There are several different anti-wrinkle injectables brands on the market and we asked Dr Garry Cussell of Rejuvenation Clinics of Australia, who offers all of them, to help us understand the difference between them and how they work.
There are three main injectable brands – Botox, Xeomin and Dysport. All of them are approved toxins that contain the same active ingredient and work in the same way. Dr Cussell clarifies. “All three brands contain the same active protein. When injected into a muscle, this ingredient binds with and neutralises the nerve protein within the nerve ending at the junction of the nerve and muscle. Once neutralised, less electrical current passes from the nerve into that particular muscle. Thus, the muscle relaxes in certain spots and movement is reduced in the muscles that cause the skin to crease with certain facial expressions.”
What’s the difference between Botox, Xeomin and Dysport?
As mentioned above they all work in the same way, but as they’re made by different companies, they have subtle differences and slightly different ingredients and pricing. Botox and Xeomin have a higher concentration of the active ingredient than Dysport. Whilst you might need fewer units of one over the other, you will probably pay more per unit because of the higher potency. You really need to make sure your practitioner has the relevant training and experience to understand the differences between each of them and is able to recommend which might be better for you.
The main difference between Botox, Xeomin and Dysport is the manufacturing. Xeomin, a German product and the newest to the market, actually only contains the active ingredient, botulinum toxin, without any of the other ingredients as are in the others. Often referred to as a “naked injectable”, Xeomin has the advantage of patients being less likely to have reactions or resistence to it. Xeomin is also the only product that does not need to be refrigerated due to the absence of these preservatives and additives.
The newest brand to the market (Xeomin) works in the same way, but it has other advantages too. An additional advantage is that, on those rare occasions where a patient may have developed some resistance to the extra associated proteins in the original anti-injectables, they are less likely to show resistance to the newer product that doesn’t contain the additional proteins found in the products that have been around longer.
Another difference is that Xeomin is said to be the slowest to produce results at approximately 4 days after treatment. Dysport is said to be the fastest (24 hours) and Botox at around 3 days. However, keep in mind that Dysport has been linked to more “drifting” than the other products – this is where the product moves away from where it was injected. This increases the risk of side effects such as a droopy eyelid or relaxation of a neighboring muscle.
It can be a little confusing and overwhelming trying to work out which one is best for you. This is why a good clinic will offer you a consultation before you book in for any treatment.
Dr Cussell says, “Rather than thinking about which brand is best, it’s more relevant that the doctor assesses the amount of muscle tissue causing the skin to crease and recommends the appropriate dosage. We have used all three brands for many years and injecting any brand correctly in the right amount will likely achieve the same result.
“Scientific studies show that Botox and Xeomin are equivalent in dosage and studies comparing Dysport show that the equivalent effect requires a three to one ratio, some doctors recommend a two to one ratio. The difference is the amount you use. The price may be variable, but generally, with a small glabella frown line, 20 units of botox will produce enough relaxation to prevent the frown line and the same results are obtainable with 20 units of Xeomin or 60 units of Dysport.”
How often should you have anti-wrinkle injectables?
Different patients have different needs and desires when it comes to their beauty regime, however if you are looking to use anti-wrinkle injections to their full potential and as a long term anti-ageing management, most clinics suggest having “top ups” every 3 – 4 months. We asked Dr Cussell to explain why. “All three brands of anti-wrinkle injections work by bonding with and neutralising the proteins on the nerve endings of the relevant muscles. These nerve proteins slowly rebuild themselves, which makes the effect of your injections slowly wear off over 3-4 months. If you return for repeat treatments every three months, you’ll be treating nerve endings with proteins that haven’t yet fully rebuilt, so you’re more likely to get a better result. Over time, you’ll likely require fewer units for the same result, as well.”
Anti-wrinkle injections can also be used for purposes other than eliminating wrinkles. They can assist with bruxism (grinding teeth), hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), headaches and more. If you’d like to find out more about this you might like to check out the blogs below.
Ultimately, you are putting yourself in the hands of your practitioner. Injecting anything into your skin deserves some understanding of the process and the subsequent need to find a practitioner with relevant training and experience to get the best results.
If you’d like further information or would like to arrange a free consultation with Rejuvenation Clinics of Australia go here, or check out their website.