Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

The interactions between botulinum-toxin-based facial treatments and embodied emotions

Lewis, Michael B. 2018. The interactions between botulinum-toxin-based facial treatments and embodied emotions. Scientific Reports 8 , 14720. 10.1038/s41598-018-33119-1

PDF - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (1MB) | Preview


Botulinum toxin (BTX) injections reduce muscle mobility and are commonly used to treat the appearance of glabellar frown lines. Research shows that this cosmetic treatment leads to a reduction in depression. This reduction is consistent with the theory of embodied emotions because patients have a reduced ability to frown and so receive less negative feedback associated with this action. The current research explored this effect and three further hypotheses for the effects of cosmetic BTX injections based on embodied emotions. It was hypothesised that treatment of crow’s feet (or laughter lines) would reduce mood as patients’ Duchenne smiles would be impaired. It was hypothesised that facial BTX treatments would impair emotional expression recognition because the ability to mimic emotions would be reduced. Finally, it was hypothesised that, as BTX treatments prevent facial expressions associated with sexual excitement, sexual function would be impaired after treatment. Twenty four BTX-treated and twelve matched participants (all female) were tested before and after treatment. Results found that BTX treatment of laughter lines was associated with increased depression scores. Further, BTX treatment was associated with reduced emotion recognition ability and sexual function. The current results add to our knowledge of the psychological effects of injections of powerful neurotoxins and broaden the scope of the embodiment of emotions.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
ISSN: 2045-2322
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 5 September 2018
Date of Acceptance: 4 September 2018
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2020 13:45

Citation Data

Cited 5 times in Scopus. View in Scopus. Powered By Scopus® Data

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics