Botox and skin botox may sound like the same thing, but they’re actually very different. Regular botox is injected into the muscles while skin botox (also known as Dermatoxin) is injected into the skin layer.
So what is botox?
Botox is actually a protein made from botulinum toxin that the bacterium Clostridium botulinum produces. It is a toxin, but when people use it correctly and in small doses, it has a number of medical and cosmetic uses. Botox injections are best known for reducing skin wrinkles, but they can also be used to treat crossed eyes, eyelid spasms, excessive sweating, and some bladder disorders.
To understand the differences between regular botox and skin botox, Eunogo has talked to Dr. Choi Bo Yoon from Dr. Skinny in Seoul, Korea.
According to Dr. Choi, before we learn about botox, we need to know about the type of wrinkles.
Expression lines vs Fine lines
"There are two main types of wrinkles on our faces. The first type is the expression line, and the second type is the fine line". says Dr. Choi.
Expression lines are wrinkles that take place when we make expressions. Let's take the eye area as an example. There are no wrinkles when you stay still, but when you laugh hard, you get wrinkles around your eyes like magpie feet. This is an expression line. These are wrinkles that are made as the muscles around your eye contract when you smile. In the case of the forehead, the wrinkles that aren't there when you are still, appear horizontally when you raise your eyebrows, right? Those are forehead expression lines. It's also easy to have expression lines between our eyes. When we frown in anger, the vertical wrinkles caused by the contraction of the muscles are the expression lines between the eyes.
Then, what are fine lines? Fine lines are wrinkles that are visible even when you are still, without making any facial expressions. For those in their 30's or 40's, fine lines are first formed around the forehead, and around the eyes.
Treat them while it's still early!
For those in their 50's or 60's, as the skin loses elasticity, the fine lines are formed around the mouth, chin, and neck. Babies don't have wrinkles because have good skin elasticity, so no matter how much they make facial expressions, no wrinkles are formed and their skin will stay elastic.
As you get older, it will continue to fold and unfold and cause you to get fine lines on your forehead, and around the eyes. And if these wrinkles are left untreated, the very fine lines will become much deeper wrinkles.
Dr. Choi brought up the example of paper money. When we fold and unfold a new bill a few times, we can easily smooth out the folded line with an iron. But what about an old bill that's been folded and unfolded numerous times? Even if we try to smooth it out with an iron, the line doesn't disappear and stays.
Therefore, before it develops into a deeper wrinkle, it is necessary to take care of them through procedures such as botox when they are still fine lines.
Regular Botox vs Skin Botox (Dermatoxin)
Regular muscle botox targets expression lines while dermatoxin targets fine lines. What's the difference between the two procedures? There are differences in the depth of the procedure and botox concentration.
First, the depth of the procedure. In regular muscle botox, we inject botox into the muscle layer. Botox prevents the muscle from contracting and helps it relax. Therefore, when smoothing out expression lines caused by using facial muscle, botox is injected into the muscle layer to make the facial expression difficult to make and prevent wrinkles.
Then where is the dermatoxin injected? It is injected not in the muscle layer, but the surface layer of the skin. Derma refers to skin while toxin refers to botox, so dermatoxin means skin botox. It's a method of injecting the botox lightly into the skin layer. Skin botox can smooth out the fine lines on the skin layer and since it isn't injected into the muscle layer, there is no limitation in the movement of the muscles. It has the advantage of being able to make natural facial expressions, while smoothing out the fine lines.
The second difference is the botox concentration. In the case of regular muscle botox, in order to limit the movement of the muscles, the concentration of botox is a bit higher. On the other hand, because the procedure for dermatoxin is done on the thinner skin layer, the botox concentration required is lower.
Is there absolutely no discomfort after the dermatoxin treatment?
That is not true and many people misunderstand this. Dermatoxin also limits the movement of the skin. Since it doesn't completely limit the use of muscles like regular muscle botox does, you can still make facial expressions, but the movement of the skin layer is limited. It should feel a bit heavier than before. That is how botox works and it's a natural reaction. The fine lines will be smoothed out by limiting the movement of the skin layer.
Can't we smooth out the expression lines with dermatoxin?
Those who are in their 20's or early 30's and still have skin elasticity may only have fine lines. They may have expression lines as they get older or use a lot of their expression muscles. If we try to smooth out the fine lines using regular botox, which is highly concentrated, the expression muscles may become so relaxed that you can’t smile.
Some people might say that they don't need to smile. There are those that ask to smooth out the wrinkles because they don't like the appearance of them.
Many people want the muscles to be treated just enough so it looks natural. What we normally do is we inject dermatoxin into the skin layer to smooth out the fine lines, and also to the muscular layer, where there are expression lines, to smooth them out as well.
Since the concentration of botox in dermatoxin is lower, when we inject dermatoxin into the muscle layer, there’s less discomfort. You can still make facial expressions, but you just need a little more effort than before.
We hope you have a better idea about the differences between regular botox and dermatoxin. It is advised to first diagnose what kind of wrinkles you have before planning a treatment accordingly. Since determining the right concentration of botox can be tricky depending on your skin condition, you should always see a professional dermatologist if you are thinking of getting a botox.