When it comes to plastic surgery procedures, Botox blunders seems to be a popular subject. Mistakes can easily happen when left to an inexperienced or unskilled injector. It’s important to know what are the common mishaps are when it comes to using this popular wrinkle reducer, and how to avoid them.
AVOID THE MR. SPOCK LOOK
If you flip through the magazines at the grocery store, you will likely see some of the lingering results of Botox blunders splashed somewhere on the pages. One of the tell tale signs of bad Botox is called “Spocking,” where the eyebrows are overly arched. That look is fine on a Star Trek episode, but not in real life.
Mistakes can happen, even to celebrities who receive Botox injections. Dr. Stafford Broumand, a plastic surgeon in New York City says the goal is always to keep it natural and get it right. “We don’t want people to look like they have had Botox, we want them to look younger,” he shares.
NO FLAT FOREHEAD
There is also the ironed look of the forehead that leaves the area looking ultra-smooth, almost like glass. Even celebrities aren’t immune to this over use of Botox. Experts will point to Hollywood actress Nicole Kidman as an example of excess Botox resulting in a shiny forehead.
More often than not, the mistake is the result of a lack of experience. It’s important to know the background of your injector. A board-certified plastic surgeon is your best bet for a good result. Dr. Broumand is a big fan of Botox, but he says it needs to be used by a qualified injector who works like an artist. “If you have patience to work with the patient to get it right, you can blend it so it all looks natural and it doesn’t look out of place between the upper face to lower face, or around the eyes to the brow.”
ELIMINATE FROZEN FACE
It’s evident when someone has received too much Botox and and can’t make even the slightest of facial expressions. It’s that frozen look that Hollywood is famous for during most of the awards shows. It’s a mistake that plastic surgeons say shouldn’t happen if Botox is used properly. “It’s okay for your brow to move, it should move some,” says Dr. Jim Namnoum. Namnoum, a board certified plastic surgeon in Atlanta, says avoid freezing your face, even if it means leaving a couple of wrinkles behind.
“The fact that you might have a tiny little whisper of a line is okay – just get over it,” says Namnoum. Some Botox problems can be solved with a repair, but others may require time to let the material wear off. Botox usually lasts anywhere from 3-6 months.
BOTOX IS INCREDIBLE, BUT DOESN’T SOLVE EVERYTHING
Even with the best injector, Botox isn’t a cure-all. “Botox is not a wrinkle eraser, especially in the older patient who has those etched, deep lines,” shares board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Kevin Smith. This understanding is key for patients, the understanding that Botox is not a magic bullet. “Botox is a muscle relaxer,” explains Smith. “And with Botox, we can do some relaxing, some repositioning – especially around the eyes to get rid of the crow’s feet, to give us a little brow lift.”
There is no doubt that Botox is an incredibly powerful tool. The trick is finding a practitioner who understands how to use the product as an artist, not just inject willy nilly into the face. In the right hands, Botox can provide a wonderful rejuvenation for those beginning to face wrinkling and fine lines from the aging process.