For Curious Minds—Botox Procedures Are Only Getting Sneakier and More Natural-Looking
I won’t pretend Botox isn’t appealing. Needles don’t scare me and though it obviously isn’t a big deal, I spend an obscene amount of time staring at the expression lines forming around my mouth.
To be alive is a blessing and getting older is a part of life, but let’s be real—the moment you realize you’re not 18 anymore comes out of nowhere even though it technically didn’t come out of nowhere. I say all of this to say that I’m admittedly interested in new Botox trends because I may or may not schedule an appointment. But enough of my pre-midlife-crisis, let’s get into it.
For the curious newbies, Botox is a substance injected into the skin that inhibits muscle movement and smoothes out (or completely diminishes) fine lines and wrinkles. The most common misconception is that anyone who gets it will be left with a frozen face stuck in one expression. Such is not the case. “The most common fallacy associated with Botox injections is that you’ll look ‘locked out’ or ‘frozen’—this simply isn’t true,” says Dr. Kirby, a board-certified dermatologist and Chief Medical Officer for the nation’s leading aesthetic dermatology group, LaserAway. “When implemented appropriately, Botox simply makes you look rested, relaxed, and more youthful.”
There is also the assumption that Botox is especially risky, another myth you can stop believing. According to Dr. Ednan Sheikh of Eternal Hair and Esthetics, because “it’s a toxin from a bacteria that has been sterilized,” the substance itself is safe. Additionally, Dr. Kirby says that “good or bad, it is a transient treatment, meaning the effects will only last approximately three months or so. So there is really no reason not to try Botox if you are concerned about the cosmetic signs of facial aging.”
More risk lies with the practitioner. If you entrust your face or body to someone who isn’t qualified, you risk getting side effects you didn’t sign up for. Both Dr. Sheikh and Dr. Kirby emphasize the importance of finding a board-certified expert and practice with good word-of-mouth and excellent reviews. Most importantly, they should specialize in aesthetic dermatological injections. As for deciding whether you want Botox or not, that choice is up to you and you only. (Side note: pricing also depends on the amount of Botox and the practice.)
For those who do, here’s a rundown of the latest trends delivering results that are so next-level and natural-looking, Botox would be the last thing on an onlooker’s mind.
Classics Never Die
Those lines between the brow and around the eyes are still pain spots for Botox users of all ages, whether it’s a twenty-something squinting at her computer screen or a 65-year-old preparing for retirement.
“Overall, the most common area injected is the glabella complex which is the muscle group that makes the frown lines between the brows,” confirms Dr. Kirby. “This is followed by forehead lines and the crow’s feet around the eyes.” Forehead lines, also called “LL lines” and crow’s feet are also popular areas for Botox treatment at Dr. Sheikh’s Eternal Hair and Esthetics.
Health First, Aesthetics Second
There’s also an increased interest in the benefits of Botox beyond our general appearance. According to Dr. Kirby, “many patients report that Botox injections help relieve some of the discomfort associated with facial tension and headaches.” Treatment for hyperhidrosis (sweaty armpits) is also a growing sector within the Botox industry since it can block the secretion of the chemical that activates sweat glands.
“Botox is FDA-approved for treating excessive sweating of the underarms, but some doctors may also use it on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet,” adds Dr. Kirby. Dr. Sheikh is also seeing Botox used as a treatment for torticollis, which is severe spasm of the neck.
The New Lip Filler
The Botox “lip flip” is also more popular than ever. In the simplest terms, this is simply injecting Botox onto the vermillion border of your lip. Dr. Sheihk says that “this makes the lips roll up to give you more of an upper lip.”
But overall, Dr. Kirby believes that “baby Botox” or “micro-dosing” is the wave of the future. “Millennials are requesting these types of injections not so much as to remove existing wrinkles, but instead to prevent ever getting wrinkles in the first place,” he says. “So small doses used at a younger age is a trend that I suspect is here to stay.”
Speaking of age, Botox is no longer associated exclusively with middle-aged or elderly people. Since more and more of us are using it as a preventative treatment, people of all ages are scheduling appointments.
“We typically get Botox requests from women in their late ’20s to early ’50s. That said, more and more men are getting Botox injections around that same age too,” adds Dr. Kirby. “The driver here is that patients in this age group are starting to visualize the signs of aging and want to take the necessary steps to prevent unsightly facial lines and wrinkles.”
Ultimately, people from all walks of life are loving Botox and making it an important part of their skincare routine. So if you’re one of them, know that you’re not alone and this is probably just the beginning of more innovation for years to come.
“There are so many ways that Botox cosmetic can be utilized. It’s the most studied neuromodulator in the world and the truth is that while it’s been the gold standard aesthetic injectable for nearly 20 years, we are just now finding new and exciting ways to utilize it to improve patient mental wellness and skin fitness,” concludes Dr. Kirby. “I’ve personally nearly always utilized it to remove unwanted lines and wrinkles and to make patients appear more rested and attractive but I’ve seen it implemented in hundreds of other ways. It’s safe, effective, and nearly painless so it’s my sting contention that you’ll see more and more Botox users in the near future.”
By Nikki Brown
This article first appeared in Style Caster.