Burning Question: How Many Units of Botox Do I Need?


Botox is one of the most renowned products on the market when it comes to addressing wrinkles and fine lines. It’s also notable as an effective way to prevent the development of these concerns. Because of its name-brand recognition, Botox has become especially popular and one of the most requested services at The Skin Center By CPS. During initial consultations, many questions are asked. Probably the most common question we are asked is, “how many units of Botox do I need.” While there is no universal answer for everyone, as every condition and need is different, it is possible to provide a general idea of what to expect and how many units of Botox may be required.

Your First Time

In general, you will receive fewer Botox units the first time you come in for a treatment. The reason for that is the team of master nurse injectors will want to assess how your body responds to the injection. The best way to determine this is to administer a conservative dosage first, allowing the product to take full effect, then reassess after 2 weeks to determine if additional units are required to help achieve your desired correction. Most patients receive just one or two units per injection site spacing them around the desired area. Thereafter, once you have achieved your goal of correction you will be advised to schedule your next session in approximately 3 months to maintain the effect.

Retreatment appointments are quicker since the dosage and specific injection areas have been determined. Of course, should you have additional requests, or wish to address new areas the master injectors will gladly accommodate.

Forehead Treatment

The biggest factor in determining the number of units required is based on the actual injection site. The forehead generally requires more than other areas of the face, based on the large area, depth of the wrinkles, the strength of the frontalis, procerus, and corrugator muscles of the forehead, and of course how your body responds to neuromodulation will all factor into how many you will require. Typically there are five injection sites on your forehead that are treated. For many, four units per injection site (or 20 units total) will be sufficient. You may need upwards of 50 units or as few as 10. Everyone responds differently, there is no one size fits all.

If you have rather deep glabellar lines (aka forehead furrows), the number of injection sites may increase, as well as the number of Botox units required to provide a smoother appearance. Schedule your in-person consultation with The Skin Center By CPS for a more accurate estimate of units required to meet your desired correction.

Eye Corner Treatment

The delicate eye area often shows signs of aging well in advance of other facial features. The thin layers of skin reveal fine lines, creases, and wrinkles, better known as crow’s feet. The muscles around the eyes work hard to protect them; repetitive squinting, smiling or other gestures eventually lead to crow’s feet. Botox will help soften and smooth them out. Usually, six injection sites per eye are fanned out to treat the area. Eye treatments are unique to each eye, as well as to each person.

It is common that one eye may require a little more Botox than the other, ordinarily, the left side of your face has a few more wrinkles (due to driving – the driver’s side window allows more light, therefore more squinting). Some patients may only require 4 units or fewer per site whereas others require 5 units per injection site, (equaling 30 units). Just as each of us is unique, so is the amount of Botox we require.

Between the Eyes Treatment

The area between your eyebrows is another common problem area. The corrugator and procerus muscles can cause a “V” shaped crease and squint lines. Treatment is based on how the muscles between your brows animate,(raise and lower your brows, make an angry face, squint) the depth and shape of the wrinkle determine how best to put them temporarily to rest. There are usually five injection spots around and between the eyebrows. Each injection site might receive around 5 units, (a total of 25 units) for your eyebrows. Just remember that your condition will determine how many units are required. So you might need more or fewer units than what is average.

Around the Mouth Treatments

This is where the number of units is most difficult to generalize. While offering an estimate is possible, it’s best to schedule an in-person consultation for more exact numbers based on your personal needs. To receive a slimmer jawline, or treat TMJ, you may require anywhere from 25 to 50 units per side. This is due to the amount of tissue being treated, the size and strength of the masseter muscles.

Additionally, you can treat the (orbicularis oris) muscle around the mouth to relax the upper lip (think lip flip). To elevate the corners of your lips and mouth typically 2 to 4 units are needed, while chin dimples can be addressed with 2 units per injection site (usually, there are 3 injection sites for chin dimples).

Other Common Areas

The forehead, frown lines, and crow’s feet are by far the most common target areas, but they are not the only locations where Botox can be used. A brow lift, for example, is a rather common target area, easily treated with just one injection point per brow. Each area may require anywhere from 2 to 4 units. Many clients have the brow lift performed along with the frown lines, but each patient is different.

If you have what is known as bunny lines, which are thin lines on either side of the nose, you may need around 3 units per side. Lines around the nostrils of the nose often need between 2 and 4 units, while correcting issues directly under the nose are around 2 units.

If you want to target the neck, Botox is a highly effective treatment (to isolate platysmal bands). There may be around 12 injection sites, but this area will vary based on your needs. The number of units doesn’t need to be high, though. Usually, 1 or 2 units per injection site will likely suffice.

Schedule Your Botox Consultation Today

The information provided above is a general guideline for how much Botox might be required for various areas of the face. However, everyone is different. Your skin type, the severity of wrinkles, metabolism are all different from the next person, as is the area you’d like to address. Someone looking to prevent the development of wrinkles versus someone who wants to reduce the appearance of existing fine lines will likely receive a different number of units. A quick calculation as to how many units of Botox do I need? Often expressed as 10 units per decade of age. 30 years equals 30 units, 50 years equals 50 units, etc., this is of course a generalization and may not be adequate to treat your needs.

That is why the best way to determine what is best for you is to schedule your in-person consultation today. The team here at The Skin Center By CPS will work with you in identifying the optimal number of units for your desired outcome. And then, of course, it can always be fine-tuned and adjusted for future treatments. For personalized information and specifics, there’s never been a better time to schedule your Botox consultation than today.