Okay … this is going to be an interesting one!
In light of me trying to be as open and ‘real’ as is physically possible across all my social media and blog, I’m kinda thinking, screw it! I don’t have to share these posts or personal information … and some might hate … but more importantly, if I can help or shed light on the subject for those that want to know, I’m putting that above anything else.
So yes, I have had botox. I’m 25, and I didn’t listen to my mumma when she said sunbathing with no cream on would damage my skin. Hey ho, we live and learn! Lesson 1 – wear suncream! I had a scan about a year ago which shows the ‘brown spots’ (I think they’re called) aka sun damage on my skin and she said it was closer to 50-year-old women, not 25!
I’ve had some bad experiences and heard of many other worse experiences with botox and fillers so after finally finding someone I really trust and will be using forever more, I figured it was best to leave this post to the professionals…
Why did I do it? I’m in front of the camera all day long whether that’s on my stories or in a shoot, and I’m naturally a very expressive person, so the lines and wrinkles were just starting to bother me. This post is in no way here to encourage or say people ‘should’ get botox – it’s simply an informative post using the knowledge of someone I respect in the industry. I’m always here for any other questions you might have!
Let’s get stuck in….!
I interviewed my own Dr for this – Dr. Jaffer Khan – who I personally think is one of most reputable specialists in the industry that I have come across. Hopefully, this is helpful for those that have some questions…
Q: What is the difference between Botox and Dermal Fillers?
A: Both Botox and facial fillers are effective treatments of rectifying the signs of aging. Botox (botulinum toxin injections) is primarily used to treat and prevent wrinkles. The treatment helps to relax facial muscles, and makes fine lines and wrinkles appear smoother. Facial fillers are also known as Dermal Fillers. Like Botox, it is also used to prevent or eliminate signs of aging in the face like wrinkles. This is where they often get confused. The primary difference between the two is that Botox reduces the activity of muscles in the face that cause wrinkles. Facial fillers, however, fill the trouble areas with hyaluronic acid (HA), which helps to stimulate collagen growth in the face, as well as plump and lift the skin to replace collagen loss. This helps your skin achieve a youthful look, increasing the volume and definition and create a lifting effect.
Q: What should people be looking for when it comes to qualifications for giving Botox and Fillers? Are they different for each?
A: Here in Dubai, Botox and Fillers can be done only by specialist plastic surgeons or dermatologist. Around the world, nurse practitioners are doing Botox and Fillers, and in some cases non-medically qualified people are also doing these.
With regards to Botox, I think the threshold is a little bit lower, as this is a neuromodulator, and its side effects and even beneficial effects will disappear with time. That is not true with Fillers, as any complications can result in devastating permanent effects of skin loss or even permanent blindness.
Although these risks are always there (no matter who injects), the chances of disastrous effects lessen by the person’s knowledge of anatomy. Therefore doctors or surgeons are more familiar with the areas present under the skin.
Q: Is there a ‘right’ time to start Botox?
A: I don’t think that there’s any “right time” that you should start using Botox. It’s more about when you start seeing lines that are fixed on your face, which you don’t want. If you want to prevent dynamic lines, then you need to start sooner because, once the collagen has depleted, you’re looking at fillers to replace it.
Q: Is there a ‘right’ time to start Dermal Fillers? Are you ever too young, or old, for both?
A: Again, it’s much more about when is the right time for an individual person as ultimately we are all unique.
Q: Does Botox improve wrinkles, or just stop them from getting worse?
A: Botox works by relaxing the muscles, which are causing fine lines or wrinkles, and then prevents these muscles from contracting. This means that your skin is smoother, fresher and free of wrinkles and prevents collagen loss. This means that it smooths out the wrinkles, preventing them from getting worse.
Q: What is the best type of Botox or Fillers someone can use?
A: Most of the proprietary fillers seen today are Hyaluronic Acid based. These are pretty much the same but have different degrees of crosslinking and particle size. Therefore, practitioners usually choose those that are best suited for a given area. Other FDA approved fillers such as Radiesse have a longer life but are not dissolvable in case of adverse effects. I would never suggest using a permanent filler, apart from your own fat, as this can have very serious long terms effects.
Q: What would you say if someone said to you that the industry was encouraging a lack of self-confidence in women (and men) who wanted to change the way they look? Is it a negative feedback loop to start doing work like this?
A: How can we encourage a lack of self-confidence for those who wanted to change the way they look? Indeed, it is the desire which brings them to us in the first place. There is nothing wrong with having a desire to change a particular facet or feature in your face provided that it is safe, predictable, and one can afford it.
The industry as a whole is continually evolving, and for many years people have been looking for ways to improve their looks. Social media and pop culture has had an accelerating effect on this, as we know clients are watching celebrities such as the Kardashians and influencers in the beauty industry and aspiring for similar looks. Whether it’s plumper lips, fewer wrinkles or simply a more youthful version of themselves, our clients are keen to look after their skin and look their best. I don’t see this as a negative, as it’s a continuation from the norm, where people are continually looking for the best treatments to improve their looks.
Q: Is it painful? Can you numb the areas before work?
A: This really depends upon your pain threshold but we always recommend numbing cream before Botox and we use a dental block for example to avoid any pain when you’re having Fillers in the lips. Ultimately, we always do everything within our power to avoid painful procedures.
Q: What does the recovery look like for both botox and dermal fillers?
A: There is no real downtime with both Botox and Fillers. The results of Botox can be seen after approximately three days and are further enhanced to the full results ten days after the treatment. Whereas the results of Fillers can be seen instantly, and some people can experience some swelling and bruising which usually lasts 3-5 days.
Q: Are there any big horror stories you hear that happen quite consistently? Things that people should keep a particular eye out for?
A: Statistically, we do not have major complications from Botox and Fillers. Thankfully, the most common things that we saw are either too much volume has been used, or has been placed at the wrong depth. These were all resolvable by used of Hyalase which can dissolve Hyaluronic acid fillers. As with anything your purchasing it’s always important to do your research into both the clinic and the doctor who is performing your treatment.
Q: How long do results last for botox and dermal fillers?
A: This really depends on the individual and the areas treated. The majority of my patients tend to have a top up of their Botox every four-six months and Filler tends to last approx. eight months with lips going earlier and under eyes lasting longer.
Q: Are botox and dermal fillers the best out there in the market for doing what they say on the tin, or are there other (possibly more expensive) treatments that have the same or better effects?
A: Each patient is an individual and I think it is important to assess everything from the skin to the subcutaneous tissue to even bony structure of the face before giving an advice on which treatment are optimum. With millions of treatments done worldwide, Botox and Fillers we constitute of course, the majority of the treatments giving beneficial effects. Pigmentation and fine wrinkles are also a quite beneficial and important when it comes to Fillers and Botox is to use them on the right locations. Ultimately, though also this is an art. It is really not about putting fillers, it is about putting a right quantity in the right place at the right depth, such that, even when we are using large volumes, no one can really tell that someone has had them.
Q: How much do a standard amount of fillers and botox cost with Aesthetics International?
A: The cost of Botox is AED 140 per vial and it really depends on what areas and how much Botox is needed, but on average the cost is usually around AED 2,000. The cost for Fillers starts from AED 2200 per cc (1 vial) and goes up to AED 3100 per vial in more complex areas like under eyes and lips.
About Dr. Jaffer Khan
Specialises in: Face Art, Botox, Fillers, Liposuction and Breast Augmentation.
Often referred to the ‘King of Botox’ across the region, Dr. Jaffer Khan is the medical director and head consultant at Nova Clinic and Aesthetics International with over 20 years’ experience in the region. His areas of special interest include liposuction and body contouring, as well as aesthetic and reconstructive surgery of the face, breast and abdomen. Dr. Khan is trained with hand, burns and is a microvascular surgeon, and a pioneer of Facial Resurfacing having introduced the first Erbium YAG laser to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in 1997 and to Dubai in 1998. He is currently a Consultant for Allergan Middle East and a Key Opinion Leader (KOL) in the region.
If you have any comments or questions on this post, as always, please feel free to comment below!