Avoiding The Discount Trap

I will be the first to admit that I love a good bargain, who doesn’t.  Over the last few years I have had cosmetic treatments such as Botox from wonderful doctors in Perth and overseas as well as laser, IPL and other dermal therapies, however I have never been tempted at the deals floating around offering discounted cosmetic treatments. Why? Because I simply don’t trust them.

The cosmetic medical industry is competitive and clients are spoilt for choice in who they decide to see for treatment of their wrinkles and other cosmetic concerns. Discounted treatments are one of many marketing tools clinics and practitioners use to attract new clients. However shopping around for aesthetic procedures  is not like shopping for a new ipad or pair of shoes. I am of the firm belief that offering discount specials or ‘scoupon’ deals on wrinkle relaxers and dermal fillers is irresponsible.

"When it comes to your face, your body and your health I am a strong believer that we should invest and use high quality, evidence based and safe products or procedures"

As a potential client you should be assertive and know EXACTLY what a doctor (or in some cases a nurse) is injecting into your face and you should ALWAYS have a consultation with a doctor before any treatment is performed.  You should be offered all available treatment modalities and work with the doctor in establishing a treatment plan tailored to your individual concerns and desired outcome.

During my training in aesthetics I have come to realise that not everything is in my scope of practice . For example I love to use dermal fillers and may want to perform an ‘8 point lift’ in a patient but the condition of their skin may be such that a mini-lift ( a surgical procedure) would be their best option both in terms of results and longevity. I would then refer on to a surgeon rather than pocket my client's hard earned dollars by performing a procedure I know wont have the best aesthetic results.

Think about those clinics that offer a deal of ‘$x for area x” how do you know how much wrinkle relaxer you are getting? In order to cover costs the amount of wrinkle relaxer for treatment of this area would have been pre-defined. Thus you could be getting very under treated (not enough units to have an effect) or if you only had very mild dynamic lines you could be getting over treated and walk out with a frozen expression. There is a big difference in the amount of wrinkle relaxer needed in a 25 year old woman versus a 65 year old man. One of my lovely clients I saw the other day was only 2 months post wrinkle relaxer treatment and it had already worn off! This is because she purchased a set amount of units which was half of what was required to perform a full treatment. With the correct amount of wrinkle relaxer her results would have lasted over 4 months.  

I have even seen patients to have used a 'scoupon' deal but don’t even know what product was used. For example X amount of units of Botox is very different to X amount of unit of Dysport (these are two commonly used products). And there have also been accounts of injectors adding more dilutent (saline) to the vial to make it last longer. This is pretty scary stuff. 

Have a look at my last blog post to learn about wrinkle relaxers and dermal fillers.


"Always ask what product is being used and in what amount"

Don’t get me wrong, I also offer specials for some of my treatments such as my upcoming lip enhancement offer before Christmas (more on that later). However I am transparent with this and also open about the RRP and the reasoning behind the offer. I am doing this offer for lip enhancement as the lip filler I am using is a new product which I have not yet personally experienced the long term results of (although it has been used with great success overseas with brilliant results). I would also like to get used to the feel of the product when I am injecting it, hence I encourage my lovely clients to give it a go by offering it at a special price.


So a few pieces of advice from Dr Kate, if you find yourself tempted with a deal from a medispa or a clinic for wrinkle relaxers or dermal fillers just ask yourself two questions:

1.     Is there a doctor on the premises. A doctor needs to prescribe the treatment however this does not mean they are present during your consultation. If there is no doctor on site I would see this as a HUGE red flag. These are medical procedures and although complications are rare, I would not feel comfortable knowing there is not a doctor nearby.

2.      If there is a doctor present or administering the procedures, what are their qualifications? The laws in Australia are quite variable in regards to post graduate specialist training for cosmetic medicine. I actually trained in Botox when I was an intern (baby doctor only a few months out of medical school) and there was nothing stopping me opening my own clinic and administering these procedures with little more than a few hours training. Yikes! Luckily I was not comfortable with this and have undergone years of training both formally and informally with local and international injectors. I would suggest asking what training your injector has had, and if they are a member of a specialist college or organization. Again for peace of mind and a knowledge you are in safe hands with a doctor who is trained and passionate about facial aesthetics. Not just a doctor performing these treatments as a money spinner because they know how to use a needle.

Here at Dr Kate Aesthetics we pride ourselves on transparency, honesty and trust.

You will walk out of your consultation with a defined treatment plan, knowing how much product was used and how much you will require in the future, both in regards to wrinkle relaxers and dermal fillers.

Dr Kate x