A woman who forked out £1,000 for a new smile was instead left with ‘crusty’ painful ‘elephant skin’ all over her face and body.
Lily Lindsay, from Aberdeenshire, was inspired to get a set of veneers after being watching influencers on TikTok.
Composite veneers are tooth coverings made using resin to help shape teeth into a more desirable appearance.
But instead of fixing her life-long insecurity, the 29-year-old was left with ‘crusty’ painful skin after what she claims to be an allergic reaction to the dental treatment.
Lily said: ‘My veneers gave me immensely dry and flaky skin – like elephant skin.
Lily Lindsay, from Aberdeenshire, paid £1,000 for dental composite veneers after watching influencers on TikTok was left with ‘crusty’ painful ‘elephant skin’ all over her face and body
But instead of fixing her life-long insecurity, the 29-year-old was left with ‘crusty’ painful skin after what she claims to be an allergic reaction to the dental treatment
‘No doctors could help me – so I ended up on anti-depressants. It was absolutely consuming me.’
After seeing TikTok influencers getting the dental procedure in August 2022, she went to the ‘best dentist around’ and was ‘chuffed’ with the result.
But two weeks later, Lily began to suffer from red, itchy eyes and dry skin.
She made an appointment with her doctor, who thought the issue may be dermatitis – a condition that causes skin inflammation.
Lily says she was given a cream and told to avoid anything containing sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) – used in toothpaste and shampoo.
After no improvement, Lily says she was given a steroid cream as it was thought she may have eczema.
Despite the redness clearing up after a month, the patches returned with a vengeance.
Lily said: ‘It was so painful under my arms – I couldn’t even put my arms down or shower.’
She became so unhappy with her appearance that she became increasingly depressed.
Lily’s skin had no red patches, irritation or inflammation before having the veneer fitted
Two weeks after her dental procedure, Lily’s face started started to swell and her face started to flare with red patches
Despite many trips to doctor and trialing many different creams, Lily’s body was covered in ‘crusty’ painful red patches which left her on anti-depressants
After she had the veneers removed by her dentist, Lily’s skin cleared up within two months
She said: ‘My mum came up to visit me for a weekend, she couldn’t bear to see me like that. In fact, she had to leave.
‘She couldn’t handle the way I looked because I looked so unwell and she couldn’t do anything to help me.’
‘I was just so low at how I looked – it got to the point where I just didn’t want to be here anymore. I felt like a failure,’ she added.
A private dermatologist patch-tested Lily for 100 different allergens – but none were flagged for the cause.
By January 2023, Lily’s allergic reaction began to affect her immune system and she suffered episodes of dizziness, ringing ears and black spots in her vision.
Allergy symptoms range from mild, such as a runny nose, to life-threatening, like a swollen throat.
But a blood test eventually revealed the inflammation was actually inside her body and not on her skin.
This made Lily recall that her skin started flaring up two weeks after having her veneers, so she took a chance and removed them in April, 2023.
A private dermatologist patch-tested Lily for 100 different allergens – none were flagged for the cause
‘My dentist said she’d cover the cost, because I was clearly suffering,’ Lily added.
‘She was so worried that filing them off may give me an anaphylactic shock – but luckily, it was fine.
‘By mid-May this year, my face had completely cleared up.’
Healthcare expert Dr Helen Evans-Howells said it’s possible to have an allergic reaction to composite veneers.
‘Allergic reactions to composite veneers tend to be triggered by the resin used within these products,’ she said.
‘Commonly, this would trigger contact dermatitis which is caused by a delayed allergic reaction.
‘This would tend to present with irritation at the site of the veneers or mouth ulcers. On occasion, reactions such as eczema, or eye swelling can occur.’
An allergic reaction is a body responding to a substance that is usually considered harmless, but sometimes the immune system thinks it is a threat and may overreact.
Allergies can affect anyone, but you are more likely to have or develop an allergy if your parents have them.
What are allergies?
An allergy is where your body reacts to something that’s normally harmless like dust or animal fur.
The symptoms can be mild, but for some people they can be very serious.
Causes of allergies:
Things that cause allergic reactions are called allergens.
Common allergens include:
- Tree and grass pollen (hay fever)
- House dust mites
- Foods, such as peanuts, milk and eggs (food allergy)
- Animal fur, particularly from pets like cats and dogs
- Insect stings, such as bee and wasp stings
- Certain medicines
Symptoms of an allergic reaction can include:
- A runny nose or sneezing
- Pain or tenderness around your cheeks, eyes or forehead
- Coughing, wheezing or breathlessness
- Itchy skin or a raised rash (hives)
- Feeling or being sick
- Swollen eyes, lips, mouth or throat