Washouts, not to be confused with blowouts, are a super cool intervention in the wonderful world of beauty. Blowouts, on the other hand… are a super cool intervention in the wonderful world of beauty… hmm, maybe they are a little similar.
A washout describes the ‘washing out’ of a substance from your system. This is an effective method for an array of reasons, but here we use it as a treatment against neurotoxin resistance. If you’re a seasoned neurotoxin consumer, you may have been exposed to discussions about Botox resistance.
View this post on Instagram
I found that some online forums had concerned patients who wondered if resistance to neurotoxins might even translate to other substances, like filler! Worry not dear reader, we will debunk some of these myths—and teach you more about the wizardry of the washout.
What Does Science Say About Botox Resistance?
To begin, let’s explore this pesky resistance response and what science says about the internal systems at play. We all know by now that neurotoxins work by blocking certain receptors and other types of neurochemicals in the body. This results in a relaxing of the muscles in which the substance was injected, effectively minimizing wrinkles and lines that may form as a result of movement.
Our bodies are pretty phenomenal at protecting us—sometimes a little too phenomenal. When our cells detect an intruder they go into defense mode and create special proteins to fight the foreign body. This is why vaccinations contain weaker forms of the viruses they set out to prevent. Our body becomes familiar with the external substance, it learns all about its molecular composition, gets into its head, discovers all its secrets. Then it sets out to destroy.
Our body will program cells to produce antibodies, or little soldiers that fight foreign bodies. In the context of neurotoxins, once our body becomes friendly with the substance, it may begin to block access, which can diminish effectiveness.
Resist the Urge to Resist
Sometimes patients will notice this ‘resistance’ response when they go in for a neurotoxin injection and don’t notice the effects they observed in the past. Your body’s gotten used to the substance and now you have to employ some counter-attacks.
Approach 1. If Botox fails, try a different formula.
There are various types of neurotoxins each formulated a little differently from one another. This doesn’t drastically impact their effect but it does mean that their chemical composition varies. If you find that Botox isn’t doing it for you anymore, some doctors have recommended switching to something that does.
A study assessing the issue of resistance mentioned “complexing protein-free formulations.” This is where the science gets a little too complex for the scope of this article, but I’ll leave the term there in case you’re interested in doing some of your own research, you little keener you.
Essentially, you want to find neurotoxins (NTs) that have fewer complexing proteins. Dysport and Xeomin were mentioned in the study. Check out our other post about all the different kinds of neurotoxins on the market.
Approach 2. Proper injection technique and gentle product handling
We say this all the time, but proper technique is KEY>>> You could have a miracle drug in your possession, but if it’s not administered appropriately it will not have the miracle effects it promises.
Working with practitioners that are proficient at their craft will make all the difference. They’ll know exactly where to perform the injection, the dose required, and how much dilution is necessary for the desired result. Plus, they’ll give you the appropriate recovery tips to prolong effectiveness.
It’s also important to find a reputable establishment. The way NTs are stored is important to their functioning. I remember when I was working at the office and we’d get deliveries of Botox in boxes of dry ice because it needs to be refrigerated.
Approach 3. Timing and delivery of the NT
Timing out appointments is an important consideration as well. If you’re inconsistent with treatment, you compromise the results you want. It’s crucial not to space your injections too far or too close to one another. The sweet spot is 3-4 months apart. It’s a good idea to book your follow-ups during your appointments so you don’t forget.
If that’s not possible, set a reminder or calendar alert on your phone. Life gets in the way sometimes, so try to set yourself up for success.
The Botox Washout Method
While it’s important to make all of the considerations we just highlighted, a washout is sometimes the most effective intervention for NT resistance. A washout works a little like a detox.
Since your body is now exceptionally good at digesting the NT, you wanna create some distance. You wanna purge your muscles of the NT. The recommended time is at least 4 months of no NT injections. Make like a freezer before Thanksgiving and go cold turkey.
Once you’ve completely cleared your system and you no longer see the effects of the NT, you can book your next appointment.
After a washout, you’ll likely find that your neurotoxin results go back to lasting their usual 3-4 months. For some folks, a longer washout period is required. Simply assess your personal response to determine the time frame best for you.
Once you’ve effectively completed the washout period and gotten the results you desire, consider getting a blowout to compliment your fresh look 😉