Simply put, Botox® is the brand name of an injectable made from purified protein. Specifically, it contains the botulinum toxin, which is a versatile substance used for everything from smoothing out wrinkled foreheads — as with Botox® Cosmetic available at our spa — to treating medical conditions. Doctors choose it for hyperhidrosis, for example, because the injections can prevent excessive underarm sweating.
It does all of this by keeping signals from reaching their targets in the body. When the brain sends a message to underarm glands to begin to produce sweat, for instance, Botox® prevents that message from ever making it to those glands. Similarly, when the brain sends a message for muscles to contract as part of a facial expression — say, a scowl — that message doesn’t arrive at key muscles that contribute to forehead wrinkles.
The makers of the prescription injectable can boast more than four decades of study that have gone into ensuring its safety and efficacy. In fact, Botox® was used in a medical setting for years before it gained FDA approval and popularity as a cosmetic.
Its development was influenced by roughly 2,500 studies, all of which helped it to get approved for a variety of uses — and new applications continue to be discovered and approved.
It is certainly popular as a cosmetic. In the 12 years since its cosmetic approval in 2002, there have been about 11 million Botox® injections. It regularly tops lists of globally popular procedures for men and women alike.