I've read a few articles online about "Baby Botox," which involves receiving a smaller-than-average dosage of Botox to soften wrinkles somewhat, but still allow natural facial movement. Is this something most experienced cosmetic dermatologists would be familiar with? I'm a 33-year-old woman and have light static forehead wrinkles I'd like to reduce. I've considered Botox, but am concerned it would be obvious to others that I've had Botox if I can't move my forehead or eyebrows. Thank you.
Question About Baby Botox for Forehead?
Doctor Answers 16
Natural results following Botox treatment of the forehead
Great question! There is truly an art to Botox and Dysport treatments which is why it's important to go to an experienced injector. I've never used the term "Baby Botox" but it's a catchy way to describe what most of us already do...
For patients your age, I typically use half the number of units in the forehead (10-12 units of Botox or 30-35 units of Dysport) versus what I typically use in the muscles between the eyebrows (glabella) or near the corners of the eyes (crow's feet), each of which usually require 18-20 units (60 units of Dysport). Patients with deep wrinkles or strong forehead muscles certainly may require a greater number of units.
The goal is to give you a natural look with some residual movement but eliminate or soften the horizontal forehead lines. Over-treating the forehead can cause the eyebrows to feel heavy. An additional benefit is that a lighter treatment is less expensive for patients, as, in our practice, we consider 10-12 units to be just half an area.
I feel another important technique is to inject evenly across the forehead. This gives a nice, consistent, natural effect, avoiding that "Mr. Spock" look when only the outside portions of the eyebrows are moving. In patients with lower brows, I inject a little less Botox or Dysport in the spots right above the outside of the eyebrows.
As I mentioned, your best bet is to seek a consultation with an experienced facial plastic surgeon, plastic surgeon, or dermatologist and communicate with them exactly what your desires and concerns are.
Botox getting a natural-looking result
- Check with Allergan to find some of the top providers of Botox in your area
- Look at the philosophy page on the website to see if you agree with the philosophy of the plastic surgeon
- Take a look at the nurse injector providing your injection. These are people who probably have access to as much Botox and filler as they like. You might be able to learn something about the philosophy of the nurse based on their ability to make expressions and the fullness of their lips
Low dose of "baby" botox for subtle relaxation
What you seem to be describing, is not what the other doctors to-date have addressed. Rather than using 1 or 2 units in each insertion site, you seem to be referring to a physician, in an off-label manner, mixing the Botox with a significantly greater amount of saline than is commonly done. In this way one would be able to give 1/2 or 1/4 a unit per injection and inject wider areas than they had in the past. The result would not be as strong a relaxation, nor the duration of effectiveness as long. I am not aware of any medical studies investigating the effectiveness, nor safety of this. I have heard of it being done. There is a chance though, that regardless of the greater dilution, and lower number of units, the Botox injected into certain areas might relax an important muscle group which could make you very unhappy, such as if you had problems speaking or eating or looked like you had a stroke because of an unequal facial appearance.
The information provided in Dr. Shelton's answer is for educational purposes only and is not intended to constitute medical advice. The information provided should not be relied upon as a substitute for consultations with a qualified health professional who may be familiar with your individual medical needs.
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We have seen more of a trend to the more natural than "frozen forehead" look that was once more popular. Most experienced dermatologists will know how much Botox to inject based on their clinical exam with you (i.e. how strong your muscles are in motion). It is always best to try just a small amount and to go back for a follow up visit a week later to evaluate if you need additional units. It will definitely soften the lines on your forehead and prevent the forceful movements that can lead to more deep wrinkles over time.
Your original question titled scared me! Ha! I'm glad to see that what you're referring to (I've never heard this term used before) is just a conservative dose of Botox. Any physician can provide this for you, provided they are experienced in working with the product. At your age, small maintenance doses of Botox would work well in preventing future wrinkles while still allowing you lots of facial expression movement.
Botox for natural movement
Low dose Botox softens the lines but still allows some natural movement. The effect will not last as long as a full treatment with Botox. Most patients do not want to lose all of their facial expression and would rather return for treatment more frequently.
Using low doses of Botox
I have many patients who come in who want less than obvious reduction of forehead, frown lines, or Crow's feet wrinkles. You can always do smaller doses as a great preventative treatment, and its easier on the budget too. I often have my patients follow up 2 weeks later, and if they want more Botox, it can always be added.
This is called intradermal Botox
I do this technique with Botox, Xeomin or Dysport. There are very small muscle fibers that run from the deep muscles of your face to the skin. Probably the botulinum toxin targets these fibers. I have found it very useful in the forehead if you want to be able to move the forehead after injection. The affects are more subtle. I especially like it for fine lines of the face over the cheek bones. It may not last as long as botulinum toxin placed in the muscles. It take some practice to get it right.
Careful dosing of Botox can soften wrinkles but keep natural movement
Make sure you convey your interests to your injector and that you see someone with appropriate experience. Especially for younger patients, I prefer to use lighter doses of Botox. "Baby Botox" isn't a specific technique or product, but a cute marketing name to describe the lower doses. Just as you described, lighter dosing of the Botox will help with the wrinkles, but keep a natural amount of movement in the forehead, making it almost impossible to tell that you have had any intervention at all.
The only downside to this type of treatment is that the duration of effect may not be as long as with a higher dose of the mediation, but since the effect is much more natural, I think it worth the tradeoff, as do most patients.
"Baby botox = Botox light"
We like to use the term "Botox Light", but I think Baby Botox is a nice catch phrase too. In young patients, or patients with more petite foreheads, it's great to decrease the number of units for the frown lines (11"s between the eyebrows), and for the horizontal creases on the forehead. It does lead to a more natural look, and allows for some movement. I also like to "rotate areas". So instead of injecting the crow's feet, the "11's, and the rest of the forehead in one setting, we may do just one or two of the areas at a time.
My only caution, is that with "Baby Botox", is sometimes leads to patients coming in more frequently than they need to for treatment. I like to tell them to let their foreheads go back to full movement before retreatment. Great question.