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How Botox Changed My Life – It’s not What You Think

For the past three years, I’ve experienced the thing that is the center of many television characters’ humor, the thing that others find unattractive, the thing that forces me to dread professional attire events.


Sure, everyone sweats. It’s how our bodies keep temperature fluctuation regulated. My problem? I sweat even when I don’t need to.

The technical term – hyperhidrosis – is pretty self-explanatory. And, according to one of my dermatologists, it can happen in any part of the human body – hands, feet, back, you name it. Also, it occurs in a lot more people than we think; people don’t recognize it as a serious problem, so they don’t come forward.

I spent three years trying to hide it. “Super strong deodorants,” body sprays, taking extra clothes with me wherever I went, shaving every other day… Nothing worked. All of my friends would wear these nice dresses or brightly colored shirts, and here I was, wearing two-sizes-too-big men’s tees and yoga pants because I couldn’t wear anything else.

And high school teachers don’t like it when you ask to go to the bathroom in the middle of class to change your shirt, even if it’s sopping wet. And in college, people just kind of eye you for a second and start to slowly draw away from you when they notice the rings under your arms.

Yeah, it sounds gross. And, it is. But, regardless of the societal aspect of it, the main reason I wanted it fixed included my future and my finances: How can I be successful at a job interview if they notice my underarms are wet? How many times can I afford to buy new clothes every few months because all of mine now have stains or have been worn through?

So, I went in search of a cure.

And I came up with nothing.

Hyperhidrosis doesn’t have a cure. But there are treatments. Most of the time, you start out with prescription deodorants, but with my sensitive skin and ridiculous allergies to anything metal, I couldn’t use them. Then, I was given two options: Botox or miraDry. Getting Botox involved getting a series of quick injections all around my underarms (which I ended up going with because it was not only less expensive but faster to get). MiraDry, on the other hand, electromagnetically destroys the sweat glands under your arms, but for a hefty price (I’m pretty sure my dermatologist quoted me at $12,000 for one treatment).

When we (my parents included, since I’m not an adult and they pay the health bills) made the decision for Botox, I knew it would change my life. And, so, I decided to do the one thing I do best: write about it.

MiraDry procdure

I’ve never had them before, so I thought it would be great to share with you my experience of getting the injections.

A couple of days before the procedure, I spent about two hours looking up everything I could about what the experience would be like and the after effects. So, going in, I thought I knew what to expect: ice, red underarms, blood, and a quick procedure.

Boy, was I wrong.

Let’s go in a listical of how this all went:

1. You get your underarms looked at. A lot. It’s kind of violating.

2. You might get numbed. Or, if you’re like me, you won’t. YAY!

3. You might get this horrible-smelling corn starch-iodine mixture painted on your underarms (and when it’s mixed with the musk of sweat, it smells even worse).

4. And then you spend forever feeling it being wiped off because you JUST KEEP SWEATING.

5. And then you get pricked a million times – okay, it was only ten for me – in different parts of your underarm.

6. And then, just when you get used to it, it’s over.

It’s kind of interesting, getting pricked in your underarms. I kinda hated it.

But I kinda loved it.

The woman who did my injections, Amy, was TOTALLY chill – fun fact: she went to Granby, which is in the next city over from my school, Churchland, so we’re like TOTALLY twinsies (except we’re actually rivals but that’s beside the point) – and she had no problem explaining everything to me. She made sure to carry a conversation with me while I was being pricked, as I like to call it now, so that I was sort of distracted.

Plus, it’s only been four days in and I’ve already seen a difference. Sure, I was told that doing activities where I’d normally sweat (working out, getting nervous, etc.) I still would a little bit, but it hasn’t been anything NEAR what I had been experiencing before.

In fact, I can now officially wear grey colors without fear of having large rings under my arms.

So, here’s to having cuter clothes and a wider smile! And, special shoutout  to the specialists at Pariser Dermatology for making this possible!

You can categorize Royall as either Leslie Knope when she has her color-coded binders: or Hyde whenever Jackie comes into a room before they start dating: There is no in-between.  Royall recently graduated with her B.A. in Sociology & Anthropology from CNU and now studies Government & International Relations at Regent University. She also serves as the Victim Advocate and Community Outreach Coordinator for Isle of Wight Co., VA in Victim Witness Services. Within Her Campus, she served as a Chapter Writer for CNU for one year, a Campus Expansion Assistant for a semester, Campus Correspondent for two years, and is in the middle of her second semester as a Chapter Advisor.  You can find her in the corner of a subway-tiled coffee shop somewhere, investigating identity experiences of members of Black Greek Letter Organizations at Primarily White Institutions as well as public perceptions of migrants and refugees. Or fantasizing about ziplining arcoss the French Alps.