Dysport vs. Botox: Determining the Best Cosmetic Injectable for You

By Charisse Miller
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Aging is a natural process of life. Although it’s a beautiful one, sometimes, you just can’t help but wish that time would stop.

Thanks to science, it’s possible to maintain your youthful appearance. Many are hitting the pause button on their aging process by turning to lunchtime cosmetic procedures — with Dysport and Botox being two of the most popular options available.

These injectables are great non-surgical solutions for people who notice that simple skincare can’t erase their wrinkles or fine lines. Both Dysport and Botox add more volume to the face, which reduces the signs of lines and wrinkles. They can also help contour parts of your body.

While these two are similar in many ways, it’s also always a conversation of Dysport vs. Botox: which option is better?

Botox vs. Dysport: What’s What?

Botox (also known as Botulinum Toxin Type A) is a neuromodulator produced from the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. When used in controlled amounts, Botox can remove or reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. This cosmetic fix blocks the nerve signals of the face’s muscles to the brain.

By preventing nerve signals from reaching the muscle, Botox induces flaccid paralysis, which leads to little to no muscle movement. Anyone can have it.

So, what sets Botox apart from other cosmetic injectables? Formulated with protective proteins, Botox is an FDA-approved solution to crow’s feet around the eyes, laugh lines and horizontal forehead lines. Apart from aesthetic solutions, Botox can also treat cervical dystonia, hyperhidrosis, overactive bladder and chronic migraines.

On the other hand, Dysport is the name for another form of Botulinum Toxin Type A. It has the same primary active ingredients as Botox but with a dash of proteins that shift the product’s molecular weight to a lower scale. As a result, Dysport is a lighter and less potent injectable, which is great for treating larger areas like your forehead.

For some people, Dysport is a “gentler” alternative to Botox since they experience a less ‘frozen’ aesthetic. Similar to Botox, Dysport is FDA-approved to treat facial wrinkles.

Dysport vs. Botox: How are They Different?

In general, Botox and Dysport aren’t too different from each other. They only differ at a molecular level since they have different structures. Since they are manufactured by different companies, this leads to different dosages, formulations and costs.

Both products fall under the Botulinum Toxin Type A umbrella, but each injectable features protein blends that affect the efficacy and diffusion of the product.

Another “argument” in the Dysport vs. Botox conversation is the approved use for each product.

For instance, Botox is used to treat different types of wrinkles, which include laugh lines, forehead wrinkles and crow’s feet. On the other hand, Dysport corrects glabellar lines and the frown lines between your eyebrows, as well as severe frown lines.

Some people also experience quicker results with Dysport. Patients notice a reduction in fine lines in just two to three days. With Botox, the results take around a week to appear. Both Botox and Dysport reveal their results at around two weeks.

Also, a single unit of Botox is three times more potent than a unit of Dysport. But this doesn’t mean that Botox works better than Dysport. Instead, you might need more Dysport to achieve the same effect as Botox. To make up for this, many cosmetic centers sell Dysport at a more affordable price compared to Botox. That way, you’ll spend the same amount of money and still enjoy the same results.

How Long Does it Last? Dysport vs. Botox

Dysport can last between four to five months after each treatment. There are several ways to prolong your results, which include good skincare habits, using anti-aging products and scheduling touch-up injection sessions.

On the other hand, Botox can last for up to three to four months. Some patients might enjoy the effects of Botox longer (four to six months) while others might have a shorter experience (up to two months only). If this is your first time, you might also notice that Botox doesn’t last as long, but it will last longer on your second treatment.

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Photo by Diana Polekhina on Unsplash

Is Botox or Dysport More Expensive?

If you consider the price per unit, Dysport is more affordable than Botox. However, you’ll need three units of Dysport to achieve the same effect as a single unit of Botox.  Dysport is more affordable, but if you want to even out the results, you might be better off with a Botox procedure. This depends on what you need, as well as the results you want to see.

What About Side Effects?

Both Dysport and Botox are painless but you might still feel a slight pressure once your physician injects either one into your facial muscles. Once the procedure is done, you can leave.

Right after the injection, you could experience a few side effects. Dysport and Botox have common side effects, which include the following:

  • Headache
  • Pain on the injection site
  • Eyelid swelling or drooping
  • Muscle pain
  • Redness
  • Bruising
  • Numbness

These side effects tend to go away on their own without any serious issues. There are more serious side effects. For example, serious side effects for Dysport include upper respiratory infections, nausea and sinusitis while Botox has a slight (yet very rare) risk of paralysis. For both cosmetic injectables, there is also a risk of botulinum toxicity.

Give yourself some peace of mind by talking to your doctor. They can walk you through the procedure, explain the pros and cons and help you prepare for potential side effects.

Dysport vs. Botox: Which is Better?

The best way to determine which option is better is by asking your doctor. All cosmetic injectables have similar efficacy and safety profiles, but the subtle differences between the two could make either Dysport or Botox better for you. To find out which is better, consult with your physician. They can also address your specific goals, as well as help you choose between Dysport and Botox.

The Bottom Line

A discussion on Dysport vs. Botox is like a discussion on Coke vs. Pepsi — they’re similar and a bit different from each other. The dosing units set both injectables apart, which is a technical point. In some cases, Dysport diffuses more, but both injectables are excellent at helping you maintain a youthful appearance.

Talk to your doctor first to learn more about your options. Make sure you work with a trusted physician so you can enjoy the best results, no matter what your choice is.

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