Alison Curtis: “I don’t want botox or fillers, but I still want to slow things down a bit. So I tried microneedling.
I’m a human — a human woman who didn’t grow up in a bubble, so like many other women, I don’t want to look like I’m getting older. I’ve been told by everyone – TV, magazines, movies, social media – that aging is a bad thing. Which is really weird, because the reality of life is that those of us who are lucky enough to get old will naturally change the way we look. And why, oh why, is this so universally viewed in a negative light?
As a collective, we have yet to reach an agreement that a mature face is as much an acceptable reality for women as it is for men. , In my mid-40s I am aware of the lines that have been developing on my face. I get super excited when someone thinks I’m younger than me and I’ve spent a fortune on lotions and potions for the last 15 years.
In the past year, however, I’ve started to think about what it means to get older. I started actively following various women on Instagram who “own” the aging process. They are advocates for aging and the fact that it’s not just natural, it’s a privilege. I wanted to normalize seeing older faces for myself by looking at them more often on social media.
But despite my best efforts to champion aging and accept that I will change, I still wanted to slow things down a little. I was sure that I didn’t want to radically change my face or exactly stop time, I just wanted to look the best version of my current age. So I embarked on a little skin adventure to see where it would take me.
My first station was not happy. On an autumn afternoon, I nervously entered the very polished waiting room of a treatment center. What happened next was I was led into a clinic room and forced to hold a mirror in front of my face while the doctor told me my face was like a deflated balloon that would need botox every four months for three years. difference to even begin with – plus I would absolutely need fillers. I thanked him kindly for taking away all my self esteem and floated past the receptionist who was a bit shocked that I hadn’t booked my first appointment with them.
I went home and shared this experience on Instagram and immediately received a massive response. It rolled on for a few days, with DMs flying in from women who shared similar experiences and alternatives I could try. As the conversation progressed, it became clear that the majority of women who came forward wanted alternatives to injections as a treatment. One suggestion that kept coming up in these online conversations was microneedling – something I had no idea about.
At the same time, I was offered an appointment at the Fitzgerald Clinic in Dublin to discuss options. I took the chance and met with Dr. Deirdre Fitzgerald. From the start I felt in good hands. She did a thorough exam of my skin and analyzed my skincare routine and the products I use.
It was very clear to me that I didn’t want to go down the injectable route, so she confirmed what many people had already suggested – that I would try microneedling. But what is that exactly? Deirdre explained it all: “With medical microneedling, we use a medical device (like the SkinPen) to conveniently create thousands of controlled micro-injuries in the skin to trigger the body’s natural wound healing process. The idea is that by creating precise wounds in a specific layer of skin, the skin is attempting to heal itself — and it does so by producing new collagen and elastin at levels the skin was unaware of from its early to mid-20s. Patients should notice improvements in their skin within three to four weeks,” she says.
Fast forward a few weeks and I showed up to my appointment anxious and excited. Skin therapist Jade met me and calmed me down. The procedure takes about an hour and a half and begins with a topical anesthetic that takes about half an hour to work properly. Jade then used a SkinPen to trace my skin in a fairly mathematical manner. I won’t lie, you feel it. The forehead was the sharpest, being the least fleshy. I left with a little red face but in high spirits.
It takes 28 days to see the full results from the first microneedling session, so I’d have to be patient. For the next two days you should only use products that soothe and regenerate your skin. You can only wipe the skin with cold water, no soaps. You then have to do without other active ingredient products such as vitamin C and retinol for a week. By the third day, faint red lines were still visible on my forehead, and five days later I looked like myself again – only fresher.
While at the Fitzgerald Clinic, I asked Deirdre if more people were still choosing botox over microneedling. “Botox – or rather Anti-Wrinkle Injections (AWI) – is a very well-known treatment. It is certainly one of the most requested treatments. However, medical microneedling is definitely gaining popularity – its benefits for the skin are being discussed more and more often. It works very differently than botox and both have different functions.”
While Deirdre was very reassuring and medicinal in her answers, which I really like, I’m still unconvinced by the idea of injections. However, I feel much more comfortable with microneedling. Three weeks after the treatment, I definitely noticed that the deeper wrinkles on my forehead had diminished and my face overall felt brighter and fresher. Along with my usual skincare routine, plenty of water, and plenty of sleep, I think microneedling is the way to go for me. Well, that and being more proactive and positive about aging.
https://www.independent.ie/life/health-wellbeing/health-features/alison-curtis-i-dont-want-botox-or-fillers-but-i-still-want-to-slow-things-down-a-bit-so-i-tried-microneedling-42317443.html Alison Curtis: “I don’t want botox or fillers, but I still want to slow things down a bit. So I tried microneedling.