The first impression of Botox
When hearing the word Botox®, the image of a plastic woman with a frozen face often comes to peoples minds. Why is it that the image pops into heads of so many? As a generation of people who have been brought up with the rise of social media, reality tv programmes and Instagram influencers. It’s no question we’ve seen some serious transformations.
It only takes someone famous and influential to take it a step to far to build the stigma that there is today about undergoing cosmetic procedures. But let’s be real, these celebrities have had thousands of cosmetics procedures between them which has caused their “before and after surgery” photos to look completely unrelated, unlike that person you follow on social media who seems to look that slight bit different or a work colleague who looks like they’ve had a bit of a glow up and looking really well.
There is nothing wrong with a little tweak here or there to restore and contour what we have naturally or even, to halt the ageing process. With the increasingly affordable cost of lunchtime treatments, it’s no surprise that the money we set aside for cosmetic procedures is as important as the money we set aside for the weekly food shop. The proliferation of Botox® is happening and if even if it is unspoken about most people have an opinion about it along with a lack of knowledge on what it actually does and how it works.
Where and why have these wrinkles appeared?
You’re on the sofa plucking your eyebrows when you notice yet another new wrinkle. With panic, you quickly google the top ten anti-ageing creams on the market. But how and why has it appeared?
There are two types of wrinkles that can begin to form as we get older; Static and dynamic wrinkles. Botox® can be used to diminish dynamic wrinkles and fillers can be used against static wrinkles. So, what’s the difference between the two?
Static wrinkles appear as we age, and our skin starts to lose elasticity. The collagen and fat stores begin to deplete, and our skin is left droopy and saggy. We are left with fine lines and wrinkles from stretched and deflated skin. The best treatment to tackle these wrinkles are dermal fillers which plump and restore to eliminate fine lines.
Moving onto dynamic wrinkles, these are formed by the repetitive action of frowning, squinting and smiling which causes the skin to create crinkles around the eyes (crow’s feet), frown lines (in-between the eyebrows) and the forehead (the horizontal lines across the forehead.
Focusing on dynamic wrinkles and how the two-chain polypeptide protein and neurotoxin produced by a filtered form of bacterium Clostridium botulinum also known as Botox® (thankfully) has given us the extra boost of confidence and changed the way we feel about ourselves on a daily basis.
What is Botox®?
Botox® is FDA approved for males and females between the ages of 18-65. Most people are led to believe that it’s for the older generation, but it is also extremely preventative. For example, look at your grandparents. Do you see those permanent wrinkles in between their eyes? Those lines are caused from the corrugator muscle contracting over and over again. This repetitive contraction causes the collagen in our skin to breakdown. So, the earlier you start receiving Botox® the less wrinkles you’ll get in later life as you’ve prevented them from occurring. Whereas the older you become the more Botox® you’ll need to treat the wrinkles.
What can Botox® be used for?
We’ve lightly covered what areas are most popular for receiving cosmetic Botox®
like the forehead, frown lines and crow’s feet. But it can also be used for other cosmetic reasons such as bunny lines (horizontal lines on the bridge of the nose), eyebrow lift, upper and lower vertical lip lines, gummy smile, down turned mouth, chin dimples and platysmal bands of the neck. It doesn’t stop there, Botox® does a whole lot more and actually offers a range of solutions for a multitude of problems. Botox® also has non cosmetic uses which help a variety of medical treatments such as migraines, muscle spasms, wound healing, reduction of the masseter muscle for decreasing the size of the jaw, hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), teeth grinding, movement disorders associated with injury or disease of the central nervous system including stroke, trauma, Parkinson’s disease, cerebral palsy and multiple sclerosis. And that’s just naming a few. It’s hard to believe that people still have negative beliefs about this product.
How does it work?
Focusing on the cosmetic use of Botox®. When injected into the skin it temporarily relaxes the muscle back to its smooth and soft shape. For a minimum of three months the targeted muscle cannot move as the Botox® blocks the nerve impulses that trigger contractions which keep the fine lines and wrinkles at bay, preserving our youthful looks for longer. Be sure to let your practitioner know what you want from the treatment, do you want a full freeze or would you still like a bit of expression, as the kids need to know when they’ve crossed the line.
The results are unfortunately not immediate, and patience is key. It takes about 2 weeks for the Botox® to settle to see the full effect of the treatment before it begins to fade over the following months. Every individual is different, it may last 3 months for some and 6 months for others. It’s also recommended to keep up with Botox® treatments when you begin to notice the reappearance of wrinkles as the results will begin to last longer each time.
So, what’s your new impression of Botox?
In short, the subject is still somewhat taboo in this day and age and I’m sure in years to come it will become the norm as it is to wear make-up and buy nice clothes all of which costs money and takes time to make us more attractive on the outside. I hope after reading this article it has given it a better impression of Botox® and the plastic frozen faced woman we tend to envision has disappeared.