If you read about the beauty industry as religiously as I do, you may have taken notice of a curious pattern. It seems that BOTOX is establishing quite a reputation for itself as the next “all-purpose” medicine — almost. From excessive sweating to migraines to depression, BOTOX may just be the next cure for what ails you.
But despite its ever-increasing popularity across several medical specialities, the injectable still has a reputation as being only for “patients of a certain age.” With its proven safety record and impressive results, I wanted to give it a try. The kicker? I’m 27.
Despite my relatively young age, I’ve recently started to notice crinkles developing between my eyebrows when I scrunch up my nose or frown. What’s more, those crinkles are starting to linger even after I’m done making the expression. Through a quick Google search, I learned that these are called “glabellar lines,” and they’re actually fairly common, regardless of age.
Incidentally, because BOTOX works by relaxing muscles, one of its most popular cosmetic indications is the treatment of these glabellar lines. When I mentioned to my friends that I was considering BOTOX, I was met with almost unanimous disbelief. “What?! You’re not old enough for BOTOX!” they screeched. (With all apologies to my friends, of course. But you guys did screech.) I tried to explain that many doctors regularly administer BOTOX to patients my age, emphasizing the fact that there are no official lower age limits for the treatment. Despite my friends’ protestations, I scheduled a consultation with a cosmetic surgeon near me to get to the bottom of my eligibility.
As it turns out, I was a candidate for BOTOX. The doctor I saw told me that, very often, glabellar lines are hereditary and usually have more to do with your facial anatomy than your age. In addition to reducing the appearance of the lines, BOTOX can actually help prevent future signs of aging. Whenever we make a facial expression or movement, the muscles and skin involved develop creases. Over time, repeated facial expressions (such as squinting in the sun or puckering up to take a drag on a cigarette) can leave permanent indentations in the skin — which is why long-term smokers often have permanent lip lines or people who have spent a lot of time outdoors have more noticeable crow’s feet.
After briefly explaining what I could expect during and after the procedure, we decided to proceed with the treatment during the same appointment. I signed a few consent forms before the doctor returned to the treatment room. He wiped down my forehead with a cleansing wipe and explained to me exactly how many injections he was going to make and where. The injections themselves were incredibly quick and less painful than I expected. Afterward, he gave me a cold compress to use for a few minutes before I paid and left.
It took a few days to start seeing results, but once I did — whoa. My forehead smoothed out significantly, and I was surprised at how the lack of wrinkles between my brows kind of perked up the rest of my face. Best of all, I didn’t have that weird “frozen” look that a lot of us associate with BOTOX. I looked like a smoother version of myself.
It’s been a couple of months since my BOTOX treatment, and I can still see the results. I’m not sure if I’ll go back for a touch-up once the product wears off. According to the BOTOX page of Spokane-based aesthetic surgeon Dr. Kevin Johnson, results usually last for about 4 months, so I’ve got a bit to think about it. Regardless, I feel vindicated knowing that I’m not too young to take an active role in my appearance.