What is Botox?
The Short Read
Botox is a non-surgical anti-wrinkle injection which is made from the Botulinum toxin and has been in use for many years as an effective way to temporarily remove facial wrinkles. Only ever use a fully trained and qualified professional for any cosmetic treatment.
The Long Read
We’ve all been there… admiring the celebs who seemingly don’t age, asking ourselves, how? What? Where? Would you? Wouldn’t you? Have you? Haven’t you? Is their baby smooth skin the effects of good lighting, a flattering filter and maybe a bit of photoshop thrown into the mix? Or is it more likely the case that they look 10 years younger due to the controversial ‘B’ word?
Ageing is one thing in life which is inevitable, whether we like it or not. Most of us will experience a moment like this – you’re trying out a new makeup trick, or you catch a glimpse of yourself under new lighting and staring right back at you is the ’11’ imprint, taking a firm stance in between your brows. Maybe you’ve just been sent the photos from a recent meet up with friends and you’re trying to shrug off the faint lines of crow’s feet as ‘laughing’ lines.
Whether you see ageing as adding character or you’re looking for ways to minimise your furrowed brow or any other areas you may be bothered by, it’s always handy to know that there are solutions and ones which can provide envious results. Let’s delve a little deeper into what Botox is.
What are Botox Injections?
Firstly, let’s define what the ‘B’ word is and how does it really wrangle wrinkles. Botox is derived from botulinum toxin and it’s produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. C. botulinum is found in plants, soil, water, and animal intestines. It is a chemical which essentially prevents neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which results in muscle paralysis that can last for up to several months.
It’s likely you’ve heard horror stories surrounding Botox and we can’t mistake that it is a highly poisonous substance that affects the nervous system. But worry not! The dosage which is administered during Botox procedures is a very small volume of the chemical. Still wary? Botox is even used to treat some medical conditions. The Botox shot has a paralysis effect on the muscle it is targeting which results in reduced wrinkling when we make particular expressions as well as just from good old ageing. Botox has also shown results in preventing general crinkling in the skin.
How does Botox work?
As mentioned, Botox is a drug which causes temporary muscle paralysis. The substance is a neurotoxin which targets the nervous system by disrupting the nerve signalling processes which stimulate our muscle contraction.
The process of muscle contraction relies on our nerves releasing a chemical messenger called acetylcholine at the junction where the nerve endings meet muscle cells. Our muscle cells contain receptors which the acetylcholine attaches to, this causes the muscle cells to shorten or contract. These cosmetic injections prevent the release of acetylcholine, therefore our muscles cells are stopped from contracting.
Types of Botox Injections
If someone states that they “get Botox,” it may not mean what you first think. There are actually four injection types currently on the market, which go by the names: Botox, Dysport, Xeomin, and recently Jeuveau, all of which use botulinum toxin to smooth out wrinkles and reduce the signs of ageing in the same way, however there are many varying opinions on how this happens.
Baby Botox: For those looking to prevent signs of ageing.
Plenty of people have Botox, and there are plenty of opinions on what age people should have the procedure.
“’Baby Botox,’ also referred to as ‘micro–Botox,’ is a term linked to the desire for subtle, rather than more dramatic changes. Think less Kardashian more Meghan Markle. The procedure would entail the doctor injecting a much smaller dosage of Botox. “Baby Botox is more a case of out with the frozen expressionless faces and duck lips and in with the ‘au naturel’ look. This rising trend allows the Botox market to broaden as the offering of smaller more subtle changes entices a larger target audience of people. An example of one area which can benefit from this type of treatment is to lift the brows, which results in a much shapelier, contoured brow. This is increasingly popular amongst younger patients.
BlowTox: For those who want to stop scalp sweat and maintain their hairdo.
For some of us who experience a sweaty scalp, this excessive sweating is a medical condition, called hyperhidrosis. For others, a sweaty scalp comes post working out, and sweating profusely from your head in the gym can be slightly embarrassing, not to mention the fact it ruins your hairdo and it’s a chore to re-wash and style after perspiring from your scalp.
So, what does this have to do with Botox? Well if you’ve found yourself dealing with an overly sweaty scalp. Botox may be just the solution. Nicknamed “BlowTox,” this is the Botox treatment in which Botox in injected into the scalp.
Whether it’s during the summer months or after a particularly strenuous gym session your scalp sweats, which can be the cause of lifeless and limp looking hair. For those women who get regular ‘blowouts’ (a salon treatment where the hair is professionally blow-dried), “BloxTox” can be an appealing benefit. “There’s been a growing trend to superficially inject Botox into the scalp to help your blowout last longer,” says Joshua Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City.
BroTox: For the guys who want a bit of the anti-wrinkle action.
Achieving a youthful appearance is not just limited to women. In fact, the most common nonsurgical procedure for men is Botox and fillers, according to a 2018 AAFPRS report. The outcome of the survey suggested that male patients choose to have rejuvenating treatments as a way of keeping them “relevant and competitive at work.”
One of the most popular areas to target; those stubborn “11s.” A lot of men can find themselves with deep frown lines between the brows. Which can have an impact on how they come across to others, making them look older and even angrier than they are. Another common area of male Botox is the frown lines and crow’s feet, by having the procedure within these areas, the results include a much more awake appearance as the face appears less droopy.
NewTox (Dysport): For the Ex-Botox Users.
Like Botox, Dysport, can help men and women target and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
But what is the difference between Dysport and Botox? Although Dysport and Botox are very similar there are some clear differences between the two neurotoxins.
Firstly, Dysport is seen to be more effective on the lines between the eyebrows, the glabella lines, and as with ages these lines become more pronounced, Dysport might be the treatment for you. Secondly, the aesthetic company and maker of Dysport, have created Dysport purely for cosmetic purposes, as oppose to Botox which can be used for cosmetic and medicinal uses. This therefore means Dysport may be offered at a more competitive price compared with Botox. However, Botox has been used for a considerably longer period of time within the cosmetic industry and therefore has a larger research platform behind it.
Budget Botox: A dangerous cosmetic trend to avoid at all costs.
This is as disturbing as it sounds. The use of DIY Botox has been on the rise, and it doesn’t take an expert to work out that there are severe risks to self-injecting Botox. A study published in August 2018 in the journal Plastic Surgery detailed that many prospective Botox patients instead decided to try their hand at becoming their own doctor. Purchasing unvetted kits off the internet and then resorting to YouTube tutorials was the trend in the study. And the reasoning behind it? That they’re entitled to do what they like to their own bodies… while this is true it is highly unsafe.
It goes without saying that there can be a risk involved with Botox if not delivered by a properly trained doctor. “Injecting may look easy, but to inject it safely requires in-depth medical knowledge of how the body works.”
We at The Clinic cannot stress highly enough how dangerous it is to inject yourself or allow someone else to inject you, unless they are a fully qualified professional, and you can trust what it is you are injecting. We continuously train and refine our skill-set to ensure our customers get the most professional experience possible, and are therefore able to stand over the quality of our service, as well as our products. We only use the best products for our customers. Why risk your health when professionals like The Clinic are available.
Are Botox injections safe?
This brings us on nicely to the question ‘is Botox safe?’ Botox has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration since 2002, and given that it is an injection with poisonous qualities being put into our faces it’s understandable to think it may not be safe.
However, researchers consider it to be relatively safe when compared to other, more-invasive cosmetic procedures. There as some risks to any cosmetic procedure but it has been researched and found that when performed by a board-certified dermatologist, less than 1 percent of patients experience an issue.
Botox Side effects
Side effects of Botox treatments are highly uncommon and most people tolerate the procedure well.
‘Along with its intended effects, botulinum toxin may cause some unwanted effects. These can include:
- mild pain, swelling, or bruising around the injection site
- flu-like symptoms
- a headache
- an upset stomach
- temporary eyelid drooping
- malaise, or feeling generally unwell
- temporary unwanted weakness or paralysis in nearby muscles’
Always ensure you research your practitioner and clinic prior to contacting them. A botched Botox job is the last thing anyone wants. Too much of the neurotoxin or injecting into the wrong areas of the face can result in a “frozen” or expressionless face, asymmetrical issues, or drooping. But it is useful to remember that Botox is a temporary measure and thankfully, any of these mishaps will eventually wear off.
So, is undergoing a treatment likely to make a dent in your wallet? Well your needs and expectations will have a big impact on this one as well as the procedure you choose. Not to mention that any Botox is a temporary measure lasting around 6 months, therefore, to maintain your desired outcome and wrinkle free look you may consider having regular treatments.
Cosmetic Injections – It’s not just for celebrities
To conclude, while we’ve almost all heard of Botox and it seems everyone has their own opinion, especially those 21-year olds who exclaim they will ‘never poison’ their bodies, their opinions will likely change as their age does.
We’ve evaluated the types of Botox treatments as well as the risk implications. There has been advanced research into the procedure which has time and time again been deemed safe for patients to undergo and to re-iterate Botox is used to treat various medical conditions successfully.
So, if you’re considering taking the dive and losing your ‘B’ be sure to make a plan with your clinic and talk through any concerns you may have. And remember there’s nothing wrong with doing something for yourself.
And as always, if you have questions you would like to ask please just contact us. We are always interested in talking to new customers.