How Barely-There Botox Became the Norm

Kathryn Gongaware, a 32-year-old yoga teacher and actress in Chicago, has always been curious about Botox, but it wasn’t until she started talking to friends about it and realized that people who she hadn’t expected (including her au-naturel -all acupuncturist) to understand that she felt comfortable taking the leap at age 30.

“The more people were open about it, the more it felt de-stigmatized,” she said.

This franchise has been particularly transformative among women of color, who are often left out of conversations and marketing about cosmetic procedures. There is also a deeply ingrained stigma in many communities of color by opting for cosmetic procedures that have tilted towards European beauty ideals, you reject your roots, said Dr Onyeka Obioha, dermatologist in Los Angeles who receives Botox. since she was 25.

“Historically, and even today, the majority of advertisements for cosmetic procedures do not feature or target minorities,” said Dr. Obioha. “But now, with social media, more attention is being paid to the fact that women of color also benefit from cosmetic procedures, so the stigma around them appears to be diminishing.”

While online sharing has helped reduce stigma, it has also come with downsides – namely, young people think they need to start Botox because their friends are.

“Some 20-year-olds in college walked in without knowing anything about Botox and really don’t need it, but they have this sense of FOMO because their friends do,” said Dr. Sheila Farhang, dermatologist. and a cosmetic surgeon in Arizona, who distributes skin care tips to thousands of Instagram and YouTube subscribers. “I won’t inject someone this age and I’m trying to explain to them why they really don’t need it.”

A change in the way Botox is administered has also helped convince young people to try it. “When Botox first came out, people were using it to really isolate and freeze muscles, so the frozen gaze was what people associated it with,” Dr. Schaffer said. Back then, doctors used 20 to 30 units in an area or muscle alone, a dosage that has declined dramatically over the past 10 years.

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