Botox in a Box: Enhancing the Results of Cosmetic Acupuncture with Herbs & Nutrition

Posted on Monday, January 02, 2012 by Hyde Park Wellness

In my clinic I offer cosmetic acupuncture treatments as a safe and healthy option for my patients who are starting to show signs of aging and who desire to look better naturally, without the use of chemical injections or surgical procedures. I have gotten some really good results with acupuncture alone. I find, however, that combining herbs and nutritional support in conjunction with cosmetic acupuncture treatments yields dramatically better results. To really explain why this is the case I think it’s important to first understand a little bit about how cosmetic acupuncture works.

The procedure itself is quite simple and takes about 20 minutes to complete. I start by cleansing all areas of the skin where a needle will be placed and then shallowly insert a series of very tiny needles – think of a needle the length of only a few millimeters with a diameter much like a single hair on your head – in pre-selected points on the face and body. By inserting these needles I am stimulating the dermal layer of the skin. This is the portion of the skin that contains nerve receptors and blood vessels – two key structures responsible for the effects of acupuncture, both cosmetic and otherwise. Stimulation of the dermal layer in this way signals the body to produce collagen and collagen is what helps to fill in fine lines and reduce the severity of deeper wrinkles.

Because collagen is the main player here, I like to boost the effects that the needles give by also encouraging my patients to take an internal herbal supplement that contains Gotu Kola. This is an herb that has been used for centuries by traditional cultures for a variety of ailments, but most notably as a vulnerary or wound-healing herb. It has gained attention in modern times for its ability to stimulate collagen production. In this way, Gotu Kola containing products are the ideal complement to a round of cosmetic acupuncture treatments. Using the two together can create a synergistic effect, whereby overall results are greater than if each was used separately.

Another smart choice for patients looking to enhance their results with cosmetic acupuncture is a good, high-quality antioxidant formulation derived from whole food or whole herb sources. Antioxidants are perhaps best known for their roll in scavenging free radicals – the by-products of cellular metabolism – and reducing the harmful effects of oxidative damage within the body. The right antioxidant formulation can help to strengthen and support the integrity of connective tissue, blood vessels and capillaries. This can translate into more supple and radiant skin.

Finally I advise taking a nutritional supplement that contains a complex of B vitamins, which are essential for healthy skin and nerve cells. The particular one that I use is called Cellular Vitality and it is unique in that it combines Western nutrition with Chinese herbs to support and maintain healthy tissues, starting at the cellular level. The formulation is notable for containing antioxidants, including CoQ10. One patient that I started on this formula said that she noticed clearer, more glowing skin after taking it for about 2 weeks.

As always, I hope this information has been helpful for you and if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at Thanks for reading and best wishes for the New Year!

-Tama Henderson, L.Ac.
January, 2012