Who does it…?
Courtney Cox does it. So does Kelly Ripa. Kim Kardashian did it on TV (like she does everything on TV). Of course, we’re talking about Botox and fillers. Unless you’ve been in hiding, you’ve undoubtedly heard of these non-surgical treatments to stave off the signs of aging. These products are incredibly popular, and they’re not just for the Hollywood set. In 2012, more than 6 million Botox injections were administered in the U.S. The truth is, they’re popular because they work. In the time it takes to get dressed in the morning, you can soften the creases on your forehead or reduce the appearance of smile lines around your mouth. If you love the results, you only have to come in a few times a year to keep it up. If you don’t like a particular treatment, in a few months it will be gone. In an age of commitment-phobia, injectables provide the perfect opportunity to try out an age eraser without the permanence of surgery.
But, as with any treatment, or anything in life, the devil is in the details. There are many products available on the market, and each one is designed to address a slightly different problem in a slightly different way. Used incorrectly, any of these products can do more harm than good. Botox in the wrong place or wrong volume can leave you with a frozen, surprised look or worse, a droopy brow on one side. Fillers injected too superficially can leave unsightly lumps and bumps. Too much filler and you can end up with the pillow-face look embraced by some “real housewives” but rejected by most real people. Botox and fillers done correctly enhance your appearance and soften the signs of aging. They are not designed to create drastic changes. They should just make you look like a slightly better version of yourself.
My advice to you?
1. Go to a plastic surgeon or a dermatologist for your injectable treatments. There are lots of people out there pretending to be experts on injectables. Unfortunately, a lot of the bad results we see are done by people who don’t know the anatomy of the facial muscles, nerves, and vessels well enough to avoid pitfalls.
2. Make sure the doctor you go to shares your aesthetic goals. We all have different things that bother us. One patient might hate the crows feet around their eyes, while another patient finds that endearing and is focused on their thin lips. It’s important that the doctor you are working with understands exactly what bothers you when you look in the mirror. Treatment planning with botox and fillers should be a two-way conversation.
We encourage you to learn as much as you can about what’s available. Here are a few resources to get you started:
1. American Society of Plastic Surgeons A good place to start for reliable and unbiased information.
2. The Botox website Obviously skewed to the positive, but there are quite a few photos and some interactive tools you might like.
3. This article in The Washingtonian does a pretty good job describing the different treatment options for facial aging.
When you’re ready to talk about what might work for you, give us a call or send us an e-mail to find out more.