Your Comprehensive Guide to Smile Lines Correction
Smiling is part of human nature. Did you know that ultrasounds have shown that developing babies smile when they're in the womb? Or that smiling is contagious because we lose some control over our facial muscles when we see someone else's smile?
Given that smiling can boost your happiness, this is all good news. The bad news? At some point in our lives, we're all going to develop smile lines.
Fortunately, there are ways to both treat smile lines and prevent them from coming back or getting worse.
Read on to find out more about these pesky features and what you can do about them.
What Are Smile Lines?
Smile lines are the lines that extend vertically from the edges of the nose, curving around the sides of the mouth. The technical term for them is "nasolabial folds," which may be harder to say but is a little less misleading. Smile lines aren't directly caused by smiling, even though they do seem to fall right in the facial pockets that move and crease when we smile.
Instead, they develop as the fat pads in our cheeks shift around with age. This shifting is exacerbated by repetitive facial motions like smiling, frowning, and opening our mouths, but it's also made worse by several factors.
The biggest factor contributing to worsening smile lines is the loss of collagen or elasticity in the skin. We lose collagen as the result of things like overexposure to the sun, tobacco use, and the overconsumption of sugar.
Smile lines may also look worse when we don't have a good skincare routine, leaving our skin dehydrated. Without proper hydration, our skin looks less vibrant and smooth. This makes any wrinkles we may have look, well, a lot worse.
In some cases, facial features like smile lines are simply genetic. This means that even if you take good care of your body and skin, you may need some extra help to smooth out those lines.
How Can We Treat Smile Lines?
If you've already got smile lines that you want to get rid of, you're going to have to go straight for the treatment and use our preventative tips once the treatment is complete. Fortunately, there's no need to break out the scalpel and sutures for this process!
Dermal fillers are the perfect solution for someone who wants instantly younger-looking skin. The process is nonsurgical and, in some cases, reversible! The procedure is quick and easy and the recovery time is short, letting you get back to your day-to-day as soon as possible.
It's very common for patients to get hyaluronic acid fillers to treat their smile lines. Hyaluronic acid is something our skin naturally produces and it helps our skin to stay hydrated, but we lose a lot of it over time. Hyaluronic acid fillers are reversible but they're also temporary, lasting about 6 to 18 months.
For patients who want instant, permanent results, we usually recommend bovine collagen fillers. Taken in different forms, bovine collagen has been shown to help with arthritis relief, bone strength, and improved skin. Of course, we use it in our fillers for improved skin, as it improves elasticity, enables hydration, and boosts collagen levels.
For patients who want more than just their smile lines corrected, we usually recommend a nonsurgical facelift.
Nonsurgical facelifts also use dermal fillers, but with some added help. Botox may also be used to freeze the muscles that experience repetitive motion, causing wrinkles like smile lines and crows feet. In this case, the dermal fillers are still erasing those wrinkles while the botox is one of your prevention tools.
We also use threading, a technique that keeps your fillers in place. Fillers are dense, and over time can begin to collapse in response to gravity. Our facial threads hold onto your skin from the inside, acting as extra support for those fillers so they don't shift around or fall.
Alternatively, patients may go for the Fontana Laser Tight Sculpting procedure. During this procedure, existing collagen is heated and stimulated, resulting in a filler-free plumpness that will get rid of those smile lines in no time!
How Can We Prevent Smile Lines?
Once your treatment is complete, it's up to you to adopt a skincare and health routine that will keep your smile lines from coming back.
Peptides and Retinol
Use facial serums and moisturizers that are enriched with peptides and retinol. Both stimulate collagen and together, they can keep your skin looking fresh and young.
Peptides act as the building blocks of protein development in the skin. This process sends a signal to collagen to kick it into high gear while also fighting inflammation and protecting against sun damage.
Retinol speeds up cell turnover, which helps your skin fight against discoloration. It also works to keep your pores clear. While these additional effects of retinol won't fight wrinkles as collagen stimulation will, they're added benefits that will make your skin look and feel great!
SPF is a no-brainer, but people forget about it all the time! We all love a good tan, but we all loathe wrinkles. So what should we do?
Skip the fleeting natural tan and opt for bronzers and other lotions or makeup that will give you the look of a tan without the damage. If you're bad at remembering to put on sunscreen before you go out, use a daily moisturizer with SPF built into it. Look for products with at least SPF 30 for your face and neck.
Smiling is a natural response that keeps us looking and feeling happy.Â If you're worried about your smile lines, don't try to hide your smile from the world!
Instead, opt for treatment and prevention methods that will restore your skin to its formal youthful glow. Now that's something to smile about!
If you're ready to begin your path to smooth, smile line-free skin, contact us today! We can't wait to set up a consultation with you!