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Complaints about botched ‘tweakments’ soar 14% in a year as Brits including Love Island star Faye Winter reveal how getting fillers and Botox from cowboy practitioners have permanently scarred them


Brits including Love Island star Faye Winter have spoken of their fears that beauty ‘tweakments’ have permanently scarred them.

Figures show complaints about botched lip fillers and Botox have soared almost 14 per cent in a year, with more than 3,000 made in 2023 alone.

Reality TV star Faye, 28, said she was left with ‘pretty horrendous’ lips after having too much filler injected, which has left them stretched and wrinkled and forced her to continue getting the treatment to hide the side effect.

Lisa Kelly, from Essex, was left with painful purple lumps across her nose and cheeks that left her insecure and obscured her vision. She feared they would last forever.

Under current rules, anyone can administer aesthetic treatments, even if they have no training or qualifications. 

The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons warned patients are suffering from skin loss and blindness as a result of botched procedures. 

Brits including Love Island star Faye Winter have spoken of their fears that beauty 'tweakments' have permanently scarred them

Brits including Love Island star Faye Winter have spoken of their fears that beauty ‘tweakments’ have permanently scarred them

Reality TV star Faye, 28, said she was left with 'pretty horrendous' lips after having too much filler injected (left), which has left them stretched and wrinkled and forced her to continue getting the treatment (right) to hide this side effect

Reality TV star Faye, 28, said she was left with ‘pretty horrendous’ lips after having too much filler injected (left), which has left them stretched and wrinkled and forced her to continue getting the treatment (right) to hide this side effect 

Data from Save Face, an online register for accredited practitioners, says complaints hit 3,211 in 2023.

This was up from 13.7 per cent from 2022 (2,824) and 24.7 per cent compared to 2021 (2,576). 

Nine in 10 (91 per cent) of those who complained to the register found their injector on social media, which is littered with adverts promising instant results for as little as £60 .

There are also concerns about counterfeit products being used, with 31 per cent of complainants who thought they were receiving Botox claiming they were instead injected with something else.

Botulinum toxin (of which Botox is the most widely recognised brand) costs £100 to £350. 

WHAT IS BOTOX? 

Botox injections relax the muscles in the face to smooth out lines and wrinkles.

It’s not permanent — it usually lasts for around 3 months.

In the UK, the cost of Botox injections can vary from about £100 to £350 for each treatment, depending on the clinic and the area being treated.

Botox injections for cosmetic reasons are not available on the NHS.

The procedure, which usually only lasts 10 minutes, involves having botulinum toxin injected into the face muscles using a very fine needle.

It then takes around two to three days to start working and up to three weeks to see the full effect.

Side effects include, headaches, a frozen look, weakness in the face and bruising, swelling and redness where the needles went into the skin. 

However, Botox can also be used to treat medical conditions.

These include abnormal contractions of the eye, conditions that cause muscle pain and stiffness —such as cerebral palsy — and excessive sweating.

Source: NHS

It is typically injected directly in the forehead, reducing the appearance of wrinkles for up to six months.

Other popular procedures include lip fillers, where collagen or hyaluronic acid are injected to add volume.

Effects of the procedure, which costs around £200, last for up to 18 months.

Ms Kelly, a business development manager, was left worried she would be scarred for life after having anti-wrinkle jabs.

The 34-year-old went to a clinic for a Botox procedure but suffered complications not linked to that product, leading experts to believe that she was injected with a fake product. 

The botched procedure left her with painful, purple lumps across her face for months, with one on her nose partially blocking her vision.

She told Good Morning Britain (GMB): ‘It really made me insecure. For work, I go to client meetings and I just felt really like I didn’t want to go.’

Ashton Collins, director of Save Face, told GMB: ‘Because they are so trivialised on social media, people assume that they are risk-free beauty treatments but they are not. They are medical interventions.’

Dr Davina Wilson, founder of clinic Look Lovely London, told the programme she is reversing five to 10 procedures a week.

She warned an increasing number of women, particularly young ones who are seeking out procedures, are suffering serious complications, including nerve damage and a risk of blindness.

‘If you don’t have an intricate understanding of facial anatomy, you’re really going in blind, using sharp needles in areas that can cause irreversible damage,’ she said.

In rare cases, dermal filler can enter a small blood vessel in the face which connects to the retinal artery, which supplies blood to the retina at the back of the eye. This can lead to permanent blindness.

Tissue death can also occur if filler is accidentally injected into a blood vessel, which can cut of blood supply and causes the tissue to die and eventually fall away.

Love Island’s Faye, who appeared on the show in 2021, said she started having beauty ‘tweakments’ aged 21.

Lisa Kelly, from Essex, was left with painful purple lumps across her nose and cheeks that left her insecure and obscured her vision. She feared they would last forever but they eventually disappeared months later

Lisa Kelly, from Essex, was left with painful purple lumps across her nose and cheeks that left her insecure and obscured her vision. She feared they would last forever but they eventually disappeared months later

Ms Kelly went to a clinic for a Botox procedure but suffered complications not linked to that product, leading experts to believe that she was injected with a fake product

The botched procedure left her with painful, purple lumps across her face for months, with one on her nose partially blocking her vision

Ms Kelly went to a clinic for a Botox procedure but suffered complications not linked to that product, leading experts to believe that she was injected with a fake product. The botched procedure left her with painful, purple lumps across her face for months (right), with one on her nose partially blocking her vision (left)

Dr Nora Nugent (right), vice-president of British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, said: 'We have seen skin loss from fillers . If filler is a gel, and it can be thicker or thinner depending on where it is put, but if it gets into a blood vessel it can block that blood vessel'

Dr Nora Nugent (right), vice-president of British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, said: ‘We have seen skin loss from fillers . If filler is a gel, and it can be thicker or thinner depending on where it is put, but if it gets into a blood vessel it can block that blood vessel’

She found practitioners on social media, with no knowledge of their background or training.

She told GMB: ‘I’ve always naturally had quite big teeth and one of my insecurities was the fact that my lips did not frame my teeth the right way for me.

‘And I do believe if you’ve got insecurities and you can be a more confident version of yourself, you should absolutely be able to go out and get those “tweakments” done but get them done safely.

‘But I didn’t have the knowledge or the resources to do it safe.’

This resulted in Faye having 4ml of filler injected into her lips, which left them looking ‘pretty horrendous’. The recommended starting dose is 0.5ml.

She had the filler dissolved before going on the ITV2 dating show but the skin had been left ‘so wrinkly’ that it had left her with an ‘aged lip’.

‘I had to get filler put back into my lips but only a small amount, 0.5ml, because the skin had been stretched so much.

‘I had to have something put back in them as I’d had a very aged lip and I was even more insecure about it.’ 

Her feature on ITV’s GMB also saw shocking pictures of other women who had allegedly received botched cosmetic treatments that left them with lumps and swellings on their face.

Faye's feature on ITV's GMB also saw shocking pictures of other women who had received botched cosmetic treatments that left them with lumps and swellings on their face

Faye's feature on ITV's GMB also saw shocking pictures of other women who had received botched cosmetic treatments that left them with lumps and swellings on their face

Faye’s feature on ITV’s GMB also saw shocking pictures of other women who had received botched cosmetic treatments that left them with lumps and swellings on their face

Faye's feature on ITV's GMB also saw shocking pictures of other women who had received botched cosmetic treatments that left them with lumps and swellings on their face

Faye's feature on ITV's GMB also saw shocking pictures of other women who had received botched cosmetic treatments that left them with lumps and swellings on their face

Faye’s feature on ITV’s GMB also saw shocking pictures of other women who had allegedly received botched cosmetic treatments that left them with lumps and swellings on their face 

Dr Nora Nugent, vice-president of British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, said: ‘We have seen skin loss from fillers

‘If filler is a gel, and it can be thicker or thinner depending on where it is put, but if it gets into a blood vessel it can block that blood vessel. 

‘You have a blood vessel running along each side of your lip. 

‘If the filler gets into that, it can damage the skin over the entire lip. Liquid rhinoplasty, or liquid nose job, are notorious.’

Liquid nose jobs use filler to disguise and imperfection or bump in someone’s nose, creating illusion of a straighter or more lifted nose.

Dr Nugent added: ‘Legally, there are no sound regulations for derma fillers. 

‘There are very large numbers of non-medical people doing medical treatments, invasive medical treatments with side effects such as skin loss and blindness.’

She urged people to ‘go to a medical practitioner who is trained in aesthetic procedures’ and ‘check that it is actually a registered medical practitioner’. 

Ministers last year pledged to ‘crackdown on unregulated cosmetic procedures’ — with plans to introduce a licence for cosmetic procedures like ‘Botox’ and fillers.

This could see age limits and restrictions introduced to protect patients from being harmed.

However, campaigners have said that the Government is not acting quickly enough. 



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