Considering botox? Before you do, try these 7 tweakment alternatives instead

20 June 2024
By Fashion Quarterly

The complexion-enhancing secrets of those in the know.


By now, most of us have heard of (or tried) Botox. While it’s a staple in many-a-woman’s regimen, there’s now plenty of other treatments or “tweakments” celebrities, models and everyday women are seeking out to rejuvenate their skin and attempt to turn back the hands of time. Here are some on offer in New Zealand.

7 alternative botox treatments fro anti-ageing:

Fire & Ice Facial

What it is: Known as the Red Carpet or Hollywood Facial, this treatment consists of two masks. First, a heated mask, which uses glycolic acid and retinol to brighten and resurface. Niacinamide is another ingredient which aims to increase microcirculation and blood flow under the skin. The second is a cooling mask containing aloe barbadensis leaf juice (aloe vera) and mentha piperita (peppermint) leaf extract which provides
the cooling sensation — it’s particularly cool when coupled with ice globes.

Results it promises: Red-carpet-ready skin!

Time it takes: 40 minutes with no downtime, meaning you can still attend your special event that night.

Best practice: Repeat every three to four weeks.

Where: Clinic 42.

Cost: $250.

O2 Lift

What it is: A treatment designed to deliver boosted brightness and glow in dull skin with “foam burst technology”. So what exactly does that mean? Well, it’s a fancy name for a peel that infuses the skin with oxygen, plant-derived stem cells, peptides and a high dose of enzymatic botanicals.

Results it promises: Refreshed and rejuvenated skin with an instant boost and glow. It does this by purifying clogged pores and supporting collagen production which in turn works to brighten a dull complexion.

Time it takes: 45 minutes.

Best practice: A one-off for when you seek extra glow.

Where: About Face.

Cost: $229.

Dermapen 4

What it is: A micro-needling skin treatment to stimulate collagen, and improve the look of wrinkles, pigmentation and scarring. Using the skin’s natural healing response to light trauma, Dermapen works to create new cell growth.

Results it promises: Overall skin renewal and improvement of tone and texture.

Time it takes: After a cleanse, the actual needling takes around 15 minutes. No anaesthetic is required.

Best practice: A course of three to six treatments.

Where: About Face.

Cost: $399 for one treatment, including a Dermaceuticals Hyla Active 3D Sculptured Mask. A course of three is $1050.

Ultraformer III

What it is: Known as the ultimate Hollywood Lift, this non-surgical treatment delivers results — with no downtime. Utilising ultrasound energy, it works to lift, tighten and contour the face, offering an alternative to surgery and Botox. So how does it work? Well, low amounts of micro- focussed ultrasound energy are delivered at precise depths, without damaging the skin surface. Micro-focussed energy creates heat, which stimulates tissue remodelling and collagen.

Results it promises: The neck, eyelids, brow, chin and jawline can be lifted. Skin is tightened; wrinkles reduced.

Time it takes: As little as 30 minutes. Plus there’s no downtime, and minimal side effects.

Best practice: The three courses of treatment should be spaced one month apart.

Where: Exclusively at About Face’s Mt Eden clinic.

Cost: $850.


What it is: Sculptra contains a biostimulator called PLLA (poly-lactic-acid). When injected into facial tissues it works with your body to stimulate and revitalise natural collagen production, meaning the skin starts to regain its structure and volume. And yes, that means wrinkles should be plumped out! It’s placed mostly over the cheek and outer portions of the face which results in a firming and lifting effect of the face and jowls.

Results it promises: Developing slowly over time, it provides subtle, gradual changes. Depending on your skin, there can be minimal swelling, redness, bruising.

Time it takes: 60-minutes. Results can last up to 25 months after the last treatment.

Best practice: For best results, book a course of two to three treatments approximately six weeks apart.

Where: Clinic 42.

Cost: $800.


What it is: Known as a bio remodelling product, this treatment works by slowly releasing hyaluronic acid under the skin. The purpose of Profhilo is not to volumise (like a traditional dermal filler would) but to stimulate new collagen and elastin.

Results it promises: Lifted tissue, which gives fewer lines and wrinkles, improved texture, and — because it uses hyaluronic acid — intense hydration and glowing skin.

Time it takes: The total appointment is 30 minutes, but the actual treatment is only 10!

Best practice: Two treatments, four weeks apart.

Where: Caci.

Cost: For the face and neck, it’s $1700.

LED Light Therapy

What it is: This therapy works to soothe skin and stimulate its natural regeneration process. Blue-light therapy targets acne causing bacteria, while red-light therapy boosts collagen and elastin to produce plump and glowing skin. It’s a great add-on treatment to try after another, more-advanced treatment.

Results it promises: A plumped, brighter complexion.

Time it takes: 20  minutes.

Best practice: While a full course is recommended, your skin will benefit from just one treatment.

Where: Caci.

Cost: $95 per treatment.

Words: Sarah Murray.
Images: Supplied,

This article originally appeared in the autumn 2024 issue of Fashion Quarterly.



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