As promised here is the follow-up:
The professional clear bra installation was very good, although, not perfect (is anything ever?). The installer worked in my garage, which I cleaned so well you eat off the floor! It took her about 2 1/2 hours of pretty intensive effort. Oddly, the XPEL kit she ordered for $275 did not include the tow hook circle, as it can fuse back to the surrounding film for the "grill". I later decided to order a 6'x12" 3M Pro PPF from eBay (image below). I used it to partially cover the hood with wrapped edges, the headlights, tow hook cover and door handle recesses (images below). It certainly is a bit difficult to deal with, but if you can accept the odd little bubble here and there, you can save yourself some money. Be careful to meticulously clean the car surfaces and remove any dust that may get under the film. I used two spray bottles, one with release and the other with tack solution. I found the latter is not essential. You can go to YouTube for solution proportions for the baby shampoo (release) and 71% isopropyl alcohol (tack) formulations. You will need a soft squeegee, distilled water, sharp scissors, scalpel and microfiber cloths to place the film. A heat gun or hairdryer is helpful for the edge wrap on the hood and for stretching the film over curved surfaces.YouTube will take you through some tutorials (they make it look easy). I cut some templates out of flexible heavy paper to reduce PPF waste. The hood and the tow hook cover were the easiest areas to cover. The headlights and door handle recesses were more challenging due to their more extreme contours. However, on my first attempt to do the door handle recesses, I decided to peel off and redo the film, which was no big deal even after a couple of days of drying. That is the great thing about PPF ... it protects the paint, but it can be peeled off at any future date with relative ease. For a mere fraction of a detailer's cost you can experiment with the partial hood cover and anything else you have left-over film to cover. At worst you will have said some bad words and have to peel off your unacceptable results. At best you will have a feeling of accomplishment in having provided protection for your ride ... be bold!
Overall PPF; Although misleading, the 12" wide edge of the partial hood film is seen at the end of the fluorescent light reflection.
The piece-of-cake tow hook cover and right headlight film. (Bumper kit previously applied by professional detailer.)
Left headlight film and a couple of dings in the earlier bumper film (no paint damage), after a 100 mile freeway trip on sanded and snowy road surfaces. I was also passed by a 60 mph snowplow truck approaching from the opposite lane on a two lane highway. That is when the PPF is really appreciated. By the way, the PPF is allegedly self-healing.
Driver door handle recess film.