The Different Types of Neurotoxins, Explained

Neurotoxins such as Botox, Xeomin, and Dysport can make your skin look smooth and youthful. We dive into the different types of neurotoxins here.

4.4 million botox procedures take place every year. Some of these are for cosmetic reasons, while others are for health-related reasons like chronic migraines. 

Regardless, there is no denying that Botox is the most widely used and known neurotoxin. Dysport and Xeomin, two other neurotoxins with similar anti-aging effects like Botox, are not as widely known.

That is why we’ve compiled everything you need to help you decide between Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin for your skin smoothing treatment. Learn more below!

What Are Neurotoxins?

Neurotoxins are injectable solutions made with an active ingredient like Botox, Dysport, or Xeomin. Neurotoxin solutions enter the skin to block nerve impulses sent to facial muscles.

This causes facial muscles to relax. As an effect wrinkles formed from natural facial expressions- frowning, squinting, concentrating, and more smooth out.

There are over 1,000 chemicals known to have neurotoxic effects on the human body. These range from botox to pesticides and ethyl alcohol to heroin. Some neurotoxins enter via external environmental sources.

Endogenous neurotoxins are the kind produced by the body.

The neurotoxins in these three branded treatments stem from the same toxin, botulinum. 

What Are Neurotoxins Used For?

Neurotoxins injections are the most popular cosmetic procedure in the United States. This is because they are fast, non-invasive, easy, relatively painless, and more affordable than other options, with the average cost per treatment ranging from $300-$600. 

Neurotoxins primarily prevent aging by causing muscles to relax instead of contract. They are also effective at reducing and reversing wrinkles due to aging. 

The primary use of neurotoxin botulinum is wrinkle reduction. However, some unconventional uses of neurotoxins include:

  • Chronic migraines
  • Overactive bladders
  • Eyelid spasms
  • Crossed eyes 
  • Reducing foot pain
  • Excessive hand sweating

For this guide, we’ll be discussing the effectiveness of Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin for wrinkle reduction. Keep reading below to learn about the benefits, pros, and cons of these treatments. 

The Benefits of Neurotoxins

The FDA cleared the use of neurotoxins as a method to reduce and reverse wrinkles. They are relatively painless, and fast and results reveal themselves in a short timespan. 

Risks of Neurotoxins

Although neurotoxins are so commonly used, they are still made of a lethal toxin causing minute muscle relaxation. It is possible that more serious complications arise like systemic toxicity, vision problems, trouble speaking and swallowing, loss of bladder control, or breathing problems.

These complications are rare, but they do occur.

The Three Most Popular Types of Neurotoxins

Botox has become the colloquial term for the neurotoxin botulinum type A. However there are many other brands of botulinum type A. We investigate the effectiveness, benefits, and risks of these three brands of botulinum type A:

1. Botox

2. Dysport

3. Xeomin

Learn more below!

1. Botox

Botox is a 2002 FDA-approved temporary aesthetic treatment. Botox owns about 80% of the market share for neurotoxin botulinum type A, which is why the brand Botox is synonymous with botulinum type A. 

It is used to treat forehead lines, crow’s feet, laugh lines, and more. Botox can also be administered to other parts of the body. It is sometimes used on the neck to target wrinkles and sagging jowls.

Pros of Botox

  • Effective 
  • Widely available
  • Results in 3-5 days
  • Lasts 3-6 months depending on bodies reaction
  • Especially useful for tiny areas

Cons of Botox

  • Contains protective proteins- patients may develop antibodies to these proteins which would reduce the effectiveness of each treatment
  • Foreign matter entering the body
  • Swelling and redness at the injection site

All botulinum type A products contain what is a lethal toxin. However, when administered in the correct amounts, which is done with Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin, it is safe. It is very rare to develop the complication botulinum toxicity which is when the injection spreads beyond the intended injection site.

2. Dysport

Dysport is another FDA-approved botulinum type A injection. 
It is designed only to treat glabellar lines. Glabellar lines are the vertical lines between the eyebrows that are commonly a result of frowning or stern facial expressions. 

Botox vs Dysport

The differences between Botox and Dysport are trivial. Dysport is five years younger than Botox, so if you prefer a heritage treatment, Botox might be the way to go.

Dysport also has a lower molecular weight, which makes it less potent. However, this is also good as it means the rate of diffusion is higher. So if you want to larger areas, with fewer injections, Dysport is better. 

Other than those differences, Dysport and Botox are the same on terms such as cost, application, tolerance, and procedure.

Pros of Dysport

  • Generally longer lasting than Botox
  • Results in 24 hours
  • Results up to 5 months
  • Good for last-minute treatments


Cons of Dysport

  • Not safe for people with dairy allergies
  • Less potent than Botox


3. Xeomin

This form of botulinum type A was FDA approved in 2011. It is free of the protein that patients may develop antibodies to. 

Botox vs Xeomin

Because Xeomin does not have any complexing proteins. This means it doesn’t require refrigeration like Botox and Dysport, which makes application easier and more comfortable. The cost and results are about the same as Botox, although it is said that sometimes fewer applications of Xeomin are needed to achieve the desired result. 

Pros of Xeomin

  • The injection is slightly more comfortable as the formula is stored at room temperature
  • Useful for patients who have shown resistance to Botox and Dysport
  • Fewer treatments needed 
  • Cleared to correct muscle spasms and excessive drooling


Cons of Xeomin

  • Take the longest result window of 5-7 days to show up

Are Neurotoxins Right or Me?

If you’re fed up with stubborn wrinkles and want to improve your appearance, neurotoxins can be an effective choice. Always speak with your doctor to ensure they are safe for you. And always find a reliable, trustworthy doctor to administer the injectables, not whoever is the cheapest.

The good thing about neurotoxins is they are impermanent and non-invasive. You can see which brand gives you the best results with no side effects. 

Contact us today to learn more about which treatment is best for you!

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