What I tried this year 2020 and more.
BODY I am an Ambassador for Kings College Hospital Dubai and therefore I’m often invited to try procedures and meet experienced Doctors. I am happy to give you the results from a client/ patient/customer perspective. Honestly, without fear or favour!
Botox and fillers
I feel that I am getting to the stage where I cannot hide my wrinkly, sun-damaged skin. I see it most at the top of my underarms, on my elbows, my inner thighs, and, oh, those knees!
“Kninkles”. Do you remember the drama back in 2006 about Demi Moore's knees?
I would be lying if I said it doesn’t upset me when people comment on a picture where the wrinkles are visible. More importantly than that I don’t like my wrinkles myself. I prefer not to use filters nor do I photo-edit my skin, so I do my best to hide it physically. I would like the freedom not to have to, to be totally authentic. I rarely wear makeup for the same reason.
So, despite lots of experimentation, the treatments just
don’t seem to make a difference. I was even challenged by Dr. Natalia Spierings on Instagram (as she is stuck in London) to get just one knee filled and botoxed...
Result? No difference at all. Dr. Natalia said it wouldn’t work.
And she’s the expert, my expert, and almost always 100% right!
I have spoken to dermatologists, cosmetologists, and cosmetic surgeons. A couple of whom (like Dr. Natalia) I totally trust. It seems, once through the marketing hoo-hah, that there is no cure. I will keep my ear to the ground and will continue to try what is on offer. I could bulk up but gaining weight does not appeal as I love the energy of being fit, light, and lean. I consistently swim one to two thousand metres daily and that too has made little or no difference. But I am cardio fit! I do bodyweight strength training. I run a lot and see the loose skin move with each stride. My skin has lost its elasticity. I have officially lost control of my skin.
This is me in October 2020
So what is natural beauty? To me, it is Judy Dench or Jane Fonda. Both fabulous. Chalk and cheese. Both born naturally beautiful but took their own paths later in life. Natural beauty is born naturally beautiful, foundational. ... Natural beauty is attractive features, a structure that allows one to look attractive with or without any makeup. It means your lips are beautiful without any lipstick or lip balm, your eyes are beautiful without any eye makeup, your face is shiny without any compact. Yes, they paint, but the canvas is beautiful!
Natural beauty seems to mean something different to everyone. As does the concept of growing old gracefully or disgracefully. Not many women of any age can say they never wear makeup, never have botox, or never use a gentle filter. All of these things are a choice and have their place and time. Do we even know what beautiful is any more?
According to the ‘Golden Ratio’ (see end of post!)
CELEBRITIES WITH THE MOST BEAUTIFUL FACES IN THE WORLD ARE (apparently):
1. Amber Heard 91.85% 2. Kim Kardashian 91.39% 3. Kate Moss 91.06% 4. Emily Ratajkowski 90.8% 5. Kendall Jenner 90.18% 6. Helen Mirren 89.93% 7. Scarlett Johansson 89.82% 8. Selena Gomez 89.57% 9. Marilyn Monroe 89.41% 10. Jennifer Lawrence 89.24% (And if you google before and afters of most of the above, you will see LOTS of sometimes very extreme work!)
Perhaps there are two sorts of beautiful celebrities, those that have had work done and those that hide it. 2014/2015
I began to feel invisible, insignificant, and old. I was blending into a sea of 50 plus ladies. I was looking around me and thinking I don’t want to play this game. I think I wanted more but didn’t know what more I wanted. I just wanted to feel more alive! My eyelids were non existent (the genes of my estranged father). I imagine I was peri-menopausal but had no idea what my body was trying to tell me.
It has taken much soul searching to show this next picture. Do I stay quiet or do I continue to speak up for not being ashamed? I want everyone to be able to share life journeys without being judged. But there will always be those whose preconceptions will drive a rush to judgment. Whether this revelation helps you decide you want to do something or confirms that you don’t, I will have done my job. I paid for the procedure in installments and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made.
I have been looking back at the photos on my phone and there are very few pictures of me prior to this time, the few that are there I wouldn’t like to share much. I didn't like having my picture taken at all. I didn't like how I looked. My Instagram page consisted of portraits I painted. And running pics or others of me wearing sunglasses.
I had no idea what a difference that this procedure would make! Having shared most of my life with you in the last three years here we go...
July 2015, the new me. An Endoscopic brow lift! Yes, I bruise easily and that is from the lip filler, not the procedure. I think I look fresh, not different and I guess that is all that matters. Cosmesurge Dr. Claudia Alves Silva Machado
Then again, 2nd August 2020 just one week after CO2 Laser. I love this procedure. My skin looked fabulous in a very short time, although we could have gone a bit deeper in the area around my mouth and chin. Different skin textures in different places. Dr. Natalia Spierings was cautious as we were celebrating my 56th birthday on the 1st. Procedures:
Lip filler. I have had this over the years when it is very subtle I quite like it. Done badly which is all too easy to do, I dislike it so much I had to have it removed a week later (easily done). Fillers. These are so temporary and fillers can migrate. I am not a fan and luckily nor is my dermatologist. I have tried it in my jawline for definition, my cheekbones for lift. Personally, I like a bit of gaunt, a lean face.
The Vampire PRP facial certainly made my skin glow for a few months. Again a temporary glow.
Ultherapy was the most painful way to try and get a tighter neck and jaw. I didn’t notice any results from that.
Carboxy quite painful, I did repeat it a few times, watching the carbon dioxide gas work its way under my skin on my tummy and inner thighs were bizarre. I don’t believe this worked at all. I am a big botox fan, in my neck, chin, jaw, eyes, nose, and brow. Almost everywhere actually. It works on some wrinkling. But all this (above) is temporary.
MiniNano blading I had about 6-10 hairs tattooed on each brow.
Composite filled lower teeth,
A small change but a huge confidence booster, I don’t know why I never did this before now.
I had Invisalign prior to the composite filling.
Ultimately a procedure that leaves me looking refreshed is the vision I have for my future, not filled, plumped up, and fake. My version of Ageing Gracefully.