Needle-wielding Botox pushers are everywhere these days, hoping to inject you where you eat, drink and sleep. After Allurereported on a service in which you can summon a professional to inject your face in your office (much as you would order General Tso's chicken), I learned that Norwegian Cruise Line now offers on-board injections and Wine Styles, a bar in San Diego, combines booze with-you guessed it-Botox.
Feeling creeped out about all this, I dialed up Joan Kron, Allure's contributing editor-at-large and cosmetic surgery expert. (Joan writes our Scalpel News column and reported on the dial-up Botox service.)
Joan explains that while it may be novel, getting Botox on a cruise ship-where there is a medical facility staffed with doctors and nurses-is a lot better than participating in a Botox party (yes, they're still going on), where someone of questionable experience may pass themselves off as a skilled practitioner. Even scarier, this "party" (if we can refer to this potential nightmare as one) is traditionally held in a place where sterility can be iffy.
As for the Botox bar, Joan was appalled.
"That is absolute insanity," she says. "You don't want to be tipsy when you're getting Botox. You want the ability to make decisions-like saying no."
Given all of this craziness, I thought it would be a good time to reinforce that Botox isn't a party favor or dart game at the local pub.
"Botox is a medical device," she says.
Some basic points to remember:
- The results depend on the injector's experience and technique: Sloppy work begets sloppy results. Says Joan, "The injection needle should be pointing upward, not down. If an inexperienced injector needles your forehead or faces the wrong direction, the solution can go directly into your eye." Ouch.
- Botox is a brand name, but outside of a legitimate medical environment, someone may use unapproved, overly diluted "brews," which can cause serious problems, like droopy eye. "If the solution is too thin, it will travel beyond where you want it to go," says Joan.
- If you're getting Botox for a bargain-basement price, beware. "You get what you pay for," says Joan. Every bottle of Botox is labeled with hologram film to prove it's the real thing. Do your research and ask to take a look at the bottle before you get the injection.
The bottom line is simple: Be smart about Botox. "Go to a reputable doctor who buys from a reputable source," says Joan.
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