Written by Dr Nerina Wilkinson MBChB (Stell) M.MedFC PLAST (SA)
The jawline is one of those things we tend to take for granted, and unlike your hips and tummy, we cannot hide them away in those Woolworths spandex tights. Jowls tend to creep up on us… For a long time, there is no sight of this concern, and before you can say bulldog – you are almost 40, reminiscing about your youthful years while pulling your sagging jowls towards your ears for hours in front of your (now least favourite) mirror.
How can I hide my sagging jowls?
Well, you can’t… I partly blame INSTAGRAM – particularly the filter tool that lifts and firms our faces to match those of the next top model, or gives us the look of a baby deer, only to accidentally flick past that filter to find Shrek staring back at you. Let’s be honest, it’s not like we need any other body part to fall out of place, but once you’ve noticed the increasing accumulation of soft flesh around the outer edges of your mouth, there is no coming back. Don’t worry – at Dr Nerina Wilkinson + Associates we’ve got your “sag”.
What causes sagging jowls?
When treating sagging jowls, we need to start by identifying the cause of the sagging jowls.
Culprit number 1 is skin laxity, which can be a result of genetics, inflammatory skin conditions (such as acne or rosacea causing the skin to age so much faster), or damage caused by the 2 evil brothers: smoking and excessive sun exposure.
The second culprit is one that gets to all of us: GRAVITY. As we age our facial fat moves downwards, causing heaviness and loss of definition in the lower part of the face and jowls. This can lead to pre-jowling and the dreaded bulldog look.
How to treat sagging jowls
Skincare products to treat sagging jowls
Luckily help is at hand! If skin laxity is one of your concerns, vitamin A-derivate creams and vitamin C (such as tretinoin, retinoic acid, and l-ascorbic acid) will stimulate the building blocks of the skin, fixing you from the inside out. (Our favourites are ZO’s Radical Night Repair and Mesoestetic’s AOX Ferulic).
Skincare treatments for sagging jowls
To stimulate collagen production your specialist may suggest treatments such as the Forma Lift and 3D Micro-needling. This is a great place to start if you are experiencing the early stages of sagging. It is however important to remember that the results of these treatments are temporary and must therefore be maintained. If you are experiencing more advanced sagging, more intensive approaches will be required to make significant changes to your jowls.
Medical aesthetic procedures for sagging jowls
To camouflage rather than treat a soft jawline, hyaluronic acid fillers can contour the jowls to create a more defined jawline.
When it comes to the migration of fat-pads, our amazing doctors like to use a thread lift, a non-surgical facelift that delicately adjusts your facial architecture. A fine thread is inserted in the skin and gently tugged upwards to persuade falling fat pads back into their original position. The threads also stimulate collagen production to eventually hold the fat pads in place, and then naturally dissolve over time.
How to prevent sagging jowls?
Sagging jowls are inevitable, it is just the degree of sagging that will differ!
If you have tipped into bulldog territory with jowls extending down into your neck, a cosmetic surgery procedure will be your magic wand. If you want to hold off on going under the knife there are important lifestyle changes that might help.
It is important to try and keep your weight stable, as fluctuating weight gain or loss can cause stretching of your skin, which can eventually lead to jowls forming prematurely. If you love being outdoors, make sure you always wear a hat and sunblock all the way down to your chest! Last, but not least – train yourself to sleep on your back, this will delay the process of jowl formation…
Whether you are ready for surgical intervention or not, we are here to help design a custom rejuvenation plan to suit your wants and needs! Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to enquire.