Always wanted to try a BOTOX or filler treatment? It can be tough to know where to look so that you can ensure the safety and quality of the treatment. I have 3 great tips to look for when evaluating a quality and a safe injectables clinic.
BOTOX and filler treatments are popular, and in the coming years the popularity of the injectables treatments will only rise more and more. Also, people are starting to get injectable treatments at a younger age than before, as an anti-aging treatment.
The reason for this increase in wanting to look looking younger and more beautiful has to do mainly because nowadays it is really important how we look. Research from opens in a new windowCampen, C. & Versantvoort, M came to the conclusion that someone who looks better has way more chance to get a job than someone who is not viewed (in the public opinion) as pretty. In Argentina for instance, the chance of getting a job is 37% higher if you look prettier than if you are not viewed as beautiful.
You might be interested in doing a BOTOX or filler treatment, but you wonder what the opinion of others will be. Do not worry, almost everyone is trying out these types of nonsurgical treatments or has had one performed in recent years. Also all injectable treatments are temporary and the effect of the treatments will go away after a while.
If you’re ready to take the next step and go to a provider for a consultation, what do you look for specifically?
1. Specialization and Experience
During your consult, find out who will actually administer treatment. In a lot of countries every doctor, even if a student just finished his or her degree as a basic doctor, is allowed to perform injectable treatments. Which is not good because these doctors do not have the amount of knowledge and experience as a plastic surgeon who is specialized for example. I rank 3 types of doctor hierarchy by knowledge and expertise in the world:
- Plastic surgeon
- Doctor who is certified as a cosmetic doctor
- Basic doctor who completed at least a couple of injectables courses
What you can do is look up if the doctor is member of an national or international medicine association associated with injectables/plastic surgery. A couple of the most qualified associations are:
- opens in a new windowAmerican Society of Plastic Surgeons
- opens in a new windowEuropean Board of Plastic, Reconstructive, Aesthetic Surgery
- opens in a new windowThe Aesthetic Society
- Association for Cosmetic Medicine (these vary from country to country)
When choosing between a plastic surgeon or a doctor who is certified as a cosmetic doctor, I recommend choosing the plastic surgeon. The reason is that the surgeon is specialized in this field while the regular doctor associated with a cosmetic certification is just certified and did not follow a long specialization in this field. This does not mean the surgeon is always the better doctor for a opens in a new windowBOTOX or filler treatment. It just means he or she is more likely to have expertise in this field. A BOTOX or filler treatment with a doctor who has focused on general practice or another medical specialty is less likely to be one you’ll be happy with.
2. Get Details on the Products Offered
After finding the right doctor it is important that the doctor or clinic works with A brand products. In some countries there are still clinics that buy cheap products/brands which don’t have the same quality as the A brands. Always ask the clinics with which brands they work.
For the botulinium neurotoxin brands there are 4 brands that are most used. These brands are:
- opens in a new windowBOTOX Cosmetic (Allergan)
- opens in a new windowAzzalure (Galderma)
- opens in a new windowBocouture (Merz)
- opens in a new windowXeomin
For the injectable fillers, some of the most famous brands and products are:
- opens in a new windowJuvederm
- opens in a new windowRestylane
- opens in a new windowRadiesse
- opens in a new windowBelotero
Watch for off brands. For example there are Chinese BOTOX knockoffs that are way stronger than the American BOTOX formulation, which is the most famous and one of the safest cosmetic neurotoxins on the market. The Chinese brands are illegal in Europe and the United States for example but still some clinics use them. So watch out, and ask the clinics with which brands they work.
3. Check Reviews
One more thing you can always check for are reviews. Have in mind that reviews of clinics are always a little subjective where people that are loyal customers tend to be more likely to leave positive reviews. Also a clinic will mostly put only positive comments on their own site. Look for reviews on Google by searching review (+) name of the clinic (+) city. These reviews are more trustworthy than the reviews on the own websites of the clinics.
Also look for reviews or information about the doctor. In a lot of countries there are multiple sites where you can find information about doctors and plastic surgeons. In the United States a good website for example is opens in a new window. Here you can see for which treatments the surgeons are specialized.
In my experience, most of the clinics offering injectables are safe, just make sure you do some research before going somewhere. Good luck!
Stefan Mladenovic is director of the injectables clinic Looking Young in the Netherlands. He has a Bachelor’s degree in marketing & management and was a former professional basketball player. He spent several years playing in the Netherlands, winning the national championship in 2017.