'I pulled threads from my skin after botched facelift left me streaming with blood' – The Mirror

Barbara Bellinger, 47, from Weston Super Mare, has warned others not to fall for reduced price, bargain cosmetic surgery after fearing she could be permanently disfigured
Barbara Bellinger spotted an advert for a £400 thread facelift on Facebook and her eyes lit up.
The tempting, "heavily reduced" offer seemed like exactly the new start for the new year she wanted. So, at the beginning of 2020, she booked herself in.
"I spotted a beauty salon was running a training day, and required models with a trainer who had more than 10 years’ experience.
"At £400, it seemed like a great opportunity at a price I could afford. I wanted to give myself a new year's lift," Barbara, 47, said.
But when she went to have the procedure, she claims something didn't feel right.
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"My treatment was really painful, and it felt very rushed. I was keen to get it over with as it hurt so much. The final result felt very tight, but looked fine," she recalled.
After the treatment, Barbara was sent on her way and told to take ibuprofen if she felt any discomfort. She was also told to wait six weeks to see the full results.
The next day, Barbara claims she felt something "snap" in her face – but when she called the salon, she was told it was normal.
She said: “My face felt extremely tight and painful and even chewing was difficult but I believed it would settle as they told me it would."
A few days later, she felt a bump above her top lip.

"When I touched it, it felt sharp and stung, like it was piercing my skin. I contacted the salon again, and was told to try and manipulate the thread back up, and to not mess with it," she said.
"I was so concerned I sent a video of myself doing exactly as instructed to the salon, to show them."
The next day she became even more concerned when a blue thread pierced the skin by her top lip and she pulled it out.
“The thread had a cog on and came out of my face! Fortunately, there was no major bleeding, but I was incredibly concerned that my face would become lopsided.”
After calling the salon to complain, she claims she was told it was her "own fault."
Barbara added: "At no point did the trainer contact me directly to check on me. She had washed her hands of the whole thing."
Terrified her face was damaged forever, Barbara found another thread piercing her skin, near her eye.
When she tried to pull out the thread, the cog at the end got caught on her skin tissue, which caused it to pucker.
By now, blood was streaming down her face as she tried to push it back in. In the end, she managed to remove the thread by slowly manoeuvring it outward.
"I was left with two further lumps. One by my chin and another by my nose. I feared both threads would poke through at any moment," she said.
"I took myself to A&E who were supportive, but said they couldn’t touch it as it was cosmetic and they would not risk hurting me further. I was beside myself.
"The pain was so bad I contemplated buying a scalpel to cut the threads out of my face."
After conducting her own research, Barbara found Save Face, a national register of medical practitioners accredited to provide non-surgical cosmetic treatments.
She travelled to River Aesthetics clinic in Bournemouth, which is a training centre for Silhouette Soft threadlifts – which are only available from medically qualified clinicians.
After a consultation with the clinicians, Barbara was determined unsuitable for threadlifting treatment in the first place due to an autoimmune condition.
Dr Manning, from River Aesthetics, said: “A medical professional would have identified this immediately.

“We could clearly see the threads had been inserted superficially and had migrated significantly since their placement.
“The threads were unlike any we had seen before. We suspect they may not have even reached UK standards. “
Dr Manning added he worked with Barbara to remove as much of the thread as he could from her face – and added she was lucky not to have been disfigured by her experience.
"We strongly urge anyone considering aesthetic treatments to research the treatment provider and the treatment itself," he said.
Three months later, when Barbara's face had fully healed, she went back to the clinic for the new look she'd originally wanted.
The clinicians used MaiLi filler to plump up her cheeks, add definition to her jawline and enhance her lips.
Barbara said: “I would strongly urge anyone contemplating an aesthetic treatment, to thoroughly research everything and ask questions about the qualifications of the treatment provider, the treatment modality, the products being used. See if they are accredited by Save Face.
“Don’t do what I did and be seduced by the price and the promise that someone is a ‘trainer’.
Have you ever had a cosmetic procedure that didn't go to plan? Send your stories to jessica.taylor@reachplc.com
“I'm absolutely thrilled with the results now. I should have researched the suitability of different procedures and treatments and got a better understanding from the experts about the results that I could expect to achieve.
“We now know that I wasn’t suitable for PDO threads so it's frustrating to think that I went through all of that pain and worry for nothing.”

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