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17 Jan

My Liquid Facelift Experience with Dr. Peter Malouf

The Lowdown On What It’s Really Like To Get Botox And Fillers

If you’ve been following me for any length of time, you probably know I’m a bit of a health-nut, and now I’m letting you in on a little secret-I’m also a big weenie when it comes to needles!

So, branching out at the ripe age of 43 to get Botox and Fillers to look my best before attending last years 90th Academy Awards was entirely out of my comfort zone.

Christy Dunaway Smith

I’ve never been one to cut corners to save a buck, so it was imperative that I see only the very best for these procedures. I needed to go to the doctor I knew to be the best, which was Doctor Peter Malouf.

I’ve been a patient of Dr. Malouf’s since college graduation.

Dr. Malouf started his practice from the ground up and eventually brought in partners till his business was bursting at the seams.

In 2017, he decided to simplify and start over with a new private concierge boutique practice, Dr. Malouf Dermatology.

At the time of my appointment, Dr. Malouf’s new Fort Worth location was under construction, so I drove to his Dallas office with my photographer Maria, and my husband’s work wife, I mean operations manager of his company, Kelly, to hold my hand.

I have to admit; I was a bit nervous about what would unfold with all of the pokes I was about to receive.

Dr. peter malouf christy dunaway smith

But first, we popped into The Gem, an all organic juice bar/vegan cafe located in Preston Center, for a quick healthy bite.

Besides, I needed a moment to slather all the prescription numbing cream onto my face before my beauty doc appointment.

I’m not gonna lie, the stares I received while doing this in the middle of the restaurant were awkward, but a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do.

Even more awkward, my Dallas cousin Chris Winn also happened to walk in for a quick bite. It’s one thing to do weird things in public when you don’t know anyone, but when family sees you acting weird, now THAT’S embarrassing.

Christy Dunaway Smith Dr. Malouf
Christy Dunaway Smith Dr. Malouf

By the time we pulled up to Dr. Malouf’s office, my face and lips were so numb from the cream, I had to keep wiping the drool from my mouth. Due to this attractive side effect, my anxiety had lessened.

As soon as we walked into the waiting room, Dr. Malouf immediately put my mind at ease as we caught up on life and chatted about everything under the sun.

Dr. Peter Malouf Christy Dunaway Smith
Dr. Peter Malouf Christy Dunaway Smith

Once we settled into the exam room, he asked what I was looking to achieve aesthetically. I pointed to the hard forehead lines I’ve had since middle school and mentioned my face had slowly journeyed South.

I told him my primary concern was not to look frozen or have unnaturally arched brows like The Joker. I mean, I have seen some terrible Botox jobs in my lifetime. The overall goal was natural with a splash of youth.

He said, “I’m going to give you a Liquid Facelift.”

Dr. Peter Malouf Christy Dunaway Smith

Before we got too far along, I decided to bust out my phone and go LIVE on Instagram for a behind the scenes experience of what it’s like to be with me in a doctors office, WITH NEEDLES!

Dr. Malouf knew I was paranoid about feeling any pain. Before he started the Botox injections, he prepped me for a dental block for the facial fillers.

He put a liquid numbing agent onto two Q-tips and stuck them in between my lips and gum-line to numb that section of my mouth, where the potentially painful numbing injections would go.

The three-minute wait for the numbing to kick in was far worse than the actual injections, which, by the way, didn’t hurt at all. Not even a pinch, only pressure. If life were only that easy, right?

Dr. Peter Malouf Dental Block
Dr. Malouf Dental Block Injection

To my surprise, I didn’t even feel the first Botox needle poke, but I yelped out anyway because I just knew it was going to hurt. In fact, I didn’t feel about 80% of the needle pokes, and the ones I did, felt more like mosquito bites. Mind you; I did have a whole jar of prescription numbing cream on my face.

Dr. Peter Malouf
Dr. Peter Malouf Botox Christy Dunaway Smith
Dr. Peter Malouf Christy Dunaway Smith

I’m dying laughing here cause I had worked myself up over nothing. Everyone was laughing. I seriously couldn’t believe how easy it was. Like a total cake walk, people.

Laughing after 1st injections

By the time Dr. Malouf finished the Botox injections, my cheeks and nasolabial folds (aka parentheses lines) were numbed entirely and ready for the Restylane Refine filler. Filler, just the sound of that word made me want to run home to mama, but my shallow Hollywood vanity gave me strength for the next process. I didn’t want to look like a skid mark on the red carpet at the Oscars.

I told Dr. Malouf my concerns of looking like an over-filled chipmunk with my already cheeky smile. He assured me that he does cheek injections in a precise location, so his patients don’t look blown up. And thanks to that dental block, I only felt a little pressure during the process.

Restylane Filler Dr. Peter Malouf
Dr. Peter Malouf

WE HAVE A BLEEDER! Now, most people don’t bleed when getting Botox injections, but I made the mistake of taking Advil the night before, which most likely caused the excessive bleeding. Oops!

Restylane Filler Dr. Peter Malouf

But then the inevitable came, and I just had to ask him about my lips! Talk about playing with fire. Of all the lip jobs I have seen in my life, about 90% of them are an embarrassment to society and ain’t nobody got time for the Kylie Jenner lip challenge look. Dr. Malouf agreed that many specialists over inject patients lips, which can cause an unnatural ‘trout pout’ look.

Dr. Malouf mentioned he had perfected the perfect natural lip with Juvederm Voluma injections. He said, “The cupids bow is the center curve on your upper lip, and when enhanced, it improves its definition.

Over-injection in this area will produce a ‘beaky lip.’ In our youth, the vermilion border of the lip looks like a ski jump from the side view but is lost with aging and sun damage. Subtle enhancements with this filler will make it look youthful again.”

So, I said why not, let’s give this a shot! And just like that, there was hardly any discomfort, and instantly I had the perfect natural upper lip. In fact, I am SO IN LOVE with my new lip; I’m probably going to keep up with the look for life.

Dr. Peter Malouf

Despite my nerves, Dr. Malouf and his staff were amazing! I knew I was in the best hands DFW had to offer.

He has been voted Best Doctor by Fort Worth Magazine every year since 2000, a Texas Monthly Super Doctor, and the #1 Cosmetic Producing Practice in Tarrant County by Fort Worth Business Press.

His credentials and awards are long, and he deserves every single one.

Screen Shot 2019-01-17 at 12.27.46 PM

Photography by Maria Ciszek

The ULTIMATE Liquid Facelift GIVEAWAY with Dr. Peter Malouf!!!

Dr. Peter Malouf is giving away the exact same Liquid Facelift he did for, to one very lucky reader. This amazing $2000 valued beauty package includes:

  • 45 units of Botox, which will last between 3-6 months. ($540 value)
  • 1 syringe of Restylane Refine, which will last up to 14 months. This was used in my cheeks and smile lines. ($700 value)
  • 1 syringe of Juvederm Voluma, which will last up to 18 months. This was injected along the top rim of my lip to define the slope again. ($800 value)

*Please read the TERMS & CONDITIONS for the official rules at the giveaway link below, including following all requested social media accounts and being subscribed to the SoFortWorthIt newsletter for your entry to qualify. 

27 Nov

Tape-In Hair Extensions for A Red Carpet Look with Novak Hair Studios

Hairdreams Tape-in Extensions

The 411 in the 817: Hair Edition

Red carpet hair extensions featuring Novak Hair Studios, the latest and greatest solo artist, eco-friendly salon in Fort Worth.

Most of you know Jason and I had the incredible opportunity to attend the Academy Awards this past March alongside our wonderful friends Angelique and Mike De Luca. But before we headed out to La La Land, I needed to kick my beauty routine up a few notches.

So, I stepped out of my comfort zone and tried a few things I hadn’t done before, including Botox and fillers (this post coming soon) and a total hair makeover, which included hair extensions.

SoFortWorthIt Hair Extensions

Anyone who knows me knows I am very particular when it comes to my hair. Through the decades, I have had multiple experiences at different salons and various stylists that ranged from not-so-great to exceptional. Check out the homemade perm job from my grandmother and a run-in with Sun-In at Camp Longhorn. NICE, huh?

My signature-look for the longest time was blonde hair, and it perfectly fit my bubbly personality. After transitioning to a more healthy, brunette color a few years ago, I thought it would be fun to experiment with extensions to keep that full-bodied, voluminous look.

Christy Dunaway Smith Chair for Cancer Care Services 2013

Being the research queen that I am, I reached out to a few experts in the beauty industry in search of the top stylists who specialized in hair extensions. Ben, the co-owner of Novak Hair Studios, and his ultra-talented sidekick Madalyn were recommended with the best of the best reviews.

I knew that Madalyn at Novak would provide the service I was looking for, and would ultimately understand what I needed to take my hair game to the next level.

Ben Novak and Madalyn Porche

I may be biased, but I am here to tell you that Ben’s team is indeed the best in the industry, and that is no exaggeration. In fact, Novak Hair Studios is the official sponsor for Mrs. Texas, Mrs. Oklahoma, Miss America Texas, and Miss Teen Texas. Whoa, that’s kind of a big deal, right?

Not only that, local Trinity Valley student Brenna Flynn of Fort Worth took the crown as reigning Miss Texas Teen USA 2018.

HAIR EXTENSION 101

Highlighting the hair extension process and procedures.

I started this process by booking a complimentary consultation with Madalyn so she could asses my hair and pick the best extensions that matched the color, texture, and length of my current locks.

SoFortWorthIt Hair Extensions Novak Hair Studios

Although Novak Hair Studios uses several different extension brands, Madalyn chose Hairdreams, a tape-in brand that uses real human hair and is known for its natural texture. Human hair just feels better over synthetic, and it is by far the superior way to go.

Tape-in extensions are best for keeping your hair thick, happy, and healthy. Plus, they can be reused up to 4-5 times which will save money and time in the long run.

Hairdreams
Hairdreams tape-in

The extension process didn’t take nearly as long as I had imagined. For my hair, the installation was around 45-60 minutes, in addition to the standard amount of time it takes to color, wash, cut and style.

I go in every 5-7 weeks to have the extensions taken out, cleaned, rebound, and moved up closer to my scalp, on top of the services mentioned above. A reinstall day is always a little bit longer than the 1st time you have them put in.

Overall, I always plan for 4 – 4 ½ hours in the salon on extension day.

At the moment, I am on my second set of tape-in extensions this year. The 1st set, which were installed in February, lasted all the way through Halloween while taking a Memorial through Labor Day break. Since we are at the lake as much as humanly possible during the summer months, I really wanted to preserve the integrity and longevity of my Hair Dreams extensions by not exposing them to harsh conditions like lake water, sunscreen and chemically treated pool water.

Remember above when I mentioned how tape-in extensions don’t damage your hair? This picture was taken right after I had them removed for summer break. I believe using these particular extensions has actually made my hair healthier.

How Much do Extensions Cost?

So here is the scoop, Novak Hair Studios truly wants to take care of their customers- so much so that they do not mark up their hair extensions when they purchase from a third-party distributor. Instead, they pass their cost directly on to the customer.

When I originally had my first set of extensions put in before the Academy Awards, Madalyn used seven packs of hair for a fuller Red Carpet, glamorous look. Each pack included six pieces, so we used 42 extensions total, which came to $500 for all of the hair.

For the first time around, it is about $900 for the average person to walk into Novak for a full extension service, including color/hi-lite, cut and style. Paying for your hair upfront is the priciest part of this gig, but after your initial appointment, your regular maintenance is most likely similar to what you have been paying for a typical hair appointment.

For everyday purposes, Madalyn recommended we go down to six packs at the next install to maintain a more manageable look.

Novak Hair Studios is in a League of Its Own

Now let me highlight this luxury solo artist salon in downtown Fort Worth a bit more for you. There are so many unique characteristics that make up Novak; it’s just too exciting not to share.

Novak Hair Studios
Novak Hair Reception Desk

Novak Hair Studios is partnered with Green Circle Salons, a sustainable salon solution that helps recover and repurpose beauty waste to ensure that 95% of everything is recycled, including the hair trimmings.

Novak
Novak

Their eco-friendly model also goes as far as using water-saving Ecoheads on their European wash bowls (reduces water and energy usage by 65%) and an HVAC system that is continuously cleaning the air from chemicals released throughout the day.

The customer service at this salon is unparalleled. A concierge service will check on guests periodically to make sure they are being taken care of and comfortable, and who can resist a complimentary glass of wine from their digital beverage menu.

While you are waiting for your foils to set, enjoy that glass of Chardonnay in a PRIVATE processing lounge so you can rock your lovely foil-covered head without other guests seeing you.

And I’m head over heels with the organic and cruelty-free Eufora hair product line that is exclusively sold at Novak Hair Studios. This stuff is the BOMB!

Eufora

Last, but not least, the attention to detail that Novak prides itself on is unlike any other. Novak’s fantastic staff members and stylists radiate passion for their work and continuously strive to create a positive pampering experience for all guests. I immediately feel right at home when I walk into Novak.

Photography by Maria Ciszek & Novak Hair Studios

SoFortWorthIt GIVEAWAY

Who is ready for a very exciting giveaway from Novak Hair Studios! After all, what says red carpet more than having red carpet hair?!

Start your night out with an Oscar inspired HotTools Pro 24k Gold 1.1/4 inch curing iron with a pure gold finish, along with an arsenal of the styling products you will need to be ready to make headlines for your academy awards debut. Eufora Retain Spray to help retain curls and provide heat protection, Eufora Tame Spray to help lock out frizz and provide additional memory for curls that will last through the after party, Eufora Full Effect Dry Texturizing Spray to help separate and add fullness to any style, and lastly Eufora Uplift Extra Firm Finishing Spray to finalize and perfect those locks. But that’s not all, Madalyn is throwing in a full blowout and style for your next big night out on the town.

Please read the TERMS & CONDITIONS for full details and disclosures located in the Rafflecopter link below.

16 Sep

SoFortWorthIt LOVES Beauty

When I was a little girl, my mom always said to me, “beauty comes from the inside.” I never quite understood what she meant. I thought, how could your guts be pretty? It wasn’t until the dreaded, hormonal, pre-teen phases of middle school, when I started to realize what she was trying to tell me. People’s behaviors determined if they were truly beautiful or not. I feel very fortunate my parents emphasized the importance of inner beauty, because no matter what you look like on the outside, if your inside isn’t beautiful, then you’re just plain ugly.

Me, at age three.

Truthfully though, no matter who you are on the inside or out, we all want to look the best we can, right?

Fort Worth Star Telegram, Class Acts, 1991.

Well, you have come to the right place! I can’t wait to share with you the amazing world of maintaining your fountain of youth. Speaking of youth, here are two dear friends of mine who know more about beauty products than anyone else I know.

Lisa, on the left, is the founder of LA FACE, an all natural and organic luxury skincare line. She definitely knows the science behind age defying. Kathryn, on the right, has tried every beauty product known to man, no joke. In fact, she travels with a duffle bag filled to the brim with all of her lotions and potions.

These gals are my go-to when it comes to trying something new or answering any questions I might have about ingredients. I look forward to sharing their opinions here in SFWI Loves Beauty!

I’ll talk about what’s happening in the DFW area with current trends, beauty education, and products & services.

I’ll also share all the details of the products I’m using and my current routine.

Charlie Price, hairstylist to the stars, Charlie & Co., 2017.
Makeup application at the Chanel counter, Neiman Marcus, 2017.
Airbrush makeup application, Bella Retreat, 2016.

Most importantly, I will never write sponsored content about a product or brand that isn’t already a natural fit for myself. I will always stay true to my readers. If you see something here, rest assured I love it, and it’s worth trying!

SoForthWorthIt is always on the hunt for the holy grail of luxurious beauty products and trends. If you have a product that meets my standards, I’d love to collaborate! Reach out to partners@sofortworthit.com.