I've wanted to get my nose done since...
I've wanted to get my nose done since I was 24 years old. When looking at pictures, all I could see was my nose and I was always self conscious about it. I'd admire friends of mine with a naturally petite, cute nose and always wondered "why do I have such a shapeless potato on my face?!"
When I was 14, I asked my mom outright if I could get my nose done. I'm from western Europe, and plastic surgery is anything but the norm here, so she obviously flat out said no. The next year, she said "ok, when you turn 16!". Once I was 16, she admitted she'd only said it to keep me quiet. She then agreed to do it when I was 18. Unfortunately I didn't have the time (as it's frowned upon so much, I had to take a lot of time off), so we started looking once I was 19. At that time, she also agreed to a breast augmentation with a plastic surgeon family friend (he doesn't do noses) as I was fully developed but had less than an AA cup to fill out - another huge insecurity of mine. I became completely obsessed with before and afters, read countless reviews and spent my days watching rhinoplasties on YouTube (I want to be a surgeon myself). I got more and more anxious as seemingly every surgeon had horror reviews and malpractice suits, so I was on the edge of giving up. I was scared to end up with a botched, fake nose and hating it even more afterwards....but then I realized I wanted this more than anything - I had to put my trust in a surgeon. I had multiple consults and, although the surgeon I chose wasn't the one that spent the most time with me and chatted away, he seemed to really know what he was doing and was confident. My mom and I made a whole California trip out of the surgery :)
will update later with details!!
Ps: somethings wrong with my phone, so everything's black and white currently. I'll add color pics once i get it fixed!
Pre-op and the days after:)
So to update!
My mom and I drove to San Diego and came to the office before checking into our Airbnb. Dr Hilinski was late for our appointment because a previous rhino was running longer than expected, so I didn't mind (would've been worse if he rushed out of the surgery!)- my mom and I went around the corner to pick up supplies for after the surgery. During our pre-op, Dr Hilinski was very matter of fact and said my nose didn't need much altering (shocker to me!!), much more a "finesse" procedure. He said he wouldn't even need to break my bones!! I was examined on the inside and outside (septum wasn't severely deviated) and listened to what I dislike. I also showed him the pictures of Natalie Portman's nose - forever jealous of her nose - and he took them into account. He took pictures of me and while he edited them, Christine explained my medications to me (arnica, pain killers and antibiotics as well as the cleaning procedure). We were then called in to morph the pictures he took. I like that he himself did the morph and not an assistant or a nurse (I had that in a previous consult), because HE'S performing the surgery after all. My mom didn't like that he wanted to add projection, so we left it open (he sent me the pictures to overview and send him back my final thoughts). It was relatively quick and I felt very confident in my choice!
Day of the surgery:
I had to wake up at 6am and was suuuper tired lol..my anxiety was not bad at all, I was pretty excited actually! My mom drove me to the office and was way more nervous than I was. Before surgery, Dr Hilinski came in again and talked about the procedure once again. My mom really disliked the "longer" nose, so I asked not to project it but to rotate the tip a little more. In hindsight, I feel like I should've listened to him because I feel like my bridge is a little too short, but I'm less than 2 weeks post op so I don't know yet. My nurse came in and calmed down my mom lol, she also explained everything to me once more and made sure I was okay. After changing and laying down on the operating table everything went super fast. I had a blanket over me and my anesthesiologist talked to me while I was slowly drifting off...
Upon waking, my nurse was right beside me and asked me how I was feeling. Surprisingly, I didn't feel ANY pain by my nose. The only discomfort I had was my throat, as a breathing tube was in there during surgery. i had some water and was fine to go home within 15 minutes. My mom was there to drive me and at home I went to sleep right after taking my meds and slept the whole day. I didn't find the packing (silicone splints) to be super uncomfortable as I didn't have great breathing before.
Day 1 &2: I didn't do much these two days, just slept and watched a LOT of "how to get away with murder"(hooked) and only ate yogurt and soup. I didn't have any pain, just a slight bit of pressure by my forehead, but it didn't bother me. I stopped taking pain pills after two days.
Day 3: my packing came out today and Dr Hilinski checked if everything looked good, and it did! I could breathe right after the splints coming out. He said my scars were looking good as I'd been cleaning like a maniac (w/ hydrogen and saline). :)
Day 4: I actually went outside today lol. I was nervous because 1) I didn't want to move too much to keep bleeding / swelling down and I was embarrassed! But nobody knew me there, so I felt okay. I felt fine at the mall and dinner but went to sleep early.
Day 5: went to a museum that day and felt fine, nothing new
Day 6: my cast fame off that day!!!
OMG I was way more nervous of this than the surgery. The white tape down the center of my nose wasn't straight so I was freaking out whether or not my nose would be crooked, but thank god, it was super straight. It was and still is VERY swollen, but it already looks really nice! I'm very happy with the outcome and my mom is too. She said I still look like "her baby", and I agree, it's not a super drastic change, but I hope it gets a little smaller over time. My mom wants hers done now too! Dr Hilinski cleaned my nose once more and promised me the swelling would go down soon and it'd look amazing. I can't wait for that stage to come.
The only bad thing. About all this is that my skin is horrible around my nose right now, lots of blackheads that won't go away even with glycolic/salicylic acid :( and I can't properly wash it since it's still VERY tender at the tip...praying that my skin will improve soon because I had pretty good skin before.
Oh, dr Hilinski also gave me a silicone gel with SPF to put on my columellar scar to improve healing. Doing that meticulously!
Now, PATIENCE!!! Not the best at that lol
uneven swelling and other scares
It's now more than 2 weeks post op and I honestly forget that I've had my nose done a good part of the day! Nobody has noticed A N Y T H I N G. Except when I wash my face and do my make up, I don't think about it all. :)
However, when I'm cleaning it (with saline & aquaphor) I always inspect it meticulously. There's still some slight bloodiness and scabbing in one nostril and it worries me sometimes because I'm scared my incision isn't closing (inside). My columellar scar is already so tiny, it amazes me every day! I have accidentally touched my nose too hard a few times and it'll hurt, but no crazy pain. The weirdest feeling is the nerves regrowing at night. It tingles all around the nose! So funny.
I have medium thick skin and my swelling is pretty insane and very uneven. My left side is significantly more swollen than the right, both around the bridge (next to it especially) and tip! I really hope it's only swelling and it's not crooked! That'd be my worst nightmare. The small bump I had removed sometimes looks like it's still "there", but my surgeon explained that the skin has some memory to it and thus needs to readjust to the bump not being there again. Makes sense. Other than that, I feel great. I still sleep fairly upright to minimize swelling and don't do too much around the house etc. I can't wait for the first three months to be over to see what I'll look like ;)
Really happy with my choice
Just a quick update/comment!
Before choosing my doctor I read lots of reviews on Dr Hilinski too and came across one saying he's not responsive after the surgery and I've had a completely different experience so I'm not sure if that was a real review??
I'm extremely paranoid whenever being sick/having surgery and always have questions. I'm in a different time zone but dr Hilinski ALWAYS answers the emails in less than a day himself, which I find very impressive and couldn't be happier with my choice of surgeon! I've also been reading his online blog/instructional posts about rhinoplasty like a madwoman. I recommend reading them to anyone interested in rhinoplasty! :)