Around age 30 is when I started noticing the deep furrow between my brows that appeared like the ‘number 11’. I remember clearly at age 31, after my second daughter was born, that I decided I wasn’t going to go back to work after maternity leave with that big furrow. I had seen billboards and advertisements for Botox Cosmetic. At that time, it was still relatively new, but I was curious. I knew that if there was something that I could do to stop those lines from getting deeper, I was going to do it!
Many women that I talk to when I am doing their makeup are curious about Botox. It is a word that is casually thrown around to describe someone that appears like they have had some work to their face. Actually, Botox treatments generally do not have extremely obvious results; celebrities that look stretched and pulled most likely have had a lot more serious work done like facelifts and tucks – things that involve cutting. Botox injections are a simple procedure that helps to relax your muscles that are frowning or wrinkling. It was recommended to me that getting Botox injections at a younger age would prevent me from needing something more invasive in the future (if I desire it). I think of it more like maintenance.
Now that I am in my mid-forties, I have been getting Botox only about once, sometimes twice per year. Generally the effects last 4-6 months depending on how frequently you keep up with treatments. In those first few years, I didn’t miss a beat when it came to getting my frown lines done every 3-6 months.
I am not a doctor or medical professional, however, I have had Botox done a few dozen times in the last decade. Many women are curious, so these are some questions that I can answer, given my own experiences.
1). Does it hurt?
The fine needle used penetrates just under the skin so feels more like a pinch or mosquito bite. Usually I get about 25-30 units in the forehead in my furrow between the brows and then up around the lines on my forehead. Sometimes, as the doctor starts to move the needle across the forehead (each injection point) the head of the needle starts to get a little dull so the puncture hurts a teeny tiny bit more, but truly that is all. I’ve never had it done around the eyes so I cannot talk about the pain here.
2) Is it expensive?
I have shopped around the Lower Mainland and have found that prices can range from as low as $8 per unit to $14 per unit. It is a matter of first finding a care professional that you feel comfortable seeing. You can expect that if you are in you mid-40’s and have never done any Botox before, you will probably be recommended to receive a higher number of units. For myself, getting 25 units at $10 a unit twice per year, is around $500 a year. Personally, I love the results so much that I will allocate my ‘beauty budget’ for this instead of nails or other treatments. Some may consider this expensive, but it just depends on what you want to spend your money on to keep up your appearance.
3) What about side effects?
Many years ago I had what I thought was a side effect to Botox. I got a rash all over my legs that was excruciatingly itchy and I just couldn’t get any relief from it. I went to a few doctors but a rash is very hard to diagnose. The only thing that I could determine that was different in my regime at the time was that I had received Botox, so my doctor thought I could have been having an allergic reaction to the drug, even though that would have been very rare. I took antibiotics, and the rash went away. I never got the rash again, and have had Botox many more times, so that instance is still a mystery. My understanding is that Botox is considered very safe. Your doctor or caregiver can give you a rundown of the facts about possible side effects before you receive treatment.
THREE DAYS AFTER
A really nice side effect of Botox that I notice is that my pores smooth out a bit. I have large pores and oily skin, which has always been something that has bothered me. Even though I have used an array or recommended products over the years, Botox has been definitely one of the most successful treatments that’s helped the appearance of my skin.
TWO WEEKS AFTER
When it comes to cosmetic procedures like Botox, it is really a personal choice – many friends, acquaintances and clients that I speak to have tried Botox and are thrilled with the results. I am definitely an advocate for the treatment and will continue to get my bi-yearly treatments well into the future.