As you grow older, you begin to experience a loss of collagen and facial fat. Collagen is vital because it is the substance produced by your body that keeps your skin looking young and moist. As early as in your 20s the skin’s natural supports begin to break down producing a gradual loss of definition in the cheeks, eye sockets, temples, lips, jawline, and forehead. As facial volume diminishes, the skin will have acquired lines or wrinkles due to collagen and facial fat depletion. There is a hallowing around the eye sockets along with sunken temples, flattened cheeks, and loose skin around the jaw line, better known as jowls. Fine lines appear on the lips and around the nose. Nasolabial folds form around the corners of the nose and mouth and oral commissures develop just beneath the corner of the mouth. The skin appears drier, thinner, and less pliable and vibrant.
What causes Facial Volume Loss?
- Normal aging process
- Certain medications
- Prolonged stress
- YoYo dieting
- Prolonged sun exposure
A full, well-defined lip implies youth and vitality, and a thin lip can signal sadness or displeasure. Our lips seem to be one of the first features that give away our age. There are a few reasons for these changes in our lips:
First, our lips lose volume and body, commonly seen in the lips of elderly women, they are often very thin. Second, they lose the philtrum columns as we age, leading to loss of the “Cupid’s Bow,” the two parallel lines between your nose and upper lip that give the upper lip it’s distinctive “M” shape. This usually happens in your 30’s and 40’s, as the upper lip loses its “M” curve it becomes flat at the top. Third, as you lose lip volume and the philtrum columns (cupid’s bow) which support the upper lip, you begin to get small horizontal lines around the outside of your lips, commonly known as “smokers’ lines.” Fourth, as you lose volume in the sides of your chin (the horizontal lines below the outside edge of your lip) creating “marionette lines,” this makes the outside corners of the mouth turn down, giving the lips a drooping appearance. Our patients often describe this as a “sad or displeased” look that they are unhappy with.
Fortunately, most of these changes in our lips can be reversed with dermal fillers and an experienced, highly skilled cosmetic injector. Creating beautiful lips requires an in-depth understanding of the facial structure, creating a natural shape, contour, and definition.