Researchers at Barnard College recently found that Botox users may not only be hindered in their ability to make facial expressions, they may actually feel and experience weaker emotions.

The study, led by Barnard psychology professors Joshua Davis and Ann Senghas, suggests that facial expressions themselves may influence emotional experiences.  In short, Botox not only changes one’s appearance, it also affects real emotions.

“In a bigger picture sense, the work fits with common beliefs, such as ‘fake it till you make it,’”  Davis said.

So someone with Botox who watches a sad movie, for example, will have less movement in the facial muscles that have been injected. The researchers argue that lack of movement will give less feedback to the brain, and perhaps influence emotion.

Davis studies emotion, and in particular, works on understanding how emotional experiences arise and how to change them.

Botox was approved by the U.S. Federal Drug Administration in 2002 for use in cosmetic procedures. It's a neurotoxic protein produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum and is known to temporarily improve moderate wrinkles.

Update: I presented these findings to friend who uses Botox. She claims she's never felt happier since she started getting the injectables, but added that perhaps she's just shallow. So there you go.