an environment where there is no oxygen. When pores are plugged, an oxygen-deprived environment is created, and those bacteria flourish causing pimples and cysts. Plant oils such as aloe, coconut oil and baby oil should be avoided. Conditioners, hair sprays and hair gels almost all contain plastics, which can block pores and cause breakouts. The ingredients to be aware of are PVP, CVP and any copolymer ingredient. Many waterproof and smudge-proof cosmetics and sunscreens also contain these plastics.

What Cosmetic Products Can Be Recommended?
Standard dandruff shampoos and conditioners that do not contain plastics. Avoid any product containing silicones which will clog pores and are often the cause of facial acne as well as acne on the back and arms. Use only water based make-ups. Avoid make-ups that are oil based as they will clog pores. Avoid all waterproof make-up as they use silicones.

Avoid hair sprays and gels. Most products bought from health food stores will not contain silicones. A bit of homework may be the answer to preventing acne, and costs nothing.

We recommend the Pola foundation for females, it is non comedogenic and covers redness very well without being heavy.

Can Skin Care Help Acne?
Medical grade skin care can help you eliminate or reduce acne. If we look at the skin, and what is actually causing the active lesions, we see that there are two problems contributing – blocked pores and an over production of sebum (oil).

Most acne sufferers are actually meticulous with their skin care and have tried everything to keep their skin clean to prevent this problem occurring . However, most skin preparations used for acne simply dry the skin excessively, causing flaking of the dead skin cells, which in turn blocks the pores. These blocked pores coupled with an over-production of oil in the skin, swell the sebaceous glands and produce an ideal location for bacteria to thrive.

Medical research has shown us that Alpha-hydroxy acids are extremely efficient at cleansing the skin of excess oils and also give the skin the ability to

let go of dead cells, thereby reducing pore blockages. Vitamin A creams have been used by acne sufferers for many years to reduce the production of sebum, and therefore reduce the active lesions and inflammation associated with acne. We recommend the Stieva-A brand of retinoic acid cream – a prescription strength vitamin A cream available in three different concentrations (as opposed to Retin-A, which is only available in one strength).

What Skin Care Will Suit Me?
Teenage acne is often very easily treated with alpha-hydroxy acids alone. The products that we recommend are medical grade, that is – they are sold to medical practitioners only. They work very effectively. We can recommend an alpha-hydroxy acid specific to your individual skin needs.

For more persistent or adult acne, the use of Stieva A is imperative.

What Else May Help?
Androgens (male sex hormones) increase sebum production and worsen acne. An anti- androgenic oral contraceptive pill, such as Diane 35, is often helpful in women whose acne resists topical skincare treatments. If necessary, we will advise you to see your general practitioner to organize this.

What is Chirally?

All natural molecules and compounds exist in “chiral” form.

Chiral is a Greek word meaning “handed” and is used to imply that these natural substances have two mirror-image forms, one being left-handed – called levo or “L”, and the other right-handed – known as dextro or “D” form.

Only one of these compounds , either levo or dextro, fits perfectly into skin cell receptors and so can be recognized and utilized by body. The other form has a negative effect, and is simply waste. Some say that the form not utilized by the body make contribute to free radical production and thus actually be harmful to the body.

Chirally correct products separate the two sides and utilize only the components of each ingredient which our body can utilize, and are maximally beneficial to the skin. This process is an expensive one and so very few companies choose Chirally correct ingredients.

Chirally correct products should be used sparingly. A chirally correct skin care product will be half the size of the same product that is not chiral. Thus you need to use half as much.

Products That Are Chirally Correct

The Cosmedix range of products are based on chirality. No other skin care range has, at this stage embraced chirality so completely. In the future all skin care products will have to be chiral.cosmedix

Why We Have Chosen the Cosmedix Range of Products

We have always strived to offer our clients the very best in skin care products, and after much research we have decided to include the Cosmedix range of products. Not only are these products chirally correct, but they are free of any substances that may be harmful eg sodium lauryl sulphate, parabens, emulsifiers etc. More and more, people are becoming aware of the many chemicals and toxins that we subject ourselves to daily. Why would we choose skin care products that may be harmful?

The Cosmedix range has also included some very sophisticated anti-oxidants in their range of products. This range is “physician only” which means it can only be sold by doctors through a medical practice.

Let’s face it, we live in Australia, we are going to suffer sun damage and will age more quickly than our European counterparts. However, we don’t have to sit there and take the damage! Sun protection has to become part of our daily routine if we care about how our skin looks and want to prevent many years of surgery removing skin cancers as we age.

Most of us are well aware that unprotected exposure to UV radiation can cause premature aging, pigmentation problems, broken capillaries and skin cancers. This is due to the massive free radical cascade that results from continuous radiation exposure causing DNA damage to healthy cells.

So what can we do to afford that best possible protection from the sun this summer?

Quite obviously sunscreens are a necessary part of your daily skin care routine, but are all sunscreens really doing the job of protecting your skin? The answer is yes and no, depending on the active ingredient in the product.

Chemical sunscreens such as Octyl Methoxycinnamate are designed to absorb UVB rays but not UVA (deeper penetrating -destroying collagen and elastin). Two hours after applying a chemical sunscreen, UVB protection has ceased as the chemical has been absorbed by the skin. Reapplication is necessary at this time, but who does this vigilantly, especially through a normal work day?

Physical sunscreens such as micro fine Titanium Dioxide or Zinc Oxide are a far safer option because of their reflective nature. When applied to the skin’s surface, the micro fine particles act like tiny mirrors, reflecting both UVA and UVB rays away from the surface of the skin. They cannot be absorbed and they stay on the surface until washed off or rubbed off.

The finer the titanium and/or zinc is “microfined” the less “whiteout” occurs on application, so there is cosmetic appeal and more chance of complying to use the product on a daily basis. The finer the zinc or titanium in a product will increase the cost of the product to you. That’s why the products sold in big department stores, supermarkets and pharmacies tend to leave that white appearance on the skin.

The products that we recommend at Vie are all very high SPF and the minerals are finer, avoiding the “white sunscreen look”.

Now that the Australian TGA has changed its legislation, and SPF 50 products are allowed on the market. How will that change the products that we recommend? TGA still rates mineral sunscreens at a maximum SPF 15 as comprehensive studies have not been performed. The changes will occur to chemical sunscreen products.

Always read the label and if your preferred sunscreen has a chemical absorber as its active ingredient, make sure it is 50 SPF and that there is also a mineral component to give the best possible protection for the life and health of your skin.

Remember, we are all undergoing the natural process of chronological ageing, but who wants to speed this up by adding photo ageing to the mix? Think-protection with reflection and …….enjoy the skin you live in!

Want to know more about protecting and treating your skin?  Call 18000 80001 for an appointment.

Did you know?

1) Excessive exposure to UVB rays causes classic sunburn as UVB rays penetrate past the skin’s epidermal basement membrane. UVB rays cause basal cell carcinomas, melanomas and possibly squamous cell carcinoma.

Current statistics indicate that 81% of all cancers diagnosed per year in Australia are skin cancers. Each year, over 374,000 Australians are diagnosed with non-melanoma skin cancer (BCC and SCC) and 8,800 Australians are diagnosed with Malignant Melanoma.

2) A significant amount of UVB is screened out by the ozone layer, which is itself diminishing. Ultraviolet ray intensity in sunlight is thus increasing over time.

3) There are 20 times more UVA rays than UVB in sunlight hitting the earth .Excessive exposure to UVA rays causes DNA damage to important skin cells in the deeper layer of skin, the dermis. Collagen fibres are damaged and there is an overproduction of abnormal elastin fibres leading to small pockets of yellow elastic tissue observable under the skin and commonly referred to as Solar Elastosis.

4) UVA can penetrate window glass and its power is unchanged throughout the day, season or altitude, unlike UVB radiation.

5) Water resistance is defined by the TGA as maintenance of the label SPF or Sun Protection Factor, after 40 mins of immersion in FRESH water consisting of two 20 minute periods of activity in water separated by a 20 minute rest period during which the skin is allowed to AIR dry rather than using a towel. These guidelines obviously do not reflect usual public behaviour! Re-application after swimming is a must!

6) To cover an average size 1.73m square surface area of adult skin requires 35 ml of sunscreen for proper SPF related protection. A shot glass (standard 30ml) can be used as a mental measuring tool. Any dose below this standard will not provide the advertised protection. Efficacy of sunscreen is highly dependant upon correct dosage and application.

7) An SPF 15 blocks out 93% of UVB (burning) rays (i.e. fourteen fifteenths)
An SPF 45 blocks out 98% of UVB rays
An SPF 100 blocks 99% of UVB rays.

8) UVB exposure depletes the skin of many important antioxidants, including Vitamin C.
Even minimum exposure to UVA rays decrease levels of Vitamin C in the skin by 70%! The skin’s antioxidants are very important in avoiding sunburn. Sunburn is, in fact, an inflammatory response to the free radical formation caused by UV rays. Increasing the skins levels of antioxidants is an excellent means of reducing actinic (sun) damage.

Sunscreens prevent only 55% of the free radicals produced by sun exposure. Topically applied L-Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C) has been shown to reduce UVB induced erythema (i.e. sunburn) in the skin by a further 52%. Antioxidants must be applied to the skin BEFORE UV exposure to benefit from their photo-protective qualities. They act like a sponge to mop up free radicals before they damage healthy cells. Vitamin C creams also help to increase collagen and elastin secretion in the skin, and have been clinically proven to reduce lines and wrinkles. There are many reasons to include Vitamin C in your skin care routine.

9) Physical sunscreens (Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide) reflect, deflect and absorb ALL UV rays.

10) Chemical sunscreens absorb all UVB rays but only some UVA (ageing) rays.

11) Chemical sunscreens DO NOT work after 1- 2 hours on the skin. They are absorbed into the dermis and taken away by the bloodstream to the liver where they are broken down and then excreted via the kidneys.

12) UVA rays can cause skin damage and tanning without burning.
People who use high SPF sunscreens that prevent burning may in fact stay in the sun for longer periods under the illusion that they are well protected from all the sun’s rays. This may lead to unnoticed damage via UVA rays. This may be a possible cause of the increased incidence of UVA induced skin cancers.

13) UVA rays damage and deplete our skin reserves of Langerhans cells, those responsible for skin immune function. This leaves our skin more prone to damage by free radicals and invading pathogens.

14) There is currently no standardised way to measure degrees of UVA protection.

15) Chemical sunscreens labelled “broad spectrum” are formulated with chemical screening ingredients which are able to absorb up to 90% UVA and up to 99% UVB rays.
The extent of protection from UV damage is only to light wavelengths up to 360nm. UVA rays, in fact, include wavelengths up to 400nm.Therefore even broad spectrum chemical sunscreens are still not 100% effective in their degree of UVA protection. Physical sunscreens offer greater UVA protection but are also not 100% effective.

16) Common chemical sunscreen ingredients include:
Octyl methoxycinnamate (260-313nm, absorbency range-NO UVA screening)
Oxybenzone (270-350nm-MINIMUM UVA screening)
Avobenzone (310-400nm-FULL UVA screening)

17) Common physical sunscreen ingredients include:
Zinc Oxide (250-380nm)
Titanium Dioxide (250-400nm)

Moral of this story:
a) Talk to us about your sun protection and skin care

b) Slip, slop, slap, wear sunglasses and find some shade!

c) No amount of sun protection will avoid sun damage. Your skincare programme will need to incorporate Retinoid (Vitamin A) creams that have been shown to reverse accumulated sun damage.

d) Sunscreens are not all as protecting as they seem.

e) Choose a sunscreen that is labelled “Broad Spectrum” AND has a percentage of physical sunscreen such as Titanium Dioxide and/or Zinc Oxide. That way you can be confident that both UVA and UVB rays are being screened out.

f) Use this sunscreen EVERY day, even if you work in an office. Remember, UVA rays penetrate glass. You may want to purchase one for your face that is less oily in consistency so that you will be diligent in using it.

g) Never rely on sunscreen alone to do the job! Hats, sunglasses and protective clothing as well as shade are a must if you want to be serious about protecting yourself from premature ageing as well as skin cancers. If you ARE going to venture out in the sun, the use of an invisible zinc product on your face is highly recommended

h) 90% of required Vitamin D is synthesized in the skin from UV exposure. Limited UV exposure to hands, arms and face 2-3 times per week will provide the necessary exposure to produce adequate amounts of Vitamin D .Unless you live in a cave, your normal day to day activities will suffice!

i) Malignant Melanoma’s are statistically more common on women’s legs and men’s torso’s.
So men, cover up! And women, sunscreen your legs every day as well as your face!

j) Moisturisers and foundations with SPF ratings are NOT a good indicator of protection.
They commonly have chemical absorbers as their active ingredient and are therefore ineffective after 1-2 hours! Use ones with physical sunscreens instead.

k) Use a mineral make up as your foundation of choice as they provide the benefit of Titanium Dioxide in their formulations, giving an added protection of 20-90 SPF, depending on product and application. We recommend Pola as our mineral make up of choice.

l) We can’t stop extrinsic chronological ageing, yes the clock keeps ticking!

However, we can minimise the photo ageing which every one on the Sunshine Coast will suffer from. Daily use of appropriate sunscreens will help to prevent photoageing as will medical grade skin care programmes.

m) Believe it or not, you will actually tan when wearing sunscreens! Good news for those who insist on wanting a tan, however all tanning of the skin is damaging. There is no such thing as a “healthy” tan.

You may ask what interest Vie Institute has in a make-up? The answer is quite simple – protecting your face from Queensland’s harsh environment. At Vie Institute for Beauty and Longevity, we pride ourselves on not only giving you the very best service and cosmetic treatments available, but we also take a holistic approach to helping you look your best. This means helping you to prevent problems before they happen, rather than just “fixing” problems after the damage is done.

For more than a decade we used and recommended Pola Southern Call Two Way Protect, but this unfortunately has been discontinued. We continue to get requests for the Pola make-up as it really was superior. We have trialled many make-ups to replace this and to date the Synergie range has been the closest we have found to the coverage that Pola Southern Call gave.

Like Pola, Synergie is a mineral make up which works like a second skin, giving you a naturally flawless make up coverage while allowing your skin to feel like you’re not wearing anything at all! Synergie Mineral make up is free from chemicals and also provides your skin with superior protection from UV damage by using the physical reflection properties of zinc oxide and antioxidants. Perfect for people wanting a sheer natural coverage for day to day wear, or layer it up for a photo shoot ready look!

Of course mineral make-up does not take the place of a sunscreen, rather it is another layer in our defense against the sun’s harmful, and ageing rays.

If you would like to trial the Synergie range of mineral make-ep, call us on our free-call number to make an appointment for a free consultation, colour match, and makeup advice. Our resident beauty therapist, is happy to show you which products will suit you best.


Gift Certificates Available for Men and Women!

Everyone wants to look better, so what better idea for a Christmas gift than a Vie Institute Gift Certificate!

It’s so  simple- just call us on our free-call number 18000 80001, or email us and we’ll send a beautiful certificate to you for that special someone.

What do you get the person that has everything. It is so difficult buying gifts these days as everyone has what they want (that is within a reasonable price of course!).
We all, on the other hand love to be pampered and has a list of things that they would like to do to enhance their appearance. Our Vie Institute Gift Vouchers are the perfect gift! You simply nominate how much money you would like to spend and your guest can decide what they would like to spend that on. Alternately if you know that your friend or loved one is really wanting, for instance – hair removal. We can create a Gift Certificate for you for laser hair removal, and your friend/loved one need not know the exact amount of the Gift Voucher.

We are happy to tailor Gift Certificates to your particular requirements, just ask us!

  • List of Treatments and Services available on Gift Certificate at Vie Institute:
  • Wrinkle removal treatments – eyes, frown, lip, cheeks, neck
  • Treatment for excessive sweating
  • Deep line removal
  • Lip enhancement and rejuvenation
  • Correction of lip asymmetry
  • Restoring facial contours – cheeks, chins
  • Remove dark circles, rejuvenate the eye areas
  • Anti-ageing injections and treatments
  • Removal of pigmentation from face and body
  • Medical grade skin care to reverse and prevent sun damaged skin
  • Medical grade skin peels
  • Relaxing anti-oxidant massage
  • Laser hair removal that works!
  • Nutritional supplementation for health and longevity

NB Surgical procedures cannot be given away. Government regulations prevent this.