thu 24/09/2020

The Truth about Cosmetic Treatments, BBC One review - pain, but not much gain? | reviews, news & interviews

The Truth about Cosmetic Treatments, BBC One review - pain, but not much gain?

The Truth about Cosmetic Treatments, BBC One review - pain, but not much gain?

Customers risk unregulated procedures in search of physical perfection

Mehreen Baig with aesthetic surgeon Tiago Guimaraes

According to one interviewee here, a young Mancunian woman festooned with eyeliner, tattoos, pumped-up lips and huge hoop earrings, a major motivation for having cosmetic treatments is to make yourself look like Kylie Jenner and the Kardashians.

According to one interviewee here, a young Mancunian woman festooned with eyeliner, tattoos, pumped-up lips and huge hoop earrings, a major motivation for having cosmetic treatments is to make yourself look like Kylie Jenner and the Kardashians. “Big lips, square jaw, tiny waist, big bum, big boobs – now it’s become commercial enough that we can get it,” she explained.

This may not be an aspiration shared by everyone – and what happens if the Kardashians switch to a gamine, Twiggy-style new look? – but you might at least expect that the people who provide such easily-available appearance-altering procedures would be subject to some kind of regulation. But, incredibly, they aren’t, as medical journalist Michael Mosley (pictured below, being treated) was horrified to discover in this often wince-making documentary (BBC One). You don’t need a licence or even any training to sit someone down in your kitchen and start injecting their face with fillers, which can cause disfiguring infections or even blindness.

The rush for self-renovation has been accelerated by social media trends and the way that previously established treatments like face-lifts and nose jobs, requiring full-scale surgery, are being replaced by an assortment of quicker and less invasive techniques. Teaming up with blogger Mehreen Baig, Mosley explored the frequently bizarre world of lip and nose fillers, microneedling and botox, and bravely volunteered to have his own crow’s-feet wrinkles blitzed by a gadget which, as its operator enthused, “melts the skin instantaneously” at a temperature of 400 degrees. But once the rawness and swelling on his face had subsided, Mosley was disgruntled to find that it hadn’t made much difference.

Other customers were left feeling similarly deflated. Julie, whose “fractionated CO2 laser” treatment left her face covered in Fear the Walking Dead-style tatters of dead skin, did enjoy some improved skin elasticity, but tests revealed that the treatment had made no noticeable dermatological changes. In fact the only treatment that seemed to have a significant effect was the stem cell facelift undergone by Kim, who paid six grand for the privilege of having the cells injected into her cheekbones and was subsequently delighted with her smoother, younger-looking face.

Mosley had assembled a panel of punters to look at “before” and “after” photos and assess whether the treatments had made the contestants look more attractive. “They lost their personality, I thought,” one man commented. As dermatologist Dr Tamara Griffiths warned, “it’s buyer beware.”

A major motivation is to make yourself look like Kylie Jenner and the Kardashians

rating

Editor Rating: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)

Explore topics

Share this article

Add comment

newsletter

Get a weekly digest of our critical highlights in your inbox each Thursday!

Simply enter your email address in the box below

View previous newsletters