Many people, upon learning about Botox injections and the fact that it is made from a “purified” form of botulinum toxin which paralyzes muscles, well, they get a little creeped-out. Despite the fact that we see with our very own eyes how cosmetic surgery in its many varieties are creating a ghoulish subculture of altered humans who have no expression or understandable experiences mapped on their faces, and a weird android-like plasticized look about them, we still feel somehow compelled to look into it. Anything is better than wrinkles in our society. And maybe we’ll be one of the lucky ones, who doesn’t end up looking quite so freakish after getting work done. Maybe it won’t cause side-effects that other people have suffered: dimpling due to thinning skin, migraines, flu-like symptoms, nausea, leakage into other areas which can cause them to droop, injecting too much or too deep into the neck area causing difficulty swallowing… (as far as long term effects, we’ll learn about those eventually). And then in three months, you get to pay bucks to do it again! Those with an “allergic reaction”, may subsequently find they no longer get any results. And suddenly there seems even more wrinkles or sagging. After that you must look into other procedures, likely lasers, threads, or the knife, getting caught up in trying to stay one step ahead, while often just trying to recapture the image of a lost youth, that shined like a health and joy from within… anyway…. Maybe those dense blankish stares will become a permanent part of the Barbie-doll chic that every man desires. Or provide necessary advantage for the Texas Hold’em card shark wannabe. One day so few wrinkles will exist, we can make them a trend again.
Okay, I’m not so completely snobbish as to discount the whole concept of the “face-lift”. And it’s not to say that I don’t have my own areas, like those so called “brow furrows” for example, that I wouldn’t mind making go away. But first of all, I think of them more as “thinking”, “deep squinting” or “tension” lines. This occurs in the area located between the eyebrows and, along with the crow’s feet, frown lines, and mouth, are one of the most commonly Botoxed area. But I look at it as an area that needs to relax and let go; like any part of my face, from my jaw to my forehead, that holds tension. I know by doing massage, I can mush a face into jelly similar as one would do with muscles (with more care to the delicate facial tissues). Utilizing warm stones and therapeutic quality essential oils. Cranial-sacral therapy and acupressure can do wonders. But the ultimate non-surgical treatment seems to be acupuncture, and even that can be costly. And so in the spirit of making information available to all, including equal access to looking and feeling good despite one’s ability to pay…or one’s ability understanding “The Secret” enough to manifest wads of cash for your coffers to pay for people to fix you up…I’ll gift you this free of charge…
The Broke Girl’s Guide to a No Botox Party
It’s real easy, and in a few simple steps I’ll teach you to rid yourself of those harsh unsightly lines between the brows and much tension in the face. Actually, you can compare it to plucking one’s brows, in the sense that it takes almost no time or energy, and for best results you should do it at least once a week and any time you want to relieve random hairs…I mean stress that accumulates in the area. I’m giving you one powerful acupuncture point to start, as our goal is to keep this easy and realistic while achieving maximum benefit.
1) Purchase disposable acupuncture needles. If you live near a “China Town”, that’s a good bet. If not, or if you prefer the slightly thinner Japanese needles which are nice for the face (and sensitive points), you can check online. Yes, acupuncture needles are restricted for use by qualified practitioners as determined by the state in which they reside. All acupuncture devices are sold to qualified practitioners only. I’m not saying that you might find some without too much difficulty… but if that ends up being the case… get 36 – 40 gauge (Chinese) or 1 – 3 gauge (Japanese) in 1/2 inch to start.
2) Don’t be squeamish, this isn’t all that complicating. The needles come in a handy “applicator” tube which make them easy to use. Just peal back the paper seal, carefully remove the needle from the packaging while keeping it in the tube, remove the plastic that locks the needle in place in the tube (or it twists loose) and use your pointer finger to keep the needle in place while holding the tube between your index and thumb. If the needle falls out and gets dirty or you poke it in incorrectly and want to try again, it’s best to use a clean needle. And once used, never re-use the same one. If you are a complete newbie, I recommend you at least go to your local acupuncture school and get a few treatments so you are familiar/comfortable with the whole needling concept. You can also try to get access to an instructional DVD so you have something to go by.
3) Find the point at the vertical mid-line of the forehead, above the bridge of the nose and directly center between your eyebrows. This is the Yintang point, considered an “Extra” point, which is used for anxiety, stress, calming, clearing the mind, clearing sinuses, relieving headaches. You can also put it slightly higher, at the “Third Eye”*. Squeeze the skin together, place the bottom of the tube against your skin at a slightly upward angle, tap the butt of the needle with your forefinger ‘til the needle enters the skin. Pull the tube away, then with the thumb and forefinger again take the needle and if it needs it give it a bit more push (noting the point is quite superficial since this area has little fat), then make a gesture of twisting the needle in a clockwise fashion (clockwise as if you were a acupuncturist facing you).
That’s It! Leave it in for five or so minutes. Dispose of your needles properly.** Don’t be scared if it bleeds a little; it feels good when it lets go and…kinda micro-similar relief as to getting your period. It’s nice to feel that pressure being released, and the face relaxing, and the furrows less intense and deep…all without squirting disgusting weirdness into your face. So whether you believe in acupuncture or not, the idea of “bleeding” or releasing pressure in something by poking a whole in it (as microscopic a whole as it is) has a physics kind of logic to it, no? The act also has the effect, as mentioned in the “Ice, Heat or Bloodletting…” article, of moving stagnant blood, creating increased circulation, feeding and relaxing contracted muscles and skin, and thereby giving one that natural, non-surgical face-lift people have been looking for. Acu-facials aren’t so much about getting rid of wrinkles, it’s actually almost a side-effect. If you’re poor, and don’t mind a little more therapy and a little less quick-fix cover-up or symptom relief, this might be for you. Check it out, enjoy, learn and explore! And if you become rich and famous after the fact because you looked so damn hot and felt so good, remember who pointed you in the right direction. Please send the money direct – we’ve got PayPal. Love you long time. xo
P.S. If you are too scared of needles or unable to acquire them, try this: Clean face with the mildest natural soap. Put a mild natural face cream on finger tips. Massage your face. Do whatever feels good. Go deep in the jowls. Move across your eyebrow up and apart. Do acupressure on areas like the upper inside underside of the brow (use thumbs), the temples, cheeks… Don’t forget your neck (front and back and under the chin), tops of head, and acu-points on the ear (just rub the whole ear and hold pressure on sensitive points). Put a washcloth under hot water, ring out, lay down, place on face. Relax. When it’s done being hot, wipe face with cloth. Put a drop of peppermint oil in palms, rub them together slightly, (careful not to get oil in eyes) cover nostrils with cupped hands and inhale…Ahhh. You can do this after your needle work as well to compliment the therapy.
* from Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit: Yintang is the energy point, tianmu is the third eye. Tianmu in Chinese means “heaven eye”. The spot where tianmu is located may be at yintang or it may be slightly above it. Everyone has a yintang energy point, but not everyone has a third eye. If a person’s yintang is “open”, his yintang is also the third eye. If it is open a point above yintang, we can also say his yintang is a third eye too… Although the centre of the third eye may be a point above yintang the area of the third eye covers the yintang energy point too.
** If you order your needles online, most web sites also offer Bio-Hazard containers to dispose of these needles safely. Get the one which you can actually send in the mail once it is full.
note: I am not a medical doctor nor doctor of acupuncture. My 1000s of hours of bodywork work and training, 1000s of acupuncture sessions, guidance from a few masters, as well as crashing many acupuncture school classes, one, in theory, some insight. Of course, there are many rules and regulations all in our best interests (meaning, seek your doctors advice) since we are but lowly creatures who might hurt ourselves by, say, sticking a needle in our eye, or doing something otherwise idiotic if someone didn’t prevent us from doing it…I can only say that everything you do after reading this article, you do at your own risk. And for the hoity-toity practitioner who thinks this is blasphemous -encouraging someone to place one needle into their forehead over pumping poison into it- well….