Sir John, the celebrity makeup artist whose clients include Beyoncé, Serena Williams, and Priyanka Chopra, recently went public with his decision to get microneedling and facial filler.
He was prompted, he said, to learn more about both minimally-invasive cosmetic procedures after Lifetime’s “American Beauty Star,” the show on which Sir John serves as a judge, first came out.
“I thought, Damn, I look so tired. When you see yourself from the outside, you start to look at yourself objectively,” Sir John told Refinery29. “For me, being on TV was like looking in a mirror, and I was very self-conscious about my eyes.”
He underwent microneedling first. Also known as collagen induction therapy, microneedling stimulates the body’s own natural healing response, dramatically improving skin tone and texture. The result is firmer, more radiant skin.
Microneedling suits all skin types and colors. It’s most often used to target:
- Wrinkles and fine lines
- Uneven skin tone
- Sun damage
- Acne scars and other types of scarring
- Enlarged pores
As we age, our skin’s ability to produce collagen naturally slows down. Microneedling helps replenish those stores. And unlike other treatments, it’s safe enough to use around the eyes, so it treats the entire face.
Soon after, Sir John underwent his first round of facial fillers.
“I only thought of [filler] to be one thing, which was going to make me look tight and plastic. But nowadays, there are so many conservative ways to use these ‘helpers,” as I like to call them,” he said.
“After I got the filler, I walked out … feeling like Superman,” he said. “We all have something we want adjusted, corrected, or revised. When that happens, it feels good and moves the needle emotionally. It changes our sense of wellbeing.”
Facial filler is an umbrella term that encompasses a nuanced range of injectables. The majority are made of hyaluronic acid, a safe sugar found naturally in the human body. Hyaluronic acid fillers act kind of like place holders, substituting for depleted collagen and fat.
Fillers made from other materials are known as biostimulatory fillers. They include Radiesse, which is made from a mineral found in our bones and teeth, and Sculptra, which uses poly-L-lactic acid, the same biodegradable component that’s used in absorbable stitches.
The main purpose of biostimulatory fillers is to spark the growth of your own collagen for longer-lasting fullness and lift. (Hyaluronic acid fillers have also been shown to increase collagen and elastin production over time, but to a lesser extent.)
“I didn’t have any reservations as a man—that’s the last thing that crossed my mind,” Sir John said of getting facial filler. “These things have absolutely no gender. I’m a beauty guy and [I’m] also around really strong women who impact real change all around the world. One thing I have always learned from women like Beyoncé and Serena is that they never allowed people to put them into a box.
“However, I was apprehensive because there are other cultural barriers to accepting something like filler,” he said. “We’ve grown up with so much toxic masculinity and stereotypes of machismo in the Spanish and black community, so I’m coming from a place that some might call rebellion or enlightenment—depending on who you ask.”