Botox and fillers can help you enhance and retain youthful-looking skin. If you are like many people, though, you might wonder what the right age is to begin undergoing these cosmetic procedures. The answer depends on a wide variety of factors.
Both Botox and dermal fillers are treatments that help reduce the signs of aging skin. Botox is a protein produced by bacterium Clostridium botulinum. It stops the development of wrinkles by temporarily blocking the nerve signals that make muscles move, which allows skin to relax and wrinkles to soften. Fillers boost the skin’s supply of hyaluronic acid (HA), a compound that occurs naturally in the skin. Hyaluronic acid attracts water to fully hydrate skin and make it appear plumper and more youthful.
The FDA has approved the use of BOTOX for cosmetic use in patients 18 and older, and has approved cosmetic fillers in patients over the age of 21. Consumers begin using these products at different ages, depending on their specific needs, skin types, lifestyles and expectations.
When to Start Botox
While you can start Botox as early as 18 years old, you probably do not need to. Skincare professionals assess each patient individually and recommend the best treatment – at the best time – for every individual. For many people who are prone to wrinkles and want to prevent them from developing, this means starting Botox when they are in their 20s.
The right age to start Botox and fillers depends on your skin and your goals. Starting Botox in your 20s can help you prevent the appearance of wrinkles in your early 30s. Many people in their 20s experience wrinkles only when they move their face to smile, frown, or squint. Skincare professionals refer to these as dynamic wrinkles. In time, these dynamic wrinkles can turn into permanent wrinkles. Getting Botox in your 20s can help stop wrinkles from developing later.
Sun damage and smoking are the main causes of premature aging. Consumers who have spent significant time in the sun, used a tanning bed, are current smokers, or who have smoked in the past may benefit from starting Botox earlier, in their 20s and 30s.
Botox may be right for you in your 30s if you have started to develop a few wrinkles, especially crow’s feet and brow lines, and you want to stop them before they become deep-set and noticeable. Starting Botox in your 40s may be appropriate if you notice frown lines, crow’s feet, and deeper lines around your eyes, forehead, and upper eyelids. If you are a woman in your 50s, Botox can help you address those lines between your eyes that appear more pronounced due to menopausal changes that make your skin drier and more prone to wrinkles. In your 60s, Botox can help your skin look fresher and rejuvenated.
Is it ever too early to start Botox?
Muscles treated with Botox can also become susceptible to muscle weakness, known as atrophy, from lack of use. Atrophy causes muscles to shrink and weaken, which means the muscles provide less volume to the skin to make the skin look older.
Some people build up resistance to Botox over time. This tolerance to Botox means treatments later in life may not work as well as the treatments the patient underwent years before. The good news is that Botox resistance is rare, affecting only a small percentage of the population; tolerance to Botox also fades over time. However, it is important to start Botox at the right time and at the right dosages to balance the beneficial effects of Botox with the slim chance of developing resistance. Using smaller doses, a practice known as “Baby Botox,” can also help. A skincare professional can help consumers determine the best time to start Botox, and the appropriate dosage to deter premature signs of aging.
When to Start Dermal Fillers
Natural compounds help skin look plump and youthful, but as we age, the body slows down production of these helpful compounds. Collagen provides structure and elasticity to skin, for example, but the body begins to slow down its production of collagen in the third decade of life. The body also slows down its production of hyaluronic acid at about this stage in life. Starting dermal fillers early can help slow down the skin’s visible aging process.
Many people start dermal fillers in their 30s, when they begin to notice a loss of volume of their facial skin. Others start at a younger age, using fillers to treat thinning skin under the eyes, also known as “bags” under the eyes. Younger people are also interested in using fillers to give their lips a fuller appearance, although many older people ask for cosmetic fillers for their lips. Consumers of all ages over 21 can use fillers to restore youthful volume to their faces and to help soften the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
The right age to start Botox or fillers is a personal matter – the right age for one person might not be the right time for another. For more information on when it might be the right time for you to start these age-defying treatments, consult with one of our skincare professionals.