With images of seemingly ageless celebrities dominating the media, it might seem that everyone is getting Botox. Smoothing lines and softening wrinkles, for some, it’s a miracle — but what age should you get Botox?
From “baby Botox” to trying the procedure occasionally later in life, many areas need to be explored before you find the answer to the question, “What age should I get Botox?” Let’s dive into those key areas behind Botox now.
Botox is the brand name of Allergan’s anti-wrinkle cosmetic injection. Botox was first given Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in 1989 for treating squint (strabismus) and blepharospasm. Created using botulinum toxin, a neurotoxic protein made by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum, in 2002, Botox received FDA approval for use as a cosmetic treatment to address fine lines and wrinkles by paralysing the muscles that cause them.
Numerous brands have been established since the brand Botox was first released; Xeomin, Vistabel, Azzalure, Bocouture, and Dysport are a few of these. While some of these products differ slightly, they all function as muscle relaxants.
Botox works on facial muscles by temporarily blocking nerve signals that stimulate muscle contractions. When injected in small, controlled amounts, Botox disrupts the communication between nerves and muscles, leading to muscle paralysis or weakness. Following Botox treatment, the skin has a smoother, more youthful appearance. As the targeted muscles are paralysed, Botox, often referred to as “baby Botox” treatment, can also be used to prevent lines from appearing.
Generally speaking, those in their late 20s and 30s use Botox as more of a preventative treatment, but those in their 40s, 50s, and 60s commonly use Botox to achieve a smoother and more youthful appearance and stop lines becoming deeper.
It is, therefore, a very personal choice as to when you start getting Botox — if you think this treatment is right for you. Let’s explore a few more aspects of Botox treatments that may help you to come to a more informed decision about what age to start having Botox.
As we have touched on previously, there is a big difference between Botox for preventing and treating lines and wrinkles. This has much to do with age, as younger people may aim to prevent fine lines from appearing. Alternatively, more mature people wanting to rejuvenate their looks will use Botox to treat and reduce existing wrinkles, such as Botox on the forehead or for neck bands.
So, now we understand the different types of muscles, let’s dive further into muscles that are often targeted with Botox.
Botox is approved by the FDA for treatment in three areas:
Botox is a popular treatment that is used “off label” for other areas, including:
With a good understanding of the types and location of wrinkles, let’s jump into what age you should start getting Botox and the different types of treatment in terms of their frequency.
Another key part of the Botox journey is the difference between dynamic and static wrinkles. In a nutshell, dynamic wrinkles are visible during facial movements, from smiling, frowning, etc. In contrast, static wrinkles are visible regardless of movement and are caused by loss of elasticity and volume.
Here’s the key to unlocking the power of Botox — this treatment is very effective when performed by an established and qualified aesthetic doctor or an appropriately trained medical professional, when targeting dynamic wrinkles, but less so with static ones.
Dynamic wrinkles are often in “active” parts of the face, such as the forehead, between the eyebrows, and around the eyes. Common areas where people see static wrinkles include the lines from the nose to the mouth (nasolabial, which might be better with a special “smile lines” treatment) or the lines from the mouth to the jawline.
Sometimes, Botox isn’t the correct treatment for the desired effect. For example, if someone has skin that has lost some of its natural elasticity or fullness, fillers may be more suitable. For a better understanding of when you might choose to have Botox vs fillers, let’s take a more in-depth look at the difference between how Botox and fillers work.
Botox works by paralysing facial muscles, which can help lines and wrinkles appear smoother and also prevent them from deepening. In contrast, fillers work by plumping up an area where volume has been lost. For example, frown lines are typically treated with Botox, while treatment with dermal filler might be more suitable for “smile” lines (from the corner of the mouth to the nose). When this area is treated with Botox, it may result in an unnatural “frozen” face.
When considering what age to get Botox, it’s also important to know how frequently you should have this treatment or the intervals required between each session if you want long-term results.
How often and at what age do you start getting Botox? It is a very personal choice. Some people may only want to get Botox for a special occasion, such as a wedding, or once a year, while others seek treatment every few months. In terms of efficiency and when Botox starts to wear off, this can depend on various factors. According to NHS guidelines, Botox treatments should be administered at most every three months.
A trained professional can advise on the correct frequency of Botox for you. For example, preventative Botox for people in their late 20s might be better with longer intervals of five to six months when compared to Botox for correction.
The key to finding the best age for Botox is to find the best age for you. Take time to research the different areas Botox can target with your goals, as well as the frequency of your treatments. There is no “best time” to start getting Botox. So when you’re asking yourself, “What age should I get Botox?” it’s most important to be informed in your decision-making and go with a qualified medical professional — whether you’re in your late 20s or decades older.