Long lasting, high-quality cosmetic procedures may come at a steep price, but they are still a worthwhile self-investment that can help you regain your confidence and feel good about yourself. Botox is one such procedure, and it is widely used around the world to smoothen wrinkles and tighten the skin. However, the effects of Botox typically do not last longer than a year.
So how can you make the effects of Botox last longer? With a combination of skin care, sun protection, proper diet and exercise, and maintenance treatments, you can maximize the lifetime of your Botox treatment and get the most out of your investment.
Why Botox Is Temporary
Botox is derived from Clostridium botulinum, a bacterium that produces a neurotoxin called botulinum toxin. This neurotoxin is responsible for botulism, a rare illness which attacks the body’s nerves and severely weakens the muscles that control the body. Botox is created using a very small amount of this neurotoxin diluted in saline, so it can temporarily paralyze muscles without the lethal effects of pure botulinum toxin.
Botox helps facial muscles relax by preventing the nerves from releasing acetylcholine, the neurotransmitter that controls muscle contractions. When the Botox latches itself onto nerve endings, it disrupts the synaptic pathway between the nerves and the muscles. This disruption is not permanent, as old nerve endings get replaced and the new nerves can stimulate the muscles to move again.
By softening lines and preventing dynamic wrinkles (wrinkles caused by muscle movement and facial expressions), Botox treatments can help reverse signs of aging. Aside from the temporary nature of the Botox cosmetic, the everyday wear-and-tear experienced by the body also contributes to how quickly the Botox’s effects wear off. This does not mean that you cannot make the effects of Botox last longer though.
How Long Does Botox Last?
While the results of Botox injections are visible 7-8 days after the treatment, the duration which Botox results last varies. Some patients notice these results wearing off after 3-4 months, while others’ Botox results last longer, up until at least six months. Still, some patients can extend their results up to a year until they need to schedule an appointment for their next Botox injection session.
Making Your Botox Last
The initial step to make the results of your Botox treatment last longer is to have your injections done by a highly experienced and certified medical aesthetic practitioner, who will ensure that the appropriate Botox dosage is administered. An expert plastic surgeon can also find the correct placement in the facial muscles for the Botox injections to take maximum effect.
Most of the difference in maximizing the lifetime of your Botox last depends on your day-to-day skin care routine, diet, exercise stress levels and other habits.
1) Proper Skin Care Routine
Extend the youthful effects of Botox on your skin by establishing a hydrating skin care regimen and committing to do it regularly. This means moisturizing your face and keeping yourself well-hydrated to keep your skin plump and firm. Products with plenty of glycerin can be used to boost the skin’s hydration as well.
Protecting your skin from sun damage is another major component of facial care that is underrated. Sun damage can increase premature wrinkles in the face. Frequently squinting up at the sun may also cause dynamic wrinkles to emerge between the brows and around the eyes.
It has also been observed that the sun’s UV rays can reverse the benefits of injectable treatments like Botox, so it’s important to avoid going outdoors during peak UV hours.
Sun exposure is known to increase the enzyme collagenase, which breaks down collagen faster. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body, and it provides the structure for the skin and helps blood clot. As the “glue” that holds the body together, it is the major building block for the bones, muscles, and tendons.
Collagen production in human bodies decreases with age, which accounts for the wrinkles and dry skin as people grow older. Smoking cigarettes is another habit related to collagen loss. Aside from aging the skin prematurely, experts suspect that smoking also reduces the efficacy of Botox treatments.
2) Healthy Diet
To help maintain the efficacy of Botox injections, doctors would also recommend going on a healthy diet. You can make Botox last longer eating antioxidant-rich plant foods, such as blueberries, kale, spinach, and beets.
A diet filled with processed foods, packaged foods, and/or sugary foods can weigh the skin down and cause wrinkles. Foods containing dairy, salt, and caffeine also contribute to skin issues and premature aging.
According to certain studies, Botox efficacy is affected by the levels of zinc in the body. As many individuals are slightly zinc deficient, taking zinc supplements may help prolong the Botox’s effects. Aside from incorporating multivitamins in your diet, topical vitamin A derivatives like retinol and retinoids can promote collagen production in the epidermis, which can help address those fine lines.
3) Regular Exercise
Maintaining a steady weight will also help your Botox treatment go a long way, as extreme weight loss will reduce the effect and longevity of the injections. Though exercise is encouraged to keep you happy and healthy, some Botox users who are physically active find that the results of their treatment tend to wear out faster.
Exercising increases the blood flow through the muscles and diffuses the Botox, which is why you are not allowed to exercise 24 hours after receiving Botox injections. You can make the Botox last longer by contracting the muscles an hour after treatment, which allows the Botox to flow into the muscles and have a longer effect.
If you have just received Botox injections, it is important to not overdo any physical exercise afterwards. It will also help if you avoid scrunching your face when working out, as this will cause the face to crease.
4) Managed Stress Levels
Plenty of rest can also work wonders in prolonging Botox results. By sleeping well and stressing less, your body releases less cortisol. Cortisol is a stress hormone that accelerates the aging process.
Too much stress causes an inflammatory cascade and breakdown of collagen, fillers, and Botox. By reducing stress-inducers in your life and incorporating stress relief techniques such as meditation and yoga, you can help manage the unwanted lines that may creep out in the six months until your next Botox session.
Invest in Maintenance Treatments
Although there are natural ways to make the Botox effects last longer, it is best to consult with your plastic surgeon on getting a personalized maintenance treatment program for you before the Botox wears off completely. Having regular rounds of injections into the facial muscles is useful for the Botox, since the frequency may train the targeted muscles to respond for longer periods of time. Plastic surgeons would suggest returning for another session of injections every six months.
Doctors may also recommend combining the Botox with other treatments, like dermal fillers or microneedling. Dermal fillers are gel-like substances injected beneath the epidermis to help restore its volume. Dermal fillers fill in the hollows, dents, and scars, and also helps manage dynamic wrinkles.
Microneedling is a process that uses micro injuries to activate your body’s natural healing abilities, layering proteins like collagen and elastin to make the skin stronger and tighter. The boost in these proteins can help make Botox last.
Experience Long Lasting Botox Results
At Ethos Spa, we can make your Botox treatment last as long as possible. We are committed to providing our patients with medspa treatments that achieve long-lasting results, and facial Botox is no exception.
Our board certified cosmetic medicine doctors are the authorities on the most advanced techniques in Botox, dermal fillers, and other aesthetic services, so we can work with you to figure out a personalized treatment plan to help you look your best for a long time.
Our patients are guaranteed a world-class and luxurious experience, as only the leading New Jersey medspa can provide.