What to know about new TikTok beauty trend ‘Barbie Botox’: From effects to cost

Entertainment

A new trend called “Barbie Botox” has gained popularity in the TikTok cosmetic surgery community as many people are getting the procedure done to elongate the neck and shrink the shoulders, in order to mimic the looks of Barbie, though the procedure also has clinical benefits, like pain and migraine relief.
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – APRIL 25: (L-R) Ryan Gosling and Margo Robbie attend the red carpet promoting the upcoming film “Barbie” at the Warner Bros. Pictures Studio presentation during CinemaCon, the official convention of the National Association of Theatre Owners, at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace on April 25, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Greg Doherty/WireImage)
Key Facts
  • Many creators who’ve gotten the procedure have shared their before and afters, like TikToker Malibutoast, who said her “beautiful, long neck” wasn’t from yoga or getting massages, but from the Botox.
  • Clinically known as Trapezius Botox (or “Trap Tox”), before being done for cosmetic reasons, “Barbie Botox” was used to improve posture, relieve tension in the neck and help with migraines, according to Ann Arbor Plastic Surgery.
  • Botox is injected into the trapezius muscles and works by blocking the nerve signal that causes the muscles to become overworked, and the procedure only takes a few minutes to complete.
  • The Barbie look comes in because when the Botox relaxes the muscles, muscle atrophy happens, which causes the shoulder area to slim down and results in the elongation of the neck, according to the Sisu Aesthetics Clinic.
  • Like most cosmetic procedures, the full effect of Barbie Botox isn’t evident immediately after the procedure, as it takes two weeks to see noticeable results and two months for the full effects to kick in, according to Australia-based Skin Clinic Robina.
  • The effects generally last between four to six months, and factors like metabolism and daily lifestyle routines can affect the procedure’s longevity.
  • Prices for the procedure typically vary, based on how many units of Botox are injected—Washington-based Gallery of Cosmetic Surgery charges $219 for 20 units, $299 for 30 units and an additional $14 for each unit after that.
  • The number of units needed depends on the size of each person’s muscles, though it usually takes the Gallery of Cosmetic Surgery injectors between 50 and 75 units per side.
Big number

9.4 million. That’s how many views the hashtag #barbiebotox has on TikTok. The hashtag #traptox has 22.5 million views on the platform, and they’re both filled with creators and cosmetic clinics alike sharing the results of the procedure.

Key background

The trapezius muscle is a large, flat muscle that starts at the base of the neck and extends across the shoulders into the middle of the back. It helps move the neck, shoulders, arms, torso and head, and it took its name because it’s in the shape of a trapezoid.

The upper trapezius helps shrug the shoulders, lift the arms and assists with neck movement, like turning, tilting and rotating.

The middle trapezius stabilizes the shoulders when the arms move and pulls them back when the arms are lifted behind the body.

Margot Robbie, the star of “Barbie,” posing for a picture. GETTY IMAGES

The lower trapezius is responsible for the “un-shrug” movement and stabilizes the spine during movements like bending and twisting.

Strain to the trapezius can be caused by overuse, an accident or strenuous exercise, and can result in loss of muscle function, swelling, discoloration, less muscle strength or pain with movement, according to WebMD.

Though Botox can be used to relieve this tension, if done incorrectly, it can lead to potentially fatal results.

Anil Shah, a board-certified plastic surgeon told MDLinx the trapezius muscles are “near vital respiratory and central nerve control centers—one of the few places that can lead to fatal outcomes in Botox,” and warned against going to unqualified injectors who aren’t board certified.

Tangent

On an episode of reality show The Kardashians, Kim Kardashian revealed she got the procedure done and that half of her neck was “probably Botoxed.” She told her singing coach that she was unable to perform or use her neck muscles at the moment due to the effects of the neck Botox.

This article was first published on forbes.com and all figures are in USD.

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