Age Guide for Facial Rejuvenation

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Looking youthful is a maintenance game.  No matter what age you are, there are useful principles to abide by to look your best.  The skin is the largest organ (yes, it is technically an organ) and as such responds to good care just like a liver or a kidney.  If you abuse yourself, your skin will spill the beans and let the world know.  Here are some basic, common sense guidelines to abide by:

20's: sunscreen, clean living and exercise!  Teenagers and people in their 20s think they are invincible and untouchable.  Wrong!  Everything you do even in your 20's matters!  Smoking causes premature aging no matter what age you are.  Smoke generates “oxygen free radicals” which attack and damage the skin and organs, leading to damage in the form of reduced elastin, collagen and ground substance which are all important building blocks of skin and skin vitality.  The second source of oxygen free radicals is sun.  Tanning beds, and overexposure without the use of sunscreen ages people prematurely as well.  Stay away! The type of food we eat can also generate chemicals that either add to this oxidative damage or help by providing substances that function as oxygen free radical vacuum cleaners (sometimes referred to as scavengers).  Fruits and vegetables are key (and missing much of the time in the modern diet).  Exercise also boosts endogenous chemicals that promote health and well being.  Sorry kids.  How you live now effects the future, and what you do today can influence whether or not you look like crap at 40. 

30's:   Wash, rinse, and repeat.  All the same advice is applicable.  Sunscreen, clean living and exercise.  In addition, consider using medical grade skincare products that incorporate among other things Vitamin A derivatives (Retin-A) that promote cell turnover and new creation of collagen.  In addition, a maintenance regime of facials, chemical peels and non-ablative lasers and energy devices like Inmode’s Forma can also help.  These work by scrubbing and buffing the top layer of skin and stimulating new collagen production deeper down creating tighter, fresher and better looking skin.

40's:  in addition to the steps mentioned above, consider injectables like Botox and Dsyport along with facial fillers.  Neurotoxins like Botox diminish wrinkles.  Fillers such as Restalyne and Voluma restore age-related volume loss and soft tissue pruning.  In addition to collagen stimulation through non-ablative, maintenance devices such as Forma, IPL (Lumecca) can remove age related sun damage from the top layer of skin.  This typically manifests as brown spots and the appearance of small red vessels (referred to as telangiectasias).  IPL provides more even skin tone and a refreshed appearance. 

50's/60's: Sunscreen, Clean living and exercise. Continue using injectables like Botox and Dsyport along with facial fillers for volume loss. Continue using great skincare and non-ablative laser treatments like Forma and IPL.  Also consider more aggressive, ablative laser treatments like Fractora for non-surgical face and necklifting. These devices work by removing part of the surface layer of the skin (epidermis) along with a more significant delivery of radiofrequency energy into deep dermis that then turns into heat and neocollagensis (new collagen formation).  Depending on how you age due to genetics and lifestyle, you may need to consider surgical options as well such as Blepharoplasty, neck and facelifting, browlifting and fat grafting of the face.

70's/80's: Sunscreen, Clean living and exercise. Continue using injectables like Botox and Dsyport along with facial fillers for volume loss. Continue using great skincare and non-ablative laser treatments like Forma and Lumecca. Consider more ablative laser treatments for non-surgical face and necklift like Fractora. Surgical options mentioned above are still applicable presuming you remain in good health. 

The take home message is that maintenance of skin health is a life long process.  It is a marathon and not a sprint.  I have patients in their 70s who look better than many of my patients their late 40s and 50s due to a dedicated, lifelong pursuit of health and wellness and self-care.  Start now.

Article by
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon