Dec 092015

What Happens When You Get Botox For the First Time

Do you ever catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror and think to yourself “Eh, I wish I could change that”. Well guess what? Thanks to a lot of advancements in medical cosmetic treatments, there are a whole slew of modern non-surgical options for people who want to turn the clock back.  They’re a lot more affordable than you may think, too.

I recently had the opportunity to have a consultation with Dr. Anna Petropoulos at the New England Facial & Cosmetic Surgery Center in Danvers and I am excited to tell you about my experience.


*Disclosure:  I was provided with complimentary services in exchange for sharing them here.  All opinions expressed here are strictly my own and were not influenced in any way.

Dr. Anna Petropoulos offers the latest techniques at her Boston area practice for facial plastic surgery and non-surgical facial rejuvenation. During  my consultation, she evaluated my specific needs and suggested the best treatment for me based on my skin type and bone structure..  I was also impressed by the fact that she didn’t make any false promises, so my expectations were realistic.

The ancient Greek Goddess of Beauty, Aphrodite, is Dr. Petropoulos’ inspiration. Her philosophy is that classic beauty arises from natural, symmetrical proportions. Dr. Petopoulos has over decade of experience using natural facial fillers in facial volume restoration. Harvard-trained Dr. Petropoulos is actually one of the few physicians in the United States named as a National Education Faculty member for artistry in the use of BOTOX Cosmetic treatments and for facial volume restoration using the three main natural facial filler substances – JUVÉDERM® XC, RADIESSE®, and Sculptra®.

During my consultation, Dr. Petropoulos and I talked about Botox.  She explained to me how our eyelids droop a little each year and that a Botox injection would help lift them up a little bit & make me look more youthful.

You might be thinking “Why would anyone get Botox so young”?  The answer is simple – as a preventive measure. As for me, I tend to scrunch up my forehead/eyebrow a lot and started developing lines across my forehead at a young age.  Getting Botox made it physically impossible for me to scrunch my forehead, which stopped the wrinkles from forming.


The Botox also served to help train the muscles in my forehead to keep me from scrunching, so even when the Botox wears off, I’m less likely to frown, which will keep me from getting wrinkles in the future.

Here’s what you need to know about getting your first Botox injection.

1. Go au naturel!
The doctor will clean your  skin with rubbing alcohol before you get your Botox shot (s), so feel free to show up to your appointment with nothing on your face. If you wear makeup, they will end up taking it off anyway.

2.  It only takes a few minutes.  
I got a total of seven shots and it took about 10 minutes total from the time she wiped my face with the rubbing alcohol until the time she was done with the last injection.

3. It hurts, but just a little.  
Of course, it depends on the person administering it, but it’s pretty easy. Dr. Petropoulos is one of the industry leaders when it comes to Botox, so she knows exactly how to inject it quickly and efficiently. A single injection feels like somebody is pinching your skin with a pair of tweezers and it literally only lasts for about a second.  Dr. Petropoulos uses needles that she imports from Germany & they are as thin as a strand of hair, so you will feel the injection, but as far as injections go – it’s really not that bad at all.

4.  Avoid exercise and touching the injection sites the day of your injection.
Patients who get Botox injections are advised not to touch or massage the areas that were injected because that will prevent the Botox from spreading beyond where it was injected. I was also told not to exercise the day of my injection. It takes time for the proteins in the Botox to absorb into the muscles that were treated & the effect of the Botox would have been lessened if it was not absorbed properly.

5. Yes, your face will feel “tighter” in the places where you had the injections.
The weirdest part for me is that I can’t frown.  I literally can’t frown (and that’s not a bad thing I suppose).  The area may be sensitive for a day or two after you get injected as well.

6.  It doesn’t kick in immediately!
It depends on the person, but it usually takes about two to four days for the Botox to “take”, so don’t worry.

While I was at the office they took some “before” photos and then when I went back two weeks later for a different procedure (which I will tell you about soon), they took more photos so that we could look side by side and see the difference.   The photos were taken from different angles & they had me make certain expressions as well.  No comment please about my Sasquatch eyebrows in the before pictures – I had an appointment to get them waxed the following day.

In the before picture on the left, you can see that my eyelids were drooping and you can clearly see the wrinkles on my forehead when I lifted my eyebrows.  It’s subtle, but you can see the difference that the Botox made in the photo on the right.

Forehead before and after

In these next photos, you can see the droopy eyelids from a different angle.

Side View Before and After

And finally, take a look at the crows feet on the left.  The Botox smoothed a lot of them out, which you can see on the right.

crows feet before and after

I know that was a lot of information and if you’re anything like me, you probably still have questions.  Here is some more information to help you make an informed decision.

How often do you get it?  Three to four times a year.  A Botox injection lasts for roughly three months and it does wear off gradually.  Once that happens, you will need to go back for another injection.

How much does it cost?
It depends on where you go. Most places charge by the “unit,” but the prices can vary. Some places are as cheap as $10 or $15 per unit, but some charge even more. Dr. Petropoulos is different when it comes to pricing. She charges per dose, not per unit, so you are paying only for what you need when you see her for your Botox.

Dr. Petropoulos was able to tell just by looking at my face for a few minutes how much Botox I needed in each area.  She has a unique way to diagram each patient, so she will know the dose for future injections.

Do I need a consultation first?
If you know for sure you want Botox, I am sure you can make an appointment somewhere and go get it, but when it comes to your face I think it’s a good idea to consult with a reputable physician like Dr. Petropoulos.  Dr. Petropoulos actually trains people on how to give Botox injections, so it’s pretty obvious she knows a thing or two about Botox. When it came to my face, I wanted to make sure I got my Botox from someone like Dr. Petropoulos really understands and knows all the muscles in the face – not someone who took a weekend course on how to give a Botox injection.

If you’re not sure about Botox, you should schedule a consultation.

Will people notice that I look different after I get Botox?
Nope. It’s not conspicuous at all.  You’ll notice it on yourself, but it’s very slight and you definitely will not look like one of the Real Housewives.

Yes, Botox is safe!
It’s an FDA-approved treatment for the area between your eyes, forehead,  the side of your eyes where you crow’s feet are and your cheeks.  Fun fact: Botox is used to treat migraines, neck and shoulder pain and excess sweating.

Professionals should be certified.
Guys, it’s your face – go to a reputable, trained physician like Dr. Petropoulos.  Again, it’s your face!  It’s the first thing someone is going to see when they look at you.  You can go where you want to get your Botox, but I am not taking any chances with my face.

Most importantly, Don’t be afraid to ask questions!  You should definitely feel comfortable with your decision and the person who is going to be doing the injection.  Choosing a cosmetic surgeon is one of the most important decisions you have to make, so don’t settle for just anyone.  Do your research, consider their experience and certifications and make sure you find the doctor that’s right for you. Dr. Anna Petropoulos has over a decade of experience developing and refining both surgical and non-surgical treatments & they are all customized to the unique needs of the individual.  Plus she is board certified by the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and the American Board of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery. She has completed residencies in Head and Neck Surgery with two additional formal fellowships in Facial Plastic Surgery at Harvard and Ottawa Universities.

No matter what areas of your body that you’re looking to improve, the New England Facial and Cosmetic Surgery Center offers a wide variety of services to help you look your best. They offer many surgical & non-surgical procedures as well as skin care and anti-aging treatments.  Dr. Petropoulos can even help with your snoring & sleep apnea.  Many of the procedures they offer likely won’t be found elsewhere.

If you follow me over on Instagram, you probably saw this photo that I posted right after I walked out of the office the day of my Botox.

After Botox photo

Again, I am not a doctor.  I am just sharing my own personal experience and yours may differ.  If you are considering having a procedure done and you live in Massachusetts, or even northern New England, consider giving Dr. Petropoulos a call.  She has a great deal of experience and she is extremely knowledgeable in her field, which is exactly what made her one of Boston’s best.  Not to mention her staff is all lovely. Everyone in the office is friendly and extremely helpful.

Her office is located at 80 Lindall Street in Danvers, MA 01923.  You can call the office at  978-739-9500 and be sure to check out her webite at

  153 Responses to “What Happens When You Get Botox For the First Time?”

  1. Definitely appreciate the info. Not sure I would do this or not, but is sure food for thought as I am getting older here now. Thanks Robin.

  2. Reading about the Botox process was interesting. Not sure if it is something that I would ever consider, but interesting.

  3. I tried it earlier this summer too! The needle felt like a pinch and hard one for me, but it was over quickly. The first one was the worst because I didn’t know what to expect. I did it for the “11” in between my eyes.

  4. Awesome experience. I warched as show where a guy had it done and he said his face felt like he was stuff by a swarm of bees. It’s great to hear that that’s not everyone’s experience

  5. I think you have a beautiful face. 🙂 I could certainly benefit from some facial improvements and I would only consider non-surgical options like this. Your experience makes me feel more comfortable with it. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  6. I’ve always wondered about this. Looks great! I’m not ready but at least there are options.

  7. this was very interesting and thank you for sharing your story. I am not sure it’s for me, but I like that I got information first hand from someone I know.

  8. i didn’t think you needed it – you had a beautiful face as it was 😀

  9. Interesting article information. I was curious about it, but too afraid to ask. Thanks for sharing your story with us.

  10. I didn’t know much about Botox before this but now I’m interested. I’ve started noticing my eyelids drooping a little. I’m a grandma now but I don’t want to LOOK like one 🙂

  11. You look awesome! I’m not against botox or plastic surgery in general; I’m sure I’ll go down that road eventually, but probably not until I’m done having babies.

  12. I have a few places (especially around my eyes) that would benefit from Botox. I’ve not considered it yet, but it’s definitely a possibility!

  13. I am too young for botox but I think that your skin looks fantastic and your eyes appear to be more healthy and rejuvenated.

  14. You look so great! You must have had a great person doing the work. It looks so much more natural that what I’ve seen on the celebrities.

  15. I have been considering botox, thanks for all of the information.

  16. I don’t like that it is temporary, especially since I am not crazy about needles. Glad to hear that it doesn’t hurt that much.

  17. I never knew Botox was so affordable. I have one line between my eyes that drives me nuts.

    • I always thought it was SUPER expensive so I never bothered to look into it. Now I know I won’t have to sell my first born I am going to look into it!

  18. You look great! I’m most impressed by how natural it turned out.

  19. Wow it is that cheap to do? I don’t know that! I got a few more wrinkles than what I would like this might be fun to try!

  20. I can’t believe how affordable this has become. I remember it was an arm and a leg back when it first came out.

  21. Botox wasn’t even on my radar….but thanks for sharing the information!

  22. Wow I can see the difference! I am so chicken to do this, does it hurt?

  23. I must admit that I am very curious out botox. It sounds like you had a pretty positive experience. I don’t think I am going to completely say never…at least not yet.

  24. It something I’ve thought about, now that I’m in my 30’s (gulp). Your crows feet look fantastic afterwards! Thanks for sharing some insight.

  25. I totally want to get botox! I have looked into getting it done in the past but chickened out. I think it was all just in my head now that I read your post. 🙂

  26. Wow I have never gotten so much insight before about Botox. I just thought it was bad idea since people always slammed celebrities for using Botox. Thanks for this detailed description I will now and forever it at Botox differently.

  27. Great information here! I went to college on the North Shore, so it is fun to see info from around there. I am not sure I am up for botox…but I could probably use it a little bit. I have noticed in the past year the crows feet are definitely getting bigger!

  28. Thank you for sharing your personal story with us about botox it was very informative.

  29. I think botox is great for anyyone who wants to use it! I love that this is avaialbe to those who want it

  30. I’ve thought about getting this done in the back of my neck. That sounds like an odd place. I had a ear nose throat doc tell me that, that spot helps relax the jaw. I tend to clench my jaw, and grind my teeth. My husband makes me free mouth guards though. It also helps with the sinuses. For me it would be more for feeling better, then looking better.

  31. Wow, you look great! I have never looked into botox, but it looks like quite the simple process with great results.

  32. I have always been afraid of botox because I wasn’t for sure what was involved. Thanks for sharing your experience. It seems a little less daunting now

  33. Botox has always kind of scared me. I do like how the results are! You look great!

  34. I’m afraid of needles or what could happen to my if something went wrong. However, my sister had this done and she said it wasn’t that painful and she looks great. I think I need to take the leap and just do it.

  35. I would totally do it. I’d love to prevent a few wrinkles from coming my way…or at least keep them at bay for a while. Thanks for walking me through it.

  36. That’s great! I may end up doing botox one day. I was sitting in a doctor’s office looking at a pamphlet for a tummy tuck, I couldn’t stop thinking about getting one done. Sometimes we just have that desire to hang onto as much of our youth as we can.

  37. I am TERRIFIED of needles, so this sounds scary to me. haha But, so does a flu shot. And basically anything medical. Maybe one day, I will consider it. Who knows!

  38. I like that she didn’t go over the top and you still look pretty much like you, except with fewer wrinkles.. but not that you had many too!! 😛 $10-15/ unit is cheap!

    Ai @ Sakura Haruka

  39. I think I am beyond preventative measures at this point because the wrinkles are already formed, but I would like to see them faded some.

  40. This has been a very informative read. I can see what a difference Botox has made around your eyes. Can’t wait to read about the other procedure.

  41. You had some great results. I will definitely try Botox at some point. I am glad to hear it does not hurt to much.

  42. My friend tried Botox and she looks amazing. It was a great experience for her as well. I would try it for sure.

  43. I wanted to know more about Botox. Thanks for all the great information. It really made your eyes look lifted. You look great.

  44. i might consider this to keep crows feet at bay. i’m a big smiler

  45. How interesting… I have never known anyone who has gotten botox, but I have always been curious. I know I see more and more lines creeping up daily.

  46. I haven’t tried Botox. I’m scared of needles and can’t do it. I will take the wrinkles

  47. OMG! I’m so jealous I really really want to try botox, like BADLY! You looked amazing before and amazing after so I can’t even comment 😉 Gorg all around! But YES for botox I want some too!

  48. I have had friends get botox shots, and they really did make a difference on their lines. I am not sure I am ready – but I rule nothing out. It was great to have all the info.

  49. Wow, I didn’t realize it was so inexpensive. Although I don’t think I could handle the needle.

  50. I hadn’t heard about using Botox as a preventive measure…that’s an interesting hypothesis.

  51. I’ve been curious about this for a long time. I’m heading to my 40’s now and thought about it for under my eyes. Thanks for sharing. I’m a chicken and might still have to think about it.

  52. Thanks for sharing the information. I’ve always hesitated. I don’t think I can ever get botox, at least that’s what I feel right now.

  53. You look gorgeous. Thank you for sharing this information with us. I can really see the difference.

  54. I don’t know much about Botox because it’s something I’ve never had any reason to research. it’s interesting to me to hear that it doesn’t hurt much and isn’t as expensive as I might have thought it would be.

  55. Great information! I have been wondering how/if it works 🙂

  56. I would never have thought of doing it as a preventative measure! What a good idea!

  57. This is my first education in botox. Not sure I could take needles in my face, tough I’d probably like the results, who knows maybe in 5 years I’ll take any kind of pain ha !

  58. I might consider this for the future. I don’t want to get addicted though.

  59. I’d definitely give it consideration in the future. Right now my laugh lines are my biggest offender. If they get too much deeper, I’ll look into physicians here in Indiana.

  60. You are definitely more brave than I. I am not sure if I will ever be brave enough to do it, but it does look great.

  61. Wow you can really see a difference in the last set of photos. It sounds so much easier than I ever could have imagined.

  62. I have always wanted to know about getting Botox. I was afraid it would hurt, but you made a believer out of me that it doesn’t.

  63. Your results look pretty great!! The clinic looks like an amazing place to go and have treatment done.

  64. I don’t think I would ever be brave enough to do this, but at least now I feel like I have more information on the whole process to make a more informed decision.

  65. I’d not sure I’d be brave enough to try this, but you make it sound like not a big deal.

  66. I’ve never thought of botox but it makes sense why people get it earlier in life. I’m not sure if I will ever try it BUT ask me again in a couple years and I might have a different answer 🙂

  67. I don’t care about my wrinkles.. but if this works on migraines? I’m in! I did not know that, so if mine start getting bad again, I am definitely going to talk to a good doctor.

  68. Great review and thanks for the info. Botox really works if done by the right professionals.

  69. I am also wondering the same thing! Thanks for the walk-through. I will tell my friends about this, too.

  70. Interesting – I have had friends that got Botox, even one of the men I worked with!
    I hear that it’s also good for migraines, which I’m very curious about.

  71. This is a very interesting topic.. I do love the information that you provided and all the questions you have answered that a lot of people wonder about.

  72. Wow, what a subtle yet so lovely enhancement! I see what you mean in the before and after pictures. My sister gets a bit of this done and I have never. Maybe a little assistance us due! You look great!

  73. I always though botox can be so painful. Thanks for giving me an idea how it feels like.

  74. I can definitely see where it made a difference around the corners of your eyes. I’m turning 33 next month a have a few wrinkles around my eyes and lips but I’ve never cared much. That might change in a few years. I really had no idea Botox was that affordable.

  75. wow.. you look great! The botox works great, i’ve never had one but maybe i’ll try this procedure in the future

  76. You’re so pretty. I always thought that botox is painful lol.

  77. At first I thought that Botox is too painful, But after reading your post I got interested with it. 🙂 Thank you for sharing.

  78. I’m afraid for botox but this process was really interesting.

  79. You have awesome experience

  80. That’s great that you shared your experience. It’s got a lot of great info for people still on the fence too!

  81. I am petrified of needles but it looks like it works great! My mom has done several botox injections.

  82. I can definitely see a difference but it doesn’t look obvious or “fake” .Worth looking into for sure!

  83. I am impressed at how natural the results look, not over the top smoothness just some lessening. You look great!

  84. I’ve thought about doing this. I have one fine line that I’d love to smooth out. It’s good to get to read your experience so I’m not so scared, lol.

  85. I am happy for those who chose to get Botox. It is great there are options out there.

  86. I have never really thought about getting botox before. Thank you for all the great information, makes it a lot less scary sounding.

  87. Oh wow, I can’t imagine going through shots in my face. I’m about to have gastric surgery on the inside, but it’s going to be a while before I’m ready to change on the outside. Your eyes look great!

  88. I have always wondered what it was like to get Botox!! I have been noticing some serious crow’s feet around my eyes and I bet it would help me so much!!

  89. Thanks for sharing your experience. I have been curious about this process and what the results are. Glad it doesn’t hurt too bad

  90. One of my clients is actually a board certified plastic surgeon! I have always been afraid to get Botox injections even though I do know someone extremely qualified-his office is in NYC. On occasion I have seen some of his clients walk in then out-the difference is amazing. Now that I am 65 my eye lids are drooping –maybe I should bite the bullet. Those before and after photos of you are truly amazing.

  91. I want to get it on my forehead. I have lines =( I am only 26!

  92. You can definitely notice a difference. Like you said,it’s subtle but going TOO far would be crazy and make you look completely different.

  93. It’s too bad Hollywood has overdone the procedure. It does seem that it provides some nice benefits without looking fake.

  94. I may be in the minority here, but I think that Crow’s feet are actually kind of endearing and beautiful! I never understood why women wanted to hide that. You look great in both your before AND after photos–gorgeous mama!

  95. I like that you can actually see an improvement even 2 weeks later. I know some people like wrinkles but I’m more towards I’d like to keep a smoother face. Very interesting experience!

  96. Excellent review – and love that you shared your experiences! I’ve had botox for my eyebrows – mainly because I have a large scar (tomboy when I was 5 years old) and it was pulling my eyelid down – I have never had issues with being able to frown – but we are each very different! 🙂

  97. My mom is really interested in looking younger. Today is her birthday and as I get older I know how hard it can be when we start to show our age. I will have to share this with her.

  98. I had botox once on my crow’s feet but I couldn’t go back for the 2 week boost. Still it worked will and didn’t hurt at all.

  99. This is great information!! It sounds like this is a really viable option.

  100. i have been considering Botox. It is much simpler and cheaper than I thought.

  101. This was great info. I always wondered how it worked. I definitely noticed a difference.

  102. This is really great information! I’m only 27 and know people younger than me that have down if for prevention. Although I don’t want botox right now it’s great to have the option in the future 🙂

  103. I read every bit of this article. I am so curious about it. I wrinkle my forehead a lot too!

  104. I was just asking someone yesterday if there’s anything that can be done about droopy eyelids! I’ll definitely have to look into this! I typically spend 4-6 weeks in New Hampshire each year, so I’ll have to look up Dr. Petropoulos.

  105. I have had Botox to help treat for migraines.
    It has not worked too well for me.
    You look great with it – glad it worked for you.

  106. I am all for everyone feeling their best! Botox could be my BFF in a few months 🙂

  107. I am glad this worked for your. Their are so many great options available today. 🙂

  108. I’ve had Botox before! I don’t know why but for me it last so much longer than they claim. It last almost a year for me 🙂

  109. I admit that when I hear the word botox, I automatically get a little nervous because of the needles. I do like the thought that it helps with migraines.

  110. If only you could get it and it never wore off. I do see a difference in your photos but you already looked great to begin with.

    • I think having to get it done every 3 months would make me a little hesitant to start. But I agree with ToughCookieMommy. You already looked amazing to being with!

  111. My sister who is 7 years younger than me wants botox, which makes me think I need it too. But, it always is scary that you’ll end up looking fake and plastic-y. Your botox looks very natural and the changes are subtle but noticeable!

  112. I’ve always wondered about this. Thanks for sharing the experience.

  113. I would have been scared to go for my first time! I’m glad your experience was relatively painless!

  114. I think Botox injections would work for some but not all. I was also seriously considering this procedure for sometime now, but I am scared of needles. You are lucky to have found a good doctor for the procedure. My take on this is that if would make you feel good and boost your self confidence, then go. 🙂

  115. I would love to but I’m scared of needles. You are very brave x

  116. You look so great! I can’t believe how affordable this has become.

  117. I want to do this on my forehead between my eyes…but I’m scared to. I love your article enough to consider it more. You look fabulous darling.

  118. I heard a lot of good things about botox. I think I want to give it a try.

  119. You look good and it definitely made a difference for you, but I am not sure if I could handle the needle.

  120. This is a great in depth post about it – I haven’t gotten Botox yet but I would definitely am open to it. I think it’s pretty awesome what it can do!

  121. I have always wondered about Botox. Thanks for trying it out for us. Hollywood gives it such a bad rep.

  122. Thank you for sharing your Botox experience. It answered a lot of questions I had about the procedure. I completely agree with you in that this is your face and you don’t want to mess around with an incompetent doctor. I’m glad you were able to find someone great!

  123. I have been thinking about the botox for my migraines but I really love what it did you your face. I will have to say that your eyebrows are much better than mine. Thanks for the tips.

  124. I’ve been thinking of Botox for a while. I have a line on my forehead that’s been driving me crazy! You look great!

  125. My sister has had botox a few times. You could really see a big difference.

  126. Great information! Have never considered getting Botox but you make some great points!

  127. Wow I must have missed that post on Instagram. Had no idea you had that done. I too have frown lines on my forehead since I was young. My dad used to always try to put his fingers over my forehead and ask me why I’m always frowning lol

  128. I’m too scared to do it, but you look great girl! Thanks for sharing about your experience.

  129. Wow. Interesting to read about your experience! Like Liz, I have an 11 between my eyes that I would love to make a 0! 😉

  130. I’ve never been tried it, but it looks you’re perfect for botox. I’m sure my mom would love it.

  131. I know there are varying levels of Botox that you can get, but it still scares me. It has helped reading your post, though. I can really see the difference in the photo with the crow’s feet.

  132. Thank you for the details and the before and after photos! Definitely worked wonders for you in 1 treatment

  133. I can truly see the difference but I’ve never really thought of getting it. Now that I’ve seen how it made such a difference I might try it.

  134. Oh, I can really tell a difference around your eyes!! How nice!

  135. I was very lucky to be blessed genes from my father’s side of the family. Even at 51 you would be hard press to find a wrinkle on my face. I would definitely consider botox in the future, though.

  136. I am so terrified of needles that I am not sure I could even pick up the phone and make an appointment. The results look good though, so you never know….

  137. I have a sister who is seriously thinking about getting a botox. I will share this with her, thanks for the info!

  138. What an informative and real post about botox. I love that the results you got were natural but they also made a difference.

  139. I’ve always wondered what it’s really like to get a Botox injection. Thanks for sharing your experience and the before and after photos! I can see a difference.

  140. I’ve never considered botox but I never say never!

  141. Great information! Thanks for sharing your experience. I’m terrified of needles so I don’t think Botox will ever be happening to me.

  142. This is great information, Botox isn’t for me but thank you for sharing!

  143. What a great piece of info you have provided. Thank you for sharing, I honestly fear getting older.