Latinas Are Becoming Less Hush-Hush About Getting Botox and Fillers
A few years back, a meme went viral; it displayed a side-by-side image of Sofia Vergara and Jennifer Lopez with the caption, "Latinas be like I'm 104 years old." In the same way that some Black women, including Afro Latinas, proudly say their "skin doesn't crack," Latinas — regardless of skin tone or race — have also developed a reputation for "not aging." (There are even studies to back it up.)
Still, while getting older is inevitable and there's nothing wrong with embracing the fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging that often come with that, there's also nothing wrong with wanting to do something about it. And while the stigma surrounding cosmetic injections still very much exists and we tend to thank tried and true traditions — J Lo still credits her youthful glow to olive oil and a great skin-care regimen — a new generation of people of color are unapologetically seeking out aesthetic treatments like Botox and dermal fillers.
According to Julio Gallo, MD, a Miami-based facial plastic surgeon and licensed Juvéderm and Botox injector, many within the Latinx community are talking about injectables; his clientele consists of Latinas ranging from their 20s and up. They're less concerned with the stigma and more focused on feeling good about themselves. "In Latin culture, even though we have this perspective of the Latino macho, it's really a matriarchal society," he tells POPSUGAR. "Latina women are strong and lead the way. [Having] a strong, refreshed, at ease, and not tired appearance is really important."
Here, we break down the beauty injections trends experts are noticing with Latina clientele.
Trend: We're Seeking Injectables to Enhance Our Natural Features
Despite the pressure to adhere to Eurocentric beauty standards that continues to plague our community, Dr. Gallo says that his Latina clients aren't looking to do away with their inherited features. This generation, whether using topical products or getting injections, are also reclaiming their unique beauty. They're embracing everything from their skin tones to their natural hair textures, body types, and signature features like high cheekbones and full lips. The tweaks, then, are meant to enhance the features they were born with and still leave them looking like themselves.
"Latina women are strong and lead the way. [Having] a strong, refreshed, at ease, and not tired appearance is really important."
According to an Allergan Cosmetics report, one in four Black, Latina (regardless of race), and multiracial women believe that society's beauty standards are racist. A massive 96 percent also said feeling beautiful impacts how they feel about themselves. Thirty-five percent of Latinas feel more beautiful than they believe society perceives them to be, with many of their relationships to aesthetics having been significantly influenced by their formative environments. Relatives, family friends, and Latina icons like Selena Quintanilla, all influence their beauty identities. Even so, the aftermath of colonialism still impacts our beauty standards: Latinas still feel pressure from family and friends to conform to Eurocentric beauty standards, with stigmas interconnected to race, culture, and religion. Still, at least anecdotally, it appears Latinas are aligned in resisting that pressure.
Dr. Gallo notes that most of his Latina patients come in either for Botox, filler along the jawline (which has become increasingly popular), or lip filler. Additionally, while some white women typically start trying procedures like Botox in their 20s, Latinas are more likely to begin considering the treatment in their 30s. Latinas with darker complexions tend to begin treatment later because melanin often protects the skin from UV damage that contributes to wrinkles and fine lines. Still, hyperpigmentation and uneven skin tone tend to be more common among women of color.
Trend: We're Seeking Injectables to Treat the Undereye Area
It used to be that to reshape the face, you'd need to get a facelift. But there's a wide range of dermal filler options that offer natural yet effective results. Take Juvéderm's collection of fillers, which contains hyaluronic acid, and includes everything from Voluma XC, Volbella XC, Ultra XC, and Ultra Plus XC. These ingredients not only fill, but also lift and contour areas like the jawline or the chin. They can also smooth the hollowing of the under eyes and diminish the appearance of dark circles, which Dr. Gallo also finds in some of his Latina patients.
"It's interesting because it's called a filler, but some of the other products like Voluma are to help create structure in the face," he says. In terms of duration, fillers last a lot longer than patients might think, which is anywhere from one to two years, depending on the type of filler, where you're getting injected, and the individual.
Trend: We're Adding Symmetry (and in Some Cases Volume) to Lips
There's also the misconception that all Latinas have full lips. This is not the case for everyone. Patients who visit dermatologist Dulce Belle Mascariñas, MD,'s practice in Miami don't just come in for plumper lips; they book appointments to reshape and create definition or symmetry. Her goal is always to get them to look as natural as possible, usually advising them to go conservative, at least for the first appointment, and gradually add volume if their goal is a more voluminous look.
Dr. Mascariñas agrees with Dr. Gallo, and says she doesn't find that her patients of color are looking to reject their existing features. Rather, they want to achieve a more youthful, "I just came back from vacation" kind of look. Often, patients bring a picture from their teens or 20s, just to get their lips to look more like what they used to. Others request to have their lips reshaped for symmetry or to correct a frowning pout. In that case, filler is used to slightly lift the lips to look more relaxed, forming a very subtle, but natural-looking smile.
Trend: We're Injecting a Little at a Time
"My magic rule is first to wait a few weeks [after the first round of injections] and let it settle," says Dr. Mascariñas. "Then you can decide whether you really want more. My rule is always one [dose] at a time. That's my maximum. That way it looks more natural. " While recovery is fast, bruising can appear for a few days, especially if you have darker skin Dr. Mascariñas says the first few days are usually the worst.
Doing your research to find the right practitioner is the first step in assuring you get the best results. Looking for a practitioner who especially understands people of color's needs is crucial.
"In Spanish, we often say 'lo barato sale caro (what's cheap turns out expensive).' You must be careful."
Dr. Gallo recommends making sure that your practitioner is board-certified or have the proper training from a medical association. "In Spanish, we often say 'lo barato sale caro' (what's cheap turns out expensive)," he says. "You must be careful. This is your face, so you want to be educated about what you're putting into your face and who is putting this into your face."
Whether it's Botox or fillers you're seeking — or both — a growing goal is essentially to look like an enhanced but still natural version of yourself. "My experience over 30 years is that people don't want to change the way they look," says Dr. Gallo. They want to improve and enhance things that either bother them or change with time."