POSTED: 7 Feb 2023

Botox Aftercare FAQs: Your Questions Answered

Botox injections are commonplace in the world of beauty treatments, helping to smooth out wrinkles and lessen the appearance of fine lines. 

While it’s not a permanent procedure, the results should last you up to three to four months or so — however, to get the best results, you need to ensure you follow proper aftercare advice. 

Typically, you’ll receive aftercare instructions from the aesthetic practitioner providing the treatment, but having your Botox aftercare FAQs answered can help you to prepare for after your Botox treatment.  Here, our expert doctors answer some of the most frequently asked questions about Botox treatment and aftercare. 

What does Botox feel like afterwards?

Right after you’ve had your Botox injections, you may notice your face stings slightly and that a small, red bump develops where the injection was made. These symptoms shouldn’t last too long though, and they should be fairly mild. 

You might also develop a headache afterwards, but this is quite rare. Even if it does occur, it shouldn’t be too painful and go away quite quickly with the help of over-the-counter pain relief. 

If you’re getting Botox for the first time and you want to learn more, head to our article on what to expect from your first Botox treatment.

Is it normal to bruise after Botox?

Bruising after you get Botox isn’t very common, but it can happen to some people afterwards. 

The reason you can bruise is because the needle can catch the blood vessel, which then allows blood to seep out under the skin — causing a bruise. Even the most experienced aesthetic doctors can do this, so it’s not a reflection of their abilities in any way. 

Your risk of bruising can increase due to certain factors as well. For example, any sort of blood-thinning medication (even ibuprofen or aspirin) could potentially cause you to bruise after Botox as the blood may not stop flowing quite as quickly if a blood vessel is caught. Other factors that may contribute to bruising include thin skin and certain medical conditions such as blood clotting problems. It is important to share your full medical history with your aesthetic practitioner to ensure that they can ensure the treatment is appropriate and assess your bruising and side effects risk.

If you take blood-thinning medication on a regular basis or have underlying medical problems, then speak to your doctor and let your aesthetic practitioner know before receiving any Botox treatments. 

Alleviating bruising

There are some things you can do to try and lessen the appearance of bruising. An ice pack applied to the skin before the injections may work well at alleviating the bruising or swelling caused by the injections. The cold from the ice helps narrow the blood vessels and reduces the risk of them being caught by the needle.

Sleeping with your head elevated and topical creams like BruiseMD which your clinic may provide if you have suspected bruising can help prevent bruising from spreading.

Bruising can last anywhere from 2–7 days on average, so don’t be concerned if it doesn’t go away immediately. If you ever are worried, make sure you speak to your medical professional.  

What should you avoid after getting Botox?

Once you’ve had your Botox treatment, you’ll want to avoid certain things so that you can get the best results possible. 

  • Alcohol – drinking alcohol could thin your blood and cause bruising. Wait at least 24 hours before drinking it again. 
  • Touching your face – try your best not to touch your face as it could irritate the injection sites, risk infection and even cause bruising. 
  • Sun exposure – being in direct sunlight can cause irritation to your skin, leading to redness and swelling. Make sure you avoid sun exposure as much as you can for at least 24 hours after your treatment. 
  • Lying on your face – don’t lie on your face or fat on your back for at least four hours after your Botox injections as it could force the Botox to migrate into other areas of the face (where you didn’t want it!). 
  • Exercise – too much strenuous movement can cause your facial muscles to contort and push the Botox into different parts of the face. Try not to do any vigorous exercise for 24 hours at least once you’ve had your injections. 
  • Washing your face – it’s recommended that you don’t wash your face or use any heavy lotions for around 6 hours after your Botox injections. You want to keep your face free from any kind of irritation and avoid bruising, infection or migration, so it’s advised to leave it alone for the first few hours. 

Your aesthetic practitioner will let you know of anything else they recommend in particular as well. Make sure you take their advice on board, and you should get the best results from your Botox.

How long after Botox can you get a facial?

If you’re trying to enhance your face and skin, you might be interested in getting a facial as well as your Botox treatments. Getting a facial before your treatment shouldn’t pose a problem, but it’s getting them after that could cause a few issues. 

It’s recommended that you wait at least 24 hours following Botox before getting a facial. This also applies to treatments like microneedling, waving, facial massage microdermabrasion

Intense treatments like these can disrupt the newly injected Botox and cause it to move about the face. It can also increase your chances of bruising and irritation at the injection site, so make sure to avoid facials of any kind for at least 24 hours after your treatment. 

Can you exercise after Botox?

After you’ve had your Botox treatment, you may be excited to get to the gym as part of your usual routine. However, you should actually hold off on going to the gym if possible to avoid sweating or touching your face as these can increase the risk of infection. When you work out, your face will move into different positions as you try and process the strain on your body. 

But this excess movement can have a detrimental effect on the Botox as it can move into areas where you don’t want it.  If you do need to go to the gym, avoid exercises where you have to lie flat such as weights or if you need to wear constrictive headwear as these could make your newly injected Botox migrate. 

In the event that you can’t avoid exercise for 24 hours after treatment, limit it to light activities that do not require constrictive headwear or lying flat for at least 4 hours after the treatment. 

Although it’s best to avoid strenuous exercise, there’s no reason you can’t go about your regular daily activities like work or the school run. As long as it’s not contorting your face, it should be okay for you to do.  

How to help Botox last longer: what can you do?

While Botox may last between three to four months, there are ways you can increase its longevity and ensure it lasts the longest amount of time possible. 

The best practices that you can instil are: 

  • Avoid sun damage – always wear a high SPF to keep your skin healthy and free from damage. 
  • Try not to stress – when you’re stressed, you’ll most likely frown more, causing the Botox to have to work even harder to keep those muscles relaxed. This can cause Botox to wear off a lot faster, so try to keep your stress to a minimum. 
  • Stop smoking – this can cause Botox to break down quicker as smoking damages your skin cells. 

While Botox can’t last forever, and you will need a top-up at some point, these tips should help it to be as effective as it can be for as long as possible. 

City Skin Clinic provides outstanding treatment and aftercare guidance to anyone considering Botox

If you ever have any concerns or worries about what to do after your treatment, speak with your Botox injector, and they will be able to provide you with expert guidance from a professional. 

To find out more about Botox, or any of the other treatments we offer, book your consultation today.


Authored by:

Dr Amel Ibrahim
Aesthetic Doctor & Medical Director
Founder City Skin Clinic
Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of England
Associate Member of British Association of Body Sculpting GMC Registered - 7049611

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