Celebrity makeup artist and mom of three Jamie Greenberg—her clients include Kaley Cuoco, Chelsea Handler, Kristen Stewart and more—was openly against facial fillers until the pandemic resulted in more time at home, which led to more time looking in the mirror, and more time to research options for improving her cheek contour that went beyond what makeup could offer. Here, she shares her story.
“The past two years have been life-changing for everyone—I have three kids and we’ve been home for two years—and things are starting to get back into the mix, and there’s only so much you can do with your wardrobe to make you feel better. There are only so many earrings you can buy. Every day I was looking at myself in the mirror, and one day I thought, ‘I feel like I need something new.’ So I started to do my research and I didn’t know where the path would take me.”
For me, my cheeks were the first thing to ‘fall’ and it just brings your whole face down and changes the structure of your face. But, I had always been so judgy about filler and I had heard so many bad things. I’d also done makeup on some people’s faces who had it and it wasn’t good—it felt foreign—so I was like, ’Never, ever, ever.’ I was so adamant. Then I started looking into it more last fall and I saw there was a new product called Restylane Contour that is just for the cheeks. I got in touch with the Restylane crew and they sent me information and pictures and we started talking. One thing that was most important to me was that my face would still move, and they told me they have this XpresHAn technology that would ensure I’d look normal and my face would work like a normal face. It seemed like something I’d be interested in.
I went to a place called Skin by Lovely in LA, and when I got there, I was so nervous my palms were sweating—I felt like a kid doing something my parents wouldn’t approve of. I was asking all these questions like an investigative journalist—will it hurt, will I bruise, etc—and the physician assistant Brittany was so lovely and reassuring. She told me she’d do one side first so I could see the difference and see whether I liked it. I was so scared, but it definitely didn’t hurt as much as I thought it would. I did it with no numbing too, though she said I could have it if I needed it.
I saw the first side in the mirror, and the filler just brought life back to my face—I was very excited about it, so we did the other side. They gave me an ice pack and told me I could take anti-inflammatories if I needed to, but I didn’t. The ice felt good though. I had a small mark where the cannula went in, but I guess I’m not a bruiser because I didn’t bruise at all. Apparently the cannula doesn’t hurt as much as a needle. Afterward, people were like, ‘You look good, did you lighten your hair?’ And I’m like, ’No’ (laughs). It’s so subtle but it made such a big difference.
Ironically, being a makeup artist, I wear so much less makeup now. For the first time in my career, I went to a job without any makeup on. When I wake up in the morning, I think I look so much more well-rested—like a high-functioning human—and I don’t have to contour at all. I just put on a little mascara, fill in my brow, maybe do a little lip and go. I’m just letting my face breathe, and this new definition makes my whole face light up. I also noticed my skin texture changed in the area too and I still feel it to this day. I don’t know if it’s the hyaluronic acid or because my skin is fuller, but there is a texture change and I feel like makeup goes on easier.
Now I’m at the point where that was like the gateway drug. I don’t look frozen, I don’t look puffy and weird, and I don’t know why I was so judgy. I just have such better definition now—I look like myself from seven years ago. There’s still so much taboo with these things and I was so against it before, but now that I’ve dipped my toe in the pond and seen what type of experience I could have, I’m open to trying other things. I’m in my mid-40s and I have other things I could tweak. Do what makes you feel good. Do what makes you operate at a higher frequency. This made me a happier person. I’m fully a convert and I will scream it from the mountaintops.
And to all the other moms out there, you’re always going to be busy and doing something. If you do not take care of yourself, it will catch up with you and it will make you worse at everything you’re trying to accomplish. It’s not narcissistic. Take care of yourself, and everyone else will feel the benefits of it. Do your research and don’t be afraid. If you can get a little help with looking good and feeling good, I want you to know it’s OK.”