Why Botox is not the Ideal Facial Cosmetic Option

When people talk about facial cosmetics, one of the first things that is almost always mentioned is Botox. Everywhere we turn, the consumer is surrounded by advertisements in support of using Botox for facial cosmetics. We have all been conditioned to believe that Botox is the solution when it is one of the worst treatments that can be used in facial aesthetics. I say this for many reasons but the essence of my opposition centers around the reason we show facial aging…the loss of skin volume and structure. These are factors that Botox does not help but rather negatively impacts.

To better understand why this occurs, you must first understand how Botox works. Botox is a neuro-modular. What this means is that it functions by paralyzing the muscle fiber that is being targeted. This is why Botox users see gradual improvement in their facial lines. If the skin does not move, there are no lines and over time any existing wrinkles will become less pronounced. I would agree that in the short term, users of Botox do look better because of this neuro-modulation. However, there is also a point where the individual’s appearance begins to change due to the prolonged use of Botox. We all know someone who begins to look different after years of Botox use. So, why does this happen?

To answer this question, you need to consider what happens when a muscle is paralyzed. Think about the person who suffers a spinal cord injury. What happens to the leg muscles over time? They atrophy. The same thing happens when Botox is used for a prolonged period of time. The targeted muscles start to atrophy and since the muscles in the face are one of the four components that give volume to the facial skin, the skin will ultimately lose volume as a result. The muscle atrophy that ensues, when combined with the steady reduction in collagen production as we age, eventually allows the skin to sag even more than normal when compared to someone who has never used Botox before. This is why many chronic Botox users over 40, often have a characteristic Botox appearance that is makes them look different.

In my opinion, facial aesthetic procedure need to focus on maintaining those elements that contribute to facial skin volume. And since Botox does not contribute to facial skin volume, its use is really not advantageous to long term facial aesthetic success.

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Young woman receiving a botox injection

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