Non-surgical cosmetic procedures, such as a liquid lift, are popular for a many reasons. These office treatments with Botox® and Restylane® can be performed quickly with minimal, if any, downtime. One downside to non-surgical procedures, as compared to plastic surgery, is that they are not permanent.
Depending on the specific treatment and patient, liquid lift procedures should be repeated every few months to maintain desired result. For example, Washington DC Botox patients come every three to four months, while lip injection patients may typically return every six months.
What can one do to possibly help the duration of the aesthetic results after these non-surgical treatments? Non-surgical procedures generally are not permanent, but a few things may help extend your results.
A person’s lifestyle can dramatically affect their appearance and can help prolong the effect of liquid lift procedures. – Houtan Chaboki, MD
Sun damage accelerates the aging process. Patients are also more sun-sensitive initially after skin care treatments, especially with lasers, chemical peel, and some prescription topical creams. The skin is trying to heal after these non-surgical treatments, and the sun’s UV rays delay healing and can exacerbate inflammation.
Wearing a hat and using a sunblock, as directed by your cosmetic surgeon, can help protect the skin. In addition, sun protection will help your skin look its best in the future regardless of other cosmetic treatments and is one of the most cost-effective skin care basics. Sun protection can help prevent wrinkles.
Focus your diet
Shouldn’t we all have a more plant-based diet? Not only can such a diet improve your overall health, it can help make you appear your best. We routinely encourage fresh fruits/vegetables and lean proteins both before and after cosmetic surgery to maximize healing.
Keeping an eye on fat and sugar intake is also particularly useful if you have fat reduction procedures, such as liposuction or Kybella®. While these treatments permanently remove some fat in the treated area, the remaining fat tissue can increase in size if you gain weight.
Repeat non-surgical treatments regularly
We’ve previously reviewed Botox preventing wrinkles in the distant future. Plastic surgeons will regularly recommend Botox every three months, as this is the normal time period for the Botox effect to last. Some research suggests that the length of duration of the wrinkle reduction effect tends to last longer for patients who receive Botox regularly. Instead of three months, some regular Botox patients come every four months or longer between treatments, since the facial muscles have been “trained”.
Anecdotally, we’ve noticed this effect on Botox duration in our DC cosmetic surgery office, whether receiving Botox for jaw reduction, frown lines, or crow’s feet wrinkles. However, try to avoid Botox too frequently, i.e. less than 3 months. Some patients can become resistant to these too frequent Botox injections and build immunity. As always, results will continue to vary and cosmetic specialists can never guarantee any outcomes.
Be gentle on your skin
While downtime is minimal with injections and laser treatments, allow your skin some time to heal and regulate itself after treatment. Whether it’s a skin laser treatment or cheek augmentation with filler, avoid heavy scrubs, abrasive cleaners, toners, or masks for the first few days. A gentle skin care program immediately after liquid lifts can help the treatment “settle”.
Intentionally moving the treated areas, i.e. make a frown, after Botox treatments may increase the effect of the Botox as compared to keeping the area immobile. This potential benefit is only with the wrinkle relaxers such as Botox and Dysport and does not apply the facial fillers. Lip injection patients don’t want to make too much movement, i.e. heavy kissing, immediately after lip injection treatment.
Zinc supplements have reportedly made some treatments, such as Botox or Dysport, both work faster and last a little bit longer. You can start zinc a few days before your injections and continue for a few days afterward.
Combine non-surgical treatments
Many non-surgical treatments can be combined in a single visit. The combination of wrinkle relaxers and facial fillers can possibly lenghthen the overall aesthetic duration, as compared to either alone. For example, forehead injections of Botox and Belotero® can help keep the skin smoother beyond the typical three months.
Choose a longer lasting option
The non-surgical facelift treatments have a lot of variety. For example, facial filler procedures that can vary based on thickness. Thinner fillers tend to have shortest duration, while thicker fillers can last up to two years. Thicker facial fillers include Voluma® and Lyft®. These longer lasting fillers are great for the cheeks and volumization.
As always, follow your plastic surgeon’s guidance after treatment. Have you found other methods to increase the duration of Botox, facial fillers, and other non-surgical treatments? Share below.