If you’re a particularly sweaty person, you know how inconvenient, uncomfortable and sometimes downright embarrassing it can be. (You know, like when you spend the year before your sister’s wedding worrying about how easily sweat stains are going to show in that blush pink bridesmaid dress.) Luckily, there are some solutions, from topical creams to high-strength deodorants that could help curb excessive sweating—Botox included. Here’s everything you need to know about Botox for sweating, according to two dermatologists. (But first, a quick disclaimer: There's obviously nothing wrong with sweating—it's totally natural and healthy—this is just an option for folks who aren't thrilled with how much they sweat.)
Does Botox for Sweating Actually Work? We Asked a Dermatologist
Does Botox Really Help People Sweat Less?
First, a quick science lesson on sweat. Dr. Shirazi explains, “You sweat when nerve endings tell your sweat glands to produce and secrete sweat. Botox blocks these nerve signals from communicating to reduce sweat gland activity and stop them from overproducing too much sweat.” Translation: Yes, Botox does help quell sweating. And while it’s officially approved for sweating in the underarms, Dr. Garshick tells us, “It can also be used off-label to help with sweating on the palms, soles and scalp.”
Can Anyone Get Botox in an Attempt to Curb Their Sweating?
With the approval of your doctor, most people should be able to get Botox to help with sweating, it’s officially approved for the treatment of hyperhidrosis, or abnormally excessive sweating that's not necessarily related to heat or exercise.
What Should You Know Before Trying It?
While Botox can be a gamechanger for folks with hyperhidrosis, there are a few caveats. Both doctors tell us perspective patients should know that Botox takes two to three weeks to kick in, and one treatment should last for a few months (Dr. Shirazi estimates three months while Dr. Garshick estimates three to six months).
Dr. Garshick adds, “It also may not completely eliminate sweating, but works well in conjunction with other treatments for hyperhidrosis such as antiperspirants like Certain Dri Prescription Strength or Dove Antiperspirant Deodorant, topical prescriptions like Drysol or Qbrexza, and oral medications like glycopyrrolate.”
Are There Any Downsides to Trying Botox for Sweating?
One of the main downsides is the potential cost. Botox is not always covered by insurance, so it’s important to speak with your dermatologist about the best treatment options for you. For reference, NYC-based dermatologist Melissa Levin told us back in 2019 that Botox treatments are either charged by unit (the amount of substance administered per session) or by the area addressed (such as the forehead or around the mouth). “It can range anywhere from $300 all the way up to $1,600 depending on how much Botox we need and how many areas we treat,” she explains.
Finally, both doctors also tell us that when used on the palms, Botox may cause temporary weakness of the hands. Finally, as with any injection, the procedure itself may be painful, though only temporarily so. Still, if curbing excessive sweating—and all the annoyances and anxieties that come along with it—means enduring a little pain during a Botox session, it might be worth it.