Botox 101

Lauren Cardone, APRN, Owner, Revitalize Medspa & Skincare Center

Botox® injections are widely used for a variety of cosmetic reasons. The most common application is to the muscles. By placing Botox into the muscles of the face we can help tighten the skin and relax the muscles as well as reduce the presence of fine lines and wrinkles. The three main sites for Botox® injections are the forehead, crow’s feet lines around the eyes, and the vertical lines between the eyes. These are referred to as dynamic wrinkles because they’re not a result of lost collagen and gravity. We make the same expressions day in and day out throughout our lives. As we age, we spend years contracting these facial muscles – every time you smile, grimace, or do any facial expression, you force your facial muscles to contract. Over time, the skin on top of these muscles will begin to form lines, showing a map of the expression. Eventually, these lines can become so deeply etched it can give the appearance we’re still making the expression.

There are three main sites where Botox® injections are most commonly injected:

  1. Forehead wrinkles
  2. Crow’s feet lines around the eyes
  3. Vertical ‘11’ lines between eyebrows

Forehead wrinkles

Commonly called frown lines, this is probably the most common site amongst the three above where Botox® is injected. The forehead muscles are constantly being used and the skin is constantly under stress, so it is a vey common area for frown lines and wrinkles to form. Botox® treatments for the forehead relax the muscles underneath the forehead skin. This causes the muscles to release their contraction under the skin, leading to a smoother forehead.

Crow’s feet lines around the eyes

Crow’s feet refer to fine lines that branch out from the corner of the eyes. Once they begin to develop, however, there are treatment options. Botox® injections temporarily reduces the muscle activity beneath the skin surface. Unlike fillers, which aim to plump up the skin, Botox® is aimed at preventing the activity that causes wrinkles.

Vertical ’11’ Lines

Glabella lines, often referred to as the dreaded “11s,” are the short parallel vertical lines found between the eyebrows and extending up the central forehead for a centimeter or so. They are often the first lines to appear on the forehead, even as early as one’s mid- 20s. As time goes on and with repeated movement, the glabella lines become deeper and more permanent. Aesthetically, glabella lines can make an upper face look heavy and tired: the muscles can bunch up instead of looking open and relaxed. An open appearance is more attractive to the eye. Botox® treatment of the “11” lines is aimed at softening and reducing them.

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