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How to Choose Between Botox or Fillers for a More Sculpted Jawline

How to Choose Between Botox or Fillers for a More Sculpted Jawline featured image
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A well-defined jawline is often associated with youthfulness and attractiveness. For those looking to enhance their jawline and achieve a more sculpted appearance, both Botox and jawline filler offer effective nonsurgical solutions. We know they’re both powerful tools to help achieve a “snatched look” but how do you know which one does what? To get the lowdown, we asked top dermatologists to share how they help guide patients when they want to strengthen, slim or define their profile.

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Neurotoxin for Jaw Slimming

According to Campbell, CA dermatologist Amelia K. Hausauer, MD, “Botulinum toxin can be used in the lower face to decrease the downward pull of muscles. For example, the platysma is a thin muscle that drapes across the neck and hooks into the lower face.“ She explains that neurotoxins like Botox Cosmetic, Xeomin, Dysport, Jeuveau and Daxxify can be targeted off label in two different ways to address the jawline. “First, you can soften and flatten platysmal bands, which are the vertical cord-like fibers that run from the chin down toward the collar bone. Second is the so-called ‘Nefertiti Lift,’ which involves injection along the jawline especially at the upper sides of the neck to prevent these muscle fibers from dragging down and blunting the sharp contour.“

“The myriad of benefits that patients often see with this treatment include facial slimming, less chin dimpling, reduced TMJ pain, upward turning of the corners of the mouth, and less pulling down of the jowl,” says Miami plastic surgeon Jackie Yee, MD.

Who is an ideal candidate?

Dr. Hausauer highlights that botulinum toxin is particularly beneficial for specific cases: “Botulinum toxin is good for more subtle changes, in those with very strong muscles, or to prevent some of the gravitational pull.”

Neurotoxin Costs, Side Effects and Downtime

When considering neurotoxin treatments for the jawline, it’s important to be aware of the associated costs, potential side effects, and downtime. Treatments typically range from $300 to $900 per session. The average cost of neurotoxin injections is $435, according to the latest statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, although this figure is not specific to the jawline.

Side effects may include possible asymmetry and weakening of muscles, which underscores the importance of consulting with an expert injector. Dr. Yee advises, “Lower face neurotoxin may not last as long as other areas, so regular maintenance sessions are necessary.”

How is jawline filler different?

New York oculoplastic surgeon Irene Gladstein, MD explains, “The key differences [between neurotoxins and jawline filler] are in the fact that toxins influence the size of the chewing muscle producing what we call ‘jaw slimming,’ whereas fillers strategically change volume thus creating more defined, contoured and what we like to call ‘snatched’ jawlines.” She suggests that collagen-stimulating injectables like hyperdiluted Radiesse can offer the best and longest-lasting outcomes.

“Fillers can help with contours and shadowing,” adds Dr. Yee. “They are injected deeply on the bone to mimic bone and provide sharper definition. Fillers can also be injected superficially to smooth out contours and conceal undesirable features like jowls.”

Who is an ideal candidate?

Dr. Gladstein recommends jawline filler for individuals “with a recessive chin, rounded jaw, or asymmetries in their face” as they help in “sculpting and defining the ‘weak’ jawline that is missing definition.”

Filler Costs, Side Effects and Downtime

Jawline filler treatments can range from $600 to $1,200 per syringe, depending on the type of filler used and the extent of the treatment. According to the latest statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of hyaluronic acid dermal fillers is $715, while non-hyaluronic acid dermal fillers average $901. Potential side effects include swelling, bruising, and tenderness at the injection sites. Downtime is usually minimal, with most patients resuming normal activities within a day or two, if not immediately.

How do you determine the best option?

According to Southlake, TX and Monroe, LA dermatologist Janine Hopkins, MD examining patients from different angles and with animation is crucial to determine the best treatment option for each individual. “I also evaluate the skin integrity to decide if laser or microneedling treatments are also needed to tighten the skin along the jawline or liposuction is needed to reduce unwanted fat on the submental chin and neck.”

Palo Alto, CA facial plastic surgeons David Lieberman, MD and Sachin S. Parikh, MD suggest a combination approach, stating, “We may slim the face, relax the chin…then enhance or sharpen or add additional definition along the jawline if just neurotoxin doesn’t meet the patient’s goals.” They believe that combining Botox and fillers allows for a more comprehensive and customized result. “We also incorporate the injectable filler Sculptra, which is poly-L-lactic acid, not hyaluronic acid. When injected, not only does it add volume, but it stimulates the body’s own collagen production, which makes the volumizing effects last longer.”

For subtle changes and preventing gravitational pull, neurotoxin is an excellent option, whereas jawline filler is recommended for those seeking enhanced volume and precise contouring. No matter what someone sees in the mirror, it’s best to follow the advice of a trusted expert injector who has the proper skills and training. “I personally see the best results are when the two are used in combination,” notes Dr. Hausauer. “A thorough evaluation of the patient’s anatomy, changes over time, and desired goals help determine what is an appropriate concern to target. Expectations is key here.”

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