I suspect they offer generous staff discounts.
Her face is completely unlined; almost wax like. And I am morbidly fascinated by her over-inflated lips.
I think she is trying to smile at me but it’s difficult to tell. “I can see why you would want your nose fixed. It’s not very straight is it? Have you broken it? You should also consider upper eyelid surgery; it would make you look less tired”.
Admittedly my eyelids have always been a little heavy but I’ve never really had a problem with that. She hands me a mirror then pulls my eyelids up to demonstrate how much more ‘awake’ I would look. And I find myself murmuring in agreement.
Then she says “Can I see your breasts? You could probably benefit from an up-lift too”. I fold my arms protectively across my chest and tell her that I quite like my breasts thank you very much.
She goes on to suggest liposuction on my bottom “to trim it down a little”. This really is too much. “I’m Mediterranean. I’m supposed to have a decent sized arse. Are you deliberately trying to piss me off?”
Apparently she is merely encouraging me to take advantage of this month’s special offer; three surgical procedures for the price of two. Now I understand. She’s a salesperson in a nurse’s uniform.
“Hmmm, three for two offers are hard to refuse”. Her face twitches slightly, she is trying to smile at me again>i> “Excellent. I’ll get the paperwork”.
I tell her I hadn’t finished “It’s hard to refuse the offer in a supermarket but much easier when it comes to putting my life at risk with unnecessary surgery”.
Another slight twitch, I think it’s a frown this time “I really am only interested in the rhinoplasty. When can I speak to the surgeon?”
She hands me a booking form and pen. “Just as soon as we have you booked in – when is good for you? We require a fifty percent deposit”.
I thank her for her time as I’m walking out. She follows me all the way to the door, trying to persuade me to sign the booking form.
I ask her how many people she has pressured into signing up for potentially life threatening surgery that they don’t actually need. It’s appalling how she plays on your insecurities.
Fortunately for me my intelligence outweighs my insecurity. I make a mental note to report the clinic to the GMC.
Then I walk further down Harley Street to see a surgeon recommended by a friend. His client base is all through word of mouth (not advertisements on the underground). And my consultation is with the actual surgeon.
I explain that I would like a nose job to straighten my nose and make it less prominent. He studies my face for a moment. “Your nose fits your face perfectly. I wouldn’t recommend rhinoplasty unless you absolutely needed it. It’s the most complicated facial surgery and the risk factors are high”.
I ask him about my upper eyelids. He smiles kindly at me “I wouldn’t touch them for at least another ten to fifteen years”. I want to know if there is anything else I can have done now to make me look pretty.
He shakes his head, “You are a very attractive woman and you have fantastic bone structure, just think yourself lucky”.
I remember that he also works for the NHS carrying out reconstructive surgery. And I leave the clinic feeling incredibly silly.
What on earth has happened to me? Since when did I decide it was worth risking my life and leaving Mia motherless for the sake of vanity?
I decide to scrap Plan A; I am most definitely not going to undergo any invasive surgical procedures.
But there is absolutely no harm in trying non-invasive natural alternatives that carry no risk at all right? And apparently Dracula Therapy is the hottest thing in anti-aging right now. It’s also my Plan B.
I have already done all the research but I listen patiently as the doctor explains the procedure.
He will draw blood then separate it into the red blood cells, the clear serum and the platelets. Then, after amino acids and vitamins are added, the enriched serum is injected back into my face. And my skin will look younger naturally.
I’m relieved when he produces a needle and draws four vials of blood from my arm; my keen sense of drama meant that I was half expecting him to sink his teeth into my neck.
I watch him preparing the serum and I start to feel like I’m in Frankenstein’s laboratory. I hum to try and drown out the two voices arguing in my head “How the hell do you know what he’s going to inject into your face? You could end up looking like Frankenstein’s monster. Don’t do it”.
“No. Do it. It’s only your own blood with lots of vitamins added to it. You’ll look all fresh and lovely”.
They are still arguing when he starts injecting my face from hair line to jaw line. My pain threshold is very low. And it really fucking hurts. I wince. “Stay still please”.
I want to get up and walk out but then one side of my face will look younger than the other. I curse myself for being such a shallow idiot.
Then I clench my fists and try to go to my happy place until it’s over.
It will take at least three weeks for me to see any effects. In the meantime my face looks like a pink pin cushion (without the pins obviously).
He advises me to have a top up in six months. I don’t think so.
At least my next appointment is going to be completely pain-free. A good haircut is supposed to take years off a person. And I have managed to book myself in with one of the best hairdressers in London.
I thought my face had calmed down a little but he asks me if I’ve just come out of the gym “You look a little flushed”. I nod then move on swiftly “What would you recommend? I don’t want to look mutton”.
We decide on a sleek graduated bob.
Then he suggests that I go for a deep conditioning treatment “I use an organic product with a lot of protein which is what hair is made of and lacks when it’s dry”.
I like the sound of that. He massages the treatment into my hair. I comment on the lovely smell “What’s in it exactly?”
It’s a mix of a protein rich plant called katera. And bull semen.
Bull semen? My hair is smothered in bull semen? And he couldn’t have told me that before? How do they get it? Do they make the bull wear a condom while it has sex or is someone masturbating it?
I try not to retch. I would insist on having it washed out immediately but this stuff doesn’t come cheap so I have to tough it out.
This means spending the next forty-five minutes sitting under a steamer so that the “treatment penetrates” my hair.
His unfortunate choice of words involuntarily set off a series of very disturbing images in my bull semen covered head.
Yuck. Yuck. Yuck.