What Will Happen If I Don’t Get Botox and Fillers Anymore?
Botulinum toxin injections and dermal fillers (notably hyaluronic acid fillers) are the two most popular minimally invasive aesthetic treatments worldwide. They owe that popularity to their safety, simplicity, effectiveness, and relatively moderate cost.
We say “relatively moderate” because these are not one-time procedures.
Not if you want to maintain the maximum aesthetic appeal.
The effects of both treatments wear off with time. So, occasional touch-ups are essential.
Therefore, it is not a surprise many users of Botox and dermal fillers worry about what happens when they stop using them.
They want to know if the wrinkles worsen. Will they look older, and how to prolong the treatment effects?
Luckily, we have all the answers.
What happens when I stop using Botox?
Botulinum toxin is a neural modulator. It eases the contractions of facial muscles and improves the appearance of dynamic wrinkles in the upper third of the face.
Fine lines and superficial wrinkles respond better to botulinum toxin treatment.
Therefore, an early start is vital for the best outcomes.
Consistency is another valuable factor. Regular maintenance of the effects maximizes the positive cosmetic result.
Sometimes, however, it is necessary to cease using Botox temporarily.
For instance, Botox treatments may not be advisable if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
In such situations, it is normal to feel concerned about what might happen to your face without Botox.
Will my wrinkles look worse when Botox wears off?
Many users worry if they stop using the therapy, their faces will begin to show signs of aging.
Therefore, it is impossible to end up with worse wrinkles than before once the effects of Botox wear off.
In reality, your facial muscles will gradually resume working the way they did before botulinum toxin injections.
That means they will regain the power to contract, and the wrinkles you had before the treatment will start to reappear.
However, even that will not make you look older.
You will still look younger than your actual age because Botox "froze" a part of your face and prevented additional age-related damage while its effects lasted.
However, the secondary effects of botulinum toxin, such as smaller pores, smoother skin, and improved texture, will disappear sooner.
To prevent and slow down these changes, boost your skincare with additional hydration and regular exfoliation.
Going Back Where You Took Off
After some time, without touch-ups, your face will go back to how it was looking before.
Many users think of this as a worsening effect of Botox.
But, although the change may seem radical, that is not the case. The effects of the treatment simply got you used to a better physical appearance, so it's not easy to remember how you looked before.
Additionally, regaining the ability to squint and frown can add to the perception of a decreased aesthetic appeal.
Will I look older when the dermal filler wears off?
Firstly, we are primarily discussing hyaluronic acid (HA) fillers here.
They are, by far, the most popular ones, and their effects last between six and twelve months (after a single treatment).
So, they will wear off, but the question is: Will I look older? – requires a more complex response.
It is not unusual for people to form misconceptions about aesthetic treatments.
However, these are seldom science-based. One of the common misconceptions is that adding volume with dermal fillers expands the skin.
So, once the filler wears off, we’ll be left with extra saggy skin. That, of course, is not true.
Hyaluronic acid dermal fillers get broken down and reabsorbed by the body.
The process does not happen suddenly but slowly, over time.
Therefore, the treated areas gradually lose volume over several months until regaining their former shape.
Dermal fillers can have secondary benefits too. Some increase collagen production within the skin.
As a result, the skin naturally becomes more elastic and firmer.
That is a long-lasting effect that remains even when the filler wears off.
Additional collagen support is invaluable for aging skin.
That's why follow-up treatments are important. But, there is such a thing as too many fillers.
Adding filler upon filler, without a sense of measure, can make the face look not older but unnatural.
With appropriate use, dermal fillers are very safe. Some people worry that only one visit to an aesthetic medicine specialist may age their skin if they decide not to go anymore.
That’s another misconception.
Once fillers wear off, they do not produce any negative effects on the skin.
If there are no follow-up treatments, the skin will slowly go back to how it was before the fillers.
However, the wrinkles, sagginess, and loss of volume will not worsen because of dermal fillers (especially not overnight).
With the absence of cosmetic treatments, your skin will continue aging at a natural tempo.
But, a well-balanced diet and skincare routine together with a healthy lifestyle and exercise can slow that tempo down.
How to make the effects of dermal fillers last longer?
Some types of dermal fillers last longer than others. Some are even considered permanent.
Hyaluronic acid fillers are not permanent, but they can last longer if you take good care of them.
Hydration is the number one trick. That does not only mean topical skin hydration but general hydration.
So, drink plenty of water.
Other things you can do to prolong the effect of dermal fillers are:
· Quality skin care with an emphasis on antioxidants, moisturizing, and collagen boosters.
· Avoid UV exposure (especially post-treatment).
· Take Zinc supplements
· Avoid stress and practice anti-stress activities such as mindfulness and meditation. That’s the best way to eliminate the negative impact of cortisol, a hormone that rapidly enhances signs of aging.
The Bottom Line
Quitting Botox and fillers is not harmful to your skin’s health and function. There are no dangerous side effects, except for the loss of the treatments’ cosmetic outcomes.
The potentially drastic changes you may notice are not due to the effects of Botox and dermal fillers, but due to their lack.
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· Sundaram H, Signorini M, Liew S, et al. Global Aesthetics Consensus: Botulinum Toxin Type A--Evidence-Based Review, Emerging Concepts, and Consensus Recommendations for Aesthetic Use, Including Updates on Complications. Plast Reconstr Surg. 2016;137(3):518e-529e. doi:10.1097/01.prs.0000475758.63709.23
· Wollina U, Goldman A. Paradigmenwechsel im Verständnis der Wirkung von Hyaluronsäurefillern [Paradigm shift in understanding hyaluronic acid filler effects]. Hautarzt. 2021;72(5):403-407. doi:10.1007/s00105-021-04780-x
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