Can I Exercise Away My Wrinkles
The quest for taut, smooth, wrinkle-free skin becomes more and more challenging as we age. Looking for a prevention rather than a cure, many patients at our practice want to know if facial workouts can keep their faces youthful and toned. There is little clinical research to confirm the effectiveness of facial exercises, but a new study conducted at Northwestern University shows some real promise for the concept.
Why Your Face Is Looking Old
As time takes its toll on the body, facial skin slowly and surely loses its elasticity. Additionally, the fat pads that exist between the facial skin and the muscle become thinner. “Fat pads are what give the face much of its shape,” explains Dr Marcells. “As ageing skin sags, the depleted fat pads atrophy and gravity pulls them down and out of position.”
Initially, non-invasive correctives including volume augmentation and wrinkle treatments can keep skin looking more youthful. However, as with facial exercises, the benefits of these solutions are only temporary. “Only surgical facelift offers a patient complete and long-lasting facial rejuvenation,” says Dr Marcells.
The Cult of Celebrity Wrinkle Reducers
Facial workouts to slim the face and reverse the ageing process has been with us for a long time. Fitness pioneer Jack LaLanne endorsed them in the 1960’s and today celebrities like soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo and Meghan Markle sing their praises. But do these exercises actually work?
“Despite the flood of information on the market regarding this topic, the majority of evidence regarding facial exercises appears to be anecdotal,” report Dr Marcells. “More study is necessary to confirm what researchers at Northwestern found.”
Deep Plane Facelift: The Doctor’s #1 Choice
Facelift techniques have evolved tremendously with many of the improvements addressing the overall patient experience. Dr Marcells uses the innovative deep plane facelift to give his patients natural-looking, long-lasting results. “The deep plane technique allows me to lift a patient’s entire face,” he explains. “That means better definition to the cheekbones, jaw, and neck, too.”
The deep plane lift is an advanced surgical technique, known to many facial plastic surgeons, but mastered by only a few. “It is a challenging and painstaking surgery” observes Dr Marcells, “but the results are far superior to any other anti-ageing procedure.”
Exercise Your Right to Be Beautiful
Researchers at Northwestern wanted to see whether increasing underlying muscle volume would improve the problem. “We found that muscle growth is increasing the facial volume and counteracting the effects of age-related fat thinning and skin loosening,” said study author Emily Poon. Yet there is an interesting paradox to facial exercises.
The more you use facial muscles to tone skin, the more you invite the appearance of static wrinkles. (These are the wrinkles that remain visible even when you’re not using your muscles.) Cosmetic injectables work to freeze facial muscles temporarily, until “Over time, the muscles atrophy and lose their ability to create skin furrows at all,” says Dr Marcells.
Does this mean you have to choose wrinkles or sagging skin? Absolutely not. To combat fine lines and wrinkles and keep skin plump, you should:
- Follow a daily skincare routine that includes gentle cleansing and moisturising
- Use sun protection EVERY DAY
- Stay hydrated
If erasing wrinkles for years to come is your goal, Dr Marcells recommends an in-person consultation with a facial plastic surgeon. “It’s fine to do some Internet research on your own,” he says, “but only a trained professional has the experience and skills to answer all your questions…and some you might not even have thought to ask.” To discover more about facelifts and other skin rejuvenation surgeries and treatments, please reach us by phone or online form for a prompt and courteous reply.
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Meet Dr Marcells
MBBS (Syd), FRACS (ORL-HNS)
Past President – Australasian Academy of Facial Plastic Surgeons
Dr George Marcells is known for excellence in facial plastic surgery and is considered a true master of rhinoplasty. He performs advanced surgical techniques to restore balance and harmony to the face and can also resolve functional issues such as breathing difficulties.