What are jowls?
Jowls are the dreaded area of saggy loose skin in the lower face, around the mouth and jawline.
As we age, our skin firmness, strength, elasticity and holding ability of our skin is reduced, which results in sagging as gravity does its thing.
However there’s good reason to keep your chin up as there are various ways to get rid of saggy jowls without resorting to invasive surgery such as a facelift, to raise and tighten the skin.
Indeed even a facelift, despite the cost and potential complications, is only a temporary solution: we can’t escape the ageing process and when the skin continues to become weaker it will continue to sag further.
Innovative non-invasive skin tightening procedures can address the underlying cause of sagging skin and work to reverse the process by promoting the strengthening of skin tissue to lift skin.
This is achieved by rebuilding the collagen fibres within the skin in a way that can be maintained over time as we continue to age. Ensuring your skin is hydrated, especially with hyaluronic acid, can also help to keep the skin supple.
What is the best way to get rid of jowls and saggy skin?
One of the most effective non-invasive ways of building collagen is to focus heat in the deep layers of skin which causes collagen cell stimulation, multiplication and growth of new collagen fibres to reinforce the network, and boost the structure and strength of the skin.
This can be achieved using laser or light energy creating heat, or by using radio frequency radiated heat energy.
There are numerous ways of employing both these technologies, but one of the more powerful and most effective methods is to focus ultrasound energy in the deeper layers of the skin to build new collagen, in addition to tightening and contracting existing collagen.
The well known science of this, works by inducing a heat wound reaction resulting in new cell growth and multiplication which, despite the name, is typically a comfortable and tolerable process.
The resulting new collagen growth continues for up to four months or so after each treatment, but cannot stimulate ongoing collagen production from a single treatment any longer than that.
As a result additional maintenance treatments are recommended three times a year, approximately every four months to maintain and reinforce cumulative results.
Naturally, younger people are likely to develop more collagen and elastin than older people, but it is never too late to try and strengthen the skin.
When do jowls start to appear?
We actually start to lose some collagen strength from our mid-20’s onwards but the sagging is not usually apparent until our mid 30’s. It gradually accelerates from then and is much more obvious in the 40s and certainly 50s and later, resulting in sagging skin and sagging jowls.
The reason ultrasound energy is often considered the most successful treatment for sagging skin is that it is easily repeatable, it is also more accurate as focusing ultrasound energy is more precise than laser or radio frequency energy and it can be concentrated and focused more intensely in the most appropriate zones of the deeper layers of our skin.
To prevent early jowl formation, many patients start treatment in their mid 30s focussing on the lower face area however, where budget allows, treatment to the whole face eyelids and neck provides the most consistent and comprehensive results by stimulating collagen production in all areas of facial skin.
Another advantage of ultrasound skin strengthening and tightening is that in almost every case it has no side-effects and recovery is immediate for going back to work or heading out socially.
It is a gradual, subtle improvement which most people prefer as it is not so obvious that treatments are being done. Providing treatments are delivered sequentially every four months, the results are cumulative, giving added benefit over time. After the four month mark, the natural depletion of collagen density continues, so for a steady progressive result, it is recommended to be on a scheduled maintenance program rather than to administer treatments sporadically.
I’ve heard of Ultraformer & Ultherapy, which one is best?
Branding and marketing obviously have a significant impact on people’s perception of these treatments and patients sometimes express a preference for one specific machine over another, having heard that is ‘stronger’ or ‘better’. Whilst it is important to use genuine, approved machines (as we do at Rejuvenation Clinics of Australia) to ensure trust and confidence in treatment delivery, it is really the amount of heat and length of time that heat is on the skin, in combination with the frequency of treatments, rather than the label on the machine that will deliver the best results.
At Rejuvenation Clinics of Australia we have many loyal patients that have been doing ultrasound skin tightening treatments three times a year for a long time and who appreciate the reduction in ageing over time.
Do dermal fillers & thread lifting work on jowls?
Additional improvements can be achieved by creating more volume in the upper cheek to re-volumise and lift hollowed out areas or to add dermal fillers along the jaw line to enhance jaw line contour, however these are more superficial solutions and should not be considered as a substitute for strengthening, reinforcing and building up the collagen network.
Some people have artificial threads inserted in the skin to try to lift. Although this may produce a short-term result it rarely lasts longer than dermal fillers.
The downside of anchoring threads is that they are artificial foreign bodies pulling on the skin with notable complications. As the skin ages and sags around these threads, it can create an unnatural dimpling of the skin over time. Threads are not an ideal replacement for a facelift or for skin strengthening treatments to build collagen.