Age is just a number. We see lots of gorgeous ladies (and men) of this age group in our clinic who are living life to the full and want to look and feel their best. What a great time to be in or close to retirement age with the array of products and services available in today’s world and an ageless style that is acceptable in society compared to even 20 – 30 years ago. Gone are the days that we need to ‘act, look and dress our age’, you can do whatever you please and why not?!
In our plus 60s, females have gone through hormonal changes and hopefully, the stresses of parenthood, working and juggling many balls have now reduced and whilst life may not be slower paced for some, the stresses are different to that of the juggling in our working lives.
Genetics and lifestyle are what determine how we look in our more mature years. This age group will have changes in the skin, muscle and fat pads, and bony changes. Yes, the bones in the face change and contribute to ageing.
In order to rejuvenate the face, a careful assessment of the whole face is required even to begin to design a plan that is effective and brings you the desired results.
Let’s look a bit closer!
To understand how our face ages and what you can do to rejuvenate it, you will benefit from understanding the structure of the face.
The layers of the skin
Epidermis – this is the outer layer of the skin.
Dermis – the middle layer that contains the tough connective tissue, hair follicles and sweat glands. Fibroblasts are also here and are very important when we consider how the skin ages
Hypodermis – the deeper subcutaneous tissue made of fat and connective tissue.
The hypodermis is attached to the bony structure of the face.
From the age of 28 (often younger) the fibroblasts in the dermis that produce collagen are in decline meaning there are fewer of them producing less, and often poorer, quality collagen bundles. These fibroblasts also produce elastin fibres that provide the skin with firmness and suppleness. In our sixties, these are massively reduced and do not produce as good quality collagen and elastin.
Environmental factors such as smoking, sun and stress, massively impact on the quality of both collagen and elastin fibres, thus contributing to premature ageing.
Some people are fortunate to have good skin genetically passed from our parents but most people have experienced big changes in the skin compared to how they were in their earlier years. Most people in the sixties age group have wrinkled skin which is less firm to touch and often has a sagging appearance.
As well as changes in the skin texture and tone, it is quite common to see skin with unsightly pigmentation patches, and broken capillaries that cause an uneven colour to the skin.
In addition to changes in the skin, changes in the muscle and fat pads that support the skin occur so that the skin is less well supported, this can cause hollows under the eyes, flat cheeks, and jowls.
And finally, if that isn’t enough, there are changes to the bone; the eye orbit becomes bigger further increasing hollows under the eyes providing poor support for the eyebrows, jowls appear worse because the jaw bone gets smaller and thinner, thus having less surface mass for muscle and skin to attach. If you have gum disease or have lost your teeth, you will have lost alveolar bone that supports the teeth and this also contributes to having less support in the middle of the face.
When designing treatments for people in their 60s and over all of the above need to be evaluated and we also have to consider the neck and décolletage.
Wrinkles that are caused as a direct result of muscle movements such as forehead, crow’s feet, and lips can be treated with toxin injections which relax the muscle. If you are starting treatment at this age it is not going to eliminate them but it will soften them. Other wrinkles that appear on the neck and lower face or downward pulls in the skin such as jowls can also be treated with toxin treatment and the Nefertiti neck lift can have a profound impact on the neck and jowl areas.
Hollows and dark circles under the eyes
The skin thins as we age and the delicate eye area can show more ageing signs such as dark circles, eye bags and loose wrinkled skin. In the case of heavy eye bags there isn’t really a dramatic non-surgical treatment but as you would treat the rest of the skin, products and/or laser to stimulate the production of collagen and elastin can be worthwhile. There are two causes of dark shadows, one is pigments on the skin and the other is blood vessels showing through the thin skin. There are depigmentation creams in the ZO skincare range that will reduce some of the surface dark colourings and tear trough dermal filler can be used to add volume to the hollows under the eye thus reducing the transparency of the skin. Adding toxin treatment to this to reduce the crow’s feet can result in quite a dramatic transformation of this area.
Downward folds in the skin
Nose to mouth lines (nasolabial) and lower lip to chin lines (marionettes) are partly due to the ageing skin, partly due to muscular pull and partly due to loss of support in the middle portion of the face caused by changes in muscle and fat pads in the cheeks area causing the skin to fold. A common and highly effective treatment is dermal fillers, and support in the middle face is always considered before the nasolabial area. It is likely that a combination of areas will provide a more noticeable result that is harmonious to the face. Treating the nasolabial areas without the cheeks can result in a flat look. The marionette areas can be treated in isolation but normally if the marionette area requires treatment, it is very likely other areas of the face will also have folds.
Whether you have smoked or not the lips become smaller, thinner and less defined and the skin around them is more noticeable and often lined. Dermal filler creates a beautiful defined and rejuvenated lip without the lips looking too big. Restoring the definition, shape and volume of the lips distracts the eye from seeing the lines on the skin around the lips. As well as the lips, dermal filler can be carefully injected into the skin around the lips (known as peri-oral lines) to restore support to this area without bulking the skin. This is very rejuvenating and ladies enjoy wearing lipstick again without it bleeding into the skin.
Jowls, neck and décolletage
Non-surgical treatments are not going to create the same effect as a facelift and you should not expect a similar result compared to when you lift your jowls with your hands (we all do it). They can, however, provide beautiful effective natural results that are in harmony with your face.
Facial aesthetic treatments can be preventive and/or restorative and in the 60 plus age group, it is largely restorative and therefore a full in-depth consultation is recommended. It is important for you to understand fully the results that non- surgical treatments can provide and to know their limitations. As well as injectable and other non-surgical treatments it is important that you are knowledgeable about other options such as surgery in order for you to make an informed choice.
It is never too late to begin an aesthetic rejuvenation programme and if you are curious about how aesthetics can help, book a consultation to understand what aesthetic treatments would work best for you.
Love your skin – Love your life – Love your wise years