Sitting having coffee with some of the girls after our usual friday morning music class with our kids I announced I had to leave early. “Ooh, doing anything nice?”, they asked. “Nice?..Well if you think getting a load of needles inserted into your face to freeze it nice then yes, I’m doing something nice. Queue the puzzled looks. I was having botox done. Nice may not be the best word to use when having this procedure done but the results are nice, beautiful even.
“Why are you getting botox done, you don’t need it?”. This I’ve heard off pretty much everybody whom I’ve told I was getting botox. It dawned on me that maybe they just didn’t understand botox. Most of the girls couldn’t understand why I would want to get it done. I’m young(ish), mid thirties and not terribly aged yet, ‘yet’ being the operative word. So I set about explaining why I would want to get botox.
Firstly let me explain, botox is not a reversal procedure. It will not turn back the clock on already ingrained facial lines and wrinkles. It is a pause button. It delays the ageing process and so by doing it now I can prevent my face from becoming more wrinkled than it already is. While it does not plump out lines present at rest on the face it can help to smooth them out a bit.
A few puzzled faces still looked back at me in the cafe, some nodded in agreement some maintained I didn’t need it but each to their own and all that. So I left saying I’d be back to prove myself right next Friday with a fresher face.
I’ll admit this is not my first encounter with botox, I’d had it done last year and was pleased with my results. For some reason though this time I was a little bit more nervous. I think it was the fear of pain. I was so nervous the first time I got it done my whole body was tense which made the supposedly painless procedure quite painful. I can still hear the noise of my skin popping when the needle was inserted, I’m not sure that noise will never leave my memory.
This time however I was going to a different clinic and seeing a different Dr. A Dr. I’d wanted to see for a very long time now. I’d heard nothing but great things about Dr. Lalloo and I’d seen his ‘work’ on a few faces and knew that I was going to be in the best hands possible.
Battling the M50 traffic on a very wet and stormy Friday afternoon I arrived at the Primary Care Centre in Blanchardstown. Dr. Lalloo’s clinic, Cosmedics, was located on the second floor, so up I went, waiting a minute or two before Dr. Lalloo appeared. If I’m being honest I greeted him with a false bravado. I may have been smiling on the outside but honestly my heart was about to jump out of my chest. Should I make my excuses, say I felt unwell? Maybe the girls were right, I really didn’t need botox, I could just head home…but my feet kept on following him.
He took me through to one of the therapy rooms and began asking the important ‘WH’ questions, “Why did I want botox?”, “Where did I want it?”, “Did I understand the process?”. He examined my face explaining where I might benefit from the toxin, he also pointed out where I might benefit from a filler. “Filler??!!!”. Oh god this is not something I signed up for. Surely I don’t need fillers? Do I?. Facing the mirror Dr. Lalloo showed me where there had been some hallowing under my eyes. I admit I had noticed this myself over the last year or so. I wasn’t sure though whether it was just from tiredness and kids or from gaining and losing weight over the course of my pregnancies. It wasn’t something that really bothered me, but now that it had been pointed out to me and I was getting the opportunity to do something about it maybe I should.
Again let me explain the filler Dr. Lalloo was suggesting was for under my eyes. The dark hallows that most of us get as we get older. I had done a little research on this before, I knew that it filled the area called your tear trough. It could plump up the skin reducing the hallowness and therefore reverse the signs of ageing by a couple of years.
After a further twenty minutes of explaining the the pro’s and of course the possible con’s of both procedures I decided to go for it. Despite my earlier hesitations I really wanted the botox, my laughter lines had really started to become more noticeable and the lines on my forehead were beginning to become a permanent fixture as were my 11 lines or Glabella, the frown lines between the brows. The filler I was a little more apprehensive about. Would it be painful? Would I end up looking like I had something done to my face. I really didn’t want to change my appearance, I’m happy enough with it, I just wanted to freshen myself up a bit. Dr. Lalloo assured me that I would look no different than I do now except maybe a few years younger. He told me that by filling the tear trough my cheekbones would be slightly raised, in turn lifting the naso-labial lines (those lines from your nose to the corners of your mouth) which would instantly give me the appearance of a more youthful face. I was sold. I also knew that any work that was going to be done on my face would in time fade so if I was unhappy with anything it wouldn’t be permanent. Probably not the best argument for getting it done but it made me more comfortable going ahead with it.
Once all the consent forms were read and signed it was show time. ‘Before’ pictures were taken so I could compare the results once he was finished. I lay back in the chair where Dr. Lalloo began firstly with the botox. I shouldn’t really be calling it botox. Botox is a brand name like hoover is to vacuum. Instead Dr. Lalloo used a toxin called Dysport. Kinda like the Dyson vacuum of toxins. Enough with the vacuum metaphors, the toxin he was using like everything that he uses is the best out there, FDA approved and most importantly totally safe (well as safe as a toxin can be).
He started on my forehead, explaining exactly why he was inserting the toxin where he was and the reasoning behind it. It all made perfect sense to me then and I really was listening but for the life of me now I can’t remember exactly what he said and so don’t want to bore anyone with the finite details. Let’s just say he really knows what he is doing. I felt little or no pain. This was my biggest worry about getting it done, and here I was feeling relaxed and excited now to be getting it done. I think what helped though was his manner. Every time he inserted one of the needles he said “Good for you”. And I thought, ‘yeah, good for me, thanks Doc, I’m coping with this really well.’
Forehead done and onto the filler. He had said that this may be a little uncomfortable. He used the word sting actually. But again a “Good for you” from him and it was done. I couldn’t believe it. That was it? Honestly, no pain, not really, just a little pinch. I couldn’t wait to look in the mirror. The big reveal!! Oh, I look like me. Just a slightly better me, younger maybe, definitely. A pre kids me I think. Happy days.
After photos were taken, we went to his office to take a look at the pictures so I could compare the results. We both looked at the before and after pics and both struggled to pin point the exact reason why the girl on the right looked better than the girl on the left. The changes were so sublet yet striking. My eyes looked less tired, my smile brighter and cheekbones just a little fuller but I really couldn’t point to a specific change in my face. I just looked great, well for me that is.
The real test would be if my husband could tell the difference. Dr. Lalloo did explain that while the fillers are instant the botox/toxin can take up to two weeks to really settle in with results lasting up to five to six months. Usually first time botoxer’s can see the results last up to four months but would need a top up after that. As it was my second time getting it the results should last slightly longer.
I left the clinic feeling grateful. Grateful for the opportunity to have this treatment done, grateful to Dr. Lalloo for putting me at ease while still being reassuringly professional and grateful that all went well.
I couldn’t wait to get home and show off my face. Would anyone notice? I was hoping that they did, as in they thought I looked well, not as in, omg do you get your face done? A week on and thankfully its been the latter. Everyone has commented on how fresh I look, asking whether I’d had my hair done or changed my makeup. While some knew I’d had this done others didn’t and it was their comments that I was really interested in.
Would I recommend it? A big yes. I had drinks with a girlfriend the other night who didn’t know I’d had it done who said I was looking well. I excitedly told her what I’d had done, I think I may have sowed a little botox seed in her head.
While I would definitely recommend having this procedure done to anyone who has thought about it but just hasn’t made up their mind, I think it’s important to point out that you should really do your homework. Make sure you research the different types of toxins out there. Only go to a registered doctor. The toxin used is powerful and should only be administered by a trained professional. Know that not every doctor is going to yield the same result. Look for someone who has a strong aesthetic history, who understands the intricate dimensions of the face and the effects of beauty on the face. Ask people who’ve had it done are they happy with their results. And run a mile when you see salons offering too good to be true knock down prices on botox. It’s just that, too good to be true. Quality should be at the forefront of your mind when having any chemical inserted into your body.
I had the Dysport toxin inserted into three areas of my face. My forehead, my 11 lines and my laughter lines ,the cost of this was €425.00 with the cheek filler costing €350. Not cheap I know but Dr. Lalloo did not charge me extra for his time and so offered me the toxin and filler at a reduced rate of €650.00. This price I know is defiantly not the cheapest on the market but as I said before spend your money wisely. I knew I was in the best of hands with Dr. Lalloo, I’d done my homework and was more than happy to have him carry out the procedures knowing that the quality of the product he used was the best on the market. His knowledge and precision can also not be measured monetarily.
I am now happy with the face that looks back at me in the mirror. Don’t get me wrong I wasn’t unhappy before just a little weary of the forever tired face staring back. I’m glad I did something about it and hopefully this helps anyone who may be thinking of getting it done themselves.