Is ‘topical Botox’ the way of the future?

A woman receives Botox treatment (File Photo: Shutterstock)

People will go to great lengths in the pursuit of eternal youth. For many women (and yes, even men), non-invasive beauty treatments are now as standard as a wax. According to Dr Silvian Stanciu, the medical director at Lesprit Medical Clinic Dubai, who sees 20 to 30 clients each week for Botox, the injectable is the most popular cosmetic procedure in the world, with 4.6 million procedures reported globally in 2015. But what if there was a DIY alternative? Recently, Fillerina, the world’s first dermo-cosmetic hyaluronic acid filler for at-home use was launched in the UAE offering a less invasive alternative to fillers. We don’t know about you, but between injectable hyaluronic acid, Botox and topical fillers, our heads are spinning. So how do they work? Dr Stanciu sets the facts straight.

Botox

The facts
“Botox, or botulinum toxin, is a drug made from a neurotoxin produced by the bacteria clostridium botulinum [known to cause food poisoning]. Botox works by blocking the nerves that contract muscles, relaxing them and softening the appearance of wrinkles. It’s injected into the muscles and used to improve the look of moderate to severe frown lines between the eyebrows, or glabellar lines, in adults for a temporary period of time. Botox is the best treatment for wrinkles of the forehead, glabella (the area between the eyes) and around the eyes. Botox is also injected into the skin to treat the symptoms of severe underarm sweating when topical medicines used on the skin do not work well enough in people 18 years and older.”

Lasts...
Between four and six months.

The cost...
From 600 AED ($163) per area.

What the doctor says...
“Botox relaxes the muscles that cause wrinkles, while dermal fillers add, fill in or restore lost volume. Botox is easy, quick acting and gives great results with minimal downtime. Results are immediate, with the full effect visible in a week. The tell-tale signs post Botox are also minimal, there are typically only a few small mosquito bite-like bumps affecting the treated area, which last for a few minutes and the patient can return to everyday activities almost immediately. The effect lasts around three months, after which the muscles will return to their original activity.”

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Hyaluronic acid fillers

The facts
Hyaluronic acid is a carbohydrate occurring naturally in the body, but as we age, it declines, causing loss of volume. “Dermal fillers are volumators which act to add or replace lost fullness of the face, lips and hands. Among the different types, the most commonly used is hyaluronic acid. It provides correction for moderate to severe facial wrinkles and folds, such as nasolabial folds (lines from the nose to the corners of the mouth), lip augmentation and cheek volumizing. Hyaluronic acid works by holding in water at the injection site and acting as a volumizing agent. It also stimulates the self-production of hyaluronic acid into the skin. It adds temporary volume and a smoother appearance to skin. Most patients need one or two treatments to achieve optimal results. Some products also contain the local anaesthetic lidocaine for a more comfortable injection.”

Lasts...
Between three and eight months.

The cost...
From 1,800 AED ($490) per area.

What the doctor says...
“Dermal fillers are a great way to bring a youthful look to the face, restoring lost volume, plumping the appearance of the skin, improving firmness, texture and even improving scars on the face and other areas, such as hands.”

Topical fillers

The facts
“Topical fillers or dermo-cosmetics are products used at home to moisturise, obstruct wrinkles, plump and smoothen the appearance of the skin. They typically contain hyaluronic acid in different concentrations,” says Dr Stanciu. Topical fillers, such as Fillerina, can be used on the face, cheeks and lips. The treatment is often carried out using a special applicator and the gel should be left to work on the skin for 10 minutes in order to allow the ingredients to ‘fill in’ the area.

Lasts for...
Two to three months, with repeated treatments necessary. Fillerina must be used everyday for 14 days for the best results.

The cost...
From 299 AED ($81) per treatment pack.

What the doctor says...
“Topical fillers are suitable for those who don’t want to do something invasive like injections. As you can imagine, the results are not as good as your standard filler injections. For someone looking for defined and long-lasting results I would recommend going down the traditional filler route. In my opinion, topical fillers are not as cost effective as you need a lot more treatments to achieve the desired look, which will in turn cost you a considerable amount more.”
 

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Last Update: 06:53 KSA 09:53 - GMT 06:53
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