Sagging skin, loose skin, lax skin – however you describe it, by the time many of us hit our mid-30s this issue can cause our faces and certain other areas of our bodies to lose their youthful plumpness, definition and resilience. Read on to discover what combination of factors causes sagging skin – and how an expert skin specialist can help alleviate the problem.
Sagging or Lax Skin Assessment in Vancouver, BC
There are a variety of treatments that can improve the tone and quality of the skin. At 8 West Clinic, we are a team of skin and face specialists including Facial Plastic Surgeon Dr. Thomas Buonassisi and highly experience medical aestheticians. We specialize in quality consultations and developing treatment plans that take into consideration each patient’s objectives and tolerance for downtime. We offer the complete spectrum of surgical and non surgical treatments for skin tightening. A consultation with a skin specialist will help uncover your options.
What Causes Sagging, Lax, Loose Skin?
While gravity does, indeed, take its toll, several other forces are at work when it comes to sagging skin:
- Sun exposure: The ultraviolet rays from the sun penetrate into the skin and damage the elastic fibres that keep skin firm. Sun exposure causes wrinkles, and is responsible for sun spots and other pigmented areas on the face, chest hands.
- Loss of elasticity and collagen: Our skin, over time, tends to lose elasticity and collagen, causing it to become looser and less successful at holding back what is happening underneath – i.e., problems become more visible or noticeable at the skin’s surface. Remember, for instance, when the skin beneath your lower eyelids was tight and taut enough to hold back and “hide” the small pocket of fat below? As you age, that delicate skin will generally loosen, becoming less effective at its former job, and that pocket of fat begins to bulge forward, causing a bag.
- Loss of volume in the face: Most of us, at age 35 or so, start to notice subtle changes – specifically, loss of volume – in our faces. For example, as volume in our cheeks is lost and gravity pulls the mid-section of the face down, folds may appear around the mouth, pooling at each corner and forming nasolabial folds. The lower portion of the face can lose volume, as well; when this occurs, we tend to see shadowing at either side of the mouth near the jawline, which eventually become marionette lines and, finally, jowls.
- Weight fluctuations: Yo-yo dieting or large swings in weight cause the face to continually stretch and contract. After about age 35, because our skin is less elastic, the contraction isn’t as effective anymore.
What Does Lax, Loose, Sagging Skin Look Like?
When skin laxity due to loss of elasticity and collagen is subtle, you may start to notice such textural changes as skin creping and deepening skin folds – when this occurs in a woman’s décolletage, for example, it can be an easy age giveaway. As laxity becomes more pronounced, gravity may really begin to take its toll, causing drooping skin to pool in places like the upper and lower eyelids, jawline and neck.
Generally speaking, as far as volume loss goes, this issue can result in an anti-youthful change in the overall shape of the lower part of the face. Gone is the inverted triangle formed by our cheeks and chin and, in its place, a more square appearance forms, as the facial structures begin to pool around the mouth and jawline.
Prevention: Your First Line of Defence
When it comes to sagging skin, prevention really is key. As such, it’s important to protect your skin from sun damage that can impact the elasticity – and compromise the smooth, youthful look – of the skin. Cover up with protective clothing, wear a hat, always use a physical sun block – such as that contained in Jane Iredale Mineral Makeup – and, as much as you can, stay out of the sun for prolonged periods of time.
Correction & Treatment of Sagging Skin
In the case of sagging, lax and loose skin, treatment should always begin with a proper diagnosis by a professional skin specialist, who can then develop the most effective course of action for you. Generally speaking, however, the best results are often obtained when a combination of treatments are administered, due to the fact that various factors are usually at play. These treatments can include:
- For jowls, a sagging lower face and lax neck: The gold standard in dealing with sagging skin, a lower facelift with Facial Plastic Surgeon Dr. Thomas Buonassisi looks natural and effectively tightens the whole lower face area. Tissue is deeply repositioned to where it was before, and extra skin trimmed away.
- For sagging upper and lower eyelid skin: With options for hiding incisions inside the lower eyelid or in the natural upper eyelid crease, blepharoplasty (eyelid lift) surgery removes the extra skin and fat that ages the eye area.
- Medical-grade skin-care products: A medical-grade skin-care system includes products that strengthen the skin’s barrier function and increase the body’s natural wound-healing response and produce collagen, making them a key part of an effective course of treatment for sagging skin.
- Dermal fillers: Natural looking and requiring little downtime, dermal fillers provide a great way to quickly add volume back to the face. Best of all, these safe, effective injectables can be strategically placed in areas of the face that tend to lose volume first and fastest, such as cheeks, lips, temples and around the mouth.
- Laser skin resurfacing: By directing short, concentrated pulsating beams of light at irregular skin, precisely removing skin layer by layer, laser resurfacing can not only improve skin elasticity and produce a general tightening effect, it also has the added benefit of simultaneously improving fine lines and wrinkles.
- SkinTyte: A non surgical tightening treatment that penetrates deep into the skin to stimulate collagen production and tighten, SkinTyte uses advanced infrared light technology to increase tissue firming with virtually no downtime.
- BBL Photofacial Rejuvenation: The newest-generation of Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) technology, called BroadBand Light (BBL) Photofacial Rejuvenation, improves skin thickness, tone and texture by stimulating collagen.
- Forever Young BBL: Forever Young BBL is an innovative technology that delivers light therapy (similar to IPL or intense pulsed light) in a groundbreaking manner that’s been shown to effectively change genes’ expression of aging, with minimal downtime. Patients looks younger than they did 10 years previous, and there is Stanford University research behind it.
What Are You Waiting For?
Ready to experience beautiful, youthful skin for yourself? Our team of professionals will work closely with you to find the best treatment plan, keeping your budget and downtime needs in mind, to help you achieve radiant skin that shines and glows. We offer the complete spectrum of medical services, both surgical and non-surgical, to help you get the results you desire. Contact us or call (604) 733-1669 and let us help you get one step closer to loving your skin.