There is a thing that happens nowadays to people who don’t have Botox. It’s a similar thing that happens to people who don’t have children or who have moved to the country to live in a small shed and pick bits to eat from the bins behind Waitrose; other people find it puzzling. But because they suspect you may have an underlying medical reason, which is difficult to talk about, they tend to avoid the subject – at least for a while. Eventually, however, curiosity takes over and the no-toxers, the childless, and the shed-inhabitants are cornered; answers demanded.
I can’t remember precisely, when it turned from the Botoxers being considered a bit ‘out there’ to the no-toxers being perceived as the weirdos, but it has, and nowadays, if you’re a woman over 40, you have to be prepared for the Botox question.
Obviously, you can’t say you don’t need it – not with a straight face. Unless, denial has totally taken over, you will have seen the creases and the narrow lines above your eyebrows. Chances are, some kind of needlework could improve things a lot.
Equally, you can’t say you don’t like how it looks. There are numerous reasons for this. One, it often looks very good, wiping years off a person’s face. Two, if your friend is a Botoxer, such a comment would be rude. Three. Even if your friend has overdone it a bit and perhaps annoys you by pushing on with something like ‘but look at me, I had it done last week and you didn’t even notice,’ you don’t want to be the person who says “What? You think I didn’t notice that your eye is hanging off the side of your face?’
No. No. No.
If you’re now thinking that you’ll just respond to the ‘why-no-Botox’ question by saying that you love your wrinkles because they’re a testament to the interesting life you have led, then I wish you the best of luck in that shed – although you’re obviously not reading this post.
But for those who are, I’ve come up with a line you can use without putting yourself or your friend down. Here it goes:
“I don’t think Botox or fillers would suit me.”
And now, what to do about those wrinkles?
Over the last few months, I’ve been testing some great wrinkle-fillers on myself and a couple of girlfriends. These products work by literally filling in narrow lines. For the tiny, tiny creases I still prefer the Benefit pore primer, especially around the mouth area where you don’t want anything too heavy. However, for the actual lines, especially the dreaded forehead ones, you often need something a little stronger, a polyfilla-like substance that can erase and smoothen.
Now, there isn’t – yet – anything on the open market, that will get rid of the lines completely, but I have found two products that are excellent, one of which almost erases the lines (for the last ten per cent, you can always get a dimmer for the living room light controls). This product is from Elizabeth Arden’s Prevage range, and comes in a tube with a flat applicator, which you hold close to the start of the line. You then press the tube softly and fill the line with the transparent product and use your fingers to smoothen any excess. It takes a few attempts, but you’ll soon get the hang of it. The tricky thing is to get the amount right, if you use too much it will sometimes peel off and look like peeling skin, so keep an eye on it. And be careful if applying foundation or other make-up products on top, they don’t always ‘gel’ and can sometimes cause a bit of a mess. (If you must apply make-up to your forehead you can use the wrinkle-filler afterwards rather than before the foundation, that sometimes works better, however, if your foundation is the right tone the likelihood is you won’t need make-up on your forehead as there will be no clash between the tones of the different sections of your face).
It’s not Botox, neither is it a miracle cure but it’s pretty good and when you’ve applied it, people will often tell you you’re looking well.
Another great option, and significantly cheaper, is the Wrinkle filler pen from the brilliant Icelandic brand Skyn, which works in a similar way in that you gently dab the product on with the tip of the pen. This product is like a light serum and very easy to work with. Initially, you won’t notice a difference, but after ten minutes you will see a significant reduction in the depth of the line.
TIP: Remember to apply these products in front of a magnifying mirror to ensure precise application. (Another upside to this is that when you put down the magnifying mirror and check yourself out in the ordinary mirror, it will look as if the lines have disappeared completely).
Finally, remember, there’s a reason they’re called candle-lit dinners..
Click on an image to open the gallery.
SKYN ICELAND®, Angelica Line Smoother Pen 4g, £20.00
Elizabeth Arden PREVAGE®, Deep Wrinkle Filler 15ml, £65