For and against Botox: peer pressure to go under the needle. Two women over 50 share their views
June 5, 2015 | By:

Jane, 53, is under pressure from friends to have Botox but insists she won’t. Eliza, 51, says it’s just part of her beauty routine and as a single woman it’s essential

Beauty_Botox_Peer_pressure Stocksy 620

Botox and cosmetic improvements are a part of a big industry in the UK. But should you do it?

Jane, 53, is under pressure from friends to have Botox but insists she won’t. Eliza, 51, says it’s just part of her beauty routine and as a single woman it’s essential.

Jane, 53, estate agent. Wouldn’t have Botox

Someone told me I would look better with Botox (I know, how rude…). It was news to me! But I wouldn’t. I don’t like the Botoxed look.

But when somebody else then said “most of your friends have had it”, I realised how many women are having it done and not telling.

For example, I heard that an acquaintance had been spotted in a waiting room for her Botox appointment. But when I ran into her and asked about it she vigorously protested that she didn’t have Botox.

Then another friend (yes, it’s a recurring theme among my circle) said, “Oh God, you’re going to be the only who hasn’t had it. You’re going to be looking so much older than the rest of us!”

It does fell now, at our age, that everyone is doing it. Maybe womenfeel they’ll be left behind and end up wrinkly when everyone else is looking smooth.

Why do you think women are secretive about having Botox?

Some are secretive about it and some aren’t, and the ones who aren’t get irritated with those who lie about it.

They also encourage you to have it done because then they feel it’s OK and justified.

The ones who lie want people to think they’ve aged better than their peers.

Do you think your friends look younger after Botox or not?

I don’t think they look 30. To me, they look like a 50-something who has had Botox.

Most of the time you can tell and in my opinion it doesn’t look good. Your facial expression changes and I would even say that with that, your character changes.

What do you think of how you look at 53?

I don’t think I’ve aged particularly well, not nearly as well as other people. I’ve got lots of lines around my eyes and mouth.

But I don’t mind my wrinkles or think they look ugly. They look normal for a 53-year-old. But I suppose it’s going to look less normal if everyone is having Botox. It will be very obvious when we get to 60 who has had it and who hasn’t.

How far is too far in improving your appearance?

I haven’t gone grey yet and I don’t dye my hair but I would. That doesn’t seem so invasive. It’s like wearing make-up or nice clothes. Whereas Botox seems a step too far.

Maybe I feel this way because I’m married and happy with my life. If I was single and looking for a husband or boyfriend, I might think again. Maybe I’d have it then.

How would your husband react if you said you were getting Botox?

He’d say do what you want, but you’re mad. It’s not his thing at all. But I wouldn’t: I’m too much of a coward, and I’d be frightened that I’d look like I had it done.

Beauty_Botox. Photo from Flickr Steve Terrell 620
Eliza, 51, interior designer. Has Botox regularly

Where have you had Botox?

On my forehead, around my eyes and on my chin. I have a crease between my eyes that makes me look angry, and I didn’t want that to be people’s first impression of me.

Also, I do not want to become a sad old woman with a mouth that turns down so I have a little bit injected in my chin to stop this.

Why do you have it?

I look at myself in the mirror and imagine everybody noticing everything. I believe in looking after myself and looking my best and if there is something out there that can help then I am going to try it.

How far is too far in improving your appearance?

I would never have injections in my lips as the results are horrendous, nor would I have collagen injections in the lines that run from my nose to my mouth, even though I don’t like them.

I’m lucky I don’t have baggy eyes as I would be tempted by an eye lift but hate the idea of going under the knife just for vanity. I would be too frightened to have a facelift.

There are levels of what each person thinks is acceptable and unnoticeable. I certainly notice people who have had too much work done.

They start with Botox, then fillers in their cheeks that end up looking like golf balls, and then the famous trout pout – no thanks. People get addicted and don’t know where to draw the line.

How vain do you consider yourself?

It is vain, but for me it’s personal maintenance along with dying my hair, having my nails done and keeping fit. Botox is now just another part of my grooming regime.

Botox achieves something with a needle that no amount of exercise, healthy food or vitamins can ever do. If you’re impatient it’s an immediate fix.

I’m single so I don’t have the comfort of a loving husband to fall back on, who wouldn’t notice if my face looked like an ill-fitting cushion cover. I’m in competition with younger women and believe me it’s a dog eat dog world out there.

Would you persuade friends to have Botox?

I wouldn’t persuade anyone to have Botox. I only have a small amount done, and obviously I hope that it will be all right. I admire anyone who goes against the trend and who really knows what we are putting in our faces.

New treatments come out all the time, though, and if something else came along I would be happy to try it instead of Botox.