How Karen Betts gave Alex Lewis the gift of confidence through Permanent Makeup
When Alex Lewis thought about how he might acquire his first tattoo, he didn’t have Karen Betts on his radar. Alex often joked that he thought that he might get his first tattoo on a drunken night out, but the reality was to be very different. Here’s his story about how he enlisted the help of Permanent Makeup pioneer, Karen, to give him the gift of confidence.
Alex woke up one November morning with the typical symptoms of what he described as ‘Man Flu’. But just days later, he was being supported by Life Support machinery with less than 5% chance of survival.
Alex had contracted a Strep A infection – a rare bacterial infection where the person’s flesh starts to eat itself. Alex defied the odds of survival over the next few weeks which saw him ultimately undergo quadruple amputation, skin grafts and facial reconstruction as the infection ate away at his limbs, mouth and face.
As part of Alex’s rehabilitation, plastic surgeon Alexandra Crick used cutting-edge surgery to rebuild his face with skin grafts from his shoulder, creating a new mouth for him where the dead flesh had been cut away.
Alex’s son, Sam, who was only three at the time, felt so afraid of Alex’s altered appearance that he found it hard to have the same relationship with his Dad. “He wouldn’t hug me, he certainly wouldn’t kiss me.” Alex said. “We had a very long process that was very sad for me and equally sad for him.” After reading about Karen Betts’s pioneering medical tattoo and permanent makeup work and seeing her involvement with the Katie Piper Foundation, Alex approached her to help him with his final phase in restoring his lips so he could once again kiss his son.
The treatment is not available on the NHS, so Karen stepped in to undertake an incredible Pigment Alignment and 3D Lip Simulation to create new lips for Alex. The NHS saved Alex’s life, but now Alex needs specialist artificial limbs not available on the NHS to ensure a quality of life going forward. To help him along on his journey, Karen has made it her mission to help to raise money for the Alex Lewis Trust. A fund set up to facilitate a full and independent as possible life for Alex. 1% of every treatment and sale will be donated to the Alex Lewis Trust to help him along his way.
We would be honoured if you’d stand alongside Karen Betts to help to support Alex by donating to his trust. If you’d like to make a donation, please click here. Let’s do something amazing today and face the future together.