How to decide if you want to do a cosmetic procedure:
1. Find a good doctor and schedule consult
2. Post about it on your blog and get pro and con opinions
3. Ignore advice and do what you planned on doing anyway, which was making an appointment for restylane and maybe botox.
Okay, I did it, and….. Well, let me tell the story first. I hate needles, always have. I was the little girl at the doctor’s office wailing inconsolably while they had me looking at pretty, shiny rings to take my mind off that long, sharp metal thing the doctor was going to jab me with.
For me to willingly schedule an appointment to have needles stuck in my face without being given a general anesthetic first is just crazy. But, hey, I’m menopausal, so crazy is just a part of the day now.
I was sooooo nervous this morning, but they were great at the doctor’s office and made me feel as at ease as I was going to get. Originally I was only sure I wanted the Restylane in my upper lip. This requires just a bit of background. I’ve always had good lips. Not too big, not too small, they’re just cute and have a little bow at the top, not thin, but pretty much perfect. Over the last 7-8 years, partly because I used to smoke and partly because of age, the outer edge of my upper lip was losing its volume, it was just collapsing, leaving what looking more like a red outline before you got to my upper lip. Most people could fix this with lipstick, but lipstick won’t stay on me, just lip gloss, so that option wasn’t gonna work.
After my upper lip kept deflating around the edges more and more like a slow leak in a flat tire, and my little bow just was looking sad, I decided I had to go ahead and at least try this. I’m really not that vain, and I’m perfectly happy to get old and look old. My upper lip turning into old lady lip was just not working for me! We all have our kinks, and it’s good to know where yours are.
We talked about doing a little Botox as well, just a little to help the downturning mouth (well, while we’re there and numbed up!). They put a drop where the line from your outer mouth about gets to the chin. That paralyzes the muscle, which then allows the mouth to lift back up. Then we talked about doing Restylane in the furrow, one single line, in the forehead, but she said it would be best to use the Botox there, see how that reduced it, then do Restylane since it would likely require far less after Botoxing. I’m a little nervous about Botox in the forehead… I’ve seen expressionless people, and I seriously do NOT like it. I’d rather have 3,000 wrinkles an inch deep in my face than to wind up devoid of forehead expression. But I thought… well, it’s just a little. I’ll try it — if I hate it, it will just wear off.
Now I’m signed up for three things to do. Hmmm…. this could be how this starts.
Anyway, they numb me up with a topical cream, then they put more numbing stuff inside my mouth, followed by three injections inside the mouth to finish the numbing. It really wasn’t bad at all as far as pain since I was pretty numb from all the topical ointments. She leans me back in the chair and gives me this cold air thing to blow on my faces. She said some patients find it helpful in just helping with the discomfort. Baaaa…. I’m a sheep, I blow the cold air on my face. I have no idea if it helps with the discomfort, but it feels pretty good.
She injects the Restylane in the lip, it doesn’t take long, massages it around. She also takes a little Restylane and puts it in the corners of the mouth to help the downturn in the mouthline. Then she does the quick little Botox injections, which seriously didn’t even hurt a bit. One in each corner below the mouth (near the chin — never put Botox near the mouth). Then she had me squint, found the muscle above each eye, one injection of Botox there, one in the middle and I think two further up on the muscle? I can’t remember. They were painless and kind of fun, so it didn’t even register where they went in. All in all, the procedures was relatively pain-free.
Afterwards, it is tender and swollen, but not as much as I expected, and there is some bruising. I don’t have big old trout lips even with the swelling, so that makes me happy. Some joker at my office left me a mirror with a sign on it “Caution, lips seen in the mirror may appear bigger than they are.” Bitch. Anyway, I was told not to expect optimum results for several days, after the swelling goes down, and that it takes a few days for the Botox to work into the muscles.
What do I think at the end of the first day? This shit rocks. I easily shaved 10-15 years off my face. Now, I tend to look fairly youthful, I don’t have a lot of wrinkles, but I was looking pretty much every bit of the 46 I am. The minor lines that were pulling down from the outer corners of my mouth are gone. I now have a neutral line there. It turns a little up, but mostly just in a nice even line. This is the biggest, most significant change and the one thing I’ll keep doing for sure. The upper lip is still a little bruised, but my lip line is now filled in to where it should be, and the swelling is very minor, and I’m totally loving having my upper lip back. My lips look balanced now, like they used to. The Botox in the forehead? The jury is still out on that since it takes a few days for that to do what it is going to do.
Should someone else do it? I don’t know. I had realistic expectations for my lips and to just return them to what they were. If you normally have a thin upper lip, I think the results may be harder to get to where it looks natural. Not that it can’t be done, but I think mine were easy to get a great result on. If you have the lines going down from your mouth… that is the best thing, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend that procedure to anyone at all, it’s worth every penny. I just don’t look sad or upset anymore when I’m not. My husband took a look at me and swears 15-20 years are gone. I think he’s a doll. I can say this, I like my face again. It still has wrinkles, and I don’t look like I’m in my 20s, and I don’t think I look like I’m in my 30s either. These couple of things made me look good in my 40s, happy, relaxed, rested, it erased the stress lines from my face. Is that worth the price tag? Maybe not for everyone, but I think it’s pretty cool.