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Welcome back to The Contour Edit! If you’ve been following us for a while, you're likely familiar with one of our favorite jawline contouring treatments, masseter Botox, affectionately known as "The Slim" around here. While we've previously covered The Slim in past posts, today's focus is on post-treatment side effects, specifically masseter bulging, and exploring effective ways to handle it if it occurs. Let's dive right in.

The Slim - Post-Treatment Masseter Bulging


Your jaw muscle, also known as the masseter muscle, is located on either side of your face along the jawline. The primary function of the masseter muscle is to open and close the jaw during activities such as biting, chewing, and clenching. Additionally, the masseter muscle aids in stabilizing the jaw joint during jaw movements. When overactive, this muscle can lead to a wider lower face, enamel breakdown, or even migraines. By utilizing Botox to relax this muscle, we call this treatment The Slim, we can effectively slim your lower face and alleviate tension and pain.


The Slim is a simple and straightforward non-invasive procedure that involves injecting a dose of Botox into the masseter muscles (this only takes 15 short minutes). Depending on your unique needs, the dosage can range from 20 to 50 units, with an average of 30 or 40 units. This treatment is designed to relax your jaw muscles, alleviate tension, and transform your facial shape. In addition to providing a more aesthetically pleasing look, the injections can also help protect your tooth enamel, reduce headaches, and release tension. However, it’s important to be aware of one potential side effect: Masseter bulging.


Masseter bulging refers to the enlargement or protrusion of the masseter muscle when you bite down or clench, oftentimes in a round, ball-like shape, following Botox injections. Several factors may contribute to the development of masseter bulging:

  • Final Result: It takes 2 weeks for Botox to fully set in, and during this period, the distribution of Botox may vary, potentially resulting in an uneven appearance or bulging. It's crucial to allow the complete 14-day period to assess any changes in bulging before considering additional treatment.

  • Variable Anatomy: The anatomy of the masseter muscles can vary significantly among individuals. Factors such as muscle fiber orientation, thickness, and overall volume can influence how Botox affects muscle relaxation and subsequent bulging.

  • Injector Technique: Due to a layer of fascia (what is fascia? a thin connective tissue) that separates the superficial aspect of the masseter muscle from the deep aspect; sometimes the Botox dose only affects the deep or the superficial aspect of the muscle causing the contrasting area to bulge. This can simply be fixed with a two week touch up. Reach out to your injector if you are experiencing masseter bulging and they can figure out the cause and provide the remedy.


Thankfully, several strategies can help address masseter bulging after Botox injections and achieve the desired aesthetic outcome:

  • Correct Dosage and Placement: To prevent or correct masseter bulging, it is crucial to ensure the correct dosage and precise placement of Botox injections. Experienced injectors with a thorough understanding of facial anatomy can tailor the treatment to each client's unique anatomy and aesthetic goals.

  • Client Education and Communication: Open communication between the client and the injector is paramount for achieving optimal outcomes. Clients should discuss their concerns and aesthetic goals with their provider, allowing for personalized treatment planning and adjustments as needed.

  • Follow-Up and Maintenance: Regular follow-up appointments with the injector can ensure that any concerns, such as masseter bulging, are promptly addressed at the two week mark post injections. Additionally, maintenance treatments may be necessary to sustain the desired results over time.


While masseter bulging following Botox injections may seem concerning, it is important to recognize that it is a manageable and treatable issue. By understanding the underlying causes and implementing appropriate strategies, you can achieve a balanced and harmonious facial appearance. As always, consulting with a qualified and experienced injector is the first step toward achieving the best possible outcomes in aesthetic treatments.

If you have any questions about masseter bulging, we are here to help! You can reach us at (720) 629-8921, or you can book a New Client Consultation to learn more. We're happy to answer any questions you may have and guide you through the process.


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