I am scheduled for a tuck up (see my face lift...
I am scheduled for a tuck up (see my face lift review) and decided to go for the chemical peel while I am under, which I had opted out of when Dr. Winslow did my face lift last year. I had skipped it because I was not ready to give up tanning. Tanning would destroy the results of the TCA peel. So I had to pick one or the other. Whereas I picked tanning last year, I now choose the peel this year.
Well, I was always a Jersey Shore girl but there isn't much opportunity to tan in Indy, as I have learned this past Summer. I have grown to like my more pale complexion (although one would hardly call my light olive skin pale). I also have grown to dislike the fine lines in my face and the dullness of my skin and sun spots from tanning damage. So I am getting a 35% TCA chemical peel when Dr. Winslow does the tuck up (revision to my face lift - see that review).
I am having the procedure on December 16 under twilight sedation. All told, with the tuck up and scar revision, I should be under for 90-minutes. Twilight sedation is so much easier than general anesthesia (although I would not want to do body contouring under it). I'll go home after surgery and see Dr. Winslow the next morning.
Then I will see Dr. Winslow on Dec 22 for my follow-up and directly head to Canada to spend Christmas with family. My daughter and SIL and granddaughter are flying in from Argentina, and my SIL's parents and their partners are coming in from NJ, and everyone is staying with my SIL's aunt and uncle, grandmother and grandfather. It should be a large and happy gathering and wonderful ending to the year!
Dr. Catherine Winslow does incredible facial plastic surgery. You have to see my before and after photos to appreciate the incredible transformation she was able to give me after massive weight gain and loss had destroyed my face. Again, check out my face lift review, especially the video of my transformation (first image in the slider under the review title). Dr. Winslow is amazing!
Stay tuned for progress photos and updates coming soon... until then, wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!
So today is the two week count down. I have all prescriptions filled except Celebrex (need the copay card for that one) and wow I feel like I have a lot of prescriptions this time around, 7 in total. I am apprehensive about keeping them all straight but this is how I get before surgery. I know all will be well and that I am in the best of hands with Dr. Winslow.
I also began the bleaching cream tonight. As well, I have added 1 extra serving of protein by way of an egg-based protein powder. Since I am lactose intolerant I cannot do whey protein powders. I am grateful that a friend told me about the egg protein powders as I was not aware of them. And I am going to begin taking my arnica tonight.
I have an appointment to have my hair cut and dyed on the 13th because it will be 6-weeks post op before I can have it dyed again. Then I am in surgery on the 16th. That is fast approaching! I am anxious with everything that is going on so please send peaceful and calming thoughts to me (or leave a word of encouragement in the comments below).
1 week count down
I've got my recovery room ready -- sleeping in the guest room with an inclined foam wedge to elevate my face. All prescriptions are filled. I've been taking extra protein and using the bleaching cream every night. I was incorrect when I said that I began the arnica at two weeks pre op. The protocol is to take it 3 days pre op. I also have bromeline to help with bruising after surgery, and need to buy the fresh pineapple this weekend. Dr. Winslow says to eat one whole fresh pineapple including the core every day to help healing. That is a lot of pineapple for me; let's see if I can tolerate it.
I will post an update after surgery... photos, too!
3 day count down
Today I began the arnica and valtrex. And I got my hair cut and colored. All set to go. I am feeling a little apprehensive just because I have had so much surgery. The hardest part has been emotional for me and I am somewhat dreading recovery. I know this is an easy surgery with the tuck up and the peel. It is more the thought of recovery, following the protocol and dealing with irritated flaking skin and bruising and swelling. I know it will be worth it, and an easy recovery compared to all of my other surgeries.
On my way...
16 Dec 2014
Day of treatment
About to pop a Valium and head over to surgery. Wish me luck, please! Oh, and I should mention that I messed up with the Arnica and Valtrex above. They were supposed to be started the day befor surgery NOT three days before.
Post op day 1
I ended up getting my lips done - super excited! When Dr. Winslow did the tuck up she had enough SMAS to augment my lips. Now I won't need to get lip filler, which is quite painful. Oh my my lips hurt so badly yesterday but today they are fine. I cannot wait to see my ultimate result when the swelling subsides but I can see they are beautifully shaped already.
My face looks like I have a suntan from the peel. I have to keep it drenched in aquaphor and take two showers a day, or more, but no touching the face. Plus I have lots of medications to take. Other than that, no outdoors for a week, no no lifting over 5 pounds, and I can return to the gym in a week.
Eventually the skin will start to peel off. I don't know how people risk doing a 35% TCA peel at home. That's not a good idea.
Looking funky is part of the process
I look extra funky because I had more than just a chemical peel. If you think this looks bad, go ahead and check out the photos on my face lift review. But the outcome was sooooo good! Gee, I hope I do not look weird for Christmas. I think I might. LOL
Buh-bye old skin
Lots of peeling after my second shower of the day. Of course my first impulse is to peel this hanging skin off. No. No. No. Leave it alone. Dr. Winslow often smacks my hand away from my face and tells me don't touch... with the utmost love and respect of course, LOL.
This morning Dr. Winslow told me not to wear the face bra any longer because she did not want it rubbing against my new delicate skin. It was so nice to get that thing off. It was a big gooey mess that went straight into the garbage.
Dr. Winslow has a very specific protocol to follow. I am not going to share it here because I don't want someone to think they can do a 35% peel at home and follow her protocol and everything will work out just fine. DON"T DO THIS AT HOME. There are very specific prescription medications to be taken, very specific things to do and NOT to do. I repeat: DON"T DO THIS AT HOME.
5 days PO pix... almost done!
My skin is coming off quickly now and I haven't much more to go. I hope that when I see Dr. Winslow tomorrow that she can remove whatever remains.
My face and lips look a little distorted in the full frontal shot. I really don't look that way in person. My face is a little swollen but it looks even, as do my lips. I like them this size and would be very happy if they remained this way.
I am finding it hard to resist picking at the dead skin today!
I am very happy with the peel.
No makeup required
Dr. Winslow did a great job with my peel. I am not wearing any makeup in this photo. The color of the pic is slightly washed out (sorry) but my skin is so much more youthful looking. I go back for my 3-week follow-up tomorrow. I have one area of concern -- I think that the sun did a little damage to a spot on my skin and I am nervous about that. I have been wearing sun block and hats/hoods and luckily it has not been sunny most days that I have been outdoors. But at the end of one sunny day I noticed a brown spot where there had not been one previously. I will know more tomorrow after my consult and update you.
Follow-up Appt Results
In my last post I wrote that I would be going to my 3-week follow-up the next day. Unfortunately Nurse Triste was ill with the flu and so we rescheduled my appointment. I saw her and Misty the aesthetician yesterday for my follow-up appointment.
Everything is going well. Trust had to pull two stitches that my face was spitting and that felt pretty weird. But that has nothing to do with the peel. That was to do with my tuck-up.
I am happy with the results of my peel. But darn it I did get a little sun damage! That is certainly no fault of Dr. Winslow. I wrote in my last post that I was afraid that the small brown patch on the side of my face was new sun damage and it is. I know exactly the day it happened, too. I had been very compliant with putting on my sun block every 2-hours and wearing hats and hoods to cover my face. I also was very fortunate to have lots of overcast days. But there was one long day riding of in the RV that got me. The sun was not shining in my eyes so I did not notice it until I felt it pretty warm on my face. By then the damage had been done. I saw the brown patch that day in the mirror. Darn!
Triste and Misty (awww how cute, I never noticed they rhymed) said that it may resolve with using the bleaching cream. Dr. Winslow has her own proprietary medical grade formula. If that does not work, I believe that we can do a spot peel.
I recommend the peel be done in the Fall/Winter when the sun is not so harsh. It was challenging enough to keep out of direct sunlight when I had this done in mid December (the sun damage occurred 3 weeks post op). I could not imagine how difficult it would be to avoid the sun when the skies are bright and the days are long.
Happy with my results and will be thrilled when the brown patch is gone. I will keep you posted on the results of the lightening cream.
Waxing, a word of caution...
13 Feb 2015
2 months post
Just a word of caution about waxing to any one getting / who has gotten a chemical peel...
I usually go to Heather, the aesthetician who introduced me to Dr. Winslow, for my waxing. She has a great studio in her home and it is fully licensed. Its a bit of a hike for me to Heather Brown Studios so I usually get the works when I go: legs, French bikini, and face.
Well, I didn't need the works, and as I was at my usual Salon Orange Moon for cut and color, I asked Cindy to do a little touch up on my lip and brows. She's the owner and knows what she's doing, and she uses great products. So it is not her fault what happened...
The parts of my face that she waxed began burning when she put the cooling gel on them. It turned out that my skin was lifted in these spots. It was because of the interaction with my chemical peel and the bleaching cream that I use. Dr. Winslow said it is a good idea to stop the bleaching cream for a week before waxing and use wax for sensitive skin. Oops!
I've been treating what feels like dry skin with Aquaphor and I am healing well. Poor Cindy felt terrible. I told her that maybe it is a good thing that I did not get my face done like I usually do with Heather... what if my entire face would have been burned like the few patches around my brows and lips?
Like I said, just a word of caution to all you lovely ladies... Happy V-day... and I've got some great news on the homefront... my grandson was born this morning. We've been waiting years for him!
Love Dr. Winslow's Bleaching Cream
28 Feb 2015
2 months post
The bleaching cream that I've been using daily has removed the patch of sun damage on the left side of my face. Its Dr. Winslow's own formulation and I just love it. I am so glad that I did the peel with her.
Switching gears... How do you like my hair curled versus straightened?
GF likes my new skin
14 Mar 2015
3 months post
I saw my good friend, Kathy, yesterday. We met here on RealSelf and just happen to live in the same state! Kathy has a critical eye for plastic surgery and it was the first time she'd seen me since I had the peel. I wasn't wearing any makeup on my skin, just eye makeup and lipstick, simply because I no longer need to wear makeup to make my skin look even toned and youthful and my acne scars are gone. My skin looks flawless now. Kathy was amazed at how wonderful my skin looked. I am thrilled beyond words with the peel and bleaching cream (both the silver and gold jars) from Dr. Winslow. It was absolutely worth giving up tanning to get this wonderful complexion!!!
Ladies, Dr. Winslow's beaching cream really does maximize the results of the peel. Be sure to get them both and use the creams every day as directed!!! I cannot recommend this procedure enough!
18 Mar 2015
3 months post
Pic of me waking up on my 51st birthday. Look at my skin!!!
3-mos checkup - A++
23 Mar 2015
3 months post
I had my 3-mos check up today and everything is going very well. My team at Winslow Facial Plastic Surgery was very happy with the results of my peel and the bleaching cream regimen. I did not have any makeup on aside from a little mascara and under eye concealer and my skin looked flawless. It is so wonderful to have a nice glowing complexion and tone like I had when I was much younger. Prior my skin tone had been sallow and uneven, and of course had sun damage. I know I am gushing over the peel and bleaching cream but I just never expected such a remarkable improvement. It would be great if I had closeup before and after shots of my skin to show you!!!
I will be in Palm Beach in May for a little me time. This will be the test!!! Has this former sun worshipper reformed her ways??? You betcha! Nurse Triste gave me the down low on clear zinc oxide, spray on sun block for babies, and even a dry powder sun block. She said to apply liberally every 2-hours. I think I will stay under the umbrella chair while on the beach, and maybe get one chic floppy hat for strolling. But I love the ocean, too, so I'll be sure to grease up before and after getting wet!
The resort I am staying at has a clothing optional spa... hmmmm... that sounds like something fun to try. I may call back to Shannon the aesthetician at Dr. Winslow's office and ask her what she has to cover my scars so I can go au naturel.
Before pic shows sun damage
26 Apr 2015
4 months post
This pic shows the sun damage that I had on my skin. I will bet if I had a closeup it would really show the extent of the damage. But this gives you a pretty good idea of the uneven skin tone, at least.
6-mos post op
Skin looks marvelous! Thanks a bunch, Dr. Winslow!!!
A secret ingredient for great skin
16 Jun 2015
6 months post
Great skin requires you taking care of yourself. I absolutely notice the difference in the quality of my skin and even my face when I am going through a stressful time, or not sticking to my beauty regimen. Obviously if you are a smoker and / or drinker of unhealthy things like alcohol and caffeine and sugar then your skin is going to show the effects in a way that is not good. I have found that drinking a large bottle of mineral water every day makes a huge difference. By large bottle I mean 50 oz. All in all I try to get 80-100 oz of liquid each day per my nutritionist.
I have also been told mineral makeup is good for skin although I don't use it (I've got too much invested in Sephora makeup to throw it out).
I remain happy with the results of my peel at nearly 18-mos post procedure. I have had some unevenness return owing to sun exposure -- there was a weekend getaway at the lake when I forgot to bring my wide-brimmed hat. But it is plausible. I make sure to wear sun block rain or shine and reapply every two hours when I am in the sun. I never sun bath anymore and I have come to enjoy my lighter skin.
The results will last if you take care of your skin and protect it!
Photo 1-year post 35% TCA Peel
I should have posted a photo to go with the post above. I have makeup on in the pic on the left that was taken 1-year post TCA Peel. I am not wearing any makeup in the pic on the right that was taken 18-mos after the TCA peel.