Do you have friends who’ve had Botox and look a little … weird? Not quite right? Fewer lines but somehow less attractive? Good Botox results should never be like this. There’s a secret to getting the best out of Botox.
Botox is a tool, like hair colour, and your result depends on how your Botox practitioner applies it to your face. Like a good hair colour, Botox can enhance your best features and lift your spirits. A poor Botox job is like a three-month bad hair day.
The secret to a good, natural-looking Botox result is not to eradicate all movement and lines. The key is in which lines your Botox doctor decides to leave untreated.
One of ageing’s meanest tricks is that our faces can take on the permanent appearance of negative emotions we do not feel inside. You can appear to be frowning or grimacing when you’re feeling peaceful, leading others to assume you’re perpetually hostile, sad or angry. These are the lines I go for when planning a Botox treatment.
The frown is my most frequent target. You can eradicate the vertical frown lines between your eyes and still look natural. I’ve got a lot of friends who walk around fully dosed up with Botox in their frowns and no one is the wiser. Except, of course, they look happier and more relaxed.
I also like to treat the muscles that pull down the corners of the mouth. Sometimes, in severe grimacers, this requires me to treat all the way down the neck. This transforms a sad, downturned expression into a more serene, good-natured one. People love how it makes them look.
Other areas require a little restraint. Lines associated with positive emotions can be most attractive. The key to George Clooney’s roguish eye twinkle is in his crow’s feet. A friendly little crinkle in the corners of your eyes is a good thing, so I don’t try to remove every wrinkle in this region.
Likewise, the horizontal lines across your forehead. These lines are associated with age, experience and thoughtfulness, but not negative emotions. Strongly Botoxing this muscle removes your ability to lift your brows. You might even notice it makes your brows sit lower. Not a flattering look. There was a lot of this around in the late 1990s; watch later episodes of the TV show Friends and you’ll see it. But a few drops of carefully placed
Botox can treat tiny parts of this muscle, leaving enough strength to move the eyebrows while reducing the lines and reshaping the eyebrows to flatter the face.
The key to good-looking Botox is as much about what you leave as what you take away. Personally I favour removing lines associated with negative emotions. This could have the added benefit of improving your mood. Read my blog on Botox and depression to find out more.