I recently attended the 2015 Aesthetic Symposium—“State of the Art in Facial Rejuvenation”, sponsored by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, of which I am an elected member. There were expert plastic surgeons from Europe, Canada, the United States, and Asia, discussing the latest trends in aesthetic (cosmetic) facial surgery, along with their favorite techniques.
The main emphasis throughout this three-day conference was on volume restoration of the aging face, especially with fat grafting. Within the last decade, there has been an improved understanding of facial aging and an increasing appreciation of the roll of volume (fullness) in maintaining attractive, youthful features.
If you examine photos of beautiful, younger women in the media over several decades or even famous paintings from the past, you will notice that the young face is usually characterized by a natural soft fullness creating smooth contours that blend from one part of the face to another. With aging, the face loses volume due to fat atrophy, and some of the remaining fat will sag, changing facial shape.
The younger face is more heart-shaped, wider in the upper cheeks and more narrow lower near the jaw and chin. With age, due to fat loss and sagging, this shape reverses itself, and the face becomes flatter in the cheeks and wider at the bottom, resulting in a more square or inverted triangular shape. Hollowness typically develops in the mid cheeks, the temples, above the eyes, and in the junction between the lower eyelids and cheeks. Facial bones may become more visible, and in general, a person looks older and less vibrant.
Recent research has identified the specific fat compartments of the face, and in which locations fat tends to atrophy. This knowledge, coupled with improved techniques for harvesting and injecting fat, now enables the aesthetic plastic surgeon to successfully recreate the fuller, softer contours of the youthful face. Fillers can add temporary volume to depressed facial regions and wrinkles, but only a person’s own fat offers the possibility of permanent volume replacement, giving you back what you used to have.
Fat grafting has become both an important addition to today’s facelift, and an increasingly popular stand-alone procedure to fill in temple and cheek hollows, add prominence to cheek bones and the chin, soften a sunken appearance around the eyes, and even create a stronger, smoother jawline. Facial rejuvenation has advanced from lifting and smoothing to include filling and shaping!
Interested in how these new facial rejuvenation techniques can benefit you? Schedule a free facial rejuvenation consultation and let us discuss your needs.