This little item was in The Spec yesterday:

The American Idol judge has confessed to regular Botox injections to smooth out any wrinkles. He said: “To me, Botox is no more unusual than toothpaste. It works, you do it once a year — who cares. But I’d never dye my hair, although I know everyone thinks I do!”

What I like about this quote is that he is so matter-of-fact and unapologetic about addressing something that was bothering him. Simon Cowell didn’t like his frown lines so he had regular treatments with BOTOX® Cosmetic to smooth them out.

[Ed. note: Cowell’s a bit off the mark with doing the injections once a year. Usually you need them every 3 months to begin with, and gradually you can space them out to every 4, 5 or 6 months.]

BOTOX® Cosmetic is a muscle relaxant. When you have lines on your face caused by repeated contraction of facial muscles, you can soften and eventually erase those lines.

I have a niece who has had frown lines between her brows since her mid-20s. People think she is angry or upset a lot of the time even when she is relaxed or happy. If she had BOTOX® Cosmetic, the lines would smooth out and people would be much more likely to interpret her moods correctly.

To me, if you have lines that are making you look angry, worried or upset when you’re not, then using BOTOX® Cosmetic to get rid of those lines makes perfect sense. This is about how you feel about yourself and about how the world relates to you.

A research study by Finzi and Wasserman from 2007 looked at the effect of treating frown lines with BOTOX® Cosmetic. They took 10 people with ongoing major depression and injected their glabellar (between the brow) frown lines. Two months later, they reassessed them for depression and found that 9/10 were no longer depressed and the 10th person had a significantly improved mood.

No one knows how the BOTOX® Cosmetic improved their depression and I don’t know if any follow-up was done to see whether the improvement persisted after the injections wore off but it makes sense to me that, if the patients no longer looked so depressed, maybe people didn’t treat them as depressives and maybe the patients felt better about themselves.

Isn’t it great to know that you can do something effective to improve your appearance and help you feel better about yourself?