‘Botox immunity’ could be reducing the effectiveness of your injectables

An expert explains why alternative anti-wrinkle injections are the answer to the issue

BEAUTYcrew Beauty Editor / May 04 2023

If you’ve been getting Botox for years then no doubt you’ve experienced a phenomenon doctors are calling: ‘Botox immunity’. 

“Quite a few women develop an immunity to their Botox and this reduces the effectiveness of the treatments over time,” says Dr Vivek Eranki, CEO of Cosmetique

“It is hypothesised that the older generation of [Botox formulations] on the market have a higher number of complex proteins attached to the key ingredient, which is Botulinum Toxin Type A,” he explains. “Over time, your body may register these complex proteins as antigens and form antibodies to it. This makes Botox doses less effective.” 

“Injectors and patients therefore increase the doses and frequency of treatments to compensate,” Dr Eranki explains. 

However, this can actually exacerbate the issue. 

“The good news is that there is a solution,” says Dr Eranki. 

Botox versus Xeomin

“Xeomin is a newer version of Botox,” explains Dr Eranki. 

If the name sounds familiar it's likely you’ve heard it being endorsed on social media by the brand’s celebrity ambassadors Christina Aguilera and Joe Jonas.

In Xeomin, “the active ingredient, Botulinum Toxin Type A, is purified of the complex proteins, and it is the only purified Botox available in Australia,” making it an obvious solution for those seeking an alternative anti-wrinkle injection treatment.  

Like Botox, Xeomin addresses and reduces the appearance of wrinkles by weakening or paralysing facial muscles around the eyebrows, forehead, and eyes. “The main difference is in how they are produced,” Dr Eranki explains.

Most anti-wrinkle injections “are made from a mixture of complex proteins and Botulinum toxin-A”. Xeomin, on the other hand, “is made from a purified form of Botulinum toxin-A, and doesn’t contain these complex proteins.”

According to Dr Eranki, while Xeomin is a newer product, its effectiveness is comparable to other anti-wrinkle injections, and that “some studies show Xeomin actually lasts longer than the other brands”. 

“Clinical studies comparing the two treatments’ effectiveness over a four-month period showed that Xeomin had longer lasting results than Botox,” he explains.

“The results [are] also [apparent] earlier than Botox,” he went on to say. “You may see the effects of smoother skin as early as just a couple of days after treatment, whereas with Botox, it can take longer.” 

These instant results have resulted in an increase in Xeomin’s popularity in-clinic, says the Cosmetique CEO.

Unlike Botox, Xeomin treatments also “encourage your skin to produce extra collagen, which is the protein responsible for keeping your skin looking plump and youthful,” Dr Eranki adds.

Regardless of whether you are considering Botox for the first time, or deciding to switch up your anti-wrinkle injection brand. Dr Eranki recommends doing your research and finding a reputable injectables clinic. 

“All good clinics only use substances approved by the TGA,” he explains, and they “only use premium quality injectables products to ensure the best outcomes” for patients. “If you see an injectable deal that seems too good to be true — give it a miss.” 

Are you considering anti-wrinkle injections? Well, just an FYI, Australian patients seeking cosmetic procedures and injectables will have to undergo 'validated psychological screening' as of July 1st, 2023. 

Main image credit: @adele

Briar Clark got her start in the media industry in 2017, as an intern for Marie Claire and InStyle. Since then, her keen interest in fashion and beauty has landed her gigs as a Digital Content Producer and Beauty Editor with titles like Girlfriend, Refinery29, BEAUTYcrew and beautyheaven. She loves the way seemingly innocuous topics like skin care and style have the ability to put a smile on people’s faces or make them think about themselves a little differently. A big believer in self love and experimentation, Briar has made a point of becoming the Australian beauty industry’s unofficial guinea pig for unusual treatments and daring hair trends. When she’s not testing out the latest beauty launches, Briar is big on broadening her horizons, mostly in the form of food but she’s also partial to travelling to new destinations both near and far (and of course, allocating an extra bag to bring their best beauty offerings home with her).

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