Traptox is the latest tweakment trend doing the rounds that promises to lengthen your neck, shift your posture and even release muscle tension. But is it really worth the hype?
While we hate to admit it, when it comes to the latest beauty and wellness trends, TikTok is a treasure trove of inspiration. From skin cycling to glazed doughnut nails, it is a virtual breeding ground for makeup and skincare tips that will enhance your beauty routine, often for the better. Yet while minimally-invasive cosmetic procedures should really only be touted by trained medical professionals, there’s one tweakment that’s managed to gain traction of late, with devotees claiming its myriad benefits include the potential to elongate the neck, improve your posture and even relieve shoulder tension. We are, of course, talking about Traptox.
Otherwise known as Barbie Botox, coined by wellness and beauty influencer Isabelle Lux thanks to its ability to enhance posture and create the illusion of a streamlined neck reminiscent of the iconic Barbie doll’s proportions, Traptox is the injection of botulinum toxin A, or Botox, into the trapezius muscles. For those not clued up on the biology, the trapezius is a large muscle on both sides of your body that runs from the base of your skull to the other point of your clavicle and down the centre of your back. “By injecting the Botox directly into the trapezius muscles, muscle contractions are temporarily reduced and tension is released,” explains Dr Radmila Lukian of Dubai’s Lucia Clinic. “This relaxation of the muscles can result in a subtle elongation of the neck’s appearance as the muscles responsible for pulling the neck downwards are weakened, allowing the neck to appear longer and more graceful.”While Traptox is having a moment right now, it’s not actually a new phenomenon. In Korea, for example, the trapezius is the second most popular region for Botox after the face, and it hasn’t always been used for anti-aging either. In fact, many doctors originally injected Botox into the traps for patients who had chronic migraines or tension in the area caused by poor posture, which is even more prevalent today for those sat at a desk all day. But does it really live up to the hype?
As with all cosmetic procedures, there are of course some downsides. “Since the trapezius muscles are big, it takes a lot of Botox — around 100 units — to weaken them and make your neck appear longer, so prices can add up,” explains Dr Jabbar, founder of London’s prestigious Almas Dentistry and Aesthetics. “As is often claimed, Traptox is also not a simple fix for bulky shoulders or a short neck. It would take a lot of treatments, and a lot of Botox, to achieve this result.” Then there is the fact that, as with all Botox procedures, results tend to last just an average of three months, plus the risk of mild bruising, swelling and redness which will fade after time.
Both experts agree that while Botox can be successful in temporarily reducing wrinkles and lines on the face, its effectiveness for long-term neck ageing is uncertain. “The ageing process of the neck involves various factors beyond muscle contractions such as changes in skin elasticity and underlying structural components which may not be fully addressed by Traptox,” explains Dr Jabbar. As such, always be sure to consult with a doctor to see if it’s right for you. With more than 25 million views on TikTok alone, however, there are no signs of this trend going anywhere fast.
Where To Go
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Dubai’s Lucia Clinic is a gem in the city’s healthcare scene and a go-to spot for that little touch of rejuvenation. Nestled away in the heart of Jumeirah, the clinic boasts a minimal and serene setting with white walls and relaxing water features. Over the years the clinic has attracted many celebrity names from Mona and Huda Kattan to models Joan Smalls and Naomi Campbell, and actress Eva Longoria. Whether you’re investing in Botox for cosmetic or posture purposes, the patient-first approach means genuine consults, personalised treatments and real results — natural and refreshed, just like you woke up from a good night’s sleep. Book now
- Words by Naomi Chadderton