One of Australia’s top ‘skin queens’ has spilled the top trends for 2023, the secret to an ‘ageless’ complexion without looking ‘plastic’ or overdone and advice for injectable first-timers.
Jelena Vucica Shah, an Australian cosmetic nurse and the founder of The Cosmetic Lounge, has an extensive client list including models Simone Holtznagel, Laura Csortan, Indy Clinton and Phoebe Thompson.
She got started in the industry more than 11 years ago while working as a skin therapist for the Sydney Institute of Plastic Surgery where she did treatments with medical grade peels and lasers.
Jelena Vucica Shah (pictured) is an Australian cosmetic nurse and the founder of The Cosmetic Lounge
Her client list includes models Simone Holtznagel (left) and Indy Clinton (right)
‘I worked along side injectors that I really aspired to be like. This is what pushed me to complete my degree and further education in cosmetic injecting. I wanted to help my clients be the possible version of themselves,’ Jelena, a mum-of-three, told FEMAIL.
Jelena said there are five in-demand treatments in her clinics: anti-wrinkle treatments on frown lines, forehead and crows feet, dermal filler in the lips, cheek filler, chin filler and non-surgical rhinoplasty.
She and her team are renowned for performing these treatments in a way that enhances clients’ natural features and face structure instead of changing them entirely.
Dermal filler in the chin (pictured) is used to make the face have a slightly longer looking appearance. Injecting both cheeks and chin gives the face a more heart shaped look, which everyone is loving at the moment
Non-surgical rhinoplasty (pictured) is a popular non-invasive treatment. This is where filler is placed in the nose to make it look smaller and also hides humps and bumps
What are the top five treatments women are asking for?
Anti-wrinkle: The areas that are most commonly treated are frown, forehead and crows feet
Lip filler: The Cosmetic Lounge is well known for giving clients natural looking lips
Cheek filler: People are always asking for treatment in this area as it lifts the face
Chin filler: Dermal filler is used to make the face have a slightly longer looking appearance. Injecting both cheeks and chin gives the face a more heart shaped look, which everyone is loving at the moment
Non-surgical rhinoplasty: This is where filler is placed in the nose to make it look smaller and also hides humps and bumps
What are they turning away from?
Russian lips: Everyone that was getting their lips done wanted it and the trend only lasted a year or so. The treatment involves a certain type of product that gives a high and sharp Cupid’s bow with a flat look. A lot of people are declining that look during a consult when discussing what look their trying to achieve with lip injections. Rather, they are wanting subtle filled lips, still with a Cupid’s bow but not as strong as what they were once after
In terms of emerging trends, Jelena has noticed a major surge in clients wanting a more ‘natural’, tweaked look.
‘Trends come and go all the time in the cosmetic industry, so I would always recommend not doing anything permanent,’ she said.
‘We’re getting a lot more people asking for PRP injections (Platelet Rich Plasma) I think because people are so focused on looking more natural but still want work done.’
Platelet Rich Plasma uses a patient’s own platelets to help accelerate the process of tissue regeneration and repair, encouraging new collagen, elastin and new blood supply.
Jelena, who has effortlessly glowing skin and a flawless profile, regularly gets subtle Botox and filler tweaks but also swears by a strict skincare routine with products she designed herself
It treats hair loss, fine lines and wrinkles, dark circles (particularly under the eye), acne scarring, skin texture, tone and quality, collagen production, stretch marks and restores moisture and glow.
When it comes to treatments that have become less common, Jelena says there has been a significant decline in clients asking for a special technique called the ‘Russian lip’.
‘Everyone that was getting their lips done wanted it and the trend only lasted a year or so. The treatment involves a certain type of product that gives a high and sharp Cupid’s bow with a flat look,’ she said.
Chin and jaw fillers (pictured) are popular way to subtly extend the face for a more refreshed and ‘snatched’ jawline
‘I’ve noticed a lot of people declining that look during a consult when discussing what look their trying to achieve with lip injections. Rather, they are wanting subtle filled lips, still with a Cupid’s bow but not as strong as what they were once after.’
Jelena, who has effortlessly glowing skin and a flawless profile, regularly gets subtle Botox and filler tweaks but also swears by a strict skincare routine with products she designed herself.
‘tclSKIN has been around for a year but we haven’t launched it properly as I’m still trying to get my packaging right,’ she said.
‘Mornings consist of a deep cleanse, brightening serum and tinted zinc hydration which protects and gives amazing coverage – it flies off our shelves,’ she said.
Everything you need to know about cosmetic treatments before you dive in
How often do you need to go in for anti wrinkle injections?
Anti wrinkle injections on average can last for up to six months however, factors such as which area is being treated, how your skin reacts to treatment and amount of time you spend in the sun are determining factors in how long the product can last
How long will anti-wrinkle treatments take to work?
You will start to see the onset of anti wrinkle treatments from 2 – 7 days. Final results are at 2 weeks post your initial appointment
Do they hurt?
Most patients find the treatment quick, easy and not too uncomfortable, often injections are not felt at all. Some areas will have a small sting sensation which subsides within seconds
What’s the best age to start?
Anti wrinkle injections are a powerful preventative, many patients like to use anti wrinkle injections for aesthetic purposes even if it is a low dose before lines become permanent
Is there downtime with cosmetic injectables?
It’s advised to allow for up to two weeks for any bruising or swelling to subside. Most commonly bruising and swelling is minimal and can be easily covered. In most cases usually subsides within 24-48 hours post treatment
What are fillers and do they hurt?
Dermal fillers are a soft tissue hyaluronic acid gel injected at different depths of the skin to add volume, restore structure and harmonise facial features. It can also be used to balance asymmetries, hydrate and rejuvenate your skin. Pain is subjective which varies depending on each patient, however it is common and will subside by the time your treatment is complete.
How should you prepare for fillers?
Prior to treatment, it is recommended to avoid and alcohol or anti inflammatories 24 -48 hours prior as it may increase your risk of bruising and swelling. It is also recommend to avoid any major dental work or invasive skin treatments in the treated area.
Your treatment may be declined if you are under the age of 18, If you are planning, currently pregnant or breastfeeding, are sick or unwell, travelling internationally within 2 weeks of treatment or if you have an active cold sore in the treatment area.
‘Night times consists of the same routine, I just add a repair serum which is a type of Vitamin A and on top of that I use alight hydration.’
As for the biggest mistakes women make when trying out tweakments for the first time, Jelena says the most notable is going overboard and being ‘overfilled’. With skincare, she says, ‘the only mistake you can make is not using anything on your skin at all’.
‘Small amounts of dermal filler spread across the whole face and more frequent appointments is key,’ she said.
‘This is what our clients love about The Cosmetic Lounge, we don’t try to convince you that you need a lot. We make a plan and always suggest minimal is best and if it’s not enough to come back and have more. I like to explain to my first timers that this will be a journey and we can take it as slow as they feel comfortable with.’
‘Small amounts of dermal filler spread across the whole face and more frequent appointments is key,’ she said (pictured is client TikToker Jessie Renee Wynter)
‘Definitely know the person injecting your face, see their work prior to your visit or if your attending a reputable clinic the chances are the injector working there will be great.
‘Always have a look at before and afters on socials and make sure their work is not edited and it’s consistent. Check reviews, you can’t please everyone but if the reviews are more good than not I would be confident to say this is a safe place to go.
‘As for treatments always start with minimal amounts. Obviously you want it to be effective but you can discuss different options with your injector and decide what you feel comfortable with on the day. A good injector should always give you options and explain what those different options will achieve.’
Jelena’s Cosmetic Lounge clinics are in Wolli Creek, Penrith and Wollongong, with a fourth opening in Paddington within the next few weeks.