Does 'preventative Botox' actually work? An expert weighs in.

If you’re a woman who exists on planet Earth, chances are you’ve stumbled across the term “preventative Botox” before.

And if you’re one of the three million people who follow YouTuber Shannon Harris (@Shaaanxo), you’ve likely heard all about its supposed benefits for women in their twenties, too.

“I’m here to help you guys and educate you guys,” the 24-year-old social media celebrity told fans in a video diary titled “Botox Q&A” in April last year.

“… Long term if I keep up Botox, twice a year let’s say, my [facial] muscles aren’t going to be overworked and I’m not going to crease my skin.”

The millennial has regularly blogged her trips to a comestic surgery ever since.

Beyond Shannon’s social media channels, a belief that getting Botox young will prevent wrinkles down the track is rampant. A YouTube search of the term presents 10,300 gushy videos about the wonders of preventative Botox, proselytising the concept that “starting Botox before your skin shows signs of ageing” is of critical importance.

While there’s absolutely no problem with doing what you want to your own skin, it is your own skin after all, we couldn’t help but wonder: Is the premise of preventative Botox true, or total bollocks?

It’s pretty hard to find facts when almost every “expert” practitioner has a vested interest in spruiking the product that pays their bills. After all, the sound of them hooking in a twenty-something to their pricey product for life sounds a bit like ‘ca-ching’.


LISTEN: Is Botox a feminist issue? (Post continues…)

So we reached out to Dr Adrian Lim, from the Australasian College of Dermatologists, to find out for real.

And, well… it’s time to do some myth-busting, reader friends.

“There is presently no evidence for anti-ageing benefits of ‘preventative Botox’ in young adults in their twenties,” Dr Lim told Mamamia .

In fact, Dr Lim said getting Botox in your twenties to prevent signs of ageing in later life is a “waste of money”, and listed potential side effects to young women as “bruising”, “droopy eye lids” and “asymmetrical appearance”.

While most practitioners agree that getting regular Botox in later years – say, in your thirties – can have “an observable anti-ageing effect”, there is no evidence to support the concept of “preventative Botox” for women in their twenties.

Instead? Dr Lim encourages young women who have an interest in Botox to only get it for special occasions, like weddings or birthdays; just not under the illusion it will have any affect on their appearance in the long run.

So it’s important to remember: If you’re in your twenties, Botox will not have any impact on the appearance of your skin beyond three to six months.

‘Preventative Botox’? Shmentative Schmotox.