The Skinspirations Strategy for Facial Aging Repair- a 3 Dimensional Approach
Much of the changes we see in our face as we age is due to a combination of:
- the loss of both fat and bone volume.
- repetitive muscle movements leading to permanent creases or wrinkles
- the loss of skin elasticity and thickness
- Textural and pigmentation changes from cumulative sun damage
Facial Volume Loss
We start losing the volume that's responsible for the smooth contours of a youthful face in our thirties, in general. One of the cruelties of aging is that we tend to lose fat from the upper & mid face before losing fat in the lower face. As the upper face loses volume, the skin essentially loses its underlying frame & the face starts to sag. The inverted triangle shape of the youthful face becomes a bottom-heavy triangle as we age, with some of the skin even slipping down under the chin.
In our 30’s the fat in the upper cheeks begins to shrink and eventually, with less fat to hold up the skin, the cheeks sag down to produce jowls and deep folds from the corners of the nose down to the mouth. With less fat in the cheeks supporting the eyelids, depressions form under the eyes that can make the lower lids look baggy and give us a tired appearance.
We also start losing facial bone as we age, which is the frame upon which our face is suspended. Like fat, some bony areas start to shrink faster than others, especially around the eye sockets, under the nose, around the mouth & chin, and the outer jawline. As both bone and fat shrink, the skin sags downward.
We lose about 1 teaspoon of fat & bone volume from the face each year after the age of 25. By the age of 50, we've lost about 1/2 cup of facial volume.
The pattern of where deep facial wrinkles appear exposes the divisions between the fat compartments that are located both above & below facial muscles, with ligaments forming their boundaries. As the fat in a compartment shrinks with age, grooves develop where the ligaments forming the compartment walls are located, as illustrated here.
Replacing volume while we're young is a way to prevent the clock from advancing. When we try to restore volume in our 40's & up, it takes more "teaspoons" to get back those youthful contours. Luckily once we've restored the volume, only occasional small touch ups are needed to maintain the results.
This Old Face Remodeling
Repairing the changes caused by aging in the face can loosely be compared to remodeling an old house, with an older face often requiring treatments that start with restoring the foundation, but a younger face possibly able to get good results with just a new roof.
The foundation - As in home remodeling, before you can address the rest of the house, you need to ensure that you have a solid foundation. Obviously there's a lot of variability, but in general, most people can use some added support to their facial foundation after the age of fifty. People who are noticing multiple facial areas starting to look older get the best results when they start by restoring overall volume first, rather than filling in individual lines and wrinkles.
Sculptra treatments are ideal for overall volume replacement and the results usually last at least 2 years. Sculptra is a tissue stimulant which over several treatments, done at least a month apart, subtly & slowly builds up the foundation to make the canvas again fit the frame. Other fillers can be used to build up the foundation as well.
The walls - The framing of the walls on top of the foundation can be achieved with stiff dermal fillers like Juvederm Voluma & Radiesse, which by reframing the skin, lift the areas below those treated as well.
Details like windows, shutters, etc. - Other softer dermal fillers like Juvederm, Restylane, etc. are used to fill individual wrinkles, enhance cheeks & lips, lift brows, etc. Decreasing & then preventing wrinkles that have developed from repetitive muscle movements, like smiling & frowning, is done every 3-4 months, usually, with muscle relaxant treatments like Botox Cosmetic.
Replacing the roof - Fractionated laser resurfacing like Profractional, Laser Peels or a series of SkinPen micro needling treatments replaces old, damaged skin with brand new skin that has a fresher, younger-looking texture.
Paint - Maintaining the new look on the most exterior layer is done with a combination of at-home professional skincare products & periodic in-office skin care treatments. Our estheticians will be glad to go over recommendations based on your skin type & concerns.
If you’re new to cosmetic treatments this can seem like an overwhelming amount of information but, there isn’t enough time to go through this adequately during a consultation. It is not intended to pressure you into building a house. Most new cosmetic clients start with small steps & this material can help you understand the rationale of an overall anti-aging facial strategy.
Still confused on which treatment is right for you? See a comparison of all the aesthetic injectables we offer here.
If you are interested in learning more about how facial volume treatments can improve your appearance, schedule a complimentary consultation by registering online here or by calling 727-571-1923.