One of the biggest areas of concern when clients come in for a consultation is the eye area. There are a couple of reasons for this. First of all, we all find big, beautiful eyes appealing. Recently, I was looking at a picture of the three Kardashian sisters and tried to decide what made Kim the most stunning. Even though they are all young, part of the answer is her eyes—they are a little larger than her sisters and her eyelashes are fuller and longer. The second reason is that as we mature, there are several changes that effect how our eyes look. Genetics determine the degree to which these changes affect us (warning-don’t read the next paragraph if you are easily depressed).
Here’s a brief explanation of what’s really happening. Because of osteoporosis, the bony orbit gets larger and eyes can look more sunken in. Muscle activity around the eyes can accentuate our “frown lines” and “crows feet”. The fat pad under the eyes can push out giving us the dreaded bags under eyes. This can be further enhanced by a shift of the cheek fat pad. As this pad moves lower on the face, it leaves a trough under the eye, which makes the bag look bigger and the dark circles more prominent. The skin in the upper and lower lids can grow, leading to sagging of the upper and lower lids. Our eyelashes also get smaller and thinner. And if that isn’t enough, the sun can thin the skin and increase brown pigment around the eyes.
Now for some good news. First of all, there are things that can be done to address all of this. Preventive maintenance is important no matter how old you are. Calcium supplements, periodic dexascans and medications, if indicted, all slow the bone loss process, so check with your primary physician. Next, sun protection protects the skin around your eyes, minimizing the loss of collagen and elastin, keeping the skin smoother and tighter, as well as lessening the formation of pigment changes. I put skin care products more in the prevention and maintenance categories, rather than treatment, as they help maintain things rather than reverse changes. In this category, our “Big 3” products—retinol, glycolic acid and vitamin C—all help keep the skin thicker and tighter by keeping the collagen and elastin levels up in the skin.
Once things have progressed to the point where more aggressive treatments are necessary, we have four treatments: Botox, Juvederm, Fraxel and Latisse. The other option is surgery. If there is a lot of extra skin in the upper or lower lids, then surgery will be needed to remove the redundant skin. But, before then, consider these options. When it comes to frown lines (vertical line between eyebrows) and crows feet (lines on the outside corner of the eyes), nothing works better than Botox. It relaxes the muscles causing these lines to diminish and open up the eyes. Juvederm can be used under the eyes, as well as help resolve the sunken in look. Fraxel does three things and can safely be used very close to the eye. It helps tighten the skin, stimulate collagen to reduce the fine lines, and remove sun-induced pigment. Finally, Latisse has the outstanding ability to stimulate eyelash growth in an amazing way.
The best results come from combining all the preventive and rejuvenation treatments discussed. Come in for a consultation or ask us when you are in for your next treatment so we can decide what is right for you.