I have been chasing the elixir of youth since I turned 30, and have been sharing most of that journey here in this blog. My desire to stay looking 25 forever encompasses skincare, makeup, diet, and of course most importantly through medical cosmetic procedures.
As I turned 38 years old this January, I looked back at my old pictures, and well, I can’t help but blow my own trumpet a bit… Cos I think I’ve done a pretty good job of it:
So now, I’ll share with you what has worked for me so far, ie. my current elixir
Dermal Fillers are useless for facial lines
I first blogged about my main ageing concerns in My Dermal Filler and Freezer exprience post, which listed nasolabial lines, kitty lines (the ones that go across the top of my cheeks) and downturned mouth as my key issues.
To update on what I think of using dermal fillers as a way of puffing out the facial lines, I say this: IT’S A TOTAL WASTE OF MONEY! DON’T DO IT!!
Dermal fillers would give you a beautiful fuller face for about 2 months, after which you just experience a sad decline to the way you looked before, all the while your face continues to sag and age, because the effects of dermal fillers is purely cosmetic.
Dermal fillers is not the Elixir; it is just a band-aide.
Generate Collagen, don’t Inject It
They say that 35 is a turning point in the ageing process and I’ve found this to be true. Despite being told I look young all the time, I saw a rapid decline in the plumpness of my face since turning 35. After posting about my non-surgical nose augmentation last year, I realised lines are not my main issues – sagginess is! *da-dum-daaaaaaaa* *scream*
Front on, side on, you can see it. The “apples” of my cheeks are sliding off my face, worsening my nasolabial lines and giving me a weary, older looking face. I realised how counter-productive dermal fillers would have been, if I had the money to burn to keep injecting them. I need a constant and on-going supply of collagen from within – my skin needs to be able to produce more collagen, just like it did in my 20s!
I quickly called Star Clinic and made an appointment to see Dr Chiu, a well-known and very reputable plastic surgeon in Taipei, who I know have been performing the Non-Surgical Facelift for the past 2 years or so with great success rate.
4D Ultra V Lifting – the Non-Surgical Facelift
4D Ultra V Lifting, also called Fine Thread Lifting, came from Korea (where else right?) and involves inserting and attaching thin, barbed polydioxanone threads underneath the skin to lift up the contours of the face.
Since the illustration above explains the 4D Ultra Lift procedure itself pretty well I won’t repeat it. It’s a pretty straight forward procedure: I had anaesthetic cream on my face for about an hour, after which the doctor spent about another 40 minutes or so inserting the needles, then I had on an ice pack for another half an hour or so, and I was sent on my merry way home with anti-inflammation and anti-infection medication and ointments.
In total, I had 100 needles/threads inserted; 55 on the right side of my face and 45 on the left (since I have more saginess on the right).
How did it feel? Well I’m not gonna lie – it was bloody painful, and the most painful procedure I’ve done to date! To describe it is pretty simple: it feels how it looks. Since the needles are to contain the polydioxanone threads, they cannot be that thin. So it’s pretty much like having sewing needles jab into your face one after another, and have them stuck there until that area is full of needles. After which the doctor removes the needles, then starts all over again.
There of course would be bleeding; Dr Chiu said I have very active blood vessels on my face, which meant I bleed A LOT during the procedure. In fact I did feel warm liquid on my face all the time, and also saw the tissue that the nurse was using to blot my face come up soaked in blood.
Apparently, you can get this procedure general anaesthetic, but when it comes to medical cosmetic procedures, I take safety very seriously, which is why I always stress the importance of researching the procedure and picking the right doctor. So to me, going under general anaesthetic for something other than actual medical operations is unnecessary and stupid. With modern science there are now many options to reverse the ageing process, you should only do what you can deal with – physically, financially or even emotionally.
In addition to instant lifting, since the needles are inserted into the epidermis level of the skin, it stimulates collagen production, prompting a continual self-lifting effect. So I was told that the full results are seen 3 months afterwards.
With 4D procedure there is no downtime, so I was able to go to work with makeup on the day after. The swelling took about a week to subside, and bruising another.
In comparison to dermal fillers, the 4D Ultra-V Lifting procedure is a much smarter investment! Even though Dr Chiu told me that it would not help the kitty lines, I still found that it did, as my whole face is plumper and lifted.
However, I was a little disappointed that I did not continue to see improvements after 2 weeks, my nasolabial lines and kitty lines can still be seen, and I didn’t get more “lift” like I was told I would.
However, the next procedure I did made up for it, and the 2 procedures together, have turned back the clock for me. Stay tune for next week’s post on the 2nd procedure I did.
4D Ultra V Lifting procedure at the Star Clinic is NT$70K – I had it done on a promotional price of NT$56K (20% off) when paid in cash.