When you hear the word ‘Botox’, you might think that it’s a cosmetic treatment that you’d probably be interested in getting when you reach your 40s. Since it’s a procedure to get rid of fine lines and wrinkles, the older demographic is usually the market for Botox. But experts say that younger and younger people are getting it as a way to prevent wrinkles down the road.
Gone are the days when “having work done” is someone’s biggest secret. In the past, even celebrities aggressively deny when asked if they got Botox. Today, the stigma is quickly vanishing as more and more women are disclosing how proud they are and how good they’re feeling because of the treatment. Especially today in the age of selfies and Instagram, the younger generation is adamant in getting that perfectly flawless face, thus leaning into cosmetic treatments early on such as preventative Botox.
A Quick FYI on Botox and Injectables
The first injectable filler, the bovine collagen, was the first injectable legalized by the FDA in 1981. Botox, on the other hand, was approved in 2002 for preventing wrinkles, frown lines, and crow’s feet. The main difference between Botox and surgery? The former is more accessible, has instantaneous results, and needs shorter recovery time. It’s no surprise that injectables have been rising in popularity, with the U.S having 1.5 million Botox injections in 2017.
Allergan, the pharmaceutical giant known for manufacturing Botox, has been selling the product to dermatologists and plastic surgeons, as well as promoting to women in their late 40s and 50s. However, with the net revenue of Botox shooting up to 14% in Allergan’s 2018 third quarter report, and the number of Botox treatments among 22 to 37-year-olds risen to 22% since 2013, Allergan has decided to follow the trend and is now endorsing Botox to the 20 and 30-something market. It has recently launched Regi, a booking site for beauty services which follows the “Own Your Look” Botox campaign geared towards the younger demographic.
Why Botox Works on the Twenty-Somethings
Botox is, in fact, FDA-approved for people who are 18 and older. Although wrinkles and fine lines are more visible in older people, they can start developing in early stages because of less collagen production as we age.
According to Dr. Joshua Zeichner, a board-certified dermatologist based in New York, people develop wrinkles over time when skin weakens and can’t bounce back from folding caused by motions the face makes on a regular basis. This includes laughing, smiling, furrowing your brow, and frowning. Doctors may recommend topical products to stimulate collagen, or use neuromodulators like Botox to prevent facial muscles from constricting and wrinkling the skin above.
This is where preventative Botox comes in. Because muscle movements cause wrinkles, lines are more common around the sides of the mouth, nose, and across the forehead. Stress from different aspects of everyday life may cause the excessive movement of facial muscles, and stress is definitely not something that only older people experience. And let’s face it, we can’t really avoid stress altogether. Botox freezes the pesky facial muscles, preventing their movement, and Dr. Zeichner says that the best time to start treating these wrinkles is when they first appear.
“When you start to develop the earliest sign of resting wrinkles, this is the best time to start treating them, before wrinkles start to stick—it is presumptive to assume that they will develop,” Zeichner says. He adds that Botox can totally reverse mild lines and eventually prevent them from developing at all.
And mind you, starting Botox at a younger age doesn’t mean you have to be on injectables for the next 30 years of your life. Experts say that those who get wrinkles treated early actually have lesser chances of developing lines at a later time.
Everyone’s skin is different, and some may be smoother than others even at the same age. Keep in mind that you are not alone in this early wrinkle dilemma, and many people are becoming more confident sharing their Botox treatments even in social media platforms.
So, if you notice that you have some visible lines even on your early 20s, don’t hesitate to talk to a licensed dermatologist. We recommend the experts over at Courthouse Clinics, they have a wide range of cosmetic treatments handled by licensed doctors and trained professionals.