The Art of Injecting Botox

We offer Botox treatments from our clinic in Glasgow.

Botox injections are a type of wrinkle reduction treatment which has revolutionised our approach to facial ageing, particularly in the upper face. The treatment works by injecting tiny amounts of botulinum toxin into specific muscles in the face which causes the muscles to relax, and reduces the appearance of the overlying wrinkles.

Contrary to popular belief, Botox does not paralyse muscles but rather it relaxes them.

The art of injecting Botox lies in altering the delicate balance between the muscles of facial expression. These muscles can broadly be divided into two main groups: those which lift the face up and those which pull the face down. The goal of using Botox is to weaken the muscles which pull the face down, enhancing the effect of the muscles which lift the face up.


Footage taken at The Aesthetic Medicine Institute Glasgow | Dr Darren McKeown

Areas for Treatment

Frown Lines

The frown lines are one of the most commonly treated areas using Botox.

The muscles which we use to frown also depress the brow and so by relaxing them, and preventing that effect, we can simultaneously lift the brow making the eye look more open and awake. Contrary to popular belief, this type of wrinkle reduction treatment does not paralyse muscles but rather relax them.


The forehead is another more common area to treat for wrinkle reduction.

It is important only to treat a section of the forehead muscle, leaving behind enough muscle movement to support the brow. In some cases, where there is significant skin excess and heavy, hooded upper eyelids, it is best not to treat the forehead at all.

Crows Feet

Crow’s feet can also be very effectively treated for wrinkle reduction. This works especially well for women in their 30s and 40s.

When we get into the 50s however, and when the muscles around the eye become very hyper-expressive, the options are two fold: increasing the dose of Botox used, which can sometimes look unnatural, or combine the toxin with some filler around the eye. Filler around the eye not only helps to make the result look more natural, but it can also help to extend the length of time between Botox treatments.

Mouth Corners

The depressor anguli ori (or DAO for short) is a muscle which goes from the corner of the mouth down towards the jaw.

When it contracts, it pulls the corners of the mouth downward and so relaxing it with Botox has the opposite effect – to elevate the corner of the mouth. This can be quite a difficult effect to achieve and is best suited to younger patients.


The superficial muscle of the neck, the platysma, usually contracts to pull the neck and lower face downwards.

Treating the neck can help to relax these thick bands, as well as relieve the negative pull on the lower face and neck. Again, this is not a treatment which is suitable for everyone and is best suited to younger patients who have a thin neck.

How Often Should I Have Treatment?

Most people will find the muscle relaxation begins to wear off at around 3 months. However…

When the muscle movement begins to increase, there is often a lag period of another month or so before the lines and wrinkles begin to re-appear. It is when the lines and wrinkles begin to re-appear that you should think about having further treatment.

In the first year of a Botox treatment program you will most likely find that you need to have the treatment done approximately 3 times (i.e. not much longer than 4 months per treatment). In the long term however, you should aim to have the treatment no more than twice per year, allowing muscle recovery in between treatments to minimise long term muscle atrophy.

In the very long term, after you have been using dermal fillers for a number of years, you may find you only need to have the treatment carried out once per year. 

Side Effects and Complications

Treatment of the upper face is, usually, an almost pain free procedure. The needles used are very small and with good technique it is almost always possible to avoid causing bruising.

The most common side effect from filler injections are headaches. These can affect up to 1 in 10 people. For most people it settles down within a day or two, however in some people it can take up to a couple of weeks and I have seen one or two patients who have found the headaches lasted the whole three month duration of the treatment. For most people however the headaches are very mild, self limiting and it is unusual to require any type of pain killer for them.

Complications from this treatment can occur by the toxin spreading to near by muscles that were not intended to be targeted by the treatment. In the upper face this can cause temporary drooping of the eyelid or eyebrow. Because this usually happens as a result of a small amount of toxin spreading to the wrong area, rather than a direct injection into the wrong area, it tends to wear of quite quickly – usually within a couple of weeks. In the lower face and neck, it is possible for the toxin to diffuse into muscles which help to move the mouth resulting in a lop sided smile. Rarely, toxin treatment in the neck can affect speech and ability to swallow.

Some of our other Treatment Videos

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Further Information

We are here to help

If you would like to know more about any of our treatments please feel free to call us on 0141 370 0509.

Alternatively, you can fill out the contact form below and someone will get back to you within 24 hours – and usually much sooner. If you are ready to go ahead an schedule an appointment you can either do it online using the form below, or download our app.

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