One of the most popular reasons why people get Botox is so that they can reduce the appearance of wrinkles. While it’s effective in doing so, Botox can take between three and four days to take effect. For people who have waited until the last minute to get Botox for a special event, speeding up the process can be crucial.
Some doctors and approved Botox practitioners used to tell their patients to carry out facial exercises to speed up the process, but there was no evidence to back up that it actually worked. So, it wasn’t widely encouraged or trusted as a way to smooth out those wrinkles quicker.
However, research carried out in 2018 shows that facial exercises can, in fact, shave 1-2 days off the wait time for Botox to take effect.
Study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
A study involving 22 adult women was carried out by Dr. Murad Alam, a dermatology professor at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Dr. Alam is also a Northwestern Medicine physician.
All women with forehead wrinkles were treated with a botulinum toxin. Over four afters after receiving the treatment, 11 women were then asked to exercise their facial muscles. The other 11 were told not to do anything.
The exercises included raised forehead motions in three sets of 40 reps every ten minutes. After six months, once the Botox wore off, all subjects then received the treatment again. The first 11 who had carried out the exercises were told to do nothing. The remaining 11 who had done nothing the first time around then had to carry out the exercises.
The study found that those who had followed facial exercise routines benefited from better forehead wrinkle smoothing in as little as two to three days. Those who carried out no exercise noted improvement after three or four days.
Out of all participants, 68 percent said they believed the exercises made a difference. Nearly 60 percent also said those facial exercises were easy to do.
Dr. Alam believes that because Botox relaxes muscles by binding receptors to nerve cells, exercise could speed up the binding process. The study shows promise in being able to speed up the effects of Botox and give patients more control over their care.
How to Do Botox Facial Exercises
Carrying out facial exercises after Botox treatment is easy to do and does not influence how long the Botox lasts. For those who have received Botox in their forehead, a simple brow knitting exercise may be able to speed up the process.
Raise and knit your brow in three sets of 40 repetitions. Carry these out ten minutes apart for four hours after receiving treatment. Set a timer if you don’t think you will remember to do it.
Botox can help with a number of medical conditions, but it’s also ideal for those who want to smooth out their forehead wrinkles. Whether you’re a week out from a special event, or even a few days, consider carrying out facial exercises to accelerate the wrinkle-smoothing process.