This Is What to Do if Botox Stops Working for You

Sometimes, with our most tried-and-true beauty treatments, there can come a time when your beauty go-tos—the ones that have always been your saving grace—just don’t seem to cut it. Case in point: neuromodulators like Botox Cosmetic, Dysport and Xeomin.

While these products may be regarded as the best wrinkle reducers out there, neuromodulators don’t do the trick for everyone. “Your skin can get used to the products, so you may not see the same results over time,” says Kailua-Kona, HI, dermatologist Monica Scheel, MD. Even if you’ve been getting injected for years, there are factors that can influence your results. “Some patients feel like they stop seeing an effect, which can be from too low of a dose, muscle recruitment from untreated nearby muscles, injector errors, or resistance to Botox Cosmetic,” says Melbourne, FL dermatologist Anita Saluja, MD.

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Scottsdale, AZ, facial plastic surgeon Kelly Bomer, MD, adds that older patients with major skin laxity may not get much improvement because excess skin and volume loss do not improve with Botox Cosmetic. There is a small amount of people who see results, yet have a reaction—mostly headache-like symptoms due to rare allergies associated with the product.

If you feel like your regular wrinkle reducer isn’t doing much of anything for you anymore, Dr. Saluja says to talk to your doctor about changing the course of treatment. “You may need to treat the surrounding muscles, increase the dose or switch to Dysport or Xeomin.” If you still experience the same effects, you may need to swear off neuromodulators altogether and find something else to eliminate lines and wrinkles. “You can fill in wrinkles with filler, use a high-grade medical skin-care program and engage in monthly skin treatments like microneedling with platelet-rich plasma (PRP), IPL, light chemical peels and dermaplaning to rejuvenate your face,” says Dr. Bomer. You can also opt for a treatment like ThermiRase, which uses a probe inserted under the skin (local anesthesia is used) to disable the muscles that cause lines to form (it lasts about two years and can cost up to $2,500 per treatment).

There are also over-the-counter skin-care products available, too, like Simply Venom Day and Night Cream ($59-$69), Perricone MD Re: Firm ($155) and Silk Therapeutics Silk + C30 Film ($330) that help improve the look of skin. While they don’t work exactly like a neuromodulator, nor do they provide the same effect, they can help to lessen the look of some lines and wrinkles with time.