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Busted: 10 Major Myths You’ve Always Believed About Botox

Photo: Courtesy Ouronyx

It’s a tale as old as time. Beauty always has, and continues to be, a point of interest among men and women alike. Yet somehow, when it comes to the topic of facial augmentation, years of fear and miscommunication have left a league of us shying away from the idea of Botox, fillers, and cosmetic procedures.

What many continue to struggle with is the fact that cosmetic processes—when conducted responsibly—truly can do wonders not just for one’s physical appearance, but also for their self-esteem. To banish the many myths surrounding Botox, or Botulinum Toxin, Vogue Arabia looked to none other than Dr Karim Sayed to shine a light on the misunderstood protein.

Currently practicing at Dubai’s sprawling Ouronyx clinic, Dr Sayed is one professional who has dedicated his life to the science of aging, and effective ways to successfully treat each one. Having worked on both male and female patients, Dr Sayed is a jewel in the Ouronyx roster, and is also one of the men at the forefront of the aesthetics industry in Norway. Given Ouronyx’s passion to empower every individual who walks through its doors, it was only natural to have Dr Sayed in the family. Below, the pro who also happens to be a lecturer in dermatology and cosmetic medicine at the University of Southeast Norway, addresses 10 things about Botox you’ve been mistaking for a fact. 

1. Toxin is actually a dangerous product

The history of botulinum toxin is incredibly fascinating, from its discovery over 100 years ago, through the fact it was researched as a possible biological weapon until 1972 until becoming a medical product used for an incredible range of indications. But in a nutshell, it is a safe and efficient product approved by the world’s leading regulatory institutions.

2. Using toxins for too long damages our health, so it’s best to start at a late age

There is no evidence that toxin damages our health. We have a lot of data after more that 30 years of clinical use, and on the contrary, it can be used as prevention, often called “prejuvenation.”

3. Toxin injections are fast and safe so anyone can apply them

Toxins are very safe to use, but they need to be administered correctly, and so it is important that one is in the hands of a trained and competent injector that will not be rushing with the process. Rushed and incorrect application of toxins can cause heaviness of the eyelids and the opposite effect of the intended outcome.

Dr Karim Sayed. Photo: Courtesy Ouronyx

4. Once you start using toxins, you always need more of it to get the same result

Actually, it is the other way round. Often the duration will increase over time with repeated treatments.

5. Once you stop using toxins, the wrinkles get much worse

No! On the contrary, even after the effect of the product wears out, it leaves the skin looking better for months, even years. This is because the skin has rested and because of behavioral modification and sometimes also a slight weakening of the muscles that cause the wrinkles. It also improves the quality of the skin.

6. Toxin can only freeze the face

No, in the hands of a good aesthetic doctor the result will be natural looking and live with expressions.

7. Only fillers (not toxin) can be used in facial slimming or shaping

No, toxin can also be used to slim the face, for example when injected in the masseter muscles (used for chewing), also sometimes injected to prevent bruxism (teeth grinding).

8. Nefertiti Lift requires fillers

The Nefertiti lift is a treatment using toxin to weaken the platysma muscle. This muscle pulls the face downwards and so when weakened with biotop, it has a lifting effect and also leads to better definition of the jawline. An amazing treatment when performed correctly and without the need for any fillers.

9. Toxins can be used only for the face

No, they can be used for an incredibly range of indications in medicine, like migraines, spasticity, or severe underarm sweating.

10. Toxins make us look tired as eye lids become heavy

No, in the hands of a competent doctor with a thorough understanding of both the complex muscular anatomy and the properties of the product, heaviness can be avoided. We can actually lift the brows. The trick is to be able to use a sufficient dose in order to get good duration while at the same time leaving enough movement.

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