Fill’er up aka “facial reshaping” is natural precursor to full-on facelift

April 6, 2011

The new trend is a face that moves
The new trend is a face that moves

Sorry, but life isn’t fair. The younger your skin is, the better rejuvenating treatment works. So, instead of getting a facelift at age 50, it’s a good idea to go for slow and steady facial renovation, starting in your 30’s. This advice comes from plastic surgeons and dermatologists who are movers and shakers in the new anti-aging facial treatment known as “facial reshaping,” an umbrella term for treatments that fill rather than lift the face.

According to the April 2011, More, the new natural trend is a face that moves and has a few age appropriate lines. If you’re serious about achieving this ideal, begin treatment while you’re still in your thirties.

One of the arguments for starting treatment young is that facial reshaping may retard facial aging. Fillers like Restylane, Juvederm, Radiesse and Perlane put pressure on fibroblasts in the skin to stimulate collagen production as well as softening lines and restoring lost volume. Lasers and noninvasive treatments such as Ulthera (which heats the deeper layers of the skin using focused ultrasound) and Thermage (which uses radiofrequency waves) also spur new collagen.

Botox injections, when administered consistently, can keep deep lines from ever forming. When you get Botox multiple times your muscles actually forget how to contract in the old way, so you need injections less frequently. This often happens in the area between the brows. Same for fillers; if you build up a foundation the effects can really persist.

Facial reshaping is based on more than new technology. Plastic surgeons have developed improved techniques based on a deeper understanding of what time does to the face.

Take, for example, nasolabial folds and marionette lines. Doctors used to compensate by plumping up the lips, which sometimes yielded a “trout pout.” Today, astute plastic surgeons soften the nasolabial folds and lift jowls by placing injections at the temples and the edges of the cheeks, which pulls up the skin on the lower half of the face unfolding the creases around the nose and mouth.

A reputable plastic surgeon will confirm that you are a “sinker” or a “sagger.” If you’re a sinker, age has made your face hollow out and your surgeon may never recommend a facelift. If you’re a sagger, the doctor may recommend surgery early on. Remember, the perfect time for a facelift is when your skin is still healthy and the collagen and elastin are good; the golden window is any time from 45 to 60.

The latest trends in treatment are injecting sunken temples in thin women; subtler lip augmentation, if at all; and, generally, making subtle incremental changes. The amount of volume you had in your face when you were 20 will look weird when you’re 55. Fillers when overdone are not more natural looking than facelifts. Looking overly filled can almost look worse than looking overly lifted.

If you’re contemplating a facial overhaul never look to Hollywood for guidance; women who have access to everything can overdo it and wind up looking like they went into the witness protection program. Also, never trust imaging machines. They can over promise what procedures actually deliver. And here is a totally free anti-aging treatment: sleep on your back. Facial lines become deeper on the side that’s carrying your weight; your face can even become flatter on that side.

For facial assessment, contact a board-certified plastic surgeon from the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery


The mission of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) includes medical education, public education and patient advocacy. Plastic Surgery News Briefs are summaries of current stories found through various news and magazine outlets that relate to or mention plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures. The views expressed in these news articles do not necessarily reflect the opinions of ASAPS, but are merely published as an educational service to our members and the general public. For additional information on these subjects and other plastic surgery related topics, please go to www.surgery.org

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About ASAPS
The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), is recognized as the world’s leading organization devoted entirely to aesthetic plastic surgery and cosmetic medicine of the face and body.  ASAPS is comprised of over 2,600 Plastic Surgeons; active members are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (USA) or by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and have extensive training in the complete spectrum of surgical and non-surgical aesthetic procedures. International active members are certified by equivalent boards of their respective countries. All members worldwide adhere to a strict Code of Ethics and must meet stringent membership requirements.

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