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Less is More: Concerns with Preventative Botox and Facial Injections

The practice of preventative Botox and facial injections, in general, is becoming more and more popular for women in their early 20s. Supporters of these injections believe that it’s a part of taking care of themselves and it’s their body, so why should anyone else care what they do with it? I think two main concerns are legitimate when discussing injections, especially for women that are so young, concerns that aren’t trying to shame women for what they do or don’t do with their bodies. The first concern is whether Botox and fillers are considered safe and the second is the way women are being advertised for these fillers and injections.

Image via 15minutebeauty.com

Botox is the brand name of a toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium Botulinum. Scientists discovered that small, weakened amounts, when injected into certain muscles, can relax them. Botox injections are relatively safe when performed by an experienced doctor, but it is important to research and speak with different doctors to ensure that it will be safe for you. There are many side effects, and researchers found that Botox might be able to move and be transported into your central nervous system. More research on this is needed because there is limited information on how Botox can affect other areas of our bodies. Dermal fillers, on the other hand, are gel-like substances that are injected under the skin and are commonly used to increase volume in the lips and smooth out under-eye bags. Risks that are associated with dermal fillers should be discussed with patients before the treatment, such as skin redness, bruising, bleeding from the injection site, swelling and more. Most fillers dissolve over time and maintenance can become costly. Although Botox and fillers are minimally invasive, they still have risks and side effects. If you’re considering these procedures, ask a lot of questions to ensure your treatment is being done by a properly trained and experienced dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon.

Image via Kylie Jenner/Facebook

On Instagram, many cosmetic clinics offer packages such as ‘the Kylie Jenner package’ where you can have your lips, jaw and chin injected for one set price. It’s no secret that cosmetic surgeons make more money if their patients are unhappy with the way they look and want more than one area tended to, but no reputable and respectable clinic should ever incentivize any medical treatment. Remodeling your face is not a decision that should ever be taken lightly, nor should you ever be influenced because you believe that you’re getting the best deal. Younger patients with less money could be easily swayed to purchase these package deals because they seem like the best value. Buying fillers and Botox is not the same as buying clothes, food or makeup. Your face deserves the best possible treatment, even if that means having to save more money than what is being advertised by some practitioners. It is unlikely that a lot of women need to have so many areas of their face treated to appear proportionate, especially younger patients who already have full, dewy skin. If you weren’t previously concerned with a specific area of your face, don’t let any clinic try to “fix” you. Your face is not the same as Kylie Jenner’s, and you shouldn’t feel inclined to get whatever is alleged that she’s had done. On a similar note, you shouldn’t feel inclined to get what any celebrity has gotten done, but that doesn’t stop clinics from posting before and afters of your favourite actresses, models or Kardashians. Just because someone got 2 ml of lip filler doesn’t mean you’ll need the same; sometimes, less really is more.

Image via Refinery29​

A good cosmetic clinic is expensive to run. Staff needs to be properly trained, equipment needs to be high end and doctors have to be experienced. If a service is being offered at an unusually low price, it’s most likely because something is missing. Cosmetic clinics recognize that the Instagram generation is comprised of millennials who are becoming more and more hypersensitive to their looks because they are exposed to hundreds of images a day that are edited and contrived to appear perfect. What these clinics choose to do with this is in their hands, but any reputable clinic recognizes their responsibility to educate their patients on what they believe will work best for them.

Mary Shanahan

Wilfrid Laurier '21

Mary is a fourth-year English student at Wilfrid Laurier University.