The post I have been promising for months has finally arrived! Sorry it took me so long, but it kept getting extended…because I kept getting more fillers! Lol.
As many of you who follow me on Instagram or Facebook probably know, I decided a few months ago to get under-eye filler for the deep, dark hollows that have been plaguing my existence for many years. I had been researching it for awhile and found board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Hanea Kim in Walnut Creek, CA, a doctor who had great reviews and results, so I decided to finally go for it.
At first I was only intending on doing 1 syringe-full under my eyes because I like to err on the side of “less is more” than “more is more.” Since I have never had any injectable or surgery or anything like this before, I didn’t want to overdo it right off the bat. We decided to start with 1 syringe of Restylane to the tear-trough area under my eyes.
First up is cleaning the area and then numbing it with a lidocaine cream for 20-25 minutes. Above is a photo of when I had it done later on both my under-eyes and lips. Obviously pain can be part of the process when needles are involved, but that was the least of my concerns as needles don’t bother me. I’ve had PRK (laser eye surgery) before and tons of needles in my gums for teeth procedures, so this was a piece of cake for me. Still you want the numbing cream for sure!
After I had my eyes done there was a lot of swelling later that evening and the next day, as I expected. I also bruised some, but not quite bad as I thought I would considering I am a VERY easy-to-bruise person. I would say within 4-5 days my under-eye area looked completely back to normal, sans A LOT of the dark circles. Yay!
In the meanwhile I started to think since that was so easy, I also wanted to do another procedure which I had wanted to do since 2002 or so and that was lip injections. My upper lip is really uneven which is why I always showed swatch photos from an angle. It REALLY started bothering me after I began blogging and taking up-close photos. Plus with age, as is normal, lips lose their plump-ness and I wanted some of that back. And another bonus for me is that hyaluronic acid (which is what is in Juvederm Vollure, which is what we used) helps plump lips and makes them less chapped, which has always been a problem for me also.
Above left is me before any procedures were done and on the right is after 2 syringes of Restylane under my eyes and 1 syringe of Vollure in my lips.
When I went back for my follow-up check-up and to get my first round of Vollure in my lips, I wasn’t happy with my under-eye area. I felt it looked hollow still and needed more help. So we did another syringe of Restylane.
This is me 2-3 days after my second round of Restylane and first round of Vollure. You can see my under-eyes are swollen still and my lips have little bruises where the injections were.
The day after though, I was a HOT MESS! My under-eyes were so swollen and my lips were HUGE. I felt like a bloated fish and was kind of worried the lips would never calm down and I would look like a freak. But a few days later everything had settled down and I was much happier. In fact my lips settled so much I started feeling like I needed a bit more in them (see this is what happens, you get used to it, then want MORE!)
This is after my next follow-up when I had decided I wanted another 1/2 syringe of Vollure in my lips. The swelling and bruises were nearly gone in this photo and my upper lip is so much more even! Above is a before of my lips.
And this is the final result after a syringe and a half of Vollure. As you can see they aren’t really “bigger” but more full and plumper. There is more roundness to them and the peaks of my top lip are more evened out as well. I love them and now cannot imagine not getting injections to make them stay plump! It just makes me feel way better having them evened out and it also makes wearing lip gloss nicer because they are fuller. Lipstick was always easier to get evened out because it’s more opaque and I could fake it with liner, but lip gloss isn’t opaque usually, and I felt a bit self-conscious about my wonky lips at times.
Here are the doctor’s before and after pics. The top before photos are before I did anything at all. The bottom two after photos are after 2 syringes of Restylane under my eyes and 1 1/2 syringes of Vollure in my lips. Such a huge difference, especially in my under-eyes! I feel like I can now focus on my face overall when I look in the mirror instead of zooming right onto these deep hollow areas, which made me look old and tired.
And here I am sans any editing or filters and fully healed. Yay!
I have zero regrets about this and definitely plan on continuing both of these in the future. The Restylane should last about a year under my eyes and the Vollure will last around 8-9 months in my lips.
I know many of you have been considering one or both of these procedures as well and my advice is just to really check out a lot of reviews and before and after photos. Also do a consultation beforehand to get a feel of the place and the doctor. Make sure it’s not some strip-mall day-spa type place either – you definitely want a skilled, REAL doctor, preferably a plastic surgeon or certified dermatologist (IMO) to do this kind of thing.
Also visiting different places in different areas could make a huge difference in cost. The first place I went to was in San Francisco and it was a place that Stephanie Nicole had been to a few times and had great reviews. However the doctor there wanted to do 3 syringes right off the bat in my under-eyes and cheeks, which I was not comfortable with. And it was more than twice the price of the doctor I found in the East Bay, mostly because SF is so pricey in general. So check around! A good site to do some checking from actual patients is Real Self.
Are injections something you have done or want to do in the future?