How Long Does Botox Take to Work?

Botox has incredible results but, they are not instant.  It normally takes a few days for you to start noticing changes taking place.  The delayed effects of Botox are due to the fact that it must reach the cellular level of the muscle in order to block said muscle from contracting, thus relaxing the muscle into a state of paralysis.

Let’s look at this in more detail: Botox is injected under the skin, where the toxin then binds at a connection point between muscles and nerves, although it binds quickly to a specific protein called SNARE, which is situated at the connection point aforementioned, it then takes time for another protein (that tells the muscles when to move-acetylcholine) to realise that the muscle is not moving and thus stop telling it to move (e.g. when you turn the water off at the mains, water is still inside the pipe and the tap will continue to run until there is no water left).

Generally, after the application of Botox, it takes up to 10 days to see the maximum effects, although in some cases this timeframe can stretch to 14 days. You will normally start to see a gradual appearance of results within 48 to 72 hours. This relies on many different personal factors: age, gender, muscle mass, type and quantity of Botox used and the general characteristics of your skin (elasticity etc). It is always best to follow the aftercare advice provided by your clinician in order to maximise the reactivity of the toxin, as the first 24 hours after receiving your Botox injections are crucial.

In the first day or two following your treatment, it is strongly recommended to stay hydrated and not to partake in any strenuous physical activity.  We also recommend not to rub or massage the treated areas, as this could lead to spreading the toxin to unwanted areas or breaking down the protein released in the toxin (which could lead to not achieving the desired results). As there is a delay in effects, we offer a free two-week top up service whereby we assess the results and apply more Botox if needed.

Lots of people also ask what it feels like when Botox first starts to work. Well, you will notice your specific muscles feel a little tighter and when you try to move that certain muscle it does not move, this will not affect the feeling of your skin in any way as there are two different types of nerves in the body: Botox only incapacitates the ones related to movement, not the ones that give you feeling. It will feel a little strange at first, especially if it is your first-time getting Botox, but you get used to it very quickly. The good news is once the Botox has reached its maximum effect, this can then last anywhere from 2-6 months.

As always, the Gentle Facial Aesthetics team are here if you would like further advice, prices or to book an appointment.