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The Non-Surgical Facelift, Part 1

Submitted by drgailhumble on September 2, 2014

In my last post I discussed how our faces age.  In this series of posts, I will be discussing The Non-Surgical Facelift. But before I do, I need to elaborate more on the aging face and how it effects the decisions we make regarding the Non-Surgical Facelift. In general, certain dimensions within the structure of a face contribute to our perception of beauty and in fact,Triangle artists have used these dimensions since before the Renaissance. This is best represented by the “triangle of youth”. In our early twenties, the boney support of our face actually begins to shrink. By the time we’re forty we’re losing one teaspoon or volume (or 5ccs) from our face, per year. This is due to a combination of factors:

  • Loss of the deep fat layer which supports the muscles of the face.
  • Elongation and lengthening of the facial muscles in such a way that they then thin and become flat or even concave rather than maintaining their convex shape.
  • The superficial fat that supports the skin thins and our skin itself losses its elasticity.
A youthful look depends on having the right amount of facial fat in the right places. Redistribution, accumulation, and atrophy of fat lead to facial volume loss.
  • Some areas lose fat. Examples are the forehead and cheeks.
  • Other areas gain fat. Examples are the mouth and jaw.
  • Modification of the fat pads leads to contour deficiencies.
In addition, the areas of fat tend to become farther apart. Instead of a smooth, almost continuous layer, the fat pads appear as separate structures. The overall effect is that of the skin envelope sliding down over the face and head. Other signs of Facial Aging:
  • Greater visibility of bony landmarks, lines and wrinkles
  • Forehead lines become more prominent.
  • Smile lines/laugh lines become more prominent
  • Hollowing of the mid-face (loose skin)
  • Changes in the area around the mouth (vertical wrinkles, thinning and flattening)
  • Development of pre-jowl depression (marionette lines).
With aging, the balance, proportions and symmetry of the face change. For example:
  • The lower face widens as the jowls form
  • The lower face shortens as bone is remodeled around the mouth and jaw.
  • The young face shows 1/3:2/3 ratio of upper lip to nose and lower lip to chin. With age, this ratio approaches 1:1
  • Each of the facial sections show different changes with age and are unique to each patient, sex and race.
Once one understands the aging process, then one can correctly transform the face while maintaining a totally natural effect. In my next post I will discuss different options for “The Non-Surgical Facelift”.

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