Melissa is an employee at RealSelf, working in sales. As she entered her 30s, she started noticing smile lines in pictures, and it started bothering her. She became self-conscious, worried about smiling and making the lines worse. So she decided to try a cosmetic procedure, settling on Restylane Lyft, a filler that can be used to treat those lines.

She shared her experience with us, and why she’s so excited to talk about her smile.

What did you think about cosmetic procedures before getting a treatment?

“Prior to RealSelf, I hadn’t really entertained the idea of getting a cosmetic procedure. I think a huge part of that was not knowing all the different types of procedures or treatments that were available. I feel like I walked into it and realized exactly all the different types of solutions out there. “

“Since then my perception has definitely changed. The biggest shift has occurred from just reading all the stories. What’s magic about RealSelf is that everyone is really opening up and sharing their journeys, and everyone has a really unique point of view of why they’re doing something, where they’re coming from, and what it means to them. Hearing all the different points of view really helped me understand the broader spectrum of what’s possible and what it can mean for people.”

See her before and after photos

Why did you decide to get a filler?

“After I hit 30, in pictures I started noticing these lines around my smile. I started to notice them more and more, and it became a thing where that was the first thing I noticed in every photo. It got to the point where when I took a photo with a group of friends, I was worried about smiling too much because I’d have the smile lines. That’s when I realized this is something that I can fix. I know that I can fix this. I know there are options for me where I can smile in photos again without worrying about it.”

“I knew that I needed to get something done that would be a filler procedure, but what I didn’t know was where those injections would need to go, what type of injection I would need to get, what really my options were.”

Learn more about Restylane

What did your friends and family think?

“I did not widely publicize that I would be getting a filler procedure done, because even though at my workplace it’s very open, it’s very accepting, within some of my social circles, including perhaps even some my familial circles, it isn’t something that necessarily would be accepted or not judged still.”

Why are you sharing your experience now?

“I’m open about talking about this procedure today because it had a big impact for me. I would definitely advocate for it. It’s something I think people should definitely consider as an option regardless of your age. I had a great experience and I think people should hear about that.”

Did the procedure change you?

“The reality is I actually look like me, just with a filter. If anything, I’m able to get ready in the morning putting less makeup on, because I don’t feel like I need to add all the extra contouring or the extra makeup to go out. I have that already in my face now.”

Was it worth it?

“It’s hard to put in to words the emotional impact of this experience. It’s something where I want to go out and talk to people about it. It’s also something where I just want to go out more. I want to be in photos more. I want to be out interacting with my friends more. It’s given me that added confidence where I’m even smiling more. Before, I was holding back my smile, even perhaps subconsciously, because I didn’t want those lines. Now not only do I not feel like I have those lines, I have these amazing cheekbones and it looks like I’ve slept a full night’s sleep all the time.

I just feel like a better version of myself.”

RealSelf employees receive aesthetic procedures too, and often want to share their experiences with the RealSelf community. This review reflects the experience of a RealSelf employee, and does not represent the opinion of RealSelf.