‘I looked like something out of Avatar’
SUNSHINE Coast mother-of-five Stacey Buttriss will not go out of the house without sunglasses after a non-surgical cosmetic eye lift went horribly wrong.
Ms Buttriss, who in January had plasma treatment for saggy, hooded eyelids, says she has been told by a dermatologist she has been left with permanent spotty scarring.
Now Ms Buttriss, 42, who still has unsightly spots and indentations on her upper eyelids, which makeup cannot cover, wants to warn other women about the risks of the procedure.
"It wrecks my day, every day. Once I step outside I'm fully conscious of it and I can't make eye contact with people. I've knocked back attending a lot of occasions,'' Ms Buttriss said.
She said she saw an online ad for models for a new non-surgical, non-invasive eyelid lifting plasma treatment for $400 instead of the almost $1000 that was usually charged.
"I was beside myself when they picked me. I cried because I was so happy,' Ms Buttriss said.
"I'd researched it thoroughly on the internet.''
On January 29, she went to a Sunshine Coast woman's home business, paid and agreed to allow another woman, who was being trained under supervision, to do the procedure.
Ms Buttriss said before it started, the trainee put numbing cream on her eyelids and did dry tattooing.
The advertised procedure claims to use a person's own plasma to stimulate an instant contraction and tightening of the skin fibres.
It involves using a device delivering radio frequency heat to the skin through a needle, causing a skin burn as it is used across the eyelids, in lines of small dots.
Ms Buttriss said after the one-hour procedure, her eyes felt like they were burning.
"The next morning I looked like something out of Avatar,'' she said of her swollen face.
"My middle daughter couldn't even look at me.''
Ms Buttriss claims the swelling lasted for about five days, despite her applying the cream she had been given and icing the eyelids and taking antihistamines, as the trainee instructed.
She said she had been told after the "dots'' fell off she would have smooth pink skin, but instead she still has obvious holes and scars across her upper eyelids.
"Every dot is now a hole. It's like braille,'' Mr Buttriss said.
A dermatologist recommended laser resurfacing and she also plans to see a plastic surgeon.
"We've seen an increase in the demand for non-surgical procedures, often in beauty salons,'' lawyer Mala Heffernan of Maurice Blackburn said.
"Before undergoing any cosmetic procedure, it is important that people understand the risks involved and the qualifications and experience of the people performing it.''