Published: 12/01/2015 - Updated: 05/16/2018
Author: MSc. Miriam Reyes
Using snake venom as a natural remedy is nothing new. In fact, Traditional Chinese Medicine is known for using this type of venom. It can be used to heal certain types of skin conditions, like rashes, or even some types of diseases. In recent years, however, snake venom has become more and more popular in cosmetic uses, and has started to appear in creams.
Snake venom as an alternative to Botox
Botox is actually a toxin that, thanks to science, is currently used to treat and reduce expression lines for a lot of people that want to look younger. Applying it requires an injection, however, and it can also create side effects, like headaches, dizziness, droopy eyelids, and more. That’s why a lot of people prefer to find another alternative.
Snake venom seems to be the perfect alternative for reducing wrinkles. It is believed to help relax muscles, which can prevent the appearance of expression lines while also softening wrinkles that are already present on the skin. The majority of products can be applied to the face, neck, and other areas of the body, although you should consider the quality of the product before you choose it.
Although this is an alternative to Botox, it is important that you don’t erroneously believe that it will produce the same results. Snake venom has a superficial effect.
How does snake venom work?
Snake venom prevents muscles from contracting, promoting relaxation which helps reduce wrinkles. However, because it is applied externally it may require more constant applications.
Often times the primary function of snake venom creams is to moisturize. It can be considered a good ally for dry skin, although that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be able to stop using other moisturizing creams. Some people think the cost of this product does not justify the results.
Unlike Botox, snake venom is not injected. It does not deeply penetrate the skin, and you can’t compare the results to a Botox injection. According to some peoples’s experiences, results are seen after constant use, but should not be expected immediately. Results are estimated to be most visible three days after continual use.
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These results can be quite good, but you can’t compare them with those of Botox. It does seem to have less side effects, however, so this might be a good option for you, and unlike Botox, it isn’t a painful procedure.
We should also mention that it seems to work only temporarily. This means that once you stop using the product, the results will disappear.
Synthetic venom, the most common ingredient
Currently the effects of snake venom have been imitated by developing a “synthetic” venom. This compound has action similar, making it more easily found and accessible. The majority of snake venom creams contain this version, although we should mention that the quality of product is noticeable in the results. A lot of people agree that synthetic snake venom does not have the same potency as real snake venom.
If products using snake venom are useful for you, the formula is believed to be quite influential. It seems as if combining snake venom, synthetic or natural, with certain vitamins, like A and C, provides better results. However, more studies are needed, and we recommend getting a product from a trustworthy laboratory if you’re going to choose this alternative.
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Safety of snake venom
Just by the name you can see that snake venom that probably shouldn’t be trusted too much, and it will probably set off some alarms. But if applied topically, it doesn’t seem to have too many side effects.
We recommend that you do not use this cream when under stress, as this could tense the muscles in the face, thereby promoting the appearance of expression lines. This means that it will create the opposite effect of what you are looking for.
Experts are asking themselves whether it could possibly reach the blood stream and cause severe side effects, however some say that this is not possible. We recommend using this product cautiously however, following the directions for each product without applying too much.
Revised by: Dra. Loredana Lunadei on 05/16/2018
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