Beauty News

Fact injection: Your Botox questions answered

What is botox and should you consider it? Will it hurt, and will your friends notice? We ask Dr Catherine Stone from the Face Place the big questions.

Q What is Botox?

Botox is a prescription medicine made from a naturally occurring purified protein which relaxes muscles. When used cosmetically it relaxes the muscles that create lines such as the frown and crow’s feet. It can also be used for more ‘advanced’ techniques like lifting the brow and mouth corners by ‘rebalancing’ facial muscles, or slimming the jawline by relaxing the big muscles at the sides of the jaw. Other advanced techniques include treating a gummy smile, an overactive or dimply chin; reducing lip lines; softening lines or bands on the neck; or defining the jawline.

Q Does Botox prevent wrinkles?

Yes! Botox relaxes the muscles that create the lines, preventing the muscles from banging the skin together and breaking down the collagen fibres, which is what creates the wrinkle. This gives space for the skin to start repairing the damaged collagen that creates the wrinkle. If you have deep lines they’re likely to soften with one treatment, but you’ll probably need several treatments over a year or so before they start to ‘go’.

Q When should you start Botox?

I believe the best time is when you first start to notice the lines; the damage is quickly repaired, and if you stay on top of the treatments, the lines continue to improve or will be prevented.

Q Will people know I’ve had Botox?

Not if it’s done properly. There’s an art to Botox; it needs to be put into the right muscle, in the right place, and at the right dose for each person, and everyone’s muscle structure is different. The best Botox is not noticeable other than the fact you look fresher, more youthful and more relaxed. Generally the ‘frozen’ look is due to too high a dose or poor placement of the product. We like to start with the lowest dose we think will give you a good result; it’s easy for us to put more in.

Q Does it hurt?

The treatment is very quick and simple. It’s usually over in five to 10 minutes, and feels a bit like having your brows plucked; a few little stings that settle straight away. The needles we use are tiny – smaller than what diabetics use for their insulin every day.

For more of questions and answers about Botox, see the September issue of NEXT magazine

Related stories