Monica Edwards, 29
“The main reason for getting my nose job was because I am getting married in December 2023.I have always had a complex with my nose - I never allowed side on pictures, and whenever I did see them on the rare occasion it made me feel so self-conscious. I do care about my appearance and try to look after myself, so feeling ugly hurt.
If I ever walked past someone on the street, I would turn my head so they would not see my side on profile and in school I got called "witch" a couple times because of my nose.
I tried other non-surgical options such as nose filler, and yes it did help a little bit, but it didn't really make a big enough difference for me to be super happy. Secondly filler is not permanent and is £400 every time, therefore it seemed like an expensive thing to upkeep. I appreciate surgery is expensive, but it is a one-time cost and then it is done for life then. I would just like to add, I don't regret getting filler, because this was a helpful steppingstone in prepping me for surgery.
For my wedding, I didn't want to feel self-conscious, worrying if the photographer was taking pictures of my side profile. I feared that I would look through my wedding pictures unhappy and feeling ugly, so I made the decision that I was not going to feel like. I wasn't going to let my insecurity of my nose ruin my wedding day and dictate my life like this - which was the reason behind the surgery. If you don't feel it yourself then there is nothing anybody can say to make you change your mind.
It was very important for me to do the surgery in the UK because I wanted to recover in my own home and be able to communicate fluently in surroundings I was used to. I appreciate some individuals decide to go to Turkey to have the surgery, but for me it just wasn't an option. It wasn't really about the money; it was more about finding the best surgeon for me. With rhinoplasty, I was very aware that this was surgery on my face - there was nowhere to hide if it were to go wrong.
I live in London - therefore I didn't want to travel too far from my house after the procedure and opted for a London Based clinic.
I spent a few weeks researching clinics in London, looking at reviews, looking at websites such as Real Self and following surgeons within that clinic on Instagram to get a good idea of their final work. I have a friend who is an ENT surgeon, so I asked for his advice on certain surgeons I was looking at and he checked their credentials for me to ensure they had the necessary qualifications.
The reason I ended up choosing Duncan was because he really listened to what I wanted from my new nose and was not afraid to say no if he felt like it was "too far". I think that is something that really struck a chord with me and made me feel like I was in safe hands! His results were very natural looking, which was an important factor, but more importantly I just went with my gut on this. After seeing Duncan, my gut just said, “yes this is the surgeon”.
I had never had any type of operation before, so I was shaking with nerves before going into the consultation. However, Duncan made me feel so ease, so relaxed, and just very confident in his abilities. By the time I left, I just felt sure he was going to do a great job, but more importantly he would look after me when I was most vulnerable.
My fiancé, sister and friends knew. They were all super supportive of me and some have said I have inspired them to tackle their insecurities now without judgement. Of course, my fiancé was a bit upset initially - his exact words were "but I fell in love with your face" - but after time, seeing how happy it would make me, he really stepped up and did nothing but support me in its entirety. Plus, Duncan produced before and after pictures of other patients who had had the procedure and that really put him at ease. My fiancé though my whole face would change, and I would look totally different - but after seeing the pictures, it still looked just like me, just slightly better.
I was very calm leading up to the surgery, apart from the morning of! My biggest fear was more that I had not told my mum, and if something were to happen to me on the operating table - she would be so angry with me and so upset. So, I was thinking more about my mum in that moment rather than a fear of my nose not looking quite right etc.
When my fiancé dropped me off at the clinic, I did cry a bit because I felt so overwhelmed and worried, but as soon as Duncan came to see me before the operation, I was calm and just felt ready - the time is now sort of mentality. The fear comes from the unknown, I have never had surgery before so I had no idea what to expect, no idea how I would feel waking up etc.
I felt amazing when I woke up from the surgery. ! I had done lots of research to help me prepare. I had watched about 10 different rhinoplasty surgeries on YouTube as well as documentaries of the recovery and this helped me prep mentally for every step of the way.
Lots of the videos had talked about feeling very sick and groggy waking up - but honestly, I had none of that. It was probably the pain killers, but I just felt relaxed and mentally I was very alert. This is the biggest thing that surprised my fiancé - he was expecting to pick up some one half asleep, but I was just like my normal self, as if nothing had happened!
The hardest thing was when the cast was removed after a week and seeing my nose was a shock. I had prepared so I knew it would look awful and it would not look like this when it healed but wow it hit me like a brick. My nose had swollen to the shape of the cast, so it was literally this giant bruised rectangle on my face - so I had to take deep breaths for a while and just tap into what I had learnt - this is temporary, and it won't look like this forever!
The next stage was the taping. I had to wear tape on my nose for a week after the cast was removed and as much as possible for the next two months. This did make me feel a bit self-conscious as my whole nose was plastered up so of course people would stare - but it is a small sacrifice !
I tried not to look at my nose too much for the first 6 weeks - having done all the research, I knew it would be super swollen and there was no point being too worried about it because it won't look like this in the end.
In all honesty - getting a nose job is all about mental strength. It wasn't very painful at all - it is more about being prepared so nothing freaks you out and you know what to expect.
Plus, with all the research, I bought lots of things to help me get through the first week. I took Arnica a week before the operation, and I think that helped a lot as I barely had any bruising. I had dry mouth spray as I couldn't breathe that well through my nose, lip balm for my dry lips from breathing through my mouth, and I ate extremely healthily for two weeks post recovery.
I have absolutely no regrets - and I am spreading the word to get rid of that taboo that surgery is bad and vein and selfish, because it isn't at all! So, when people ask me - I tell the truth and don't try to hide it!
I feel much happier wearing my hair up now and my side profile is much more appealing in my opinion. Everyone who saw my nose after couldn't believe how natural it looked! This is why I went with Duncan - I did not want it to be super obvious that I had had a nose job - instead, Duncan just beautifully improved my face naturally.
My friends, sister and fiancé are super supportive, everyone can see how much happier I am. I don't really mind so much about anyone else's opinion because I did it for me, and it has made me so much happier and will continue to do so for my whole life. Not feeling insecure at my wedding - that feeling is worth thousands! To be blunt, I feel prettier. I feel more confident meeting new people and having pictures taken. It is a weight that has been lifted off me. I would 100% do it again.”
Surgeon: Mr Duncan Atherton