Botox (onabotulinum toxin A) reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by temporarily blocking the contraction of select facial muscles.  Botox is injected using several small injections into the muscle with a very fine needle.  As Botox takes effect over the next several days to weeks, the overlying skin becomes smoother.  Botox specifically treats the wrinkles that occur during contraction (dynamic lines).  Wrinkles that are present at rest (static lines) are often not initially eliminated, but can soften with time and with regular injections as the underlying muscle stays relaxed.


The effects of Botox generally last 3-4 months.  The maximal effect, seen at about 2 weeks, gradually diminishes over several months as your body processes the Botox.  The good news is that with time and conscious observation, you can also learn to reduce your frown lines by noticing when you are attempting to frown and consciously relaxing the muscles in your face.

The short answer is Yes and No.  Yes, Botox removes what are called “dynamic” lines-the lines caused by actual contraction of the muscle-for example, the deep furrows seen when frowning.  However, Botox does not immediately remove “static” lines-the lines that are present even when the face is at rest.  Like creasing cardboard over and over, the lines are present even when the cardboard is straightened, just as with lines caused by repeated muscle contraction.  The good news is that although these lines remain, they can soften with time and regular Botox injections.

The cost depends on which and how many areas are treated.

Frown Lines, or “11’s”-cost ranges from $280-$350, depending on the strength of the underlying muscles

Forehead and Frown Lines together, cost ranges from $390-480

Crow’s Feet, Forehead, and Frown Lines, cost ranges from $470-875

Most patients do very well with the injections.  The needles used are tiny and the pinprick sensation is brief and generally does not persist after the injections are finished.  Comfort can be increased by breathing throughout, using ice beforehand, or occasionally a topical anesthetic, although anesthetic is seldom necessary.  I coach patients on breathing techniques which help increase comfort throughout.

Downtime is minimal.  Patients can generally return to work and most activities right after the treatment.

The most common side effects of Botox cosmetic treatment are localized discomfort or pain, swelling, inflammation, redness, bruising/bleeding, and infection.