All too frequently, people come to my clinic after having dermal filler treatment by an inexperienced practitioner looking not just unnatural, but quite frankly “odd”.
Yesterday a 60 year old lady come to my clinic after having dermal filler treatment, by a nurse practitioner. The nurse claimed she worked in the local hospital and she visited the lady's home, to perform facial filler on her way to work. Well, if you are not gasping with horror right now, you should be !
Providing a medical injectable treatment in someone's home, when it should be administered in a clean medical grade environment such as a suitable clinical facility, is to my mind shocking. Also increasing the ladies chances of complications from infection is unforgivable. And the practitioner administering facial filler when she fails to understand symmetry and the ageing process is positively unethical.
It appeared to me that the practitioner just randomly administered the filler in an ad-hock manner. Too much filler and filler injected incorrectly resulted in the lady looking misshapen. Injecting in the wrong spot will cause the face to look too wide, too long, too puffy and distorted.
Before attempting dermal filler treatment on anyone, it is imperative that a practitioner understands in depth, the intricacies of facial balance and personalises the treatment. Only then, will you bring out the individual beauty of each patient.
Over the top, drastic changes to your appearance is not the idea either. A full facial balancing will rejuvenate your face resulting in a refreshed, refined and natural look. Correcting the ageing process from top to bottom by correcting only where necessary, is the key to turning back the clock. I always keep this philosophy in mind when I perform facial fillers. It's lovely when my patients look in the mirror after having filler treatment and say “that's how I use to look”!
With fillers being available in most beauty salons, nail bars, hairdressers, shopping centres, and practitioners willing to perform treatments in peoples houses, it is now very sadly too casual. The risks of complications and distorted unnatural looks is downplayed and not considered enough. Because facial symmetry is not explained to people, there are too many people who dislike the way the filler makes them look and can't understand why. So many people come to my clinic and tell me they don't like dermal filler because it “makes people look strange”. You have to understand, it is the practitioner not the filler that has created that look. It is a shame when people have this view because of seeing so many people walking around looking “like they have had something done” rather than just fresh and good for their age. A good filler treatment especially on those over the age of 50, is your best friend when done right !
Just think about it: give a piping bag to an individual who has been icing cakes on an occasional basis after a 1 day course. And ask them to ice a wedding cake to a standard of a cake master who has been piping cakes to a machine standard for over 20 years ! Without doubt, it will turn out “botched” and absolutely EVERYONE will see the difference. Now, who would you ask to decorate your cake ?
The problem here is that the majority of practitioners are poorly trained, not experienced and don't understand facial symmetry and place dermal filler in the wrong areas. Putting filler across the cheek bones, or filling above tear troughs, eradicating nasolabial lines and over plumping lips will only lead to the “pillow face look” or in the case of the lady I saw yesterday, a wide and unbalanced face.
So, it's simple – check out your practitioner's own patient before and after photography. Make sure that you see full faces and you recognise the room in the background. Don't settle on seeing 1 example of their work, you need to see 20 plus. You can see for yourself if the practitioner understands that there is a fine line between too little and too much, and knows when to stop.
Not every practitioner can create a pleasing result. Not everyone is a good driver even people who have been driving for decades. So careful screening and selection of your practitioner is paramount. And, always keep in mind - having filler done right will bring a fresh and rested look as if you've been on holiday not to change the shape of your face beyond recognition !
Blog written by Karen Johnson