Botox is widely known for its ability to get rid of a person’s fine lines and wrinkles. There is, however, a lesser known benefit that could specifically impact Black women who opt to wear their hair blown out.

“We are always looking for ways to lengthen that silk press,” dermatologist Tara Akunna said. “Getting Botox treatments might be a solution for that.”

The Food and Drug administration has approved Botox for use on various parts of the body. It can be helpful with issues involving your mouth, hands, feet, bladder and scalp. The cosmetic procedure can also be used to help make silk presses last longer.

Is Botox Right for Your Silk Press?

Akunna believes that this lesser known benefit of Botox is one many Black women could utilize.

“In Black women, I feel like it’s an untapped market in terms of the cosmetic products that we look for. It has utility for everyone,” Akunna says.

Botox is a toxin that comes from bacteria. This helps to block nerve signals that are responsible for muscle activity. When used on your scalp, Botox treats excessive sweating known as hyperhidrosis. Akunna says the Botox cuts off the nerve signals that cause sweating. There are two different types of hyperhidrosis conditions. Identifying which one you have can help determine whether Botox is a good option for you. 

“There is primary hyperhidrosis which can involve the scalp, underarms, palms and soles,” says Akunna.

This type does not have an underlying cause, which makes Botox usage ok.

“It’s important to note that secondary hyperhidrosis can be caused by underlying medical conditions and medications,” Akunna explained.

In those cases, Akunna suggests speaking with your doctor before using Botox treatment to treat sweating.

The Process

The treatment takes just a few minutes to complete. First, the medical professional will begin by cleaning your scalp. Next, they will place injections around the scalp and hairline.

“It’s usually about 100 units for your entire scalp and it usually lasts about 3 to 6 months, Akunna said. 

The dermatologist says this isn’t something that is only for women who suffer from hyperhidrosis.

“Even if you don’t have scalp hyperhidrosis, it can just be to maintain your silk press. If we can space out those silk presses, that can help mitigate any heat damage you may be getting from your silk presses,” she said. 

Experts say Botox is usually safe but can come with some side effects like pain and swelling at the injection site. Akunna also acknowledges that Botox is not a cheap solution.

“Botox is pretty expensive and there are medical therapies that you can do before jumping into Botox,” she said.

If it’s in your price range, she says to go for it.

Seek Professionals Only

The popularity of Botox as well as other drugs, is becoming a problem for public health officials.

“Recently there has been a string of cases that the FDA has brought awareness to about counterfeit botox. People are having really bad side effects from counterfeit botox,” Akunna warned. 

The fake treatments are being caught in several states. The FDA says there have even been hospitalizations linked to counterfeit Botox. Some of the symptoms that include blurred or double vision, shortness of breath, constipation and difficulty lifting one’s head. With any medical procedure or treatment, you should always make sure that you are being cared for by a licensed medical professional.