At MenStyleFashion, we all care about fashion and we all care about our appearance. Today, it is important for men to look and feel good both inside and out, especially with the popularity and pressure from the media and fashion world, where you’re every action can be posted, blogged or Instagrammed.
My previous articles before have talked about the growing popularity and acceptance of ´male cosmetic surgery.´
This summer, which seems now a distant memory thanks to the longer nights and colder days, I was invited to test a variety of male beauty samples for the magazine, and give my opinion on them. Now comes my turn to try and test a cosmetic treatment, so here goes.
Having been involved in the fashion industry from the age of nineteen, where I found my feet as a model, I have always been conscious of my appearance and how I present myself. Even models of all ages, all sexes (and all levels of fame) suffer from occasional insecurity glitches (Jon Kortajarena for example, who smokes heavily and fears yellow nicotine-stained teeth.) In my ´younger days´ I used to hop out bed and into the shower. My beauty regime those days was pretty much body wash, shampoo, moisturiser and hair wax. However, with the increase in my years, came an increase in my cosmetics and time for ´preening.´
I am in my mid-thirties, and thankfully people still compliment me on the way I look and the way I dress. It can take me anything up to an hour to prepare myself in the morning before leaving the house (thankfully, that includes eating breakfast.) And, although people I meet and greet are always positive and complimentary towards me, I was never quite happy with. My personal appearance. Specifically some vertical lines running across my forehead, and what I considered to be a pair of HUGE vertical lines running beneath my eyebrows (apparently I was the only one who noticed these.)
I often wondered how much more confidence I would have with these lines removed (and, actually even if people would notice….) So, I set about doing a personal case study exclusively for MenStyleFashion. The project? My skin.
Nu Cosmetic Clinic
Nu Cosmetic Clinic within the domain of cosmetic surgery is certainly one of the industry leaders. Specialising in a multitude of comprehensive treatments for both female and male. They can provide treatments for face, body and hair that can allow you to create or amend what nature took away (or never gave you.) A range of full treatments can be found here .
Nu Cosmetic has thirteen clinics located all over the UK clinics and I was invited to attend a consultation with Pankaj Kishore at the Liverpool clinic in the North West of England.
On Thursday afternoon, approaching the clinic I was somewhat apprehensive in case I ended up with ´Dr Spok´ (I had seen this before, where the male’s eyebrows were dramatically lifted along with the forehead) or ´Duck face´ (where the treatment was so tight it affected the overall appearance of my face.) Regardless, I made my way down the palatial conurbation of Liverpool´s Rodney Street to the clinic which was nestled in a detached off-street position.
After introducing myself at the reception desk, I was invited to sit in the waiting room, where a plethora of ´before and after´ stories were advertised along with an enviable list of remediations and possibilities.
I was invited to my consultation by a smartly dressed Pankaj Kishore, who welcomed me to the clinic showing me some of the impressive treatment areas, on my way upstairs. Even now I struggle to remember what the purposes of these rooms were; I do remember minor operating and laser treatment areas. To me it was like a set of Gattaca, just as fully equipped, just as impressive.
It was in the private consultation room upstairs that I started to get nervous. Pankaj listened attentively as I described my problem, immediately put me at ease. Having worked in the cosmetic industry for several years, commenced by giving me a background into his education and training within the Nu Cosmetic Clinic Group along with a description of the services and products they offer as a business service. Of course, with me always being one to ask questions, Pankaj told me about the most popular female treatments (breast enhancements) and make treatments (lipo-sculpture and hair regeneration) Cosmetic surgery, although growing in popularity still only presents a ratio of 1:3 for men to woman.
¨If I had to give an example of a male, it would be Tom Cruise. He has certainly had work done, but to a very discreet level and a very high standard. This to me, is what male cosmetic surgery should be reflect.´ – Pankaj Kishore
Enough of the procrastination and questioning from me. Now came the time for the treatment.
I was led into a tall brightly lit treatment room which had a bed in the middle. A nurse introduced herself to me (I will call her Cathy). She sat me down at the desk, where I was invited to fill out a full history of my medical details (a standard practice really, factors relating to allergies, medications and illnesses.)
Cathy then brought out a ´face map´ and confirmed my fears about my ´lines.´ apparently I had lines (or wrinkles) after all.
´The occipitofrontalis muscles produce the transverse wrinkles across the width of the forehead, and the corrugator supercilii muscles produce vertical wrinkles between the eyebrows above the nose´ – Cathy
I had the ´typical´ type of middle-aged male skin. The lines on my forehead (going across and down) were usual and could easily be treated with Botox or Allegran Vistabel to give it the clinic´s title.
Next step, after I had been checked and diagnosed by Cathy was to perform the procedure. My main concern here was seeing the needles, as I have somewhat of a phobia. (Ask my dentist, he´ll confirm this.) After cleansing my face with an antibacterial wash, Cathy asked me to exaggeratedly frown my forehead and eyes several times so she could pin point the main areas to target the Botox into (which she marked with a small pen). Then came the next step. My eyes were closed for the injections (I had a look at the needle after, and it was quite small with a very fine needle.) I had a series of 4-6 injections between the eyes and then the forehead area took around 6-8. To ´balance´ the effects of the Botox, the eye area was done, again with 4-6 injections. This may seem a lot, but small doses are used over a larger area to give a much more uniform result Cathy advised me. Also, it got mathematical. If you are lifting the skin in some directions, then you have to be all round uniform and lift it in every direction. The treatment around my eyes would not only counteract any ageing, but help to ´balance´ the overall effect of the treatment. She was also quick to highlight that this type of localised treatment can avoid the skin being over tightened or the forehead and eyebrows being excessively lifted, which was my main concern.
After my final injection, I was asked to remain on the bed for several minutes. I initially presumed this would be to recover. But I can say the course of treatment was not as painful as I had anticipated. Some brief localised stinging was felt, ultimately I was having a cosmetic treatment undertaken, which would give me a confidence boost.
Some standard doe´s and don’ts like try not to lie flat for several hours after the treatment, and avoid flying on the same day, meant that my skin had an excellent chance of attaining the result promised.
I concluded my treatment and thanked Cathy, then went next door to Pankaj to report my findings. ´It was not a traumatic as I had imagined. Cathy explained the whole procedure, which I was not expecting.´ I exclaimed to Pankaj. ´We are not that type of clinic´ he said, informing me of the code of ethics that Nu Cosmetic Clinic Group undertakes. ´Sometimes people call us the day before to book in directly for surgery, which we refuse. We always speak to the client to give them full information and alternatives to their requests.´ The strict age criteria for surgery, as well as the types of treatment they only offer mean that the clinic work with the client and medical watchdogs to provide an ethical and regulated service.
Attracting a host of model, media and celebrity clients from the North West of England and beyond, Pankaj reaffirmed his claim that all work however major or minor is discussed in detail and carried out to the highest quality. I therefore had no need to be concerned with the ´Spok´ or ´Duck´ face I was originally apprehensive about acquiring.
So what are my thoughts on Botox? Well, have a look at the after picture. Some of my friends still ´cannot see any difference´ while some now ´actually can, as I look younger.´ I do, certainly feel more confident for sure. I am delighted with the result and the service. Cathy advised me to follow up the treatment every 3-4 months which I intend to under the competent hand of Pankaj.
Male cosmetic beauty is a certainty today, but like me just make sure you choose a company who care as much about their appearance as they do about yours.