In our last blog post, we discussed specific skin treatments that individuals in their 20s and 30s can pursue to improve skin quality, texture, tone, and overall appearance, and help reverse visible signs of aging. This week we will focus on those individuals in their 40s, a decade that deserves special attention in the pursuit of facial rejuvenation.
Forties – Most individuals in their 40s will start to show their age, as genetic and environmental factors lead to deterioration of the key proteins in one’s skin. Collagen production decreases, leading to skin thinning; elastin fibers diminish, leading to tissue descent and sagging; and fat atrophies, causing hollowing of tissues. Consider environmental factors such as sun exposure and pollution, and it should come as no surprise that our skin can develop unwanted lines and wrinkles that cause us to look tired and prematurely aged. The 40s are notable for the development of:
- Set-in wrinkles;
- Atrophying tissues in the temples;
- Lowered eyebrows;
- Thinning lower eyelid skin;
- Descended cheek tissue, which creates deeper smile lines, and
- Jowling, and loss of jawline contour.
Because of the multi-dimensional changes to facial skin in this decade, most patients require a well-developed skin care regimen, complemented by minimally invasive procedures such as chemical peels, wrinkle removers, dermal fillers, and lifting agents. Fillers also tend to play an increasingly large role in one’s 40s, as they support the soft tissues of the face, enhance a patient’s facial anatomy, restore soft tissue volume loss, and help lift tissues that gravity and age have caused to thin and sag.
If patients in their 40s begin to experience wrinkling in the forehead and between the eyes, as well as Crow’s feet, they may benefit from the combination of Botox and fillers – Botox to prevent worsening of the wrinkles, and fillers to correct any established deepening of the skin. Tissue atrophy along the temples is also a hallmark of the 40s and can be remedied by placement of a long-acting filler like Voluma.
Similarly, Botox can be used to elevate the outer corner of lowered brows, while filler placement will effect an uplifted, younger appearance to the upper eyelid. Thinner fillers can be placed into the lower eyelid to help smooth the transition to the cheek and improve areas of darkening skin.
Unfortunately, 40-50 year old patients may also experience cheek deflation which leads to a number of characteristic changes that may cause the face to transform from a youthful, heart-shaped or oval shape to a more rounded or square shape. Cheek tissue sagging will worsen the appearance of the lower eyelid region; it can also cause the “apple” of the cheek to drop, which increases downward pressure to the tissues around the smile lines – ultimately causing them to deepen. Many times, patients seeking correction of these specific areas can have fillers placed into their cheeks to help add volume and elevate the cheek tissues into a higher position, indirectly improving all of the affected areas.
Similar to the cheeks, the lower face develops loss of jawline definition and formation of jowling as tissue descends towards the chin and blunts the angles of youth. To combat this, fillers can be placed into the jawline and near the jowls, which will improve jaw contour and camouflage the jowls.
Because of the increased dependency on fillers and most patients’ lack of interest in surgery, the “Liquid Facelift” was colloquially coined. The Liquid Facelift combines the use of wrinkle removers and long- and short-acting dermal fillers to address the early signs of facial aging.
As an Emory, Harvard, and University of Pittsburgh-trained, ASPS board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Castillo provides in-depth skin care consultations, both for patients seeking aesthetic improvement, and for those in pursuit of high-quality protection from nature’s elements.
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