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Bad Botox. What it Looks Like, How to Fix It

Bad Botox happens, but there’s simply not enough information out there on what it looks like and what to do about it.    It’s even harder to speak the same language as your injector when they toss around words like “corrugator and frontalis” and you’re thinking, “I dunno, I just don’t want to look like Dr. Spock”.

I know from personal experience which I shared in “10 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Got Botox“, that it’s all to easy for things to go wrong, or more commonly, just not all that right.

Dr. Brandith Irwin, the creator of  Skin Tour.com, one of my favorite to sources for all things dermatology demystified talks about what makes or breaks Botox;

With Botox, there is the great, the good, the ugly.

Great Botox is customized to your individual face, taking into account factors such as which facial muscles you use the most, your facial muscle balance from side to side (we all have asymmetries), your job, your social life, and the look you want (for example, natural or high glam (my word for frozen). Great Botox requires steady hands, the eye of an artist, and the passion to get it perfect. Great Botox injectors can be hard to find.

Good Botox is where you get the standard four or five shots into your frown lines and you go on your way. It works perfectly well, but there’s not much customization. And the range of looks that these injectors can accomplish is limited.  But if you have only some frown lines, good Botox can work just fine for you.

Ugly Botox is all too common. You’ve seen it on television: it’s that completely unnatural frozen look, or worse, where the poor person almost looks like she’s had a stroke, one side of her face completely different than the other. The point is, Botox is not a cookie-cutter procedure. In the hands of a good injector, it can create a marvelously natural look that makes you more refreshed- and relaxed-looking. In my opinion, the goal of Botox is no wrinkles, not no movement.

In the spirit of making it a little easier to reach Botox nirvana, I used celebrities  to illustrate what bad Botox looks like.  Not to throw rotten tomatoes their way, but rather reinforce the point that if people who’s livelihood depends on their looks and have access to the best resources can have bad Botox, it can happen to you too.

1. Suddenly Sinister: The Evil, Arched Brow

You know the look; it’s the hyper arched eyebrows with the outer third pulled too high towards the ears that make that make women look like they’re up to no good.  This typically happens when only the center of the forehead is injected (or over injected), causing the area between your brows (medial brow) to drop down and the outside portion of your brows (lateral) to remain high. Fortunately, there’s often something your doctor can do.  According to Dr. Brandith Irwin,

“A good injector can usually prevent this. This can also be fixed rather easily and quickly (usually at no charge) with a few strategically placed drops of Botox to relax the muscle that’s pulling the eyebrow up too high.  Don’t suffer in silence, go to your doctor and ask him or her to fix it for you.”

What’s interesting about this is that it’s while I reference Dr. Spock to dramatize my point, it’s usually just a millimeter of difference that makes the difference between great Botox and “meh” Botox.  For example, look at Nicole Kidman; when examined up close, she doesn’t look so bad, but there’s something just slightly off that detracts from the beautiful woman she is.  That’s sub-par Botox.

Bad Botox happens to normal people too

Bad Botox happens to normal people too

Carla Bruni-Sarkozy evil brows

Carla Bruni-Sarkozy evil brows

Dr. Spock's evil brows

Dr. Spock’s evil brows

Nicole Kidman

Nicole Kidman

Evil Queen with evil arched brow

Evil Queen with evil arched brow

Kate Gosslin evil arched brow

Kate Gosslin evil arched brow

2. The Quizzical Brow

Another version of this is when one brow is arched more than the other.  This usually happens when the Botox is either unevenly applied, or your natural asymmetry is underestimated (usually the case), which is why the eye and hand of the injector is so important.  Again, this is something can often be corrected so get your butt back to your doctor for some fixin’ (at no charge).

Dr. Evil's quizzical brow

Dr. Evil’s quizzical brow

Nicole Kidman's quizzical, brow

Nicole Kidman’s quizzical, brow

Kylie Minogue's quizzical brow

Kylie Minogue’s quizzical brow

Fergie's quizzical brow

Fergie’s quizzical brow

3. The Iron Forehead, Low Brow

Reportedly one of the most common Botox mistakes, this is when the forehead looks ironed, immobile and your brows are a little lowered.  It can also feel like someone is sitting on your forehead, especially in the first few weeks.  This happens when too much Botox is injected into the frontalis muscle, which runs across the length of the forehead and connects to the eyebrow movement.   Your forehead relaxes, but so do your eyebrows, which can make them feel heavy and droopy.  This effect is exaggerated even more in people who already have some “hooding” (excess skin) on their upper eyelids because subconsciously they raise their eyebrows more in order to make their eyes open wider.

“If the doctor doesn’t correctly perceive how much the patient uses this muscle (the frontalis), then too much Botox will cause the upper eyelid skin to look more hooded.” Says Dr. Irwin.

Unfortunately, the only solution here is Father Time.

Cindy Crawford’s ironed forehead, lower brow

Kristen Chenowith, ironed forehead, low brow

Kristen Chenowith, ironed forehead, low brow

Cameron Diaz’s ironed forehead, low brow

4. The Deep Freeze

One thing I love about Botox is that I always look calm under pressure because my little stress furrows between my brows are gone.  But in the spirit of chasing youth and glamour, some women take it too far and wind up erasing a lot of the small facial expressions that make them look human.  Usually this happens with too much Botox in the forehead as mentioned above, but can be compounded by liberal use in the crow’s feet around the eyes or too much and around the mouth.  Dr. Irwin who calls this look the “Oscar Night Freeze” due to the amount of celebrities who consume Botox the way they do coconut water.  Like with the “ironed forehead, low brow”, the only solution is to wait it out.

Courtney Cox deep freeze

Courtney Cox deep freeze

5. Eye Lid Droop (Dana Delaney, Simon Cowell)

Dana Delaney bravely admitted this happened to her after a perfectly reputable doctor hit a nerve causing her eyelid to droop.  Even though this created a lot of buzz, it’s actually very rare.   Most of the time, heavy or droopy lids are a result of the “ironed forehead, low brow”.  Sadly, in Dana Delaney’s rare case the nerve that the doctor hit was permanently damaged, although she looks perfectly fine now.  For most though, time will usually be the cure, although there are eyedrops you can have your doctor prescribe such as apracclonidine, brimonidine or neosynephrine hydrochloride to help elevate the lid while it wears off.

Dana Delany Eyelid Droop

Dana Delany Eyelid Droop

Simon Cowell eyelid droop

Simon Cowell eyelid droop

6. Droopy Smile (Teri Hatcher)

Most injectors prefer Botox in the upper third of the face, but there are some who are experimenting with the lower face, in areas such as the vertical wrinkles above the upper lip among others, although the results are mixed.  This is an area where you need to be very careful and confident in the experience of your injector.  Not sure I would let a doctor or nurse you’re not familiar with inject you here for your first time.  If your smile looks slightly flattened and lopsided, the solution is likely time, but in some cases it may be a simple case of balancing out the other side.  High tail it back to your doctor for their opinion.

Teri Hatcher

Teri Hatcher

7. Puffy, Crepey Eyelids

There are rare cases where when Botox is injected too low into the crows feet area and migrates into to the lower eyelid, making it look puffy and crepey.  Unfortunately, this is often the result of an inexperienced or unqualified injector as the there are millimeters of difference between the injectable areas and no fly zones on the face.  If this happens and you want immediate solutions, Fraxel and Thermage are reported to help, but they aren’t cheap.  Speak to your doctor about whether you’re a good candidate for Botox of the crows feet if this has this effect.  Otherwise, time heals usually heals all.

***

The good news in most of this is that even if you have a scary encounter with bad Botox, it’s temporary.  I’ve also found, that even though Botox lasts 3-5 months, the errors soften in about 6 weeks.  The not so good news is that it’s harder than it should be to find a skilled injector.   Rule of thumb is to start out with a board certified cosmetic plastic surgeon or cosmetic dermatologist, and in some states NPs and PAs who are part of a doctor supervised cosmetic practice.

Where this gets tricky is that the best injector isn’t necessarily the plastic surgeon just because they can do more stuff.  It’s the injector with at least 5 years of Botox experience and the “eye, hand and talent” to visualize the end result.  It’s the injector who can think beyond the wrinkle and judge the impact a millimeter here and there can make on your beauty.

And while I’ve never personally used Dr. Irwin, I can tell you from experience that this video is exactly what your Botox appointment should look like.  She evaluates your face, knows where to inject based on your facial musculature and takes her time.

 

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31 Comments

  1. I think having a good physician is the only thing we need in order to avoid bad botox. Usually people that want too much from their botox treatments or that choose cheaper but not qualified solutions are the ones that experience bad botox.
    I went to one of the best botox specialists in Ottawa and I had a great experience there..the procedure was painless and the result simply great. I’m looking forward to my next appointment because I really started to love this:P

    • So true, but the trick is finding that great injector with the right combination of credentials, “eye” and innate talent. I wish it were easier than it is, especially because Botox isn’t cheap and life is too short to walk around with bad Botox!

      Becca

  2. You know, that was a pretty interesting read and extremely informative. I’ve never been curious about getting Botox done but it is oddly fascinating when you meet someone who had bad Botox, plastic surgery or lipo done. And you wonder sometimes what that person sees in the mirror.

    • It’s true. The thing is, good Botox (or any procedure) should never be noticeable. You should look like you, but well rested. And, too many women think “getting stuff done” is the key to looking younger, but so often it’s something as easy as diet, exercise or a fresh take on their style.

      • Ain’t that the truth? I was 37 when I lost the extra 35 lbs I had on me. And this being that I was doing triathlons and things. It was my eating that was bad. Once I had that down pat, I lost the weight and you don’t know how many people have come up to me and told me how young I look. Nature knows best.

  3. Hi, I have nominated you for the Inspiring Blogger Award because I think you deserve a little something for making your blog always look fab! To share this little bit of blogging kindness: 1. Display the award image on your blog. 2. Link back to the person who nominated you. 3. State 7 things about yourself. 4. Nominate 15 other bloggers and link to their sites. 5. Notify the bloggers that they have been nominated and link to the post. Thank you for all your great posts and congratulations! http://lauramichellesmith.com/

  4. Thanks for liking “Botox,” sharing your experiences, and following my blog. Hope other quips fit your interests and/or concerns.

  5. Comment

  6. Hi there,

    I really appreciated this story.

    I have my first appointment for Botox and injectables in March. I’m 27 years old and my goal is to prevent aging before it gets out of control. May I ask when you started with Botox/Injectables? What are you thoughts of people my age getting it?

    Thanks for the blog, I really love it!

    Erin

    • Hi Erin,

      Glad you’re enjoying the blog. My “first time” was when I was 41. Best thing you can do to prevent aging is SUNSCREEN. I know it’s gross, tastes bad and stings when it gets in your eyes but if there was one thing I would have done differently, it would have been to live in sunscreen.

      27 is the perfect age for getting ahead of the anti-aging curve. But, your best options might not be Botox or injectables – you’ve got Retinol, chemical peels, microdermabrasion, lasers, etc. A good trained eye can help spot what’s bringing you down, and it may not be a wrinkle!

      Regarding Botox, I think getting it all depends on what you’re treating rather than your age. If you have a particularly irksome wrinkle (like those vertical lines between your eyebrows that makes you look angry), then go for it! That said, I’m not a fan of younger women getting Botox as wrinkle prevention because the evidence to date is thin, and as wonderful as Botox can be, the biggest side effect in my opinion is overuse. I also find women unintentionally say “Botox” as shorthand for “I’m looking older and need a solution”.

      Good luck and let us know how it goes!

      • I just had my appointment this morning and I think it went really well!! Thanks for your help, your comments paralleled my doctor’s!

        The Doctor was so reluctant to inject me that he actually talked me out of it. Instead, I bought a really good sunscreen and serum (both are from the Skinceuticals line and are featured on your Skincare Matrix of Excellence!) I also bought Retinol and signed up for the “Bright and Clear” laser treatment. Apparently it was designed for younger patients (20-30).

        I think I will delay the Botox until I have something more significant to treat.

        Thanks for your tips, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that you will loose your 11 lbs… I know you can do it!!

        • Thanks for the encouragement Eric and glad everything turned out well. I’ve heard great things about “Clear and Bright”.

          Becca

    • Thank You!

  7. Stumbled across this website and am really pleased that I did. I have been having Botox for the last 6 years by the same person, a qualified GP. I have always been really happy with the results but the last time I had it done (Nov 2012), one eyebrow looks a bit higher and more arched than the other. I haven’t told the person about it as I think that our business relationship may be coming to an end anyway due to me relocating to another part of the country. I was just hoping that it would over time correct itself. Well, that was 4 months ago and although i have got movement (and lines!) back in my forehead, the weird eyebrow remains. Think I should have contacted her now but I was under the impression that Botox effects wear off after a few months. Can anyone give me some advice please?

    • I am NOT A DOCTOR, but can tell you that on me Botox sticks around a good 6 months or so. Are you still near your old doctor?? If so, really you should tell them. Your doctor may just tell you to wait it out, or may suggest something to do about it. I had a slightly asymmetrical brow at one point and just waited it out. I didn’t want any more. Did you see a board certified cosmetic derm or PS? If not, it might be worth while having a consult with someone in that specialty. One more thing to consider, is that even though we’re getting Botox, we’re still aging and changing. It’s possible some natural asymmetry is starting to become apparent because there’s less fat in our faces. That is a way big guess on my part, but worth bringing up with your doctor.

      Good luck!

  8. Hi Becca,

    I just came across your website and I can’t stay off of it! As far as my experience with Botox, I started getting it around 35. My first time was from a referred board certified plastic surgeon, and something went wrong and it made one eyelid droop! Horrified, I went back and he fixed it for no charge….but I did have to wait for a few months to see regular symmetry..I got the nerve to do it again, this time from another board certified, actual Doctor 90210 in Beverly Hills cosmetic dermatologist, and a personal friend. With that said I think he wanted to give me a little “extra” bang for my buck and used too much, or basically didn’t customize it to obtain the best look for what I needed….after all I was not showing that many wrinkles, and I couldn’t move my forehead for five months. After doing some research, and figuring out what fit into my budget, I had a certified nurse practitioner at a medical spa give me Botox, and ultimately fillers. She is amazing, and highly skilled, without an M.D. Now, I am certainly not advocating going to strip mall, and getting the cheapest deal on life booker, to get good results….but, remember plastic surgeons, and cosmetic derms are usually spending most of the time in the operating rooms, or doing more invasive procedures. Perhaps they have the training, and the skills, but they don’t create a thriving practice on doing Botox injections, that is just bread and butter…so I found that a practitioner, that ONLY does Botox injections, say 50 plus times a day, gets better at it! I have found the best, and most natural results with a skilled nurse practitioner, that specialized in injections and fillers, or an internal medical doctor, who opened a medical spa, and with additional training ONLY does injections and fillers. Now, if this same doctor wanted to “cut” on me I would run out of the door, but it REALLY is about the practitioner you choose….on the same token I have a friend that likes her forehead not to move, and has the inverted V shaped brow going on. I don’t think that is a good look necessary, but hey to each their own I suppose. Thanks for starting this blog! It is now one of my guilty pleasures, and I am sharing it with my other beauty obsessed friends!

    • Hi Aly,

      I find injections to be the most frustrating of all procedures, especially Botox. And you’re absolutely right, that just because someone is an accomplished, board certified plastic surgeon, does not mean that translates into equal talent with Botox. While many have the TECHNICAL skills, not everyone has a innate talent for injecting a dynamic face. As for me, I’ve learned the hard way that even though my wrinkles are very mild, because I have an mild facial asymmetry that makes my forehead more complicated to treat. I’ve been to 4 different doctors for Botox (plastic surgeon, derms) and the one who did it the best took a lot of time with me and created a little recipe for me so I don’t look off kilter (and like you I’m not after that deep V look).

      Look forward to seeing you again!

      Becca

  9. I was permanently disfigured by Botox at age 28. I went to a provider recommended by the Botox brilliant distinction website that had all the proper credentials and paid top dollar. No discount shopping or back alley Botox for me, I did my homework. Anyway, I had had Botox for 2 years prior and always with beautiful results. This time would forever change my life for the worse however. I was only treated for horizontal forehead lines (I didn’t have 11s) and I only received 21 units. I woke up a few days later in what was the beginning of a never ending nightmare. My upper eyelids swelled so severely that lid was no longer visible. Under my eyes was a horrific, bulging, hammock like bag. My right eyelid partially closed from ptosis, but the swelling/bags were absolutely ghastly. In addition, I had double vision and horrible headaches. It has been 14 months and none of this has resolved, it is in fact getting worse. The Botox seeped down into my cheeks causing them to drop a solid half inch. The bags hang down and under is a hollow where my cheeks used to be. The upper lid swelling is so bad that my eyes are completely hooded. I have a plethora of new wrinkles in strange, unnatural places. I have been seeing a U of M surgeon for 10 months now and he has deemed the damage permanent. I will require a minimum of 2 reconstructive surgeries to repair my face. The Botox, as he explains, worked into my eye muscle. The muscle cannot hold the fat from my eyes in place anymore due to the Botox, so it bulges out on my upper lids and under as bags. In addition, the muscle cannot pump lymphatic fluid away from my eyes, so it pools and the fat becomes engorged. Simply put: I’m very ugly. I look nothing like myself and nothing like a woman who just turned 29. My life has been destroyed because I trusted that Botox was temporary. I am not alone by any means and I talk to numerous other women suffering a similar fate daily.

    If Botox works for you, great. It gave me beautiful results once upon a time ago too. However, there is NOT adaquete safety testing for this drug. It has only been tested for the glabella. No other area is FDA approved, is considered off label, and does not have any clinical data to say what could go wrong. Doctors are passing off their opinions as fact when they indeed guessing. They don’t know and they cannot help you if something goes wrong. No matter how experienced your injector is, there is a possibility that you COULD wind up with PERMANENT damage and people deserve to know that. Every time you have Botox, you are playing Russian roulette with your face and health. There are no clinical studies about accumulative effects of Botox from extended use. There are however studies that prove Botox does turn healthy muscle into fat. Too much is unknown and untested. Presumably so profits don’t suffer. If they could have proven Botox safe for other areas, such as crows feet, they would have and they would advertise it for that purpose. The couldn’t.

    Please, educate yourself. Do not be lulled into a false sense of security. Know that every time you dodge the bullet, you were lucky. You’re gambling. If you win, great. But if you lose? Game over.

    • I am so sorry to hear what you’re going thru, it sounds traumatizing and I’m glad you shared your story here because there is way too much practice drift with Botox, and not enough training before a doctor, nurse or PA can call themselves an injector. It’s not taken seriously enough.

      Have you contacted Allergan? They are by law supposed to report any adverse events (re: bad stuff that happens) to the FDA for this very reason, longitudinal safety. Would you mind sharing exactly what your diagnosis is? Was it an allergic reaction, poor injection technique…and was it even Botox? I ask because Botox is supposed to dissipate after 3-6 months, so I’m wondering why your doctor believes this is a permanent situation. I so hope it isn’t.
      Unfortunately, that is what I hear more of than anything else – fake Botox. Then again, I recall the Dana Delaney story about getting a long term eyebrow ptosis after her injector hit a nerve.

      Any additional information you can share would be helpful to the community. Wishing you all the best.

      • Hi again :-).

        Thank you for the kind words! Sorry it took so long to respond!

        I would love to share; pictures, medical documents, whatever I can share to help!

        I’ll get started. I did contact Allergan. They were nice enough, but not one bit surprised about my side effects. They told me they have all been reported. They blamed my injector and told me that since I was injected in the forehead (not just the glabella) that they didn’t know how long I’d suffer or if I’d ever get better. They didn’t deny that Botox could do this.

        While Botox itself does (or should) eventually metabolize, it can still cause permanent damage. My doctor was kind enough to break it down for me as to how it is possible. I was diagnosed with lymphedema, optic neuritis, pitosis, muscle atrophy, nerve damage, edema, and something else that I’m forgetting (I’ll update once I read my report again). I had botox numerous times before with no complication, so i feel it is safe to say it was no form of an allergic reaction. What happened was when I was injected, Botox worked its way into the muscle around my eyes. This muscle is shaped like a donut and it serves 2 purposes: pump fluid away from the eyes and hold back periorbital fat (which is around our eyes to protect our eyeballs from our skull). The muscle around the eye is quite weak as is, so if Botox reaches it – it is devastating to its primary functions. Because my eye cannot pump fluid, it pooled around my eyes. Because my paralyzed muscle had no strength, the fat from behind my eyes bulged out all around. The fat then soaked up the fluid and became engorged. My doctor compared my muscle to a stretched out balloon. Even though the Botox has disapated, the muscle has permanent damage and atrophy. It can no longer pump fluid or hold back the fat. It is seriously ugly and super gross!

        In addition, the symmetry of my face was obliterated. Muscles in my face that were previously dormant engaged to compensate for the paralyzed ones. This completely changed my face and how I made facial expressions. The Botox is gone now, but my face trained itself to subconsciously function this way for months and months and months. I developed some hideous “super muscles” while my previously healthy Botox muscles atrophied from being paralyzed. Even though the nerves come back, the muscle is still weak and no longer functions as it once did. With repeated use, this only furthers the damage.

        As for it being fake Botox, the nurse that injected me did document the case number from the bottle she injected me with. My doctor says there is no reason to believe it was fake. I did file a complaint with the state and the investigation is still ongoing. But you are so right, fake Botox is rampant! Is anywhere even safe anymore? Who can we trust? Geesh! For example, I keep seeing Botox offers on groupon. $100 for 20 units is VERY common here on Groupon. The thing is, Botox costs providers around $5 per unit and Botox charges 30-50% to advertise your deal. If these doctors are giving real Botox at that price, they would literally be PAYING $30 to $50 per patient to give the, free Botox! It never even crossed my mind until my doctor mentioned it. It’s freaking scary!

        You really hit the nail on the head when you said it’s not taken seriously enough. I had NO idea any of this was even a possibility until I woke up looking like a cracked out Quasimodo! While I wish like hell that I could recover, it just isn’t a reality for me. I am praying surgery will help give me back my own face to an extent. I figure the best I can do is try to share my experience with others so that maybe I can save someone from a similar fate. It’s by far the worse think I’ve ever endured! 15 months with an ugly strangers face, vision loss, thousands in medical expenses, and now needing reconstructive surgery – all from wanting to smooth out some wrinkles :-(. I just hope I can help someone! Let me know if there’s anything else I can answer.

        Thank you for this post and your kindness :-)

        • I can’t thank you enough for sharing your story. You are so brave to do so and I wish you didn’t have to go thru this. Is Allergan being helpful in terms of treatment? I hope so. From what I understand, these types of issues are rare, BUT you are so right that there isn’t enough light shed on the potential risks. More so, how injector experience is so critical. Practice drift and inexperienced injectors really drives me nuts. Would you be comfortable sharing photographs? And would you also be comfortable posting this in the 10 Things I Wish I Knew About Botox thread? You’ll see there are a lot of irrate dentists and other newbie injectors who are cringing at the suggestion patients should stick to doctors with an active cosmetic medical practice.

          Thank you again for sharing your story.

        • You’re a doll :). I would be absolutely willing to share the pictures! If I can help someone, then in some way my suffering hasn’t been completely in vain :). Just let me know how I can send them to you!

          Allergan was compassionate, but they could not offer me anything. They had no advice and could offer no suggestions for treatment. They informed me that many injectors are using the botox for “off label” areas (such as the forehead in my case) and that there is no clinical data or medical treatment available. I am shocked that this is legal, but it is!

          I could NOT agree with you more that stricter regulations NEED to be placed on who can inject! I swear, it’s like the Wild Wild West! EVERYONE is injecting EVERYWHERE! They are injecting jaws, eyes, cheeks, lips, necks, hands, and other areas that Allergan and the FDA have deemed “off label”. I have read that certification can be obtained ONLINE in just one day! The laws are far too loose and our safety is at jeopardy. I can’t help but feel that Plastic Surgeons and Dermatologists who specialize in botox NEED to step in and offer some protection. I feel strongly that the ONLY reason why they have even started raising red flags is due to greed, not genuine concern. It’s very disheartening. Now that the market is completely oversaturated with injectors, specialists have been forced to lower their prices to stay competitive. To fight back, they have started filling the media with warnings about inexperienced injectors, shifty hack shops, and fake botox. I feel this is nothing more than attempt to increase their clientele. They are still failing to warn us of the serious side effects that real botox can cause when injected incorrectly or it drifts into the wrong area. They still deem it temporary and safe. If botox is temporary and completely safe, why shouldn’t dentists, gynecologists, and family doctors be injecting? Women who are searching for affordable botox may think the small risk of a TEMPORARY side effect (such as a raised eyebrow or frozen forehead) is worth saving a couple hundred bucks. If they had it before and things went great, they have a false sense of security. I did.

          If people knew they could wind up with permanent vision damage or needing over $10,000 worth of reconstructive surgery from a bad injection, that risk would NOT be worth it. BUT – they may think twice about botox all together if the word “permanent” is thrown around…. and this could hurt the pocketbooks for the plastic surgeons. In addition, they are looking to protect themselves against the possibility of a lawsuit if something does go wrong. They are only human and they make mistakes too. Plus, botox can drift, so the product itself offers a degree of unpredictability. So, they give us limited knowledge that works to their advantage.

          In addition, numerous surgeons are setting up Med Spas. There is nearly one on every corner where I live (Michigan – Metro Detroit area). Doctors lend their name and tax id number to these spas so that people like nurses can legally obtain botox and other injectables. Then nurses inject without supervision. Sometimes, the Doctor does the consult and then the nurse steps in to do the actual injection. Most of the time, the doctors are not even on site and never see the patients. This is what happened to me. A well respected, highly reputable SURGEON is listed as the “Medical Director” of the spa I visited. I later learned that his actual practice is HOURS away and he has never even stepped foot in the door. He is just a name and tax id number so that an LPN can legally inject under the supervision and director of the Manager – WHO IS NOT A LICENSED MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL! She is a damn fitness trainer. The manager DREW the injection sites on my forehead (I thought she was a nurse) and she told the LPN how many units to inject per site. I had agreed to just 10 units. The nurse held up the needle and said there was “extra”. The manager then used her finger to instruct the nurse where to give additional injections. This is ABSOLUTELY what caused my damage. I immediately questioned them after the first “extra” poke and was told that they HAD to finish or I would be lopsided. They both assured me that I would LOVE the results. The LPN finished me off with an injection to the left side of my SCALP (about an inch into my hairline) – no kidding. I was NOT happy. Within hours, my life was changed forever. When I tried to call for help, I was only able to speak with the Manager – who matter-of-factly told me “Botox can’t do that.” Then she started IGNORING my calls. I knew something was horribly wrong, but still thought it was temporary at this point. I contacted the BBB and my credit card company. The manager left me a voicemail offering me my money back if I signed a release of liability form from her lawyer. I refused. Shortly after this, I met with the Oculoplastic Surgeon who confirmed my damage and I contacted a lawyer. Her and the nurse then falsified medical documents (incorrect date, name misspelt, failure to document “extra” injections) and forged my name on a consent form. Thank goodness that my Mother was IN the room with me and was witness to EVERYTHING. How cocky, arrogant, and self assured are these skanks that they felt they could get away with this kind of criminal activity? Very confident obviously… because so far, they remain unscathed and are still injecting women as I type this. It is so difficult to prove bad botox that places like this are USED to getting away with this type of thing.

          It is INFURIATING to know that the place that ruined my face/life is being enabled by a SURGEON who has popped up 3 MORE of these “Med Spas” under his tax ID! Allergan is also allowing this place to be listed as a preferred provider on their Brilliant Distinction website. There must be ethical doctors that are well aware of this activity and are just as disgusted as I am. I just wish they would STAND up to it. We deserve to have all the facts. No matter how small or rare the risk, patients should be made aware.

          Sorry for the rant :). I get a little bit worked up lol. It seems you and I are on the same page! I just appreciate you taking the time to listen and knowing that others who read your blog can gain knowledge.

        • HI- My heart goes out to you… I am hoping you can help me decide how to approach the botox injector I saw a week ago. I have been getting botox for a year now. I first started getting it done in the State of Wisconsin by a ENT Dr. She was wonderful, I felt beautiful and always had the results I was aiming for. Well I moved back home to Alaska in july 2013 and I just went and had my upper forehead injected by a very reputable ENT office but it was a R.N injector who I saw and did the injections. Well a week later as of today, I look so bad I cant even leave the house. The wrinkles in my upper forehead did in fact disappear but it caused so much sagging in my forehead that now above my right eyebrow I have 2 deep thick wrinkles that are completely noticeable without even moving my forehead. Also my forehead has sagged so much causing the skin to push down on my brows and eyelids that my eyes now look half closed. Also above both of my eyebrows I now have what looks like pouches or fluid filled sacks, and in between my eyes in the middle of my forehead now looks like something I dont even know how to describe. I am 36 years old and looked beautiful and had the appearance of someone in there 20′s. Now I am hideous. I am also a R.N and actually was planning on getting trained to do medical aesthetics but now, I think this needs to be left to highly trained and qualified professionals. I would never want to chance doing this to another person. I called the nurse who did the injections and she said she had never heard of this. She does work in the office of two of the best ENT and facial Surgeons where I live, and I actually used to work with these Dr’s in the operating room and have seen there work. I go back to see this Nurse injector on thursday, and I swear to god I am going in there with steam coming out my ears. Honestly I dont think this is even fixable with more injections and frankly I dont want her ever touching my face again. How I view myself in the mirror at this point I see only one resolution for fixing this mess and that would be to have one of the Dr’s perform a forehead lift. I am not waiting 6 months for this to wear off. I have headaches, my eyelids are half closed, vision being obstructed. I am so furious. I dont want to go in yelling but I am not about to just sit there with a smile on my face and have them tell me to wait it out.. I feel like if this nurse is working under one of the MD’s he is liable for her mistakes and should provide me with any remedy known to man at no additional charge. How should I approach this? And what are my legal rights if they choose not to fix this horrific result…. Even my husband cant believe how horrible my face looks. He was against botox in the first place but is at a loss for words at this result…. Any feedback from anyone would be greatly appreciated.

  10. There is no easier way to put this. But…THOSE ARE SOME UGLY MOTHER FUCKERS.

    Seriously. Another big thing that is wrong with this damn world. It’s all about money and power. GREED. These clown would take it up the ass if it would keep them from working an honest day’s work. We seriously need to destroy celebrities and corporations permanently. They are no good for our world. Just making it uglier and more shallow.

  11. HI- My heart goes out to you… I am hoping you can help me decide how to approach the botox injector I saw a week ago. I have been getting botox for a year now. I first started getting it done in the State of Wisconsin by a ENT Dr. She was wonderful, I felt beautiful and always had the results I was aiming for. Well I moved back home to Alaska in july 2013 and I just went and had my upper forehead injected by a very reputable ENT office but it was a R.N injector who I saw and did the injections. Well a week later as of today, I look so bad I cant even leave the house. The wrinkles in my upper forehead did in fact disappear but it caused so much sagging in my forehead that now above my right eyebrow I have 2 deep thick wrinkles that are completely noticeable without even moving my forehead. Also my forehead has sagged so much causing the skin to push down on my brows and eyelids that my eyes now look half closed. Also above both of my eyebrows I now have what looks like pouches or fluid filled sacks, and in between my eyes in the middle of my forehead now looks like something I dont even know how to describe. I am 36 years old and looked beautiful and had the appearance of someone in there 20′s. Now I am hideous. I am also a R.N and actually was planning on getting trained to do medical aesthetics but now, I think this needs to be left to highly trained and qualified professionals. I would never want to chance doing this to another person. I called the nurse who did the injections and she said she had never heard of this. She does work in the office of two of the best ENT and facial Surgeons where I live, and I actually used to work with these Dr’s in the operating room and have seen there work. I go back to see this Nurse injector on thursday, and I swear to god I am going in there with steam coming out my ears. Honestly I dont think this is even fixable with more injections and frankly I dont want her ever touching my face again. How I view myself in the mirror at this point I see only one resolution for fixing this mess and that would be to have one of the Dr’s perform a forehead lift. I am not waiting 6 months for this to wear off. I have headaches, my eyelids are half closed, vision being obstructed. I am so furious. I dont want to go in yelling but I am not about to just sit there with a smile on my face and have them tell me to wait it out.. I feel like if this nurse is working under one of the MD’s he is liable for her mistakes and should provide me with any remedy known to man at no additional charge. How should I approach this? And what are my legal rights if they choose not to fix this horrific result…. Even my husband cant believe how horrible my face looks. He was against botox in the first place but is at a loss for words at this result…. Any feedback from anyone would be greatly appreciated.

    • Hi – I’m so sorry this has happened to you and that you have to go thru this. First of all, just remember it does wear off. But, you have to go back to your doctor immediately – the doctor, not the nurse – and get to the root of what happened. There might be some things your doctor can do to correct what happened, or at the very least explain why you got the result you did. The fluid filled sacks need to be looked at immediately – that is not typical with Botox. Any doctor worth their salt will take this seriously and help you get better on their dime. If you don’t get the satisfaction you need, see another doctor who is a board certified cosmetic plastic surgeon or dermatologist.

      I hope you feel better soon. Let us know how you fare.

    • Hi embarrassed -

      I’m so sorry to hear this happened to you. I hope at this point that you are improving? If not, I can relate. I am now 17 months post Botox and having reconstructive surgery on November 26th at age 29. I will give you my very best and honest advice. My life has been CONSUMED with Botox side effects for nearly 2 years. I have researched countless hours and I communicate with dozens of women in the same boat as us. I don’t want to sound discouraging with what I’m going to say, but it is the absolute truth. Do NOT do anything to your face to try to speed it up. You will likely cause more damage than good and I can explain in detail in a private email if necessary. Do NOT let the doctors attempt to “correct” your face – there is NOTHING they can do and the will almost certainly cause more damage. There is simply no medical remedy for bad Botox. Period. There is no herbal remedy either. The ONLY thing that will help is TIME. I know this isn’t what you want to hear, but it will save you so much pain, frustration, and money. You have to wait. There is no timeline available for when you will heal either. Any information given to you by doctors is a guess. Everyone us individual. You may wake up better tomorrow, or 6 months from now, or 4 years from now. I have spoken with women who have healed in as little as 6 weeks and I still talk with women who are still trying to regain their face after 4 years. It’s devastating to hear – but whatever is going to happen to your face is going to run it’s course. Sadly, us long term suffers learn the hard way that we are absolutely helpless with no recourse.

      Legally you will find more frustration. You CAN and should report your bad side effect to the FDA and Allergan. You can also report them to the state licensing board and complain that their negligence resulted in this bad result for you. It will likely be dismissed, sadly, unless you can PROVE that their Botox injection caused your bad result. Report them anyway. Getting any type of restitution or legal action taken against them will be the battle of your life. I’ve been fighting it nearly 2 years and it’s EXHAUSTING. You must first find a doctor that is willing to diagnose your bad results as Botox related. Most simply just won’t. They’ll blame allergies, aging, weather… it’s ridiculous. If you do find a doctor that will stand on your side (I actually did), you will need to find a lawyer. Now, medical malpractice cases are EXTREMELY expensive and require a HUGE investment of a lawyers time, resources and money. Even with a doctor backing you, most lawyers don’t feel having your face messed up by Botox is injury enough to go through with the lawsuit. Even though I was diagnosed with a plethora of injuries and vision loss, lawyers have given me the run around because the insurance policy of the nurse that injected me isn’t high enough to cover their expenses. It breaks my heart. If you find a lawyer, they will need to notify the dr of your intentions to sue. There will be a 6 month waiting period after the notice. Basically, your injector will get away with this.

      The best thing you can do is help create awareness. There are SO many of us that it’s sickening. Many are just too embarrassed to admit they had Botox. These injectors will continue to get away with this until there are too many of us demanding to be heard. I could go on and on. Write reviews on every social media site you can think of. Yelp, google, Facebook – tell people what those hacks did to you. Bad publicity may hit them in their precious pocketbook. If you are interested in talking directly – my email is kaelynsmom@ymail.com. I’ll be happy to help in any way I can. I am wishing you a speedy recovery!!!

    • P.s.

      The fluid filled sacks you described are a documented Botox side effect. One of our muscles functions is to act like a pump or squeegee to direct lymphatic fluid away from our eyes. When Botox paralyzed those muscles, they can no longer pump the fluid and it will accumulate – aka puffy fluid sacks. It will likely be worse in the morning and dissipate some throughout the day due to gravity. It may help to sleep with your head elevated. You can also try to alternate warm/cold compresses – it might help with lymphatic drainage. There is no medication, treatment, exercise, massage, ointment, topical solution or other “cure”. The muscles *might* regain their strength once the Botox wears off and begin pumping again. I know several victims who’s fluid sacks DID go away after several months. Hope this is useful to you!

  12. Do not let a doctor or anyone for that matter put Botox under your eyes. It is only for the crow’s feet and you will look 10 years older vs 10 years younger. I agree completely. The challenge is finding a good doctor. I am going on four months of the under eye wrinkles caused by Botox. I am trying cupping. I’ll let you know how that works.

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