EVENTS

My Secret To Looking 10 Years Younger & Lifting My Skin WITHOUT Surgery!

Ultherapy & PDO Thread Lift Review

If you are like me, and you are PRO-aging, you totally get that getting older is a privilege. You feel amazing in your skin and more confident than ever. Life is literally just getting started. But, at the same time, you are also game for some tweaks here and there to make sure you look as vibrant and youthful on the outside as you feel on the inside.

In this post, I’m sharing the deets on the minimally invasive procedures I had done (on my face) to looks 10 years younger!  You’ll find out exactly what I did,  how much they cost, recovery time, etc. I’m also sharing KEY before and after photos.

I know you are all smart enough to know this already, but it is definitely worth repeating. You are absolutely amazing just the way you are and I do not want you to feel ANY pressure to get treatments. Only move forward, if it really feels right to you and you have the budget for it. I got these procedures done because it’s something I really wanted to do and I also wanted to review them for you.

Also… always, always always, make sure you talk to a professional and do your research before having anything done. I’m not a professional…I’m simply sharing my experience so that you are more informed.

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A Little Background First

If you’ve been around for a while, you may remember about four+ years ago, I tried Ultherapy. You can watch that video here. About three months ago, I decided I was going to get it done again. But, I decided to get Ultherapy in combination with a hot new treatment that the beauty world is buzzing about… a PDO Thread Lift! The thread lift lifts the skin, but we’ll get more into the details in a minute. I also had lip filler on the same day! Yes, I went for it. That’s just kind of how I roll. I was thinking if we are going to do this, let’s DO this. I wanted to get it all done in one session. I went to Aesthetics and Wellness in Durango. If you mention my video (at the bottom of this post) they’ve offered to give you $500 off your Ultherapy or PDO treatment.

Now on to the fun stuff…if you’re interested in what these treatments are, how they work, if they hurt, and how much they cost…keep scrolling!

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Ultherapy

What is Ultherapy?

Ultherapy is a non-invasive laser treatment designed to tighten loose skin by using heat or ultrasound energy. The laser penetrates deep into the skin to create an ‘injury’ that then stimulates collagen, which plumps the face, tightens, and lifts. Ultherapy is the gold standard for tightening the jawline in a non-invasive way.

Does Ultherapy Hurt?

I got this procedure done a few years back and after getting it done the second time, you know what I realized?? It’s crazy how our mind can block out pain (kind of like childbirth/c-section). This procedure really hurts. In my old video, I ranked the pain as a 7 on a scale of 1-10. After this time around, I’d say it’s an 8! And that was after taking half a Xanax before going in for the procedure. The only way I can describe the pain is by saying it feels like someone is taking a needle and injecting it into your face and then that needle bounces around your face. The procedure is 60-90 minutes, which is a long time to sit in pain.

How Long Is The Recovery for Ultherapy?

My recovery time is a little different because I also got the thread lift treatment (more on that below). But there is virtually no recovery time for Ultherapy. You may experience tenderness, redness, mild swelling and raised skin.

How Long Does Ultherapy Last?

You don’t see results until around 3 months after you get the treatment. The ‘after’ photos you’ll see below were taken just before the 3-month mark so it probably hasn’t kicked in quite yet. The results last for 1-2 years. The cool thing is that it actually slows the aging process. It’s like you set back the clock on your jawline. Gravity does kick back and you will begin to age normally again, but you are slowing things down.

How Much Does Ultherapy Cost

Ultherapy is generally around $2,300 to $2,600 per area. The areas you might consider getting treated are: your jawline, your neck, and your chest. I got all three areas done. It was insanely painful and quite pricey!

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PDO Thread Lift

What Is PDO Thread Lift?

PDO Thread Lift is a minimally invasive way to lift loose skin on the face by using medial grade thread (that’s thinner than a strand of hair) that will dissolve and absorb into the body within 4-6 months. The threads go into the face through a tiny needle and then they pull the threads tight so that it lifts the skin to create that lifted look. Because the threads absorb into the body, there are very few risks associated with this procedure. Some of the risks are bruising, swelling, and skin dimpling. Another thing to consider is that we don’t know exactly what the long-term effects are. So, it’s a bit of a risk in that sense.

This is ideal for the 35-55 age window. As we get older, our skin starts to sag and thin out. This procedure helps with those early, minimal signs of aging by lifting the jowls and cheeks. It’s not meant for more progressed and mature signs of aging. But of course, talk to your dermatologist, nurse practitioner, etc, before doing anything.

Does PDO Thread Lift Hurt?

The most painful thing about the entire experience was the shot to numb the area before. After that, you hardly feel anything during the actual procedure. BUT… the harder part with this treatment is definitely the recovery.

How Long Is The Recovery For PDO Thread Lift?

You can watch my day-by-day recovery in the video at the end of this post. But I took a full two weeks to recover and get mostly back to normal. They recommend 6-8 days for recovery and I wasn’t able to exercise or do anything comfortably until day 7. In terms of how you look in recovery is a different story. By day 7-8 I saw dramatic improvements in pain and I could cover up any bruising with makeup. But it did take about 14 days to fully recover where the bruising wasn’t noticeable without makeup on. The other thing that was kinda weird is you can’t open your mouth wide. The threads inhibited eating, yawning, laughing, etc. In my video (scroll to bottom of post), I describe how I was feeling, what it looked like, etc. so you can get a better idea of what to expect.

How Long Does PDO Thread Lift Last?

This procedure is supposed to last 1-3 years. I’m not sure if it slows the aging process down like Ultherapy or if my skin will go right back to where it was after it wears off. We will see and I’ll let you know. Hopefully, it lasts the full 3 years and slows down aging.

How Much Does PDO Thread Lift Cost?

Similar to Ultherapy, this procedure comes with a hefty price tag. Depending on where you go, you should expect to pay around $2,300 per area. I had one area lifted focused on jowls.

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How I Was Feeling

In addition to getting the Ultherapy and the PDO Thread Lift, I got filler in my lips. In the video below, you’ll see me talking more about the recovery from lip filler (yes, there IS a recovery period!).

(BTW, if you’re interested in getting botox, make sure you check out this post with everything you need to know.)

  • Day 3 – It was hard to chew/eat, I couldn’t smile, and I couldn’t work out. I kept experiencing what I called “zings” throughout my face. Any time I showed too much emotion, I’d feel this really weird “zing” in my face that was painful. I also had track marks on my neck from Ultherapy (raised skin on my neck). And my lips were VERY swollen. It was worrying!
  • Day 4 – There was quite a bit of bruising (watch video to see), I was still swollen and my face was tender to touch but it was a little better than day 1-3.
  • Day 5 – There was lots of yellow bruising, and a ton of dryness. We live in Colorado where my skin is always dry anyways but my skin was flaking off at this point.
  • Day 6 – There was still a lot of bruising (yellow and purple on cheeks and very dark under the chin. I still hadn’t worked out yet and was still getting little zings when I showed emotion. My lips were still swollen but getting better.
  • Day 8 – This is when I noticed dramatic improvements…the swelling went down, bruising was better and barely noticeable. My face was still tender but not bad at all. And I still got a “zing” if I smiled big. I started noticing my jowl is tighter (yay for seeing results!!). Ultherapy under chin and track marks were much better. Lips were less swollen, better but still a little tender. This was the first day I worked out and felt good so that’s a huge improvement in my book!
  • Day 14 – I could still see yellow on the cheeks but not noticeable unless you got super close (and aren’t wearing any makeup). My cheeks were still tender but not as bad. I still had track marks from Ultherapy on my neck, my lips still felt weird and a little lumpy but they look nice (just feel weird).
Before & After Photos

Quick note: There are some slight variations in light, but I tried my very best to match the lighting as closely as possible…shooting in a room with no windows with lights on the same settings. The after photos were taken almost exactly 3 months after the procedures.

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Before & After – Lips

You may be wondering why I got filler in my lips in addition to the other procedures…Since I was already numb form PDO and Ultherapy, I went for it! I was worried during recovery because they were SO swollen and looked like duck lips. But now they’re back to normal, natural, and almost look like I didn’t have them done (which is what I wanted).

You can see in the after photo above, that my lips simply look slightly fuller. This fullness hides those fine lines around the lips. I LOVE that they’re very subtle. I didn’t want anything crazy here.

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Before & After – Full Face Side Angle

This is where things get really exciting! You can see that the heaviness in my cheek has gone away on the right, and my skin looks tighter. Notice the line from the corner of my mouth to my jawline on the left is less pronounced. And the skin at my jawline looks a little bit tighter. I also notice how much brighter my skin looks. Not as may sun spots too!

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Before & After – Full Face Straight On

You don’t see much of a change here but what I want you to notice is the difference in my skin. Skin tone and texture is just better overall. Less red, more luminous, a little fuller under the cheek bones. I don’t see a difference in jawline and neck in this picture.

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Before & After – Left Side

You can see that the line is less pronounced from the corner of my mouth down to the jawline. And, my skin is GLOWING! The cheek is also less heavy on the right… which is that lifting effect that comes from the PDO Threadlift.

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Before & After – Right Side

This photo makes me think that the Ultherapy hasn’t kicked in yet (takes 3+ months to see full results). But notice skin texture, tone, clarity, and more fullness under the cheekbones.

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Before & After – Close Up Cheek/Jaw

This is a closer shot of jawline and honestly, the difference is incredible! You can really see how the line from the corner of my mouth to the jawline has lessened. Plus, my overall skin and face just looks healthier.

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Before & After – Extreme Close Up

Just so you can really see that line from the lifting of the PDO thread lift… This one is also incredible, I think! Really noticing that cheek and jowl lift here.

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Before & After – Close Up Front Angle

It’s hard to see any big difference here but you can see how the lips are looking slightly more full and plump!

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Before & After – Crow’s Feet

This is an area I didn’t think much about… but I see a difference for sure! I think Ultherapy helped minimize the crow’s feet lines. Do you notice a difference? I think the lines on the right aren’t as deep.

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Before & After – Crow’s Feet Other Side

Same thing as before, just a different angle/side of face. I think it looks like the hooding of my eyelid is a bit more lifted too.

The Verdict: Do I Think Ultherapy & PDO Thread Lift Are Worth It???

I notice a tremendous difference and have gotten so many questions about what I’ve been doing to look so youthful. I think that the difference is more dramatic than what is portrayed in these before and after pictures. To me…

1) My face looks much more lifted,
2) I’m hardly seeing the lines from my mouth to the jawline,
3) My face below my cheeks is fuller which creates a more youthful appearance,
4) My skin quality, texture, tone, and clarity is SO much better and actually makes it easier to do my makeup,
5) And I’m using less makeup because the tone is more even and I don’t feel like I need it!

It’s expensive and it is painful. But it’s minimally invasive and really makes a dramatic difference. It also doesn’t have a lot of short term risk (I don’t know about longterm risk with threading). I’m very happy with the results and I feel good about how it looks! If you decide to try it, make sure you plan for the down time.

Please let me know what other questions you have or if I missed anything. I’m happy to answer in the comments below. For more beauty info, make sure you check out our Beauty category. And, to get my blog posts delivered directly to your inbox, along with some next-level freebies, when you sign up for my newsletter here. Thanks for stopping by!

*****EMBED YOUTUBE VIDEO HERE*****

How To Manifest Anything, Fashion blogger Erin Busbee of Busbee Style wearing an orange and blue Staud Ina dress with white sunglasses walking around in Telluride, Colorado
Erin Busbee
After a decade in TV news, a desire to help women "look pretty" sparked a career pivot. I started my own wardrobe consulting business, styling "real" women for many years. In 2014, I changed direction again, using my TV background and styling expertise to launch this website and my YouTube channel. We are now a community of nearly 700,000 dynamic, vibrant, amazing women over 40... who know that age isn't something you need to hide from. For us, life is just getting started!!
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2 thoughts on “My Secret To Looking 10 Years Younger & Lifting My Skin WITHOUT Surgery!

  1. Erin,
    Would you recommend the therapy over the radio frequency treatment?

    Thank you,
    Maureen Packer

    1. Ultherapy is radio frequency laser. It’s effective but VERY painful. Of the two, the PDO thread lift produces more exciting results. I hope this helps! xo

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