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The popularity of cosmetics injectables is on the rise and has been a worldwide trend for over a decade or so. It is arguable if Botox is still number one as we speak, for dermal fillers are quickly encroaching on that spot as a neck to neck second. Botox and fillers are non-invasive medical cosmetic procedures administered via injections, and this is about where their similarities end. In any case, the bottom-line is really to decide what is more suitable for your beauty needs, should you go for one or the other or a combination of both? If you choose to give these treatments a try, knowing the differences between your options is crucial to bank on their seemingly endless beautification possibilities for a success, and not a horror story.
What is Botox/Fillers?
Botox is the registered brand name of a specific purified botulinum neurotoxin produced by Allergan. But because it is the first on the market and hugely popular, the name “Botox” has evolved to be synonymous with the neurotoxin regardless of it’s made. There are currently three FDA-approved neurotoxins available in the market — Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin, with Botox being the pioneer of them all. The BOTOX® Cosmetic story began in 2002 when the brand helped establish the aesthetic market with its first FDA approval to temporarily improve the appearance of moderate to severe frown lines between the eyebrows (glabellar lines). It works by blocking nerve signals in the muscles where it is injected. When these nerve signals are interrupted, muscular contractions are prevented and the affected muscles are temporarily weakened, paralyzed or frozen.
As for Fillers, they are made from a variety of temporary or permanent materials that can be injected beneath the surface of the skin to fill lines, add volume and fullness, enhance facial features and improve skin tone and texture. The safest and most commonly used are those composed of naturally occurring hyaluronic acid such as those from Restylane and Juvederm, with Profhilo, a newer generation of HA filler, acting as a bio-remodelling injectable to bring about skin rejuvenation in an different way. Others include calcium fillers Radiesse, Ellanse, and ploy-L-lactic acid Sculptra.
Botox/Fillers as Wrinkle Erasers
Both Botox and fillers can be used to improve the appearance of undesirable facial wrinkles and lines albeit in different ways by targeting different kinds of skin wrinkling. The simple rule is that lines of expression need botulinum toxin while lines at rest are dealt with filler microinjections.
Botox only works as anti-wrinkle microinjections against wrinkles on “crease points” caused by muscular movements. These are otherwise known as dynamic wrinkles and are often referred to as “expression lines.” The most common dynamic wrinkles that Botox can treat are lines on the upper face, such as the “11” between the brows, horizontal lines on the forehead, and crow’s feet around the eyes. These lines are caused by smiling, frowning, squinting, and other facial expressions, often becoming more pronounced with age.
Natural facial fillers are best for deep lines that are present even when facial muscles are not contracting. These are known as static wrinkles and they do not respond favourably to Botox treatment. Static wrinkles are caused by sagging and decreased plumpness of the face due to a loss of collagen and elasticity in the skin. Static wrinkles commonly treated include those along the cheeks (deep laugh lines or nasolabial folds) and around the mouth (marionette lines). In some cases, such as visible permanent lines etched across the forehead visible even at rest, a combination of Botox and fillers will give optimal outcome.
In addition, fillers can be used as “volumizers” for treating undereye hollowing and sunken temples much like how new stuffing for a deflated pillow works. Fillers can also be used to enhance the appearance of facial features such as nose fillers, lip fillers, cheek sculpt and chin enhancement.
Botox/Fillers as Complexion Enhancers
In recent years, Botox has gained popularity and found its way into a younger cohort of patients with its alternative role in improving blemish-prone skins. When used correctly, studies have demonstrated reduced oil production by about 30% in 4 weeks in treated subjects with oily skin. By utilizing a special injection technique, miniscule doses of Botox are introduced intra-dermally or shallow in the skin to cause shrinkage and atrophy of the oil producing sebaceous glands and sweat glands, leading to a barrage of complexion-refining effects without compromising the movement of major facial muscles. Pore size is noticeably reduced, and skin appears matte or ‘airbrushed’ secondary to decreased oil production, with diminished appearance of acne scars reported.
Aimed to enhance tired and lacklustre complexions by hydrating and lifting them at the same time, Profhlio is a newly engineered bio-remodelling “injectable skincare” which engages 100% pure, unadulterated hyaluronic acid to address skin laxity and signs of aging through the bio-stimulation of collagen, elastin and adipocytes (fats) stem cells that were lost with the passage of time. Thanks to an exclusive bio-synthesis process patented by IBSA Pharma, one of world’s leading pharmaceutical companies in Switzerland for hyaluronic acid production and products containing hyaluronic acid, the 100% unadulterated pure hyaluronic acid with no added synthetic stabilizers used is highly identical to our own skin’s polymer, maintains high bio-compatibility and is readily incorporated and ram started into action for exceedingly natural looking results.
Profhlio is a skin quality treatment to bring your true skin age back to a better place in time, for smoother texture, bounce, plumpness and elasticity. As it remodels skin without making any difference to contours and volume, Profhlio increases firmness and skin elasticity to give fine lines, wrinkles and sagginess the chop without “running the risk of an over-filled pillow face” or softening of the masculinity of facial features when use in men. Improvements are apparent even after the first treatment with close to zero downtime, and optimal outcome is achieved after 2 consecutive sessions done at the 1st and 6th-month interval.
Botox/Fillers for Skin Lifting
If a surgical facelift or facial thread-lifting are beautification procedures not on your agenda now but some form of facial lifting is desired nonetheless, Botox and fillers microinjections can be employed for subtle yet appreciable improvement in selected cases.
Botox injections for lifting are targeted at specific muscles with a downward vector, and these include the depressor anguli ori at the corners of the mouth, orbicularis occuli around the eye, and the platysmus muscle at the jaw line. Intradermal Botox over the lower part of the face close to the jaw-line cancels some of the downward pull of the platysmus muscle and thus giving the cheeks and jowls a subtle “lift”. Besides the platysmus, other muscles like the constrictors of the eye and the Depressor Anguli Ori (DAO) are also weakened to allow an eyebrow lift and an up-tilt of the angle of the mouth, respectively.
A liquid facelift is the lifting, plumping, filling, smoothing, and re-contouring of the face using injectable dermal fillers, and the True Lift technique was developed and patented with support of publications on facial aging and anatomy. This technique utilises precise injection skills, introducing minimal amounts of Restylane LYFT, a high lifting capacity filler, to lift the face by supporting true retaining ligaments with increased laxity with age. The ligaments are tauter and the tension to the overlying facial tissue increases, lifting sagging facial skin for a more youthful appearance. The result is a natural, rejuvenating lift that is noticeable but not overdone, even when the face is in dynamic motion. Depending on our doctor’s assessment of patient’s individual clinical condition, an additional treatment may be recommended to achieve optimal results.