Sheryl Kraft, a freelance writer and breast cancer survivor, was born in Long Beach, New York. She currently lives in Connecticut with her husband Alan and dog Chloe, where her nest is empty of her two sons Jonathan. Sheryl writes articles and essays on breast cancer and contributes to a variety of publications and websites where she writes on general health and wellness issues. She earned her MFA in writing from Sarah Lawrence College in 2005.Full Bio
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Yesterday, I received this mail from a reader:
"I just turned 50 and thought I felt okay about it. And for the most part, I really am okay. But I hate all the lines and wrinkles on my face. I'd love to have something done - but have mixed feelings. I'm scared, embarrassed to tell anyone and a bit intimidated by the whole thing."
Well, as they say, timing is everything.
Just last week I visited the New York City office of cosmetic dermatologist extraordinaire, Dr. Arielle Kauvar. She listened patiently while I gave her the scoop on what was bothering me about the way I look. And then, like magic, she wielded her needles (it hardly hurt - I swear!) and took years off my face with some Botox and fillers. She explained, "Fillers are an excellent option for restoring lost facial volume, softening angular lines, filling the hollows under the eyes, correcting early jowl formation and deep smile lines. A patient with more advanced aging could benefit from a combination of procedures, such as lasers and fillers and botulinum toxin to improve the overall appearance of their skin." Dr. Kauvar said it would take about a week to see the full effects - and she was right. I woke up this morning and when I looked in the mirror, I saw a younger and more refreshed me. The results are fabulous!
The thing is, no one notices except for me - but that's who I'm doing it for. (That's not surprising since I scrutinize every line and wrinkle that seemingly pop up overnight.) I feel so young inside and when I gaze into the mirror and see a stranger in an older face staring back at me it's kind of unsettling. If someone asks, sure, I'll tell them the truth. If someone - like this reader who sent me this email - needs advice I'll gladly share my personal experience with them.
I don't feel embarrassed, personally. One of the great things about getting older, for me, is to hold true to my beliefs without worrying about other people's opinions or judgements. In fact, most people are open about cosmetic procedures: when the Aesthetic Surgery Education & Research Foundation surveyed over 600 people who got Botox and/or dermal fillers they found that 87% of the participants have told people about what they did. And most people they told had been supportive - only 12% said the people they told had been critical.
And despite the state of today's economy, according to an article on MSNBC.com, women are still shelling out money to look better. Here are the top 5 minimally-invasive cosmetic procedures for 2008, with Botox and fillers leading the group.
If you're curious about Botox and facial fillers, click here.