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How to do Botox the European Way

The best injectables are the ones you can't see. Lisa Goodman, founder of GoodSkin clinics, walks us through the European approach to Botox.
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Lisa Goodman wants you to think about Botox differently. "Instead of using Botox for wrinkles, use Botox for lift," she tells L'OFFICIEL

Goodman founded GoodSkin after a decade of working for the most in-demand dermatologists in Hollywood. “We would see every celebrity,” she says. “But people weren’t looking better over time.” Goodman had the opportunity to shadow a plastic surgeon in Paris, and there she was exposed to European methodology and aesthetics. She knew immediately that she had to bring these newly-learned techniques stateside, but her employer disagreed. So, Goodman branched out on her own to found GoodSkin, which now has offices in Los Angeles and New York City. Emphasizing diagnostics and an individualized approach combined with rigorous training, Goodman demonstrates to American clients that injectables don’t have to mean a frozen face. By leaving signs of life, Goodman is able to keep clients looking like themselves, but just a little bit better.

Cross Cultures

After spending time in Paris, Goodman noticed several key factors in why European women who get injectables tend to look more natural than their American counterparts. “The way the FDA regulates information in the U.S. and the way they regulate information in Europe is different,” she says. “[Before-and-afters] in Europe look much better because they are allowed to market for what’s considered an American off-label injection site...and they can’t use social media to advertise before-and-afters so you don’t have as much trend-following.” 

European clinics also don’t have nurse injectors. While Goodman has nurse injectors in her own clinic and loves the price accessibility they allow for, the standard of training for European injectors is much higher and based on science and anatomy.

Another factor, Goodman points out, is the lack of medispas and quick Botox clinics in Europe. “Nothing about Europe is quick,” Goodman laughs. “Everything is about diagnostics and getting the right treatment for you.” 

Make a Diagnosis

Goodman explains that, as we age, we lose bone, muscle, fat, and fascia, which is connective tissue. By choosing a treatment that addresses what is unique to their aging process, patients can restore their face while still looking like themselves, resulting in GoodSkin’s trademarked untouched look. While the mention of Botox can conjure up images of frozen-faced women with permanently-surprised brows, the injectable can be used in a natural-looking way.

“There’s kind of two schools of thought with Botox,” Goodman says. “You can use Botox to not have wrinkles...or you can use Botox to slow the aging process, which is when you treat what is causing the face to wrinkle.” Effectively, by using Botox for lift instead of freezing the face, you can retrain your muscles and prevent what is causing facial sagging in the first place.

Stay Well

Goodman’s first degree is in nutrition, and she believes wellness is a crucial component of the healthy aging process. “The goal is that people want to look like a healthier version of themselves, which equals not looking tired, looking rested, and looking better,” she says. How a patient’s body is functioning—how much sleep they get, if they’re deficient in vitamins, and their mental health—plays a factor in what Goodman and her team will do in-office. The clinic offers vitamin IVs, stem cells, mental health referrals, and a number of other treatments as part of a healthy aging plan.

Of course, stress is a huge factor in how we age. Though there is no quantifiable study on how much stress makes us visibly age, Goodman explains that we know for a fact that inflammation in the body causes changes in the skin, and too much cortisol—the stress hormone—results in increased levels of inflammation. 

Complete the Puzzle

While in-office treatments offer the most dramatic results, Goodman explains that at-home facial massage is also effective at improving appearance. “We offer Biologique facials, which are more European-based and it’s a lot about lymphatic drainage and facial massage which increases blood flow and removes toxins,” she says. “So it’s a part of the puzzle. It’s not going to make you not have wrinkles and not have sagging, but it is absolutely beneficial whether you do it with a facialist or on your own.”

When it comes to at-home tools, Goodman is a fan of microstamping but offers a word of caution. “I think microstamping with the correct products can be very game-changing, but my concern is that those microneedle pens that are sold on the off-market that are 1.5 to 2.5mm in depth can be very damaging. In-office, a 2mm depth is only able to be done by a medical practitioner, and even then we have to be really careful that we don’t scratch or scar the skin.”

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