I am only 45 and I hate the way my mouth and peri-oral area are aging. I feel like this area of my face makes me look 10 years older. My neck and jawline are still fairly decent so I'm not sure if its time for a facelift already or would a liquid facelift have a worthwhile effect on this area? Please advise, I'd like to take as many years off as possible in one procedure. Thanks!
Facelift or Fillers? (photo)
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Doctor Answers 27
The aging mouth...Lift v. Peel v. Volume...What to do?? Ask Dr Ellen
I can actually feel your pain, as I am in the same boat! It's so frustrating to see your mouth slip away at a faster rate than the rest of you and it seems that there should be a simple solution to fix the problem without getting into a lot of surgery, etc. And there are some remedies, so keep reading...
Here is my take on the perioral area: Aging is a 3 Dimensional Problem-
1. volume/soft tissue loss contributes to loss of lip projection and shape, our lips acquire a flatter appearance and the lip skin becomes more adherent to the underlying muscle
2 bone loss contributes to a more retrusive, prune- like or sucked in shape of the mouth. The maxilla and mandible start to lose stock and are less able to support the soft tissue.
3. loss of skin elasticity leads to drooping of the lips corners, a longer distance from the nostril to the free edge of the lip and more rigidity of the skin so that the vertical lines are more fixed and tight.
So you can see, there is not one simple answer to address this 3 dimensional problem. And, as you can imagine, lifting from the sides won't be successful in directly correcting the lip/perioral region.
Based on what I've described of the aging process above, here are some tips that will help in the short term to soften the look of your lips and restore some of the femininity:
1. add a little volume to your lips with a hyaluronic acid product- restore shape, add projection in cupid's bow
2. I like to use a very small amount of Botox in both the upper and lower lip as well as the depressor muscle (pulls down the angle of the mouth) to reduce the muscle tightness a little bit. This will soften the vertical ilnes and give the illusion of more lip volume and projection.
2. microdermabrasion for the perioral area and chemical peel will soften the skin, make it more supple and pliable and able to retain moisture.
Regrettably, there is no 'silver bullet' for the perioral area and it requires a fair amount of attention to retain a soft feminine look. However, it is a delicate region and proper care will go a long way to keeping a youthful appearance.
Thanks for asking! Dr Ellen
ps: in the future fat transfers could be combined with a face lift to add volume as well
Facelift or fillers?
From your pictures, I see three issues that cause aging to your mouth and lower cheek area. First, there are some vertical lines on your upper and lower lips. Second, there is an area on the sides of your cheeks where there is some volume loss. Third, there is an area on both sides of your face, between the mouth and the area with the loss of volume on your cheeks, that has a bit of a protrusion. A facelift, by itself, would only help with the third issue. The vertical lines on your lips could potentially be helped with Botox or fillers, or a chemical peel or laser peel. The volume loss on your cheeks could be helped with fillers, and generally filling that area would improve the area with the slight protrusion in front of it.
Candidate for Non-Surgical Treatment
You're certainly not alone, as ageing changes in this area are common. These include a loss of volume and definition of the lips, appearance of radial lines around the mouth, loss of elasticity in the skin and development of heavy nasolabial and marionette lines (though fortunately in your case these are not a prominent feature). Given that you have minimal excess skin present you would be a candidate for non-surgical treatment. Options that may be relevant for you include:
- Filler - to restore lost volume & definition to the lips, plus possibly restoring any midface (cheek) volume that has been lost. Midface volume restoration helps provide a 'scaffold' for the tissues of the lower face to be suspended from.
- Muscle relaxants - to minimise fine radial lines around the mouth and help turn the corners of the mouth upward, creating a more youthful lip appearance.
- Skin-tightening treatments - including options for microdermabrasion, chemical peels, laser resurfacing, needling/mesotherapy or injectable collagen-stimulating substances.
Keep in mind that whilst you are a great candidate for non-surgical intervention, the results seen with these procedures are not usually permanent and will require ongoing maintenance treatments. You are possibly also a candidate for one of the many variants of a mini-facelift, though skin tightening treatments (and possibly muscle relaxants) will likely need to be undertaken in conjunction for best results.
I recommend consulting with a local, reputable aesthetic practitioner (plastic surgeon, aesthetic dermatologist or aesthetic physician) so that they can perform an examination, make a thorough assessment of your individual anatomy and provide further guidance (including discussion of realistic treatment outcomes) to help you make any treatment decisions.
Hope that helps!
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Central lower 1/3rd of the face is often the first zone to age
Lilangelmommy: The perioral area is the 2nd most frequent area I treat, (after the upper 1/3rd/brow). Your photos demonstrate good jaw and neck definition but also deflation of your cheeks, tension around the upper lipstick "bleed lines" and the beginning of a left mandibular jowl. Liquid facelift usually means the use of collagen stimulatory fillers (Sculptra, Radiesse) and both of these would be suitable for correcting the vertical lines or "fish gill" deformity, which many slender women in their 40's note. Last century, a woman had to choose between optimizing either her face or her body, however now that the range of fillers has expanded, you can have both. It has been estimated that you will need a bottle of Sculptra for each decade to produce full effect, however first you need to find a consultant to discuss your aesthetic objectives. Sculptra's collagen stimulatory effects are slower to build but more sustained. Radiesse gives almost instantaneous gratification, however less persistence. The static radial lip lines confer a stern appearance, so the use of micro doses of Botox and Belotero would go a long way to softening and prettying your lips.
Concept Facelift Under Local Anaesthetic
Please seek out a board certified plastic surgeon to have a private consultation with to discuss desired and achievable results, see before and after pictures of past patients and ask questions.
Liquid Facelift May Not Be the Answer, But A Facelift May Be
Facelift or Fillers?
Surgery versus injectables
Choosing Between Facelift or Fillers?
Perioral area anti-aging procedures
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.