Neuromodulator injections: there’s a reason they’re also widely known as “wrinkle relaxer” treatments. When it comes to injectables, wrinkles are some of the first concerns that patients wish to treat when they come to our award-winning Vancouver clinic—forehead lines, frown lines, crow’s feet, and so on.
But did you know that there are other uses for wrinkle relaxer injections that aren’t just for wrinkles?
Injections with wrinkle relaxers—medications that are classed as injectable neurotoxins—can actually be used cosmetically for treatments ranging from non-surgical facial slimming to the popular non-surgical brow lift.
Before we get into other uses for wrinkle relaxer injections, let’s first talk about how these treatments actually work.
Neuromodulators work to relax the muscles which they are injected into. Let’s talk in terms of wrinkles. Wrinkles like forehead lines and crow’s feet are formed from the natural expressions, and are categorized into two different types; dynamic and static.
You can learn more about the history and evolution of two of the most widely known wrinkle relaxer brands in the below video, which features our Advanced Aesthetic Nurse Injector Jenn Sheaves, RN.
Wrinkle relaxers are used in small doses to precisely soften movement in the face by subtly relaxing the muscles causing the skin to fold—thereby forming the lines and wrinkles you see. This can be used preventatively to slow down the appearance of etched-in lines, and also as treatment for dynamic and some static lines, depending on your skin, facial muscles, and severity of the wrinkles.
Most patients begin to see diminished lines within a few days of their neuromodulator treatment, and you’ll see the full results within 5 to 14 days. The effect is temporary and lasts 3 to 4 months for most people before another visit is required.
Now, in terms of other uses for neuromodulator injections that don’t involve wrinkles: the process is the same in that specific facial muscles are strategically relaxed and manipulated with the small doses of medication to yield different results. Let’s get into the examples of ways you might not have known you could use wrinkle relaxer injections.
You may have heard of “masseter ‘tox”, which in fact can be done with any other neuromodulator product, and is a quick treatment that aims to slim the lower third of the face. It targets the masseter muscles located at the jawline, softening them to achieve more of a heart-shaped face for patients who have prominent masseters. Boost the results with a bit of dermal filler for a chin augmentation!
Aging around the eyes can result in fine lines and a “scrunched” look to the eye area, making them appear slightly heavy and strained. Often combined with crow’s feet treatments, neuromodulators can help to achieve a softer look, giving the brows just enough of a lift to lightly enlarge and elongate the appearance of the eyes when smiling. The end result is an overall brightness to the eyes that’s achieved by this treatment.
The face begins to descend with age, and sometimes the corners of the lips can do so too—giving the look of a frown even when the face is at rest. Neuromodulator injections in the DAO (depressor anguli oris) muscle around the mouth can bring the corners of the lips back up to a neutral position to restore a softer, pleasing appearance to the lips. The addition of dermal fillers for some lip restoration can often make for a beautiful combination.
Those who show a little more gum when they’re smiling can use neuromodulators to “drop” the position of the upper lip and improve the appearance of their gummy smile, sometimes done in combination with dermal fillers to create a fuller top lip and therefore boost the result. A similar procedure in this area can also be used to achieve the popular “lip flip”, usually done as an addition to a lip filler treatment as well.
For some patients, facial rejuvenation could just mean addressing some of the texture across the face that comes with age. With a full-face approach taken by a skilled injector, neuromodulators can be placed in a number of strategic areas across the face to manipulate the relationships between certain facial muscles and the skin, bringing areas of texture under control. This can give an effect of smoother, brighter skin and a more relaxed, youthful overall appearance—whether making facial expressions that bring about dynamic wrinkles, or with the face at rest.
While not quite an area of the face, neuromodulators can also do wonders for lines and texture (think crepiness) on the neck—sometimes known as necklace lines and tech neck wrinkles (owing to the effects of constantly looking down at our phones that affect the neck skin). Microdroplets of neuromodulator are injected into several small areas across the neck to relax the muscles at a superficial level, smoothing out the lines and texture.
Are any of these neuromodulator treatments a fit for you? It’s important to remember that not everyone is going to be a candidate for every procedure. Depending on the concern, there may even be other options that could achieve the desired result more efficiently than wrinkle relaxer injections might. Regardless, it is always crucial to seek out a trusted treatment provider who has extensive experience with advanced techniques and with different types of facial anatomies. Any skilled injector should be able to see you for a dedicated consultation to do an individualized assessment, and also discuss the treatment options that are right (or not right) for you.
Finding a clinic that provides complimentary consultations is also ideal, so that you feel no obligation and can ensure that you feel comfortable with the practice and the injector before paying for any treatment. 8 West Cosmetic Surgery & Skin Clinic provides free consultations with our expert injectors. This is so that we get a chance to get to know you, your treatment history, your lifestyle, and how we can best achieve your medical aesthetic goals.
If you wish to book a complimentary consultation, you can call 8 West Clinic at (604) 733-1669 or complete this online form here. We look forward to meeting you!