62 year old Stephanie works as an administrator. She keeps herself busy babysitting her four Grandchildren and enjoys pilates, going to the gym and seeing her friends. Stephanie had been suffering with a drooping neck and jowls which were making her feel old and less attractive. She tells us; ‘No matter how hard you try, foundation or any other makeup just can’t get rid of the chin and the jowls - It was mainly the jowls that were getting really bad.’
Unhappy with the way she looked, she decided it was time to seriously look into cosmetic procedures; ‘My skin was looking tired and saggy. It got to the point where I hated looking in the mirror. My reflection wasn’t getting any better, it was getting a whole lot worse so I knew I needed to go for it.’
When you go out and dress up you can get away with it but it’s the day-to-day that was really bothering me. I never go out with a full face of makeup so It was easy to notice that my face was getting worse and worse. Other people may not have noticed my skin but It was how I saw it that was important to me.
Even though the procedure was something Stephanie felt she needed to do for herself it helped that her nearest and dearest were on board too; ‘My family were very supportive. They knew how much I wanted it and they knew I wouldn’t go for something with risk involved.’ Her new partner gave her the confidence to go for it, understanding how much better it would make her feel.
Stephanie researched various clinics and even had some consultations but she couldn’t set aside the recovery time for a regular facelift. After five years of contemplation, she stumbled across The Concept™ Facelift on the Bella Vou website. ‘The downtime sold itself to me. Most face and neck lifts require a long time to recover and I couldn’t possibly take 2-3 weeks off work. Excited by the idea of a quick recovery, Stephanie booked a consult. ‘My consultation with Stevie (Patient coordinator) went so well, I knew then that there was no reason not to do it.’
So, following very careful consideration, Stephanie opted for The Concept™ Facelift and a necklift at Bella Vou; ‘At 62, the time was right for me.’ She chose Bella Vou due to feeling extremely confident about the clinic. ‘I felt totally comfortable with the clinic and its staff; from the reception staff to Patient coordinator Stevie to the time I spent in the theatre room with Joy and Amir, I always felt welcomed.’ Stephanie was extremely impressed with Consultant Plastic Surgeon Amir Nakhjevani MBBS (Plast). ‘I liked the idea that Amir had pioneered this procedure himself and it was his baby. I really felt as though I would be in good hands.’
The procedure took place in February 2019 and Stephanie describes her pre-surgical care experience as ‘Excellent’. Cosmetic surgery isn’t a choice to take lightly so it’s important to understand the procedure as much as possible. Stephanie adds, ‘I’ve been to other clinics where I didn’t feel comfortable at all. Amir really put me at ease; I liked the way that he and Stevie worked together and answered all of my questions thoroughly. The two of them make a great team; Amir with the surgical side of things and Stevie being a very personal and caring patient coordinator.’ Stephanie goes on to say that she found the mood at Bella Vou very positive; ‘It wasn’t a sterile atmosphere like a hospital, It was just a nice place to be where everyone is relaxed and comfortable.’
Even though the procedure meant serious business, Stephanie didn’t feel like she was undertaking something to be feared. During the operation she and the team were having banter and chatting away which was a good distraction that made the time fly. ‘I was quite surprised that there was no pain during the procedure.
After the procedure Stephanie remarks ‘There was hardly any bruising, it was just a bit puffy. The swelling soon went down and it was nothing I hadn’t been warned about. The great thing was that I was back to work within 8 days!’
Stephanie wanted to ensure that the healing process was normal; ‘I had to phone Stevie once on a Sunday and she was fantastic. She answered all of my questions and again reassured me - It was just nice to have her at the end of the phone, even at the weekend. I knew I could call them at anytime which was great. To me, the aftercare is just as important as the procedure itself.’
Despite her initial fears about having cosmetic surgery, Stephanie expressed that ‘It was worth it. It has only been 6 months so I am still healing but my face is looking good. My life was good before surgery. But now I look better when I look in the mirror!’ Being happy with your physical appearance makes such a difference to day to day living. ‘I was a confident person anyway but I’m enjoying looking better; I really believe it’s important to look the best that you can. When you go out looking good you feel good. ’Looking and feeling great provides a person with power and allows them to be free of insecurity.
After I’d had it done I went to a dinner party, my best friend said she couldn’t stop staring at me because it looked so good.
6 months on and Stephanie tells us that ‘People don’t comment on it; especially those who don’t know that I’ve had it done - but that is how it should be.’ Stephanie is pleased with a natural looking procedure, rather than a plastic looking one. ‘When I look back on photos from before I really notice what a difference it has made.’
If you’re contemplating having a procedure performed Stephanie’s advice is to ‘Just go for it’. Even though it’s important to consider the financial side of things ‘Money shouldn’t be the main factor, the surgeon should!’ Having a great surgeon will put your mind at ease if you’re deliberating cosmetic surgery. ‘It was something I wanted to do for myself and I’m so happy I did it.’