Aestheticians share stories of ‘botched’ fillers and botox as customers turned to home procedures during lockdown

Aestheticians share stories of 'botched' fillers and botox as customers turned to home procedures during lockdown

Aestheticians share stories of 'botched' fillers and botox as customers turned to home procedures during lockdown

Always check to see if you’re going with a reputable professional (Picture:

Throughout lockdown, many of us just had to become content with the fact that our roots were grown out and our nails were unpolished stubs.

But for some people, they decided to take matters into their own hands – and not just by buying box dye or a gel nail kit.

Aesthetic practitioners have now been tasked with fixing the ‘botch jobs’ that people have done themselves or got done by unlicensed beauticians during lockdown, from dodgy botox to cheap fillers.

There are some things that are worth spending the extra few pounds on, and treatments where you’re being injected or having surgery are one of those things.

The results can lead to terrifying consequences and a whole lot more money spent trying to fix them.

We spoke to some of these aesthetic practitioners to find out the damage limitation they’ve been doing over the last couple of weeks.

‘I have seen a fair amount of botched nose dermal fillers and also tear trough treatments recently! 

‘What tends to happen is the practitioner uses a poor quality product and/or may not have the artistic eye essential for these types of treatments, and/or they are unable to offer thorough aftercare to the client.

‘I always ask “have you been back to the practitioner who did the treatment?” And quite often the answer is “She wouldn’t take my calls” or “he said keep massaging the area, it’s just swelling.” 

‘Noses tend to be over-filled, with the result looking distorted and unattractive. Under-eye or tear troughs can be obvious if not injected correctly and I have seen lumps and swelling at the injection sites.

Implementing beauty fillers

Some people have needed surgery to correct the mistakes (PIcture: Getty Images)

‘To fix this, the first step is to have a full consultation with the client. Nose-botched cases are usually handled by using Hyaluronidase- an antidote to Hyalauronic acid (the main dermal filler constituent), which gently melts the filler away.

‘I then get the client back in after 10 days to two weeks to review the situation and assess whether more treatment is required (either tweaking with more filler to give an even result or melting more filler away).

‘In the case of tear trough, lumps have to be removed using the above technique, whilst in other cases, visible filler can be carefully disguised by injecting more filler around it, so that the client still achieves some result.

‘With all botched cases, we have to get on a bit of a “journey” quite often where I will see the client several times to achieve the final result.

‘There is definitely an uptick it seeing horrible outcomes at the moment.

‘The most common thing I am seeing is botched filler jobs. I even had one client who attempted to give herself a non-surgical rhinoplasty with dermal filler at home by herself, and it was injected in the wrong places 

‘I’ve had a lady who had under-eye filler and lip filler done by a neighbour in her living room. 

‘I’ve had a man attempt to remove a cyst from his face by following a YouTube video. 

‘I’ve had a lady who had a threadlift done somewhere where the threads were far too superficial and could almost be seen through the skin/ I actually had to do a surgical procedure to remove them! 

‘Botched filler jobs to under-eyes, lips cheeks which I have to remove by dissolving, often has to be done straight away as there is a danger of the filler blocking vital blood vessels in the face.

‘I’m also seeing a rise in unknown filler brands, where people don’t know what they have been injected with. It’s o ften substandard and may not respond to the dissolving substance. 

‘Whilst it is often reversible it can leave long term damage and emotionally is very distressing for the patients. 

‘Botox corrections where wrong doses have been injected leave faces very asymmetrical – including the dreaded brow drop.

‘I’ve been having to correct this by counteracting the Botox by using Botox on different areas – and in some cases using threads to lift the dropped brows. 

‘With more invasive things like the threadlift I described above and the cyst removal unfortunately these may require surgical procedures to correct, which is awful as can leave the patient with a scar etc – a permanent reminder of why not to do things to yourself at home watching YouTube!’

What happens if you go without Botox in lockdown? Pics: Getty

The savings you make might result in a bigger spend down the line (Picture: Getty)

‘Lockdown has affected us all in many different ways and some people have resorted to treatments provided in a reckless and unsafe environment in order to minimise the signs of ageing – with less than desirable results. 

‘At The Lovely Clinic (TLC), we took the decision to reopen recently after thorough examination of the safest measures that we could implement to protect ourselves and our patients.

‘However, soon after we opened we had several enquiries from patients seeking a second opinion or indeed to reverse treatment.

‘During lockdown when the overwhelming majority of Medical Aesthetic Clinics closed their doors to the public, the need for enhancing non-surgical treatments drove some into the hands of “practitioners” without any relevant medical training or qualifications.  

‘One patient replied on a private Facebook group, responding to yet another non-medical injector who was informally advertising Botox treatment to remove wrinkles.

‘They had received Botox treatment before lockdown, but described how this particular experience was incredibly painful, and the reason she requested a second opinion was that the result was so extreme and severe-looking that she could not make important facial expressions and found that her smile became lopsided.

‘Careful examination revealed that important muscles of facial expression had been asymmetrically immobilised and, unfortunately, because the effect on the muscles is long-standing without a recognised “antidote”, we could only reassure her that the effect would gradually disappear over the next few months.

‘Although disappointing, this outcome serves as a warning to anyone considering non-surgical and indeed, surgical cosmetic treatment, i.e. to ensure that they do their homework and due diligence in finding a medically qualified doctor, ideally with experience in facial anatomy and surgery, to provide a safe, meticulous and natural looking treatment result.  

‘All TLC Aesthetic Doctors are dual qualified Medical and Dental doctors with a background of hospital careers in facial surgery.’

‘As a cosmetic doctor I am increasingly concerned by the lack of regulation in the industry     

‘Recently a patient contacted my clinic in severe pain asking for my help. She had been tempted by a cheap “package deal” at a beauty salon where she received 4 syringes of filler in her cheeks and lips.

‘Very quickly she developed rock hard swelling in the treated areas. The beauty salon told her this was a normal response to the treatment.

‘In reality she was having a severe allergic reaction to what turned out to be an unlicensed imported filler. The swelling was causing compression of the arteries in her lips needing immediate dissolving to restore blood supply.

‘She then spent a night in hospital on a steroid drip to control the swelling. These products are not without risk and should only be administered by trained medical professionals.’

Before having any treatment, check the General Medical Register to see if your surgeon or doctor is licensed.

Or, if you’re going for a non-surgical treatment by someone qualified who may not be on the GMC, you can see their qualifications on Save Face or the Joint Council for Cosmetic Practitioners.

Always ask about the brand of product being used and the qualifications of the person administering the treatment, and look for quality practitioners rather than focusing on price.

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