Ask the Dermatologist: 8 Things to Know Before Getting Botox

botox neurotoxin k beauty

Dr. Marie Jhin was born in Seoul, South Korea and is a graduate of Wellesley College and Cornell University Medical College. She is a board certified dermatologist, K-Beauty Skincare expert and director of Premier Dermatology in the San Francisco Bay area. 

Dr. Jhin is the author of “Asian Beauty Secrets: Ancient and Modern Tips from the Far East”, and her new book, “K-Beauty Secrets: Accessible Beauty For Every Woman” is now available for pre-order.


Dear Dr. Jhin: I have been noticing lots of wrinkles around my eyes and forehead lately and would love your thoughts on Botox.
I love the natural look of K-Beauty and don’t want to look like my face is frozen! How obvious are the results and is it true that you won’t be able to move your eyebrows?
-Jen in SoCal

Thank you for your question.  Botox or neurotoxins are my favorite non-surgical cosmetic treatments for patients. It works so well for wrinkles especially around the upper face. 

Neurotoxins are a drug that doctors have been using cosmetically since 2002 to treat wrinkles and facial creases. Botox is a brand name of a toxin made by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum and while there are other brands available, Botox is the term you hear most often because it is the most popular brand and was the first.

If done correctly, the results will look natural and not frozen.  It can make you look refreshed, more youthful and help with any sagging, wrinkles and your skin will even glow.

Neurotoxins are very popular in Korea and there’s even a Korean brand called Jeuveau that is available in the US.

Why Botox is the best treatment for ‘erasing’ wrinkles

Botox or neurotoxins relaxes the muscles that create wrinkles.  It works within 3-7 days and lasts up to 4-6 months.  It’s the best treatment because it is very safe, simple and not permanent.  

You can start light

Depending on the area and how effective you want the treatment to be, you can start “light”.  I do start with less units per area and reassess in 2 weeks to see if the patient needs more.  As we get older we may need more units in some areas.

Which trouble spots can be treated with Botox

Neurotoxins can treat so many areas.  The most popular areas include the frown lines or glabella, forehead lines and crow’s feet.  Other areas can include the masseters, chin, bunny lines, and neck lines.

The procedure is very quick

The treatment takes 5-10 minutes and is a very quick procedure.

There are many brands of neurotoxins available

There are 4 main neurotoxins in the United States – Botox, Dysport, Xeomin and Jeuveau.  Botox tends to create more of a dramatic result whereas Dysport and Xeomin can create a softer look.  Jeuveau is a Korean brand that tends to be exact but doesn’t last as long.

Who should administer your shots

In my opinion, it would be best to do these treatments in a dermatology or plastic surgeon’s office.  Even though many people can administer neurotoxins, you want someone who really understands the anatomy and understands how to treat any side effects if they may occur.

How often do people need to get them

Typically we suggest treatments every 3-4 months.

What are some dangers of Botox

There is very little danger when neurotoxins are used for cosmetic purposes since we are not using large quantities.  The main side effects can include bruising, unevenness, heavy feeling and occasionally ptosis or drooping of the eyelids. 


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About Dr. Marie Jhin

Dr. Marie Jhin was born in Seoul, South Korea, and moved to the United States at the age of 6.  She moved around the US (Hawaii, Michigan, Virginia and New York) due to her father’s work assignments.  Dr. Jhin graduated from Wellesley College and then went on to Cornell University Weill Medical School.  After medical school, Dr. Jhin finished a residency in Internal Medicine before doing her Dermatology residency.  Upon finishing her Dermatology residency, she moved to the SF Bay Area, which she now calls home.  She is blessed to have a blended family of five kids, a wonderful husband and two dogs.  In her spare time, she loves traveling and being very active in healthcare advocacy. Find her on Instagram @drjhinskin

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