Wrinkle Relief Without Botox?

Beauty Without Botox

Every once in a blue moon I get a question in a consultation that goes something like this: “I hate these lines around my eyes but I wouldn’t dream of doing Botox. How can I get rid of them?”

Good question, but without Botox or Dysport, lines and wrinkles caused by dynamic muscle movement are tough to deal with. Unless you stop moving the muscle, or at least minimize the movement, the lines will continue to form. Plus, as one ages, one loses the hyaluronic acid (a liquid found throughout the body that lubricates and hydrates) that allows the skin to “slip” over the muscle. Eventually the skin starts to adhere to the muscle and takes on the shape of the contracted muscle. This is seen in the forehead, crow’s feet, and especially the chin.

So, in order to see a reduction in the line or wrinkle, one has to change a few things. They are not a subsitute to an injected muscle relaxer, but will increase skin turn-over  and freshening up your skin is essential. A retinoid such as Retin-A or Tazorac speeds up the skin reproduction and actually will increase the depth of the skin. Common myth: Retin-A thins your skin. Truth: It thickens it. It does thin your epidermis a bit which is actually a good thing. Alpha-hydroxy acids help too. So does good nutrition. Training yourself to make fewer unnecessary movements can reduce wrinkling. Of course you want to be expressive, but many folks overdo it causing excessive over-wrinkling. Also, microdermabrasion may make a subtle difference with several treatments. As you might imagine, these treatments are often recommended even after a muscle relaxant injection.

Also, fillers such as Juvederm or Restylane may help, depending upon the area. They are not great for crow’s feet, but will help the vertical lines between the eyes.

Botox and Dysport have a significant place in facial rejuvenation because they work well. While you can do without them, my patients almost all end up succumbing to the needle eventually. And, with a good practitioner, you will be amazed at the difference.

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