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Trapezius Botox: What to Know, Benefits, Before and Afters

Image Source: Getty / retales botijero, Milena Boniek and Photo Illustration by Aly Lim

“Tweakments” and tiny cosmetic procedures are on the up and up, leading many first-timers and even seasoned veterans to discover entirely new options available to them. That’s likely behind the spike in interest around “trap Botox” on TikTok right now.

As you might know, Botox is an FDA-approved treatment most commonly used for treating fine lines and wrinkles, but that’s not the full extent of its uses. Getting off-label injections in your trapezius muscles, located at the tops of your shoulders, is said to slim the muscles in that area, reducing the appearance of a hunch and creating an elongated neck. Simply typing “trap Botox” into the search bar on the app produces a long list of results and corresponding videos ranging in topic from before-and-afters to explainers. With 2.6 million views on the hashtag, it’s clear people are interested in learning more about this lesser-known, off-label use for neurotoxins.

Intrigued? Keep reading for more information on trapezius Botox, or “trap tox,” as the cool kids on TikTok are calling it.

What Is Trapezius Botox?

“Trap” Botox involves getting injections in your trapezius, aka your traps. “The trapezius is a flat, triangular-shaped muscle that can contribute to neck and back pain and easily become enlarged and inflamed with overuse,” Hillary Mills, F-NP, an aesthetic nurse practitioner at SkinSpirit, tells POPSUGAR.

Some people build muscle around their traps by lifting weights, while others may develop large traps due to poor posture — ultimately, whether you like the look of these enlarged muscles or not is a matter of preference.

There are two main reasons someone may want to get shoulder Botox: aesthetics and pain. “Injecting Botox into this muscle can ease tension pain and greatly increase quality of life for clients,” Mills says. “We can also see an aesthetically pleasing slimming effect over time with proper dosing.”

Many of the trap Botox videos on TikTok are driven by people seeking leaner and longer-looking shoulders. Case in point: the topic is gaining traction among brides-to-be looking to accentuate their shoulders and neck even more at their upcoming wedding.


TRAP TOX, I’m counting on you 🙏 #weddingtiktok #trapbotox #2023bride #fyp #foryou

♬ original sound – Stace

Who’s a Good Candidate For Trapezius Botox?

As there are two main benefits of trapezius Botox, there are two different categories of people who may seek out this cosmetic procedure. “If you suffer from muscle soreness or pain in your neck/back, you are a great candidate,” says Mills. “It can be particularly life-changing for people with very active jobs and people who spend a lot of time hunching over computer screens.”

If you’re in it for the visual impact, Mills says you’re also likely a good candidate if you “ever wished your neck looked longer and slimmer.” Just talk it over with your provider to be sure.

Trapezius Botox Surgery Risks

Unlike some trendy cosmetic procedures that go viral on TikTok, shoulder Botox is what Mills calls “low-risk, high-reward.” That said, the neurotoxin comes with a short list of potential side effects. This includes some burning and tenderness at the injection site, as well as mild bruising. These should subside shortly after your appointment.

What to Expect When Getting Trapezius Botox

If you want to give “trap tox” a try, the first step is to get a consultation with your provider. Botox is only approved by the FDA to temporary improve facial wrinkles so this is an off-label use of the neurotoxin — similar to oral injections for TMJ. That said, you’ll want to go to a board-certified doctor or trained nurse practitioner with experience in the procedure.

Similar to getting a Botox injection in your face, the process is fairly quick and easy. If you’re concerned about pain, Mills recommends icing the area to “take the edge off the sting” of the needle. “You may experience tenderness at the injection sites for 24 hours,” she says.

Trapezius Botox Before and After

How Long Does Trap Botox Last?

According to Mills, “the Botox will begin to take effect between three to four days after your appointment, but the muscles will fully relax in two weeks.” Still, no matter where you get Botox injections, it only lasts on average for about four to six months, depending on the person, before the body metabolizes it. After that, a touchup is needed to get the desired result again.

Image Source: Getty / retales botijero / Milena Boniek and Photo Illustration by Aly Lim

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