As we age, the repetitive use of the facial muscles under our skin begins causes wrinkle formation that progresses from being dynamic (ie present only when we use those muscles eg frown lines) to being static (ie present even when those muscles are not being used eg “angry lines” or “the 11s”; the grooves that run from the nose to the mouth; crows feet etc).
The degree to which a person develops wrinkles, their depth and appearance is variable and dependent on some known factors:
- Ethnic background
- General health
- Smoking and other drugs
- General diet and lifestyle, including exercise
- Sun protection – sunscreen use, avoiding excessive sun exposure, especially in Oceania
As we age also, other changes take place in the body, and the facial structures :
- Skin begins to lose its elasticity
- Underlying collagen is gradually lost and thins
- Gravity takes its toll, adding heaviness to the lower face, away from the upper face.
- Fat pads that give young people their “babyface” appearance are gradually lost, giving a gaunt/ hollow appearance
- There is remodeling (ie reshaping) of the underlying bones of the face, including the jaw, mouth, temples and eyes.
All these factors contribute to the general loss of appearance of youthfulness. In some people, these changes may cause them to look angry or sad, even when they are not. Some older women come to me because they keep being told they look angry when concentrating. Others report being told that they scare the grandchildren and want some gentle help.
How can cosmetic injectables help?
- Anti-wrinkle treatment
- work by relaxing/ paralysing the muscles underlying skin in specific areas such as the forehead, frown and around the eyes, they soften the static lines over time, and smooth the dynamic lines – I don’t believe in given people frozen faces, and will always talk to you about still retaining movement of your muscles so it is not obvious that you have had treatment unless you indicate otherwise.
- Some people notice with the formation of wrinkles, especially frown lines, “the angries” or also known as the “11s”, that they seem to appear angry a lot of the time, even if they are not. This can cause them to feel self-conscious, and is something that can be easily corrected with anti-wrinkle injections over time.
- By relaxing the overlying skin, the appearance is that of having had a relaxing holiday, or a facial; makeup goes on smoother, without the obvious caking in wrinkles that becomes more apparent over time.
- Are not permanent. Depending on the product used and your individual anatomy and physiology, you can expect your treatment to last 6-8 weeks in the forehead area; around 3 months in the frown and crows feet areas, or longer.
- The longer you continue to have treatment, the softer even static lines become. If you discontinue treatment, the product will eventually wear off with recurrence of the wrinkles.
- Dermal Fillers
- Are synthetic products that mimic the natural collagen found in our skin that gives plumpness to tissues.
- As we age, the overlying skin thins, and the collagen under the skin begins to decrease
- With the loss of this padding layer, as well as the fat pads that we all have in our face, skin begins to sag, especially after the age of 40, giving us a tired, worn out and sometimes gaunt appearance.
- Dermal fillers work by replacing some of this volume under the skin – depending on the level and depth of injection as well as the site, results can be apparent immediately and will reach maximum efficacy about 2-3 weeks after treatment.
- Depending on the areas treated, fillers can last from 4-6 months (eg lips and other areas with lots of muscle movement) to 12 months or longer (eg temple hollows, under the eyes etc).
- The filler works immediately by padding out the areas of lost collagen; they also work by attracting water to the injected area over the next few weeks, resulting in a final appearance by 2-3 weeks of firmer, younger looking skin.