Chemical peel or Botox—which one is the right cosmetic treatment for you? Before you invest in one of these aesthetic options, take a look at what you need to know about peels and botulinum type A injections.
How Are These Treatments Different?
The mechanism of action is completely different for each of these cosmetic procedures. While both are considered minimally invasive treatments and you can get both options at many dermatologists' offices or medical spas, the products used, the steps required, and the outcomes are dramatically different.
Chemical peels are exactly what the name implies. These treatments use chemical solutions to peel (or remove) the top layers of skin from your face. This forces the skin to repair itself. The new skin growth is typically smoother and more even than before. Depending on the depth of the peel, this type of aesthetic procedure can reduce the appearance of wrinkles, decrease some types of scars, or just freshen your face.
Unlike chemical peels, Botox (also known as botulinum toxin type A or botulinum therapy) is an injectable medication that reduces the appearance of some wrinkles and facial fine lines. Botulinum therapy blocks the chemical signals from targeted facial nerves. This stops muscle contractions and causes the skin above the muscles to relax or smooth.
Which Procedure Is More Popular?
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), in 2020 botulinum toxin type A injections were the most popular minimally-invasive cosmetic treatment in the United States. With more than 4.4 million procedures in one year, this number is significantly higher than the 931,473 chemical peels the ASPS reported in 2020.
Even though botulinum therapy is a more popular option, it isn't always the best or right choice for every person. Before you pick a procedure, think about your aesthetic goals or expectations and talk to a professional about the benefits and outcomes.
What Does Recovery Look Like?
Neither of these procedures requires weeks of bed rest or a lengthy recovery period. But chemical peels will cause facial redness, irritation, and dryness. The intensity of the after-effects and the length of recovery time depend on the depth of the peel, how quickly you heal, and your ability to follow the medical provider's post-treatment care instructions.
Botulinum injections typically have little to no recovery period. You shouldn't rub your face or engage in strenuous/vigorous activity immediately after the treatment. But your skin may look and feel normal right away. Some people may experience tenderness, swelling, and injection site bruising.
Reach out to a Botox provider to learn more.