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I Got Botox For The First Time. Here’s What You Need To Know

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Part 1: Two Part Series on Botox and Fillers

I always said I wouldn’t get Botox until I really needed it. The procedure seemed vain and invasive — and seriously? Deadly botulism toxin injected in your face? Do you really need it in your 30’s?

Cosmetic Botox has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) since 2002, it can sound pretty extreme. But anti-Botox opinions are easy to tout when you’re the 22-year-old owner of baby-smooth skin or have extremely good genes. As I’m approaching my second half of my 30s, I’ve gradually changed my tune. I’m currently on my first round of cosmetic Botox, thanks to Dr. Tanya Judge MD.

It’s not that I don’t want to age, or appear the age I am. I’ve actually enjoyed many things about the physical process of getting older. But lately, every time I’d see a picture of myself, I couldn’t help noticing the “elevens” entrenched between my brows. This tiny picket fence indented on my face made me look angry, the crows feet, laugh-lines looking deeper, lips not as full and so on. I didn’t love the idea that I might come across as frustrated or irritated when I’m really not. I’m actually very happy-go-lucky person that is always smiling.

Knowing that a few shots of Botox and fillers could help with this issue, I decided it might be worth a try.

I use makeup every day to enhance my appearance. Is there really such a difference between that and the temporary aesthetic boost of Botox?

I’m here to show people they can get injections like botox and filler and still look like themselves. Today, I want to talk about something that is seemingly a little taboo yet so many of us women have or have even thought about.

I am not one to shy away from enhancing your natural beauty or cosmetic surgery. In the past, I’ve talked about getting a breast augmentation in 2010 when I was 24. So, as you might guess, you probably know my opinion about it. I don’t see anything wrong with it, especially when you are doing you, and staying true to your natural beauty.

I’m a few months away from 35 and have had botox and fillers on my mind for some time. If you’re wondering ‘why now?’ well, let’s be real, as we grow older, fine lines and wrinkles start to appear. This is normal as the skin becomes thinner and the production of collagen and elastin starts to slow down as we age. These are all things I’ve started to notice these last few years. And, this is normal.

Our natural collagen production stops just before we turn 30, and taking supplements can only help so much with increasing skin moisturization, texture, and elasticity. Without overdoing it, Botox and fillers can be a way to help look a little refreshed.

I recently was introduced to Dr. Tanya Judge, a double board-certified Plastic Surgeon here in San Francisco, who skillfully blends an innate artistic eye with years of cosmetic surgical experience. Her approach is to understand her patient’s aesthetic goals and set realistic expectations about the results that are achievable for them.

Dr. Judge believes in natural beauty, a simple idea that significant aesthetic surgery is invisible to even the most trained eye. She achieves this by focusing on the visual ideas of achieving symmetry and balance.


The Consultation

My consult with Dr. Judge helped ease my nervousness & truly understand her process and what each non-invasive producer involves. I’ll be sharing more about this in the coming weeks on IGTV, Stories, and blog. In the meantime.

Dr. Judge makes you feel comfortable throughout the entire process. From the moment you walk through her doors for your consult, during the procedure, and after, Dr. Judge truly cares about her patient’s comfort while leaving them looking their best.

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Botox doesn’t actually erase wrinkles

Since Botox is, of course, a treatment for wrinkles and fine lines, I initially figured a few injections would pull these unwanted imperfections right off my face.

But as it turns out, for most patients, Botox is more preventative than restorative. Its active ingredient “freezes” facial muscles to keep you from contracting them in ways that deepen lines and wrinkles. Any line that is present at rest, whether it is an etched in frown line, or a deep wrinkle, is not going to disappear with Botox. Botox is not an iron.

Therefore, the earlier you get Botox, the more preventative its effects hence the trend of getting Botox as early as your 20s.


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Curious as to what exactly I got done?

Botox Forehead/Crows Feet; Filler to the Cheeks, Nasolabial Folds, Marionette Lines; and Lip Filler. My goal was to look refreshed, not overdone. I feel like I achieved that.

Was it painful?

Not at all. It wasn’t comfortable, because I mean, who enjoys needles?! But I can tell you this, lip fillers are known to be painful, but with Dr. Judge’s new Lip Filler technique, I didn’t feel a thing! After the procedures, recovery time was virtually nothing. I did experience slight bruising from the fillers, but that is normal and to be expected. Botox settles in, and yes, I have a regular and natural expression.


You Can Still Have An Expression

If there’s one thing everyone seems to fear about Botox, it’s looking like an expressionless robot or an overdone Real Housewife of [fill in the blank city]. Isn’t it weird not to be able to move certain parts of your face? In my experience, no. The faces we make carry emotional weight. You’ve probably heard that simply smiling more can make you feel happier and it turns out that not frowning can have the same effect.

Will I be back?

Absolutely! I want to pay a visit once it’s time to get a touch-up. These days, when I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror, I see I look happier than I used to. If I look this way to myself, I imagine I look this way my family and friends, too. That’s enough for me to say I’m happy with Botox.

Stay tuned on Sunday for Part 2 where I share about fillers and everything you need to know about that!

Thanks, Dr. Judge! I can’t wait for my check-in appointment this coming week. ????????

Hi, I’m Valerie!

I'm an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT-200), offering guidance to high achievers in aligning their lifestyle with well-being through daily wellness and self-care routines, promoting balance and harmony. Join me at Wellness Bum for tips on living well, and consider subscribing to my newsletter or booking a coaching session.