Preserve Your Pretty: Non-Surgical Skin Rejuvenation Treatment #3, Fillers

“Momma, you are really starting to look like Grandma. Like right here in your face.”

For the past year, several of my children continued to state how much I look like my mother. My mom is a beautiful and educated woman that I am honored to be compared to. With that being said, she is nearing 70 and I knew exactly what my daughter meant when she pointed to my jowl and said, “Right here.” I noticed it too.

 My mother, Dr. Mary Beth Corace.

My mother, Dr. Mary Beth Corace.

In my third installment with Dr. Brian Biesman, Preserving Your Pretty: Non-Surgical Skin Rejuvenation Treatments, we’re discussing skin laxity, sagging and soft tissue fillers. While I am happy to age gracefully and do what I can to maintain my skin with diet, exercise and a healthy lifestyle, there are certain aging components obviously out of my control. There are also some genetic factors that can play into the quality and texture of skin as we age. I held myself together pretty well until age 40 and then things began changing, things I could see in photos, things I didn’t like.

Dr. Biesman, renowned Nashville plastic surgeon and doctor to many of Music City’s most famous faces, explained to me that people with fairer skin tend to age more progressively than someone with more Mediterranean or African American skin. I have my mother’s very fair, Irish skin and see the same “droop” that she has along our jaw line. After a recent photo where I could see it prominently, I asked Dr. Biesman what could be done without surgery. He recommended soft tissue fillers like Juvederm. Although I had only ever done Botox, and was a little hesitant to do anything else, I scheduled an appointment after learning that if I didn’t like it or had a reaction, an additional shot would cause the natural occurring chemical to be reabsorbed.

Below left, you can see my before photo…which was actually worse than what I saw when I looked in the mirror. You can see the area below the mouth start to sag and that genetic “pocket of droop” that I share with my mother along the lower jaw line. On the right, the after. Although you can still see that same area, you will notice that the sag is much less noticeable. I don’t want to look like I’m not aging; I just want certain areas to be a bit more subtle. (You’ll also notice what a shower, good makeup and hair extensions can do for a girl.)


Much to my relief, the injection of Juvederm was quick with little pain. I received a few injections at the base of my jaw bone to tighten up the jowl and a couple in my chin to then balance out the jaw. I could see the results immediately.  My husband didn’t even know I had anything done, which was the exact effect I had hoped for. All I felt like I needed was a minor tweak to prevent further sagging and this once a year treatment did the trick. Fillers not only correct issues you may have now but more importantly, help to prevent your condition from getting worse. I have a friend who has this in her temples and another friend who got in under her eyes to assist with her heavy under eye bags. Neither friend looks like they had any work done; both just look like they have really great skin.

Fillers don’t just help with aging but are also known for use in beauty enhancements. They are also most notably used for lips, cheeks and fine lines. I’m sure we all can think of a few people who have done this poorly which is why it is important to receive these treatments from a well-trained doctor with a conservative approach.  

If you’re interested in fillers, Dr. Biesman offers the following information.

·      The most common use of soft tissue fillers is to restore the soft tissue volume loss which occurs with aging.  All parts of our face are affected including the temples, eyelids, forehead, area around the eyes, cheeks, jawline, lips, chin, and even the nose in some cases.

·      Soft tissue fillers may be used to provide volume augmentation to young people who would like enhancement of their lips, under eyes, cheeks, etc.

·      Soft tissue fillers may also be used to correct wrinkles and lines.

·      There are many different types of soft tissue fillers and each is unique.  Some are designed for deep placement under the skin's surface to provide lifting and contouring whereas others are softer and intended for use closer to the skin's surface such as areas like the lips, under eye area, and to help transition from one area of the face to an adjacent area smoothly (such as from the eyelid to the cheek)

·      A tremendous amount of expertise is required to achieve past outcomes with injectable fillers.  When used appropriately the appearance should be very natural and subtle.

·      There are risks associated with the use of soft tissue fillers.  Although these risks are quite low, it is important to discuss this prior to being treated.

 

Of all five non-invasive skin treatments that I experienced for this series, I would say that this had the most noticeable effect next to Botox. Both injectables were only mildly uncomfortable with results being seen within the first week. If you’re looking for a conservative approach to aging, fillers may be a good option for you to help “Preserve Your Pretty.”