Are anti-wrinkle injections the same as ‘Botox”?

The easy answer is yes but that would make for a very short and boring blog. Botox is actually just a brand of Botulinum Toxin A, which is a naturally occurring neurotoxic protein called Bacterium Clostridium Botulinum. Sounds scary, right? In small and appropriate doses, which are the quantities used for cosmetic and medical treatment, it is very safe and has been through rigorous testing to demonstrate this. It prevents the release of transmitters in muscle tissue which means the muscles cannot communicate and therefore relax. How relaxed they become, depends on your desired treatment goal, your individual response to treatment and how much your practitioner has listened.

There are a few different brands used in the UK, the three front runners are Botox, Bocouture and Azzulure. Botox is the most widely recognised but is often confused with the name of treatment, rather than the brand. All three of these brands essentially produce the same outcomes but you may find you respond better to one than another. Here at Alpha Aesthetics, we use Bocouture. The reason for this is that the protein count is lower than its competitors and whilst this may infer it is not as strong, this is not correct. Botox contains the most proteins and mimics the natural bacterium, whereas Bocouture contains the least and is considered more of a pure product. These type of proteins are believed to stimulate an immune response so if you are using Botox for your treatment, you may find efficiency of results starts to decline with frequent use. The caveat is that each individual responds differently to different brands and dosages. Bocouture is licensed for all three upper facial treatments; forehead lines, frown lines and crows feet.

You may have noticed that we do not advertise Botox or Bocouture on our website under the treatment menu. This is because Botulinum Toxin A is actually a prescription only product (buyer beware if you are not visiting a clinical prescriber), therefore it is against the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) regulations to advertise prescription only medication. As a result of this, the ‘anti-wrinkle’, ‘wrinkle relaxing’, ‘consultation for wrinkles’ advertising is born. If you are going for these treatments, which will use some of the brands above, ensure you are given a full medical and psycho-social history before you have treatment. If you are a regular patient, ensure you are asked if anything in your medical history has changed. If not, this should be a big red flag. Its also good to ask, if your clinician is not a prescribing medical professional, who will conduct your consultation and who will deal with any rare complications? Have you been given their contact details?

So, to answer the question. Botox is the same as wrinkle relaxing injections but Botox is just a brand of toxin injection used. You may find the term Botox often, even if that is not the brand being used, because its a universal term patients recognise. Do you know what product you are being given?!

Stay Safe,


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