Beauty Breakdown: Botox Vs. Facial Acupuncture

Written by Carine Camara

There’s no doubt that holistic, anti-aging treatments are on the upswing. Facial reflexology, gua sha, facial acupuncture, and massage are now being touted as effective—and enjoyable—alternatives to injectables and fillers. This shift can be attributed to the constantly changing narrative around aging. While still having a long way to go society has shifted from a focus on what it is on the outside to what we feel like on the inside. This means an acceptance of a few wrinkles and more consideration for our lifestyle, nutrition, and current health including our emotional state. There is a priority placed on treating the skin as part of the whole instead of an outside challenge. 

This is where facial acupuncture really shines

Turning the lens to an invasive procedure like Botox involves using a drug made from a toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum (the same toxin that causes the food poisoning called botulism) to freeze the muscles around the injection site, which does relax the area and the skin around it resulting in fewer wrinkles and creasing. Botox also limits the flow of lymph, blood, and chi to that area, whereas facial acupuncture works by restoring the flow of chi to the tissues. 

The trick with Botox is not to abuse it, in order to avoid the frozen-faced look that is instantly unrecognizable. Remember, this is a medical procedure with potential side effects that can fall on the more extreme side including trouble speaking or swallowing, muscle weakness, vision problems, and more.   

Facial Acupuncture as a treatment can target excess fluid and puffiness, breakouts, dull skin, boost collagen production and cell turnover, minimize fine lines, sculpt and boost facial definition, increase circulation to firm and tone, and promote detoxification. All with minimal side effects that do not go past a little soreness and bruising. The result of facial acupuncture depends on how far along you are in treatment but you can go further and further between appointments if you are maintaining your health and skin according to recommendations. Some people visit once a week, some, once a month. Like most treatments, it is important to build on top of results. 

Look at treating the skin through treating the body as a whole

My goal in comparing these two paths is to lay the facts in front of you. As an advocate for holistic health, I will always be in favor of looking at beauty and overall health from a holistic perspective. This means that other aspects of wellness – digestion, circulation, metabolism, and mental health – cannot be separated from beauty. Some wrinkles are a normal part of aging! It’s been amazing to see more women embracing a few lines as acceptable. 

That being said, it can affect us deeply when some aspect of the face seems to age faster than our years. I’m not judging anyone who gets treatments like botox or fillers, I’m just out to let them know there is another option, an effective one that addresses your health inside and out, head to toe.