Buccal Fat, or Any Other Options, to Get a More Sculpted Face?

Hello, I have a very jowly look, as shown below. I'm curious if buccal fat would be a good option...The cheeks are genetic and my fathers cheeks have shown no atrophy. I would like a more sculpted, upside down triangle look...while still looking natural. If Buccal is not the answer, kindly brief the options available. Cheeky

Doctor Answers 6

Facial Contouring

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

You are asking for a more refined facial contour. There are a variety of ways of accomplishing this: augmentation of regions and perhaps buccal fat pad resection. It does not appear from your photo that the buccal fat pad is your source of "jowliness" however the photo is not ideal. We often use either fat transfer or Sculptra to refine youthful faces wishing for a change. We even use the techniques in patients who have subtle differences between the two sides of their face. Visit a PS who offers you several artistic approaches. It should be in-line with your desires.

Do not have your buccal fat pads removed if you're unhappy with descending jowls

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Removing the buccal fat pad might accentuate the appearance of the low-lying jowls by creating an indentation in the mid cheek contrasting it to the puffiness of the jowls.  Furthermore, as you age, you might wish to rejuvenate your appearance by adding volume to the cheeks. Jowls may be raised at times by Thermage radiofrequency non-invasive treatment but the amount  meaty jowls could be raised is not substantial and you would probably get a much better result from a facelift.  Some surgeons use liposuction to carefully thin out the jowls when patients want to avoid a facelift, but again, the result would not be as good as a typical facelift. See board-certified plastic surgeons to evaluate your condition.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Buccal Fat Removal

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I am not a fan of buccal fat removal because with normal aging the face does thin and this could cause a hollow, gaunt look later in life. I'm sorry, but I cannot make any recommendations to improve your facial contour because the picture is not clear.

Richard W. Fleming, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Buccal fat removal

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
In my opinion it appears that you may need other facial rejuvenation surgery and not buccal fat removal. While buccal fat removal was a popular surgery of the past by many surgeons I perform it in very few patients. The removal of the fat can give you a gaunt and sickly look as the face ages and not the sculpted look it sounds like you are requesting. Make some consultative appointments with a few reputable surgeons in your area and they should be able to properly advise you. If they have an imaging computer this can be extremely helpful in showing you the proposed results prior to any surgery. Best regards!

Michael Elam, MD
Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 214 reviews

Buccal fat

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}


Full evaluation and discussion of what you desire. You look as if you need a face lift. Removal of buccal fat can be done at the same time. But remember that removing fat now may look good for a while. With aging you loose fat in the face added to removal of buccal fat you may look gaunt. more aged. Discuss all your options with your plastic surgeon. A  good face lift would give you high cheekbones, remove the jowles and that may make you happy.

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon

Buccal Fat and Female Aesthetics

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

It is a little difficult to judge from the blurry photo, but you appear to have full cheeks all the way down to the jawline. A careful examination is required in order to determine the best approach but I want to give you a couple of general pointers.

As a general rule, buccal fat extraction is ill-advised in most people. Even, if it looks good temporarily, almost all patients who had it done years before (and it used to be performed more frequently in the past!) regret it later and ask me to fill in the hollows. We naturally loose facial fat volume and the sculpted look you are seeking is quickly replaced by a hollow appearance.

In rare exceptions, buccal fat removal may be acceptable but be careful!

Frank P. Fechner, MD
Worcester Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 50 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.