How long should Botox last?
A friend recently overheard a conversation in a hair salon about Botox. The client expressed the view to the hair-stylist that he knew (it was a male!) of a practitioner whose Botox treatments didn't last very long. My friend and I then had a discussion about this and she was surprised to hear the many reasons why Botox might not last as long as one expects it to.
Firstly, is it Botox that is being used or some other form of Botulinum?
There are clinics which use a different form of Botulinum to Botox of which there are many and they all have slightly different durations of action. I feel the Botox brand of Botulinum works the best and in my experience is the most reliable. It needs to be handled properly as it is quite a delicate product and can be adversely affected by temperature and storage conditions.
How much Botox is being injected?
This is the biggest factor in determining how long the effect will last. When I am deciding on how much Botox to inject, I need to know certain things. What does my patient want? What will look harmonious and appropriate? What will give the best value for money? Having an authentic, effective and harmonious result is what most people desire. If you are under 40 you can get away with higher Botox doses but an immobile upper face can look very un-natural if you are older. To achieve this, it may be best to have a gentler dose 4 times per year rather than a bigger dose 3 times a year.
So my solution to the dilemma of getting the best and longest-lasting result for my patients is to use a great quality product, listen to what my patient wants, take before photos of the face both at rest and with expression and then see them for follow-up to check on the result. At follow-up, I redo the photographs, compare them with the pictures taken before the Botox treatment and then top-up if needed.
My patients who have been coming to me for a long time know they can trust me to give them a natural result and I will always do what I think is appropriate remembering that beautification is achieved by keeping in mind facial harmony.