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Why is Microtoxin for skin quality trending?

12th August 2023

Can one single tweakment offer an all-round improvement in skin quality? In March 2023, a new scientific paper suggested yes, it was possible, and the tweakment in question is… microtoxin.  If, like us, you’re wondering what microtoxin is (and it’s not ‘baby Botox’), read on… 

What is microtoxin?

Microtoxin injections use Botulinum toxin type A (BoNT-A), which is best-known as a ‘neuromodulator’ that relaxes the appearance of dynamic facial lines. For that treatment, the toxin has to be injected into the muscles. But when you’re having a microtoxin treatment,  the toxin is injected ‘intradermally’, which means more shallowly, into the skin, in the form of microdroplets, focusing on improving overall skin quality and appearance.

While the number of individual injections needed is higher than traditional toxin injections, it does so without reducing facial movement as the deeper fibres of the muscle are not affected.

So, it’s the same as “Baby Botox”?

Not quite.

“While the terms ‘microtoxin’ and ‘Baby Botox’ are sometimes used interchangeably, they do have slight differences,” explains Dr Sabina Hanoman-Singh, an aesthetic doctor at CREO Clinic. “‘Baby Botox’ typically uses small doses of toxin to achieve a more natural, subtle effect, mainly targeting dynamic wrinkles. Microtoxin, on the other hand, specifically addresses skin quality concerns, such as fine lines, pores, and overall skin texture.”


What can microtoxin do? 

From reducing enlarged pore size and controlling sebum production to improving the appearance of rosacea, acne, and fine lines, microtoxin has an impressively wide range of skin quality-improving benefits. It’s especially recommended for anyone who wants to improve the texture and glow of their skin.

According to the roundtable report, published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal, it can also be used to improve jawline and neck definition, as well as for the improvement of transverse ‘necklace lines’, and the safe prevention and management of scars and keloids.


Is it a new, experimental tweakment?

The microtoxin technique has actually been in use for decades, with top Singaporean cosmetic surgeon Dr Woffles Wu, an early proponent, observing the potential skin quality improvements offered by BoNT-A injections between 1995 and 2000. However, the latest roundtable review is likely to increase interest in the tweakment over the coming months.


Who are microtoxin injections suitable for?

The injections are reported to be suitable for all skin types, however, in clinical practice, the most pronounced improvements have been in younger patients with oily skin and enlarged pores. Moreover, although mild skin laxity can be treated with microtoxin, there are other more efficacious tweakments for significant skin sagging.


How long until you see results?

You can start to see the initial benefit of microtoxin injections for general skin quality after a week, with the full effect apparent by four weeks. Trickier improvements, such as scar appearance, will take longer, with injections every two months over a couple of years required until resolution.


Is it a permanent solution to my skin concerns?

Like other toxin treatments, microtoxin is not a permanent fix, lasting, on average, about three months depending on the activity and strength of the underlying muscles. That also means it does not last as long as traditional toxin injections, which tend to give results for closer to four to six months.


Can it be used alongside other tweakments?

Microtoxin is deemed safe to use in conjunction with many other tweakments, including on the same day if required, as long as the injections are administered second. This includes energy-based treatments for additional skin tightening, dermal fillers, laser and intense-pulsed light therapy. It is then recommended to wait two weeks after the injections to undergo other treatment.


How expensive are the injections? 

Generally speaking, microtoxin is less expensive than traditional toxin treatments because smaller doses are used. However, as with all tweakments, multiple factors influence the cost of microtoxin injections, including the number of treatment areas and the practitioner’s expertise.


What is the downtime like?

Microtoxin injections are minimally-invasive so they typically have very little downtime. Topical numbing cream is applied beforehand, but you may experience some temporary mild redness, swelling or pinpoint bleeding at the injection sites. You are also advised to avoid applying pressures on the treated areas for four hours post-tweakment.


How ‘safe’ is the tweakment?

The safety profile of microtoxin is excellent, according to the new report that looked at the collective treatment of more than 5,000 patients. Potential side effects associated with the injections also tend to be temporary and mild.

“These can include bruising, temporary weakness or drooping of nearby muscles, headache, or flu-like symptoms,” says Dr Hanoman-Singh. “As always, it’s important to have the treatment performed by a qualified and experienced medical professional to minimise the risk of complications.”

There are no current concerns about longer-term safety either, although more research is required into whether prolonged use may influence effectiveness over time.


Is the tweakment popular among those who have actually had it?

The short answer: yes. The published report highlighted high levels of satisfaction among appropriately selected microtoxin patients, with increased interest emerging as patients are made aware of its benefits.

It should be noted that the roundtable report involved experts with associations with key toxin manufacturers (suggesting they may want to promote the tweakment), but it was still widely concluded that microtoxin is a “predictable, minimally invasive and relatively affordable treatment for main key skin concerns.”


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