Massive weight gain and loss of 125 pounds had left my face and body with sagging skin. I describe my face as looking like a St. Bernard's face and my body wearing an ill-fitted suit of skin. So last year I fulfilled a long held dream to have plastic surgery and erase the last traces of my former obesity. I had absolutely amazing results from facial plastic surgery with Dr. Catherine Winslow (Winslow Facial Plastic Surgery) on 12-10-2013. I invite you to read my review here http://www.realself.com/review/carmel-in-facelift-and-feel-15-years-younger-incredible-work-dr-catherine.
One of the procedures I had was an upper eye lid lift, and I really liked my result. I used to stare at my eyes in the mirror in amazement at how awake and youthful my eyes looked without the heavy hooding.
Once my swelling subsided and the tissues settled, as is normal after plastic surgery, my eyes were not as awake looking. The upper eye lids relaxed a little and although I still very much liked the result, I missed that bright eyed look that I had in the early months after my lift.
To be clear, the upper eye lid lift was successful and my results were worth it. In fact, when I saw my body contouring plastic surgeon, Dr. Joseph F. Capella, I had him guess what procedures I had done to my face and he quickly said that I had had something done with my eyes. So, yes, the results are great.
But as. I said, I missed that bright eyed look. Yesterday Nurse Triste injected Voluma in my cheeks. Triste is the ONLY ACE INJECTOR in Indiana. This distinction was given to her by Allergan, the pharmaceutical company who makes Juvaderm, Voluma, etc, and Triste is so proficient that they even have her train other nurses to inject fillers. Triste came very highly recommended to me and has injected me several times now with great result and virtually no bruising or swelling. So I trusted her judgement and expertise when she recommended we use Voluma.
Triste injected into my cheeks and the side of my face by my eyes to pull everything up. It was pretty pain-free. I did not have any bruising and my results immediately looked natural after being injected.
What strikes me most about the Voluma is how it lifted my upper eye lids. I now have that awake and bright eyed youthful look that I did after my eye lid lift. I was even able to wear dark eye shadow in my eye crease today without it making my eyes look hooded. Voluma also smoothed out the creases around my nose. Oh how I hate those parenthesis around my nose and chin!
The price point for Voluma is higher than other fillers. However Voluma is the only FDA approved HA filler for the cheeks. Plus the results last approximately 2-years, which is far longer than any of my other fillers. So with that in mind, the higher price point is justified.
I've seen some reviews on this site in which women had bad results with filler. It is likely that the injector was less than proficient at the task. This is a prescription product, ladies! The injector you choose must be very well trained. Even my body contouring plastic surgeon advised me to go to someone who does injections all the time. Be selective in choosing your injector. Ask for credentials and certification with the product, how many procedures they have done with it, and how often are they doing them. Even if you don't get bad results, product that is not placed optimally can be absorbed quicker by your body, and your results will not last as long. I highly recommend Nurse Triste at Winslow Facial Plastic Surgery. She is an expert. I just love her and would not go to anyone else. In fact if I moved back to the East Coast where I am from, I would probably fly back to Indy to have filler with Triste (it is cheaper out here anyway than on the east coast and Fromtier Airlines flies here very cheaply from NJ).
You know, I never thought I would get filler. I did not want a foreign substance injected into my body. But once I looked at the safety profile of Hyaluronic Acid, a substance made by our bodies, and talked to a friend who is a clinician about how safe it is, well, then I felt comfortable using it. Now I really love the results that only filler can give. I have friends who have avoided getting face lifts because they use filler. The results can be amazing! As for me, my old St. Bernard's face needed surgery to give the filler a chance of providing great results -- I mean, filer is amazing but it is not a miracle in a syringe, LOL. Just look at my before face lift photos. You"ll be blown away at what Dr. Winslow was able to achieve (she may have had a bit of miracle in her scalpel).
I've attached a few pix of me getting injected. Despite the look on my face in some of the pix,this does NOT hurt -- except the lips, OMG, they hurt, but I endure the pain for the luscious lips I get. I have also attached some really bad selfies taken the day after injection so you can see how smooth my face is, and no bruising or weird swelling. Excuse the quality of the selfies, as camera phones do not take great close ups.
Triste told me to stay out of the sun as tanning will make the filler last half as long as it normally would last. She said apply 50 sun block every two hours. So I am going to heed her advice.