Bad news for Instagram models and aging Hollywood celebrities — Covid vaccines may make Botox wear off quicker.
Researchers found the average time that it took patients to need a top-up of the wrinkle-smoother shortened after they received the Pfizer mRNA vaccine.
Patients who previously returned every 118 days between injections were coming in around 20 days earlier. But doctors stressed it was not a reason not to get the vaccine.
Findings from an Israeli study indicate that the Pfizer vaccine may make Botox injections less effective, with regular Botox patients coming in around two to three weeks earlier for top-ups after receiving the vax
Dermatologists in the US are reportedly seeing a similar trend among Botox users.
New York dermatologist Dr. Marisa Garshick addressed the topic in an Instagram reel last week.
‘Is the COVID vaccine why your Botox isn’t lasting as long?’ she asks in the short video, before flashing an image of the study.
In the accompanying caption, Dr. Garshick clarified that while some dermatologists – and patients – may have noticed this phenomenon in the office, ‘more research is needed to truly understand this observation’.
She also made sure to caveat that the potential cosmetic side-effect is not a reason to not get vaccinated.
Commenting on the post, popular skincare influencer Susan Yara said she too had experienced the quicker dissolving of her filler.
‘UGH!! I didn’t want this to be true, but it happened to me. I switched to Xeomin and it made a big difference’, she wrote beneath the video.
Injections generally last four to six months before a top-up is required to ensure a smooth complexion.
Botox is a brand name of botulinum toxin injectables.
They are injectable chemical class known as neuromodulators that interrupt signals between nerves and muscles to make them relax.
As a result, visible wrinkles will disappear.
These neuromodulators are typically used to treat the areas of the face between the eyebrows and in the corners of the eyes, as well as sometimes to plump the upper lip in a procedure called a ‘lip flip’.
The study looked at botulinum toxin injectables more generally – not just the popular Botox but also other newer neuromodulator treatments like Dysport, Xeomin, and Jeuveau.
Published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, the paper focused on 45 subjects, 89 percent female, with an average age of 48.3.
Because of the relatively small sample size, researchers clarified that their findings are inconclusive and called for additional research into the subject.
However, their results showed a marked decrease in the time it took patients to return to clinics needing Botulinum type A (BTA) top-up injections.
It can be assumed that the shortening of this interval between treatments mirrors ‘a reduction in the effectiveness of BTA’ following the vaccine, researchers explained.
The study did not determine exactly why the shot would have an effect on someone’s Botox.
But researchers speculate that the immune response created by the shot could see the injected substance as a foreign substance in the body and attack it.
In turn, the effects of Botox quickly wear off as antibodies in the blood stream fight it off.
It also did not clarify whether contracting the Covid virus itself had a similar impact on Botox longevity.
Questions over the impact of the mRNA jab on patients with filler – substances injected into the skin to add volume and fullness – were raised early on during the vaccine rollout after the FDA reported two people developing facial swelling after vaccination, both with prior histories of cosmetic filler injections.
On both, the swelling was localized to where filler was injected but went down with anti-histamines and steroid cream.
Doctors at the time claimed the reaction was most likely the result of the immune system revving up in the wake of the vaccine – a similar explanation to that put forward by the recent Botox-focused study.
None of these side effects imply the Covid vaccine is unsafe, however, as many dermatologists are clear to clarify.
If patients are worried about their Botox not working as well post-jab, other types of BTA treatments are available and potentially more effective.
Likewise, people can also develop a natural resistance to Botox over time, regardless of whether they’ve received the vax.
In short, as most would hopefully agree, a forehead line or two is worth avoiding a potentially deadly virus.