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Is Face Taping Really As Effective As Botox?

Does this TikTok trend live up to the hype?

February 11, 2023

If you spend too much of your free time on TikTok like we do, you might have noticed a practice called face taping has become trendy. The idea is that by applying tape to strategic areas of the face, you can stop wrinkles from forming because it keeps you from making expressions while you sleep. But does that actually work? 

What are the benefits of face taping?

This trend has actually been around for over a hundred years. The first face tape brand, Frownies, debuted in 1889, though there are other options on the market, too. It’s also a technique that’s often used in the drag community to tape the face during performances. Since drag performers typically wear super heavy makeup, the face tape is effectively camouflaged. 

It’s true that tape will temporarily smooth and soften the look of wrinkles. If you have an event coming up and you need to look good quickly, it’s smart to have a few wrinkle patches in your medicine cabinet to apply for a few hours before getting photographed. But they do not have the preventative power of treatments like Botox or lasers. 

Why is Botox better for wrinkles than face tape?

The main flaw of face tape for wrinkles is that it only prevents the muscle from working while the tape is on. Whereas Botox is effective for 24 hours a day for three to four months on average. Botox actually paralyzes the muscles that create wrinkles; all that face taping does is limit their range of motion somewhat. It may seem like it works when you first wake up in the morning, and your wrinkles look temporarily relaxed. But as you go about your day, your muscles contract to make expressions as normal. If you’re looking to prevent wrinkles or soften the look of established wrinkles, you won’t get long term results with face taping. 

Plus, having to wear tape on your forehead while you sleep isn’t exactly sexy or comfortable. The adhesive from these products can be super irritating to the skin with daily use. Keeping face tape on overnight also runs the risk of blocking your pores, leading to breakouts and buildup of dead skin. 

Long story short, we’ve evolved past what was used in the 1890s to deal with wrinkles. There are MedSpa treatments out there that will effectively treat wrinkles and prevent them from happening in the first place–and they won’t have annoying side effects like irritation or pore clogging. Instead of spending your money on a short term fix, invest in a good SPF that you wear daily, and explore options like Botox, rejuvenating treatments like Forma or Morpheus8, or chemical peels. That way you can be wrinkle-free without sleeping covered in tape. 

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