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Is Facial Acupuncture the New Botox?

We tapped an expert to weigh in.

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There’s nothing wrong with a little “youth preservation.”  Whether to maintain or enhance, filler and Botox have been popular methods seen all over.  However, those that might be a little wary of the ingredients are opting in for a more holistic approach.

Facial acupuncture is on the rise, helping not only with signs of aging but also allergies, puffiness and more.  Unlike Botox, facial acupuncture actually restores mobility and blood flow to the face, helping plump up the skin and reduce fine lines.  

Gudrun Snyder, Doctor of East Asian Acupuncture and founder of Moon Rabbit Acupuncture, has seen significant improvements with her clients. Below, she answers all our facial acupuncture FAQ’s.

What is facial acupuncture?

Cosmetic acupuncture aka facial acupuncture is a type of acupuncture that is focused on improving the appearance of the skin, reducing the signs of aging, and promoting overall skin health. It involves the insertion of very thin needles into specific points on the face and body, which can help to stimulate circulation, increase collagen production, and promote lymphatic drainage.


Cosmetic Acupuncture works by stimulating the body’s natural production of collagen.  Similar to Micro-needling, it creates microtraumas in the skin and triggers the body’s natural healing response.  This starts a cascade of biochemical reactions that result in increased blood flow, as well as increasing collagen and elastin.  Wrinkles are often created by a decrease in collagen and elasticity, and by the chronic overuse of certain muscles in the face.  Often, we have a facial expression that we make that is uniquely our own – whether it be smiling more on one side than the other or furrowing your brows (a cause of those dreaded “11’s”).  Cosmetic Acupuncture relieves the tension of these overused muscles – so instead of freezing them like Botox – it relaxes your face.  All of this combined helps achieve a more youthful glowing appearance.

What are the benefits?

The effects of cosmetic acupuncture are cumulative, so the more you do it, the more lasting results you will see.  Some people report up to 5 years lasting change after their initial 10 sessions, with only monthly or seasonal tune up sessions. 

Walk us through a typical treatment – what does it entail?

At your first appointment, you will meet with your acupuncturist to discuss your health concerns and wellness goals.  Depending on your skin care objectives, current skin situation, and age, your treatment will be between 30 and 60 minutes. Primarily we treat fine lines and wrinkles, discoloration, rosacea, scarring and minor to moderate acne.

In general, we recommend multiple sessions – ideally 10- that are relatively close together (one time per week or biweekly) to achieve the best results.  At every cosmetic acupuncture treatment with Moon Rabbit we also treat your overall wellbeing and health goals.

Because, as we all know, beauty really does come from within, and when youaren’t feeling your best, you don’t look your best.  The treatment is completed with either jade rolling, gua sha, or face cupping accompanied with the application of a facial serum chosen for your individual needs as well as a ProStim Anti-Aging Red Light Therapy. 

How much does it cost?

The cost of cosmetic acupuncture varies depending on where you live.  At Moon Rabbit in Chicago, we charge $180 per session, with the option to purchase packages or use a our membership to receive discounted treatments.

Can it achieve similar results to Botox?

Unlike Botox, which is a neurotoxin that works by freezing the muscles that cause wrinkles, cosmetic acupuncture does not involve any injections of toxins or chemicals. Instead, it works by promoting the body’s natural healing processes and restoring balance to the body’s energetic pathways, and relaxing (instead of freezing) the muscles of the face.

While the results of cosmetic acupuncture may not be as dramatic as those of Botox or other cosmetic procedures, many people find that it can be an effective way to decrease the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and other signs of aging. It is a non-invasive and holistic approach to skin care that can have additional benefits for overall health and wellness. However, it is important to note that the effectiveness of cosmetic acupuncture may vary from person to person, and it is always best to consult with a licensed and experienced acupuncturist to see if your goals can be meet with cosmetic acupuncture.

How long do the results last?

The effects of Cosmetic Acupuncture are cumulative, so the more you do it, the more lasting results you will see.  Some people report up to 5 years lasting change after their initial 10 sessions, with only monthly or seasons tune up sessions. 

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Janene Mascarella