Time Will Tell ... - New York, NY

I had Ultherapy of the lower face and neck done...

I had Ultherapy of the lower face and neck done this past Friday, 5/10/2013. As I write this review on Sunday morning, 5/12/2013, I still have a good deal of swelling (I look like a chipmunk storing nuts!) , numbness and sensitivity around my jawline and neck.

The swelling is the big shocker as I was not told during my consultation that there would be any swelling, nevertheless the amount of swelling I have.

While it was suggested to me that I take a NyQuil PM 1-hour prior to the procedure, the amount of pain was greatly down-played during my consultation.

Before I get to ahead of myself, here are some further details:

- I'm 49 years old

- I work directly with a chemist who specializes in cosmetic chemistry and customizes all my skincare products. This individual pinpointed the Plastic Surgeons office he suggested I visit (he recommended that I make sure an Esthetician actually performs the procedure, and that was indeed the case).

- My chemist felt that Ultherapy was a great option for me as I'm just really beginning to see some sagging along my jaw line.

- When I went for my consult with the Esthetician, she was actually unavailable (out sick). I met with her assistant who herself has under-gone Ultherapy. I did feel like I got more of a sales pitch than a consult from her (she asked me what I wanted to focus on and before I could get a word out she said she'd suggest a full face procedure. My response was ... um, no). While I do feel the office should have called me to reschedule my consult, at the end of the day I was set to have this done and don't feel it would have made any difference if I had met with the Esthetician.

- 90 minutes before the procedure I took 800 mg of Motrin.

As I mentioned, I had the procedure done this past Friday. The office called me yesterday afternoon to check in (it was the receptionist who called). I told them I had a great deal of swelling and she said that's normal. When I asked how long the swelling would remain she said a day or two. Quite honestly, based on the amount of sensitivity I still have along my jaw line, I find it hard to believe that tomorrow I'll awake with no swelling, but we'll see. I'm somewhat surprised that at no time did anyone suggest I ice the area to help reduce swelling.

During the procedure:

Seriously, the Esthetician could not have been nicer. She utilizes various "tools" (e.g., a back heat/massage pad; stress balls) to try to distract you from the procedure itself. She gave me small breaks as needed.

The procedure had two phases. The first phase they go over the area using a very high laser level. During the second phase they go over the entire area again with a much lower laser level. The first phase hurt ALOT. The second phase was a breeze.

My Chemist made it clear to me that in order for the procedure to be effective, the laser has to be set at a pretty high level. I hate to say this but it's somewhat the no pain, no gain scenario. In order for the laser to get down to the layer it needs to impact, it has to be up there. Quite honestly, for the money I spent, I rather have the pain now than find myself out the money with no results later.

That's about it for now. I certainly haven't seen immediate results as other have claimed. If anything, due to the swelling, I look worse post-treatment. Obviously, I expect this to be temporary and I'm hopeful that I'll see the results I want in time for my 50th birthday!

Before Photo

This photo was taken on 12/29/2012. I had Ultherapy done to my lower face (concentration around jaw line) on 3/10/2013.

1-Week Post Ultherapy

This photo was taken on 5/17/2013, 1-week after my Ultherapy. While I still have a good amount of tenderness and numbness around my jawline, all the swelling has receded.

5 23 2013_13-days post Ultherapy

All the swelling I had post-Ultherapy has resolved itself. Still a little tender around my jawline, but feeling MUCH less sore.

Seeing some minor lift along the jowl area (at least I think I am!), which was really totally unexpected this early post-procedure.

Retrospective - Age 17 - 49

At the end of the day, no one looking at you is just focusing in on what we consider to be our "problem" areas. As such, I'm posting a retrospective of me thru the years, from age 17 - 49. My picture selection was limited to what I had readily available and online already. Basically, I think it shows how my jawline has 'squared off' over the years. I see this change most noticeably from the age of 45 onwards.

Through The Year: Age 17 - 49

At the end of the day, I realize that no one looking at me is just focusing in on what I consider to be my "problem" areas.

While overall I'm pretty happy with the way I look, I really started noticing a squaring off of my jaw line around the age of 45. This is what I consider to be my "problem" area and I think it's pretty noticeable in these photos - http://s271.photobucket.com/user/susannyny/media/ME_zpsbced3cc6.jpg.html

I wanted to post this progression of how I've aged because I feel just posting close-ups of my jawline are not a true indication of how I look. I look at those close-ups and I'm like, YIKES! :)

With that said, for comparative purposes, I will continue to post a weekly close-up. At the end of 3 months I'll also post an updated full face photo.

5 31 2013_21-days post Ultherapy

Posting my weekly update photo. Had my Ultherapy done 3-weeks ago. Feel that I'm seeing some positive changes. My expectations remain that most of the upside is still a good month or two away.

1-Month Post Ultherapy

Photo taken 6/7/2013, exactly 1-month since my lower face Ultherapy.

1-Month Post Ultherapy

Photo taken 6/7/2013, exactly 1-month since my lower face Ultherapy.
No discernible, additional change from last week. Seems status quo for now.

5-Weeks Post Ultherapy

I've decided to take a week or 2 off from posting a photo. I will definitely post another prior to the end of June. The change has been so gradual, I want to see how noticeable they are using a longer time-span.

7-Weeks Post Ultherapy - Photo Update

It's been 3-weeks since I've posted an updated photo.
I will say that while the photos are helpful, they also can vary greatly based on lighting and slight angle changes. Obviously, these are not professional photos :)

Over the last 3 weeks its been difficult for me to assess whether or not there's been continued improvement. I'm actually hopeful that the office where I had the procedure done will be calling me in soon for my post-Ultherapy photos. I'd be very curious to see the changes from the Esthetician's perspective.

Likewise, in another month I'll be seeing my skin-care chemist. I'm very interested in hearing his impression as well.

06 28 2013_7 Weeks Post Ultherapy Photo

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Comments (131)

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I had Ultherapy two weeks ago and curious how you're feeling about the procedure more than a year later.
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Overall, I suppose I don't think about it much one way or another. I saw some positive results, but it was ultimately difficult to gauge just how much. I went into it knowing that it is not a long term solution. Right now, it is not something I would rush out to do again. With that said, I have no regrets. I hope it works well for you!!!
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Well, I can definitely see an improvement in your photos...your jowls significantly less visible!
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I had Ultherapy in Thailand...a bit nervous as I was overseas and alone. So painful but no pain no gain as Susan says. Very swollen and as I also had fractional lasering straight after it was very red. I looked very sunburnt. It took 5 days for the redness to disappear and then the skin dried and peeled. I also had botox and fillers after. Everyone commented where I stayed in Karon on how fantastic I was looking and 3 other ladies ended up going for the same treatment. The whole treatment with Ultherapy to the whole face and fractional lasering to my face, upper shoulders and neck to behind ears and decolatage with botox was just over AU$4000 and I also had fillers later which I got at a huge reduction for 2ml for AU$639. Everyone says I am looking great and relaxed after my holiday!! Week 3 has gone and still improving...Karen
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Hi, Karen, I am going to Bangkok next week and am considering having ultherapy or thermage while I am there. Do you mind telling me which clinic you went to? Thanks in advance...HoBoBo
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Glad it was a "restful" vacation :)
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Hobobo...please call me 0432083716 and I will give you details.....
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I went to a clinic in Phuket. You may have to google Bangkok. I wish you well and I am so happy with my results... and am sure you will be with yours...:)
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I still did all my holiday activities but was mindful of wearing a hat and very strong sunscreen which we should all do anyway. After that I was feeling fantastic and had another 10 days to enjoy myself and had a check up before returning home.
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Thanks Susan it was an amazing holiday and coming home with a 'restful' or 'destressed' look was such a bonus.
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Hi Susan, I'm curious to hear your results and final verdict on Ultherapy. Was it worth it for you? Have you learned anymore valuable information about Ultherapy, such as how it can be focused more towards elasticity, etc? Thanks!
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Hi lynn. Overall, I'm happy with the results. As my personal "research" cosmetologist told me, my elasticity levels are excellent for a woman my age (I'll be 50 in 1 month + 1 day!). I really haven't had time to focus on my face as I've been dealing with some other things, so unfortunately I can't tell you anything more about how apparently the laser can be focused to accomplish different things (I'm wondering if the Cosmetologist who performed the procedure even knows that).
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Susan, thanks for all your postings as it has helped me a lot in determining if I should go ahead or not. I definitely see a difference in the before and afters. However, the before is still a great look since you're in your 40s. I'm "over the hill" as they say so I say enjoy your good looks and life for the time being.
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I am so not hopeful about this technique. Much more painful than I was led to believe. Can't see a difference in face or neck. The doctor never called to check on me or my progress. I was so disappointed I did not schedule a 3 month visit. I think it is a waste of a huge amount of money. So sorry. Thought you should know. My skin was good at the time but definitely needed some firming and anti wrinkling. Did not get it.
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Chrissie, while I'm not sure that I got all the results I was hoping for, those may not have been realistic :) Overall, I do not have any regrets with having the procedure done and my personal "research" cosmetologist confirmed that my elasticity levels were excellent.
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I'll keep my fingers crossed for you Hopeful! Give it some time. It can take 2 - 3 months before you start to notice results.
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I can see improvement..let me ask...do you tip on this type of procedure since done by the same person that does facials? I could not afford this with a 20 percent (my usual) tip..what did you do?
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Sorry not to have seen this question sooner. No, I did not tip when I had the procedure done. The Esthetician who performed the Ultherapy owns the practice, so I didn't see a need to tip.
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I don't think you should tip on a $4000 medical procedure even if it is cosmetic. 20% is $800! If this is a medical procedure, does the person who does your facials have medical training or degree? I realize people can be trained but this is your face and neck!
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I began Venus Freeze treatments and never even thought of tipping. I leave tipping for those who rely on tips because they are at or lower than minimum wage. I worked at a high-paying job that was a "service" type and never expected a tip nor did I get one. Some salaries are based low (like wait people) because it's customary to leave 15%. When I waited tables, I took the low salary because I knew with tips I would make fair pay.
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I didn't tip and didn't feel I should. I am extremely happy with my results..Ultherapy with fractional laser. Very painful and had to curb my holiday activities for the first 5 days but after that it started to heal very quickly...I too dealt with the owner and did not bargain on any price and was in fact offered fillers after 2 weeks at a discounted price..
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My experience is that I continued to see improvement for a year. We continue to age so as time passes you will age, whether you had Ultherapy or not. However the Ultherapy sets the clock back a little.
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Thanks for posting that lindalocket....I know personally it's good to know that without ultherapy things could be heading a lot further south! If I don't get the results I am hoping for, I still feel that it's post-poning the inevitable for a short while, and that's worth something. =)
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I am so glad to hear that. I am definitely seeing a difference, and to think it might go on past 6 months is great news. In about a year, I plan to have it done again - I've been happy with the results.
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Me too! I have been told 2 years before I may need it again so I will wait and see..
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