(Make sure after you listen to the podcast, you watch the video diary to see and hear Viv talk about each stage of her recovery on her Fraxel journey.)
Trish: Hi. Well, I’m here today with Vivienne. Vivienne lives in Melbourne and Vivienne has just had some non-surgical rejuvenation at the Coco Ruby in Hawthorn. That’s affiliated with the Cosmetic Surgery for Women. Hi, Vivienne.
Vivienne: Hi, how are you doing, Trish?
Trish: Good, how are you?
Vivienne: Yeah, really well, feeling fresh faced.
Trish: Lovely, lovely. Now, Vivienne, I know that you’ve had some treatment at Coco Ruby. Could you tell us a little bit about it like what you had done?
Vivienne: Yes, well, maybe I better just sort of give a bit of background first as to why I had it. Is that okay?
Trish: Yeah, absolutely.
Vivienne: I’m 54 years of age but we keep that to ourselves. Oops, too late now I guess. I’ve got really bad … I’ve had freckles. I’m fair skinned so I’ve got a lot of freckles and now as I’m getting older the freckles are turning into pigmentation. I don’t like it at all. The people at Coco Ruby recommended that the Fraxel treatment might work really well to get rid of the freckles and get rid of the pigmentation so that my skin can look fresh and start again. That’s what I had done and that was about four or five weeks ago now, I think.
Trish: All right. Is it just a one-off treatment or do you have to go back?
Vivienne: No, I have to go back. I’m going back for a second one because I’m so old.
Trish: Stop that.
Vivienne: The pigmentation is quite deep. What it’s done is that to my eyes, the pigmentation is still there, but what it’s done and they explained it to me is the pigmentation is because it’s so deep, it’s being brought out closer to the top, which will make it easier to get rid of in the next session and there may need to be a third. It just depends how the next one goes.
Trish: Okay. Now, I know myself, I had a Fraxel treatment about seven years ago and it took a good … I reckon a good three months for me to actually really notice the difference. It was about six months later I thought, “Oh my God, I actually look really good.” I noticed at the time that my marionette lines kind of popped out. The lines that were there kind of disappeared over time but I hadn’t noticed. I know exactly what you mean that you don’t … like you may not notice something straight away.
Vivienne: Well, they also said that because it rejuvenates the collagen in your skin, so you may like what you said, not notice for a few months down the track because all of a sudden you’ll just notice because the collagen has been rejuvenated and all of a sudden you start looking fresher and get a bit of a shock or go, “Oh, yeah, it really is working.”
Trish: Yeah, exactly.
Vivienne: Which is good.
Trish: Tell me-
Vivienne: My skin feels a lot smoother.
Trish: Yeah, that’s good. Do you have attached to that now, is there a special skincare regime that you are following?
Vivienne: Oh, my God, yes. I’ve got some Obagi products and Medi Skin 8… I also can’t remember the name of it.
Trish: Skin Medik8.
Vivienne: Yeah, that’s it, sorry. I know it’s got the number eight in it. I’ve got that is drops that I put on my face every morning and night, which is to reduce pigmentation. Now that my skin’s calmed down after the procedure, I’ve got some retinol cream that I put on as well of an evening but every second night because it’s quite harsh. That will just keep my skin ready for the next treatment. Also, one other thing is I’ve got a really good gentle skin cleaner from Obagi, which I’m using to… of a night.
Vivienne: Yes, and just my normal moisturiser.
Trish: All right, so you’re looking after your skin now. Going back to the treatment.
Tell me a bit about the actual treatment. When you went there, did you just go say, “Oh my God, I need a bit of a “jooj”. What have you got?”
Vivienne: No, well, I had a chat with … I went to one of the information nights at Cosmetic Surgery for Women, and they had representatives from the Coco Ruby, the cosmetic surgery team there. What I did was I had a chat with one of the girls from there because that gives you a really good opportunity to sort of chat with people in a sort of more casual way as opposed to having an appointment. I told her what outcomes I wanted and she said to me, “Okay, I think Fraxel would work for you.” Then the next day I sent her an email and we booked an appointment in for a fortnights time from there when she could fit me in.
Trish: All right, so in the clinic. You went in there and I’ve actually watched the video. Your face went on to this little thing and then there was a screen and showed you all the damage that you had on your skin.
Vivienne: Yeah, that was a bit scary. This I know has been going around, one of those has been going around on Facebook for years where they take all these people on the beach and do an ultraviolet type look at their face and they get a shock as how much pigmentation or how much damage they’ve done to their skin. You do get a bit of a shock because you know it’s not the best. Then when they put you under this light and you see it in … it’s just quite bad. You don’t realise how bad the sun is to our skin.
Vivienne: Especially from childhood when you just ran around and you didn’t care. It’s not good.
Trish: No, in Australia, that just goes with the turf. You sort of …
Vivienne: I know. You think in Melbourne you’re better off than you in Byron Bay but I don’t think you are.
Trish: No, I don’t think it makes any difference. I think it’s just Australia in general.
Trish: All right, so you went and you had your thing. Then you’re lying down and having your treatment. Tell us a bit about that because I remember when I had mine everyone was saying, “Oh, it’s going to hurt. It’s going to kill …” What was it like?
Vivienne: No, it didn’t hurt. I wasn’t exactly ready to have a party but they put numbing cream on my face. That stayed on for an hour before the procedure. Then they went over my face with the laser and they did that twice. It was towards the end was feeling a little bit uncomfortable, but I knew it was near the end so I didn’t really worry.
Then my face was really hot, like really hot, and they gave me this cold air to blow on it to cool it down while I sat there. That felt quite pleasant. Then they said to me that my face would feel quite hot for a couple of hours, then all of a sudden, it would stop, like bang. That’s exactly what happened. I drove home, came home, I was watching telly until my partner went how hot my face was. All of a sudden it just stopped and it was just a bit rosy looking.
Trish: Okay, well, that’s interesting. How long do you reckon before … like could you go back to work the next day? Was there any downtime?
Vivienne: Yeah, there’s no problems at all. My face was a little bit red. I told everyone because … that I was having that done. Everyone was very interested at work about how I was looking and what the consequences were going to be. I had it done on a Thursday so there was only one day of work. I just looked flushed I think or hot. I did feel hot too.
I think I became a little bit more sensitive to temperature so in an office I felt quite hot in the face but also hot in the body. I think I was a little bit more sensitive to temperature. I think winter is probably a good time to have the procedure just quietly. Also, from a sun perspective because it’s less sunny because you have to stay out of the sun and you have this … That’s the other thing. I have to wear 50 plus from now on on my face every day.
Trish: Yes, that was my next question. I reckon sunscreen is probably one of the best skincare remedies that you can actually have. Yeah, I wear 50 plus every day no matter what, no matter if it’s hot, raining, or whatever, just every day.
Vivienne: Yeah, don’t walk outside the front door without it on and then replenish too because you sweat it off if it’s warm. That’s the other thing to remember too. Yeah, so over the weekend is when it started … my face started to become like sandpaper. You’ll see the little videos. It’s really just like little dots, like sandpaper, that’s how it felt. It was really interesting. Then they all sort of came off and then underneath my skin was looking quite sort of fresh and rosy looking.
Trish: Great. Your maintenance now is your skincare regime that you’re on plus 50 plus sunscreen.
Trish: Great. All right. Now you’re going back to have a second treatment.
Vivienne: Yes, I was due to have one this week because they recommend having one about four or five weeks after the first one, but I’ve sprained my ankle so I can’t go this week. I have to go in a couple of weeks time. I’m looking forward to that and maybe we can do an update, Trish.
Trish: Yeah, no, that sounds good. I’ll put a before and after because I remember when I had mine done, it actually it seriously took me nearly six months to just one day I was having a talk to myself, I thought, “Oh, my God, those lines are not deep.” Like my marionette lines have just disappeared and touch wood, I’ve never had them back and I’ve had this done about eight years ago.
Trish: Yeah. It just tended to sort of plump out my … you know the lines between your mouth and your nose.
Trish: Yeah, mine just sort of … all of a sudden they were just like gone. I was just like, “Oh, my God.” I was looking at my passport photo. I thought, “Oh, good I don’t have those lines anymore.” Sometimes you may not necessarily see it but if you look at a photo of before and then put your after together, you can actually really notice the difference then. Sometimes you just need to have that shown to you to realise that there is a big difference.
Vivienne: Yeah, no, that makes sense too. It really will help to see the photographs along the way. You do forget when you look at yourself every day in the mirror, you forget what you looked like last week or whatever.
Trish: Yeah, of course.
Vivienne: Or sometimes, you know, you don’t look too closely because it frightens you as well.
Trish: Yeah, that’s a good thing about losing your eyesight when you get older. You can’t see yourself so much.
Vivienne: Therein there’s a blessing.
Trish: Now, I want to ask you, tell me about the team about Coco Ruby, because I know that they’re an amazing team.
Vivienne: They are.
Trish: Yeah, share with our listeners a little bit about your experience with the people at the reception through the clinic, and what your whole experience was like.
Vivienne: Yeah. They’re just really lovely people. Sometimes when you’re walking into that sort of environment, you get a bit sort of nervy because you think that they might be judgemental. You just … I don’t know. You appreciate that that sometimes that can be a bit of a nerve-racking experience, but Julia, who did my Fraxel, she is such a gorgeous, gorgeous girl. You know when they’re really passionate about what they do and really care and really want the best outcomes. Yeah, you couldn’t ask for a nicer girl there.
I was reading there on their Facebook page that there’s quite a few reviews there and everyone raves about Julia and the team. They’re just really down to earth people that just love and are passionate about skin and making your skin better and making you better. The Fraxel also apparently reduces scar tissue, which they work with the plastic surgeon’s team to fix the scar tissue. They’re just, yeah, they didn’t like some sort of place that does facials and things like that in the street. These are highly qualified people that know their stuff.
Trish: I have to say because I’ve actually had surgery with Dr Rubinstein myself, and the only thing I can liken it to is once you kind of become affiliated with them, it’s like you’ve become part of some sort of big family in some way. You’re treated like I feel like family when I go in there. I feel like an old family friend and also had Fraxel treatment on my tummy tuck scar. I know what that’s like.
Vivienne: How did that go?
Trish: That went really well. I’ve only actually had one treatment and I don’t know if I actually need anymore because I’m so far away, so I travelled for the surgery because I’m so far away. I’m quite happy with my scar but that’s not to say it couldn’t look better. I’m happy with it.
Vivienne: Yeah, if you’re happy with it, that’s a good thing.
Trish: I know they offer that as a complementary treatment as part of your scar repair, which is fantastic because that’s probably-
Vivienne: Yeah, I think that’s a really good thing.
Trish: Yeah, and that’s the biggest issue for some people as well.
Vivienne: Yeah, of course, you worry about the scarring. If it can be reduced, then that’s the service they offer, that’s awesome.
Trish: Totally, totally. That’s all complementary included in the aftercare package.
Vivienne: Bless them.
Trish: The aftercare is great.
Vivienne: Yeah, no, that’s good. There’s another girl there who I heard speaks at the event named Tara and she’s extremely talented girl as well. I met another girl there, what’s her name? Sandra and oh, another one named Kay, and they do the fillers and things. They’ve got different people. I’m going to go back and have some fillers done, a bit of Botox and some maybe a bit of lip stuff.
Trish: You’ll be like a new woman.
Vivienne: I will, it’s about time.
Trish: Well, thanks, Vivienne, that’s been really, really helpful.
Vivienne: My pleasure.
Trish: It’s always nice to have a talk to someone who’s actually been through a bit of a journey that’s non-surgical and it’s going to make a difference in your life as well.
Vivienne: No worries. Thank you for your time, Trish.
Trish: Thanks, Vivienne.
Vivienne: See you.
Trish: For all you listeners out there. if you’re wanting to know Coco Ruby is actually in Hawthorn. If you just look up plasticsurgeon.com.au or you’ll find Coco Ruby on its own site as well, or drop us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll see you next time.
Fraxel Laser Treatment – Day 1
Fraxel Laser Treatment – Day 2
Fraxel Laser Treatment – Day 4
Fraxel Laser Treatment – Day 7