Laura Cunningham, editor of Confetti, visited The Dr Mulrooney Clinic, to take the bridal botox plunge. Here's how she got on!
Most Irish brides up the ante on their beauty regimes, pre-wedding, and bridal botox has become a staple procedure for many. But if you haven’t dabbled in injectables before, you’d be forgiven for feeling some trepidation at trying it out. Never one to shy away from a challenge, I threw my hat in the ring, once again, to give you a step by step, hands-on review of the experience, my results and thoughts. Yep, my name’s Laura Cunningham, and I’ve had botox. Having worked in the media industry for many years, I have lots of pals and acquaintances who swear by the stuff, but not everyone freely admits to the ‘bit of help’. Me? - I’ll happy show anyone I meet my results. But before I get into that, let’s start from the beginning…
I’ve always been pretty lucky when it came to my skin. I never suffered, like some, with acne during my teenage years. And for the most part, remained line-free until my late 20s. It was around then that I began to dislike the furrows between my brows - they made me look annoyed, even when I wasn’t. The lines on my forehead used to vanish when I dropped my brows, but they soon became a permanent fixture. In short, my age started to show. The baby face that used to inspire requests for ID in bars, long after my 25th birthday, was starting to show its true age. No big deal, but the idea that I could make that all go away with a quick and easy procedure meant I had a way to fight back, and I love to win.
Most people’s reservations about botox are that they’ll end up a freak show, unable to express human emotion or crack a smile. Having seen plenty of real life, successful results, I wasn’t too concerned about any of that. I wasn’t, however, delighted with the idea of lots of injections in my face (who is?), but I soon found out that the needle is teeny tiny and the procedure takes mere minutes. So I stopped being a big baby, and decided to go for it.
Located on the beautiful Eglinton Road in Dublin 4, The Dr Mulrooney Clinic feels more like a luxurious day spa, with high ceilings, a clean, white colour-scheme and stylish furnishings throughout, all enclosed in a stately period building on the leafy, suburban street. Doctors Katherine and Jane Mulrooney were inspired to begin a career in cosmetic beauty by their father Patrick Murooney, who developed renowned professional Irish skincare brand Seavite, in the 80s to treat his daughters’ eczema. Later, Katherine and Jane reformulated the brand with proven anti-ageing ingredients - staying true to the brand’s core values of purity and healing – and it’s now a favourite amongst many Irish women. At the clinic they perform a number of cosmetic procedures including bridal botox, fillers, laser treatments and professional chemical peels.
After a detailed consolation with Katherine, we decided on three areas for my treatment - my forehead, between my brows and beside and under the eyes. Numbing cream was applied and I waited in the super swish waiting room until it took effect. The injections took no more than three or four minutes to complete and, although they smart a little, it was nothing this editor couldn’t handle. (I am woman, hear me roar! etc) Afterwards, I had some tiny red bumps on my face that faded within the hour. As the treatment takes anything from five to twelve days to take effect, I left the clinic not feeling any different to when I’d walked in. There generally isn’t any downtime involved with botox, save for avoiding lying down, strenuous exercise or massaging your face for a few hours. It’s also recommended that you avoid facials for at least a week afterwards.
After a day or two, I felt a gradual stiffening of the muscle start to kick in. I watched carefully in the mirror each morning, as it became more and more difficult to frown deeply. By around a week later, I could really see a big difference. I was no longer able to create the furrow between my brows that I hated so much. My forehead was totally smooth, and the lines under my eyes had softened right out. Was I still able to move my face? Yep! Except for those small motions that were creating the problem areas, I was still a real person and not a robot. Yay!
Two weeks after my treatment everything had settled nicely – I was used to the sensation and my smooth face became my new norm. I couldn’t have been happier with the results – we’re talking 11 out of 10, ’best invention ever’ levels of happy.
If you’re thinking of taking the plunge, my best advice would be to visit someone reputable and have a professional consultation. And go as early on in the planning process as you can, to give yourself plenty of time to have a trial run.
How soon should I have botox before my wedding?
As with any beauty procedure, it’s always a good idea to have a trial run. As the effects of botox stick around for somewhere from three to six months, having a first round six months before your wedding is a good idea. That way, if you love it (and I suspect you will), you can have a top up with confidence nearer to the day. Have your last procedure around three or four weeks before the wedding to allow everything to settle nicely.
Will everyone know I’ve had it?
Hey, there’s no shame in the game, girlfriend! But, if you really don’t want to admit you’ve had the procedure, nobody needs to know. Those frozen faced ladies you see on the telly have gone way overboard and, in the right hands, you won’t look like that. You’ll be you, only better. AKA: the dream.
Does it hurt?
Of course it does! But not much. I’d take it over a bikini wax any day, put it that way.
Will I have bruising/swelling?
This varies from person to person. Some people experience some bruising for a day or two, others won’t display any evidence of the procedure. I had no bruising at all.
Will I feel weird not being able to move my face?
The movements that are limited will feel completely normal – like not being able to move your ears, for example.
How long does it last?
This depends on how active your muscles are and how animated your expressions are normally, but generally the procedure’s results will last around five or six months.
Do I need to keep getting it forever, once I start?
That, for me, is the beauty of botox. It gives your skin a break from the creases we create with certain movements. Should you decide to never get botox again, it will still have had that holiday from those ageing movements. Your lines will simply reappear should you stop, and you can always go again down the line if you decide to.
How much does it cost?
This depends on the amount of areas you’re having treated and the amount of product being administered. First, have a consolation to decide the results you’d like to achieve.
The Dr Mulrooney Clinic - 69 Eglinton Road, Donnybrook, Dublin 4
W: drmulrooney.com | E: [email protected] | T: 01 441 0188