As I continue on my journey to the big “6-0”, I have taken a good hard look at the shape of my face. Aging declares itself with subtle changes starting with a decrease in volume of the upper face followed by an increase in width of the lower face. The overall effect is a loss of the youthful oval replaced with the more masculine square. No one wants to be a square. If you want to see your future face there is a fascinating website, aprilage.com, that lets you age yourself (or have fun with it – age someone else!)
Everything descends, darn that gravity! Folds form from excess skin folding on itself. Lines and wrinkles form when facial movements are repeated countless times over a lifetime. Very much like flexing a piece of leather, over time wrinkles set in. My dad used to say, “don’t give me that look, your face will freeze like that”, and he was right!
Solutions? Well one would be to grow out your hair and wear it a la Goldie Hawn. Has anyone seen her face? Most photos I find feature large sunglasses and the “face frame” do. Don’t get me wrong though, hair styling can enhance and hide all kinds of features and I support that! But for a little longer lasting solution, and one that looks good rolling out of bed in the morning, we can do wonders with fillers. Fillers are like Jell-O, they work by filling a space. They are great for replacing volume in the upper face, for that we use Voluma. It is made by Allergan, the Botox people, and lasts as long as 2 years! It is injected with a tiny needle and gives instant gratification. I had my first taste of Voluma recently and voilà! Cheeks were lifted.
For the wrinkle side of things the more traditional fillers (Restylane and Juvederm) and a newer option (Belotero) serve as the spackle once the volume is enhanced. Even the finest lines can be improved with very small amounts of filler. I had Belotero for my lip lines after some well-meaning (?!) doctor asked me why I didn’t treat my “smokers lines”….I don’t smoke!
What is the difference between the popular fillers? Well they are all basically the same: hyaluronic acid, which is composed of strings of sugar molecules. Each company has a proprietary method of making their fillers which can influence how thick they are and how long they last. Generally the thicker the filler is, the more lift and the greater longevity. For fine lines we need a very thin product which correlates with less longevity.
We need all our fillers to undo what nature is doing to us. And a new hairdo doesn’t hurt, either! Check out our events page and RSVP to our next patient seminar where we will discuss sculpting and framing your face with injectables and the perfect do!