Leaving the Lines Behind

The “Brotox” phenomenon is alive and well in New Orleans.

Since 2010, the number of men receiving Botox injections in the United States has increased by 27 percent — a phenomenon that has led to the creation of a new term: Brotox.

According to Dr. Mace Scott, medical director and owner of Chronos Institute Med Spa in Metairie, Brotox is a part of an overall increase in men using cosmetic procedures.

“The greatest increase seems to be among men between ages 30 and 60,” he says. “Men are increasingly becoming more concerned about their skin and the appearance of aging. This could potentially be due to the growth of social media and the selfie phenomenon.”

“Everyone wants to look their best and we live in a visual world,” says Jamie Gonzales of Botox Bar, a new company that celebrated its launch in Slidell on July 18. “More and more men care about their appearances and have begun to understand that taking good care of their skin and utilizing injectables like Botox can help them maintain a healthier, more vibrant look. Men having ‘a little work done’ isn’t stigmatized the way that it once was.”

In addition to just looking good for friends and family, or while battling it out in the dating scene, men are also seeing the drug as a way to get a youthful edge over competition in order to advance their careers.

“Typically, our female patients get Botox to appear younger while men get procedures done because they want to maintain competitive in an increasingly ageist workplace,” says Sarah Balladares of Botox Bar.

“Overall, our culture has shifted the ‘norm’ of a man’s look,” Gonzales says. “In years past, men have long worn their wrinkles and sun damage as a public badge of endurance, hard work, experience and sacrifice. High-profile celebrities like Robert Redford rocked their creases for decades and built a psychological baseline that it’s better for men to remain au naturel. Now, the forehead lines are decreasing and our ‘normal man’ is shifting from Robert Redford to Rami Malek.”

Dr. Kyle Coleman, a board-certified cosmetic dermatologist at Etre Cosmetic Dermatology and Laser Center, says that his recommendations for the use of Botox with men tend to differ from his female clients.

“With men, we generally recommend treating the frown line more aggressively and everything else less aggressively to achieve a natural look and not change the shape of their brows,” he says.

In addition to a more subtle approach, men tend to prefer botox over surgery because the effects are temporary, lasting only three to four months.

“The nice thing about Botox is that it slowly wears off,” says Dr. Kelly Burkenstock of Dr. Kelly Burkenstock’s Skin Body Health. “It does not cause any aging or damage and it’s reversible, so if you have a complication it’s not forever. It’s not permanent like surgery.”

While the treatment works the same for everyone, Dr. Burkenstock says men require a specialized approach and an experienced hand.

“Your provider must understand how male facial anatomy impacts the amount of botox needed for a satisfactory result without over-correcting,” she says. “For best results, look for a physician with considerable knowledge of facial anatomy and experience in male aesthetic procedures. Well-trained cosmetic physicians inject with optimal precision and finesse to achieve subtle, symmetrical results.”

Catering to a Different Demographic

Businesses like Chronos, Etre Cosmetic Dermatology and Laser Center and Botox Bar have approached this new age of man by attempting to combat preconceived notions and help each individual achieve a level of desired confidence.

“We [at Chronos] cater to men specifically in the different therapies we offer for testosterone optimization in our office,” says Dr. Scott. “We can couple this treatment with a workout membership in our fitness center and personal training. Then you can get your Botox and laser treatments all right in the same facility.”

Catering to the busy professional, Etre Cosmetic Dermatology and Laser Center offers lunchtime appointments and tailored treatments.

“We carry products in skin care that are great adjuncts in males,” says Dr. Coleman. “Because we do both non-invasive and invasive procedures, like liposuction, we are able to tailor the appropriate procedure to the person, avoiding the one-size-fits-all mentality that can be found at some offices.”

For those uncomfortable with the idea of stepping into a spa-like environment, Botox Bar offers services at a range of locations, like barber shops, where men may feel more at ease.

“By doing this, [the men] are in an environment that’s already comfortable for them in a place they have established relationships,” says Balladares, “and they don’t have to worry about walking through a doctor’s office where they might see all of their wives’ friends.”