Can Botox Create a Thinner-looking Face?

I've heard that Botox can also be injected on the chewing muscles in the mouth to help to create a thinner-looking face. Is this true?

Doctor Answers 19

Great for relief of Migraines, as well!

Injecting Botox into any muscle causes the muscle to stop working and shrink in size. We use this knowledge to make patients wrinkle-free.

Injecting Botox into the chewing muscle (masseter muscle) will cause it to get smaller and the lower face will appear thinner. It is not used to make a round or chubby face smaller, only for those with prominent masseter muscles that define the shape of their face.

The real use for injecting Botox into this muscle is to relieve muscle tension or migraine headaches. I am told that for those with uncontrollable headaches, that this has some benefit.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

In a word, yes

The masseter muscle, one of the chewing muscles, is sometimes enlarged causing a squaring of the facial shape. It occurs most often in those of Asian heritage and can be helped by Botox injections. Botox will cause some shrinkage of the muscle and narrow the jaw, creating a more angular and feminine facial shape. This effect can be further enhanced by filling the cheek bone area with facial fillers. For better or worse, the effects of Botox injections are temporary and non cumulative, meaning they will not add up if repeated several times. So, you would need to repeat the injections every 3-6 months to maintain the effect. Good luck!

Kenneth R. Francis, MD, FACS
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Yes, Botox can assist in making the face appear thinner, especially with use of soft tissue fillers.

Botox certainly can assist both directly and indirectly in making the face appear thinner.

Direct injection into one of the major muscles of the jaw that is used for chewing (mastication) has been reported to assist in making the lower third of the face appear thinner. However, an injection of this type is realized by the FDA as an “off-labeled use”; thus, it should be performed by someone experienced because of potential and unwanted adverse effects. I have injected this muscle a few times in my career, following dental procedures for the treament of muscle spasm. I will purposefully start with a small dose and work upwards. In general, I must warn you to be be careful.

A much safer route is to use Botox in conjunction with facial fillers and/or skin resurfacing. Botox has found a defined role in restoring facial harmony by removing unwanted lines and wrinkles in areas such as: between the head of the eyebrows (glabella), the forehead, and around the eyes (crow’s feet). Also, Botox can elevate the corners of the mouth and soften the vertical lines of the upper lip. Soft tissue filler injections can powerfully make the face appear thinner by adding volume to the cheeks, contouring the jaw line, and soften major and minor facial wrinkle lines, etc. A combination approach is the way to go!

I hope this information is helpful.

Stephen A. Goldstein, MD, FACS

Stephen A. Goldstein, MD
Englewood Plastic Surgeon

Yes, Botox can be used on the masseter muscles


It is possible to inject Botox into the masseter muscles to help thin the face. However, you should be sure that you are being injected by someone with extensive experience in Botox injection. It is not standard practice to use Botox in this way, but it can be done.

I hope this is helpful.

David Shafer, MD
Shafer Plastic Surgery
New York City

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Botox Can Thin the Face

If your face is wide secondary to large muscles in the face, it can be made smaller by injections of Botox.  Botox is injected into the masseter muscles, which help in chewing, it can shrink them to create a slimmer face.  This will depend, however, on the patient's anatomy and whether he or she has an overdeveloped masseter that's causing the face to look wide or masculine. You'll need to be evaluated by a facial plastic surgeon to find out if you could benefit from this procedure. I hope this helps.

Jonathan Kulbersh, MD
Charlotte Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Botox to the MASSETER MUSCLE to thin the lower face

Botox is used to shrink the master muscle and this can thin the face. This is a specialized treatment so use an expert injector.

Jeffrey M. Joseph, MD
Newport Beach Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Botox can be used to soften prominent jaw

Botox can be used to soften a square, prominent jawline in certain patients. If your prominent jaw is caused by large masseter muscles, then injecting Botox to weaken the muscle allows the jawline to become more tapered and feminine. Make sure to visit a board-certified dermatologist with experience performing this procedure for an in-person consultation because not everyone is a good candidate for this procedure. If you have sagging jowls, they will worsen if the masseter is treated.

Kimberly Butterwick, MD
San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Botox to thin the face

Thank you for your question. Botox can be a very effective way to contour the jaw line by reducing the masseter shadow through the outer jaw skin. In addition, it can reduce symptoms of jaw clenching or grinding of teeth at night time. This is an advanced technique that requires a strong understanding of the underlying anatomy. Some side effects can results in some very unintented effects. This can include affecting the smile due to diffusion of the Botox into neighboring smile muscles. Over treatment can also overweaken your jaw muscles making it harder to chew food and causes your jaw muscles to relax too much when you sleep.
The injection technique does vary by physical exam and the goals of the treatment. Facial contouring goals may change the injection sites themselves to affect different portions of the masseter as well as the dose. The strength of the masseters can be felt by palpation and also helps me to determine dosing. In general, I start with 15- 25 units per side for most patients. If the have very strong masseters, then I may increase the dose, but more commonly ask them to return in three weeks for a touch up. Once you get the desired result, I let patients know that future treatments may require less to maintain the look or the jaw clenching symptoms, especially if they get treated as soon as they notice the symptoms return.

Young R. Cho, MD, PhD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 38 reviews


Botox is injected directly into the jaw muscle, known as the masseter,  to relax it, softening your jawline and giving you a thinner appearance.  

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 179 reviews

Botox for a thinner looking face

Dear CS

This is a common question I see in my office, especially from Asian patients who tend to have more rounded facial features. 

Botox or Xeomin are very useful when injected into one of the muscles of chewing called the masseter muscle. I generally use a series of 2-3 injections of 20 units to each side. After several months, noticeable slimming of the jawline can be appreciated. 

The only FDA indications for Botox are the lines between the eyes and the crow's feet. This type of injection is considered off-label. 

For this reason, make certain you see a doctor who has extensive experience injecting Botox before you proceed. I would not recommend seeking this type of treatment from a spa. 

I hope this helps. Best wishes, Dr. S

Travis L. Shaw, MD
Richmond Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.