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6 surprising mistakes you're making with anti-wrinkle injections, according to a doctor.

Whether you've dabbled in anti-wrinkle injections before, never had them, or are just really curious about them, you'll know that slinking into a clinic for cosmetic work is now just as common as getting your hair done.

However, despite the popularity of these treatments, botched procedures and bad cosmetic work is a very real thing that many people experience.

The frozen face. The peanut head. The lip shelf.

To help suss out exactly what you should know about anti-wrinkle injections and how to avoid all of the above (and more), we went straight to one of Australia’s most trusted cosmetic physicians in the industry: Dr Joseph Hkeik.

As part of our recent Skin Summit, I sat down with Dr Hkeik from All Saint Clinic and asked him ALL the questions about anti-wrinkle injections - including the most common mistakes he sees in his clinic.

Here's what he said.

Mistake #1: Getting injectables too often.

Okay - here's a thing we didn't know. But getting anti-wrinkle injections too frequently, you can actually end up making yourself immune to the effects of them. Yep, really.

"I think all the studies have shown us that the anti-wrinkle injection lasts 12 weeks. So, you think that everyone will stick to that rule?"

We're going to say... no.

"I would not encourage people to come in every four weeks. I've seen that sadly on social media at times where people say, 'I've just been four weeks since my last treatment and here I am doing it again,' and I think all it does is encourage the clients to become resistant to the treatment."

"Eventually, [it] doesn't matter how much you use the product - you will not get any effects. So, that's detrimental rather than beneficial."

Dr Hkeik goes on to recommend people wait the full 12 weeks before coming back.

Mistake #2: Having them in the wrong area.

This is all the proof you need that seeing an experienced practitioner is SO important.

"Bad work is often because they've had either too much product injected or the product was injected in the wrong muscles on the face," explains Dr Hkeik. 

The most common example? Frozen faces. 

"No one should really walk around with no ability to express themselves," said Dr Hkeik. "How will you connect with your friends and family and your kids, if you have kids? How will you show emotions?"

"The second thing that often you notice is when injectors are too scared to inject the lateral part of the brow, so they skip it," shares Dr Hkeik. The result? "The patient ends up with what we call the 'Spock' or the 'Jack Nicholson look' where the eyebrow goes all the way up."

Image: Mamamia

"And that to me is a visible sign that you've had anti-wrinkle injections. The key is not to miss it, but to actually know how much and where they put the product to keep the eyebrow looking the same, only slightly lifted."

While in some instances these mistakes can be fixed, Dr Hkeik said that in other instances you'll have to wait for the product to wear off, before starting fresh. 

And that's an awfully long time to look like Jack Nicholson...

Mistake #3: Starting injectables too young.

Depending on your individual lifestyle, Dr Hkeik said that if you're in your late 20s to early 30s and you're experiencing deep wrinkles that are a concern, it may be time to see a professional.

"Sadly, in Australia, and I'm sure in the rest of the world, these procedures have become fashionable, amongst the very young (15 to 16), who I really don't think have any wrinkles."

"I'm always a believer in natural beauty, so I don't endorse people getting everything on their face injected just because it's there. You don't want to risk losing your character in the process."

Mistake #4: Over-injecting around the lips.

Anti-wrinkle injections around the lips have become a popular cosmetic trend (see: the 'lip flip'), however, according to Dr Hkeik, it's one area that's rife for mistakes. 

"It's become really quite fashionable. And I use that word fashionable, because I don't believe in fashion when it comes to facial aesthetics. If you need it, we do it, if you don't need it, we don't actually offer it."

"When you put too much anti-wrinkle above the lip, you can drop the lip too much," he said. 

Image: Mamamia

"People can have issues with sucking from a straw or kissing or just speaking or laughing. And I think that's sad because this is a specialised procedure, which should be done only by specialists in this field."

Mistake #5: Seeing cosmetic injectables as a 'trend'.

One of the biggest mistakes, Dr Hkeik said, is seeing cosmetic treatments as a 'trend'. He reminds us that injectables are a real cosmetic procedure with very real side effects - and should be treated like one.

"Often you see people come forward sometimes saying, 'I'm here because I think anti-wrinkle injection is the fashion'. Even when they don't have wrinkles," he said.

"For these clients, we often talk to them about their skincare, other ways to prevent some damage, and other procedures that can actually help to make their skin healthier. But we'll talk them out of getting anti-wrinkle injection for that reason."

Mistake #6: Not having a proper skin consultation.

As Dr Hkeik explained, a proper skin consultation is crucial in order to get the best results. Without one, you could be facing all the above problems - and more.

"Let the doctor analyse your face, analyse your skin, and determine if solutions like skincare products or other procedures, like micro-needling or other alternatives, can actually help your skin more," he said. 

"If we think that none of these procedures [are going to] remove those wrinkles for you, then anti-wrinkle injections will become the right procedure for you. And then we can talk about that as a solution."

So, there you have it!

Did you miss The Skin Summit presented by Mamamia? Get on-demand access to the best skin experts in the world. Whether you love nerding out over a 12-step skincare routine or still use a bar of soap, the summit is the secret to the best skin of your life. Streaming directly to your couch. Catch up on-demand here.

Feature image: Mamamia.

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