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Dermal Fillers

How Long Does Botox Take to Work?

Botulinum toxin injections have various cosmetic and health benefits. This article explains more about botulinum toxin injections, how long they take to work, and the possible complications of anti-wrinkle injections.

Botulinum toxin injections have grown more popular for their medical and cosmetic functions. The anti-wrinkle products are administered to patients above 18 years to remove wrinkles, creases, and fine lines caused by loss of compounds like collagen and elastin. Botulinum toxin injection offers an effective cosmetic remedy lasting up to 6 months, depending on the patient’s metabolism and muscle strength. Furthermore, Botox can be administered on various facial areas, including the forehead, between the eyebrows, smoker lines, jawline, and on chin. 

What is Botox?

Botox is a protein obtained from Botulinum toxin in smaller amounts. Furthermore, it is an injectable medication that temporarily blocks muscle movement and the transmission of nerve signals. It can be used cosmetically and medicinally. For example, botulinum toxin injection treats blood disorders, muscle spasticity, migraines, and excessive sweating. 

The procedure often takes less than an hour, depending on the units required per injection or site. However, patients cannot undergo the procedure if they previously had an allergic reaction to the anti-wrinkle injection. Pregnant or breastfeeding clients should also avoid botulinum injections. Drugs, such as blood thinning medications, might interfere with the procedure’s efficacy. 

How Long Does Botox Take to Work?

The effects of botulinum toxin injection can be experienced in 3-4 days, especially after possible side effects subside. However, it might take 2 weeks for the patient to notice the maximum results. 

Various factors determine how long it takes for Botox to work. For example, the units required per injection and the injection site play a critical role in the longevity of Botox. If a higher dose is administered on a particular facial area, the effects last longer in the facial muscles. Furthermore, facial areas with stronger muscles would utilize more anti-wrinkle injections over time, which would last for a shorter duration.

The following factors determine how long botulinum toxin injection takes to work;

Muscle Mass

Patients with a higher muscle mass would require more units of Botox for guaranteed efficacy. However, if the units of Botox are to be kept constant, the anti-wrinkle injection would last for a shorter duration in patients with a higher muscle mass since continuous muscle movements use up the toxin much faster.

Quality of the Botox

The quality of Botox plays a critical role in determining its longevity. Botox is often sensitive to heat and should be stored in a cool, dry place to ensure it remains effective when administered. Higher-quality Botox would last longer than lower-quality Botox.

Injection site

The effects of Botox are experienced for a shorter duration when injected in facial areas with frequent muscle movements. For example, when Botox is injected on the forehead or between the eyebrows, it lasts for a shorter duration since these facial areas involve constant muscle movements. 


Younger patients are more likely to experience Botox’s longer-lasting effects than older patients. In addition, younger patients have more elastin and collagen, while older patients constantly experience fine lines and wrinkles due to collagen loss.

Frequency of Treatment

Touch-up injections are necessary to guarantee the efficacy of Botox. These injections can be administered every 4-6 months, depending on the advice from the cosmetic surgeon. Hexsel et al. (2018) stated that supplementary injections should not be administered sooner than three months after the initial injection since the body may develop an immune response to Botox, reducing its efficacy.

The Quality of the Injection

It is prudent to undergo highly accurate Botox injections from licensed, highly qualified cosmetic surgeons. Furthermore, certified cosmetic doctors understand the facial anatomy, required units, and appropriate injection site.

The Depth and Size of the Wrinkles

Botox would last shorter when administered to patients with deeper creases and wrinkles. On the other hand, people with fewer fine lines would experience longer effects of Botox due to reduced muscle movement.


Men often have stronger facial muscles than women. Therefore, the effects of Botox would take a shorter duration in men. Furthermore, men have deeper wrinkles than women as they age, and they would require more units of the anti-wrinkle treatment.


It is necessary to avoid smoking and alcohol consumption after botulinum injections. Cigarettes often have various chemicals that damage collagen production and dehydrate the skin. 

Medical Conditions

Patients who fall ill after the injection procedure might not fully experience the benefits of Botox. In addition, strenuous exercises increase the patient’s metabolism, causing the injection last for a shorter duration.

What Do Botox Treatments Involve?

Before the procedure, the cosmetic surgeon analyses the skin, noting its pigmentation and possible skin infections that may affect its outcome. A topical anesthetic is applied to numb the skin. Furthermore, the aesthetic doctor discusses Botox’s benefits and possible side effects with the patient; they also recommend the facial areas inject the anti-wrinkle.

Where Can Botox Be Administered?

Botox can be administered on the forehead, between the eyebrows, and on the chin and jaw. Furthermore, Satriyasa&BagusKomang (2019) stated that it alleviates smoker lines when injected around the corners of the mouth. 

How Long Does Botox Last?

Botox often lasts up to six months, although supplementary injections can be administered every 3 months to ensure it remains effective. 

Frequently Asked Questions about Botox

Is Botox Safe?

Botox is administered in manageable doses. It is safe and approved by many regulatory agencies. However, it is important to ensure that the cosmetic surgeon giving the injection is qualified. 

Does Botox have Side Effects?

According to Siddiqui et al. (2021), possible side effects of Botox include pain, bruising, redness, and inflammation. These side effects subside quickly, although it is important to consult your aesthetic doctor if they persist. 

What Should a Patient Do Before the Procedure?

The patient should ensure they stop consuming alcohol and blood thinning medications since they often interfere with the procedure’s outcome. It is also advisable not to apply cosmetic products on your face before the procedure. 

Is Botox Painful?

Botox procedures are not painful. Although patients may briefly experience discomfort during the procedure, a topical anesthetic is applied to numb the skin.

Is Botox Different from Dermal Fillers?

Botox is different from dermal fillers since it relieves dynamic wrinkles, while dermal fillers relieve static wrinkles. Cozumel et al. (2021) stated that dermal fillers utilize materials like hyaluronic acid to enhance facial plumpness. On the other hand, Botox utilizes small doses of botulinum toxin to remove creases and dynamic wrinkles from the skin.

The Bottom Line 

Botox is obtained from smaller amounts of Botulinum toxin. It is an injectable medication that can be administered for cosmetic and medical purposes. For example, it can be injected on the forehead and between the eyebrows to relieve dynamic wrinkles, fine lines, and creases. It takes effect in about 4 days, although the full effects are often noticeable after 14 days.

The patient’s age, metabolism, and muscle mass determine how long Botox works. The quality of the injection, the injection site, and the quality of the toxin determine the longevity. Although Botox has various benefits, it may also have fewer side effects that subside quickly. 


Czumbel, L. M., Farkasdi, S., Gede, N., Mikó, A., Csupor, D., Lukács, A., … &Varga, G. (2021). Hyaluronic acid is an effective dermal filler for lip augmentation: a meta-analysis. Frontiers in surgery8, 681028.

Hexsel, D., Cartier, H., Hedén, P., Delmar, H., Bergentz, P., Camozzato, F., … &Kestemont, P. (2018). Efficacy, safety, and subject satisfaction after abobotulinumtoxinA treatment of upper facial lines. Dermatologic Surgery44(12), 1555-1564.

Satriyasa, B. K. (2019). Botulinum toxin (Botox) A for reducing the appearance of facial wrinkles: a literature review of clinical use and pharmacological aspect. Clinical, cosmetic and investigational dermatology12, 223.

Siddiqui, M., Shah, P. V., Balani, P., Lopez, A. R., Nobleza, C. M. N., & Khan, S. (2021). Comparing the efficacy, safety, and superiority of calcitonin gene-related peptide monoclonal antibodies and botox in preventing and treating migraines. Cureus13(1).

Crystal Kadir
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