As I have discussed in previous blog posts, loss of elastin and collagen in addition to fat loss under the skin accelerates the deflation of the skin. This deflation leads to the appearance of crepey skin.
Even on the face, the skin on different areas can vary in terms of thickness and, as a result, can require different treatment solutions. The difference in the skin areas also compounds the difficulty presented by every unique individual, and what bothers them or not about their appearance.
With those provisos above, I will outline broad categories of treatment. I am taking into account that different patients may require different combinations of treatments to meet their individual needs and desired outcomes.
For many places on the face, the thin crepey skin is aggravated by recurrent folding over of the skin by muscle movement. Botox is unique in that it can improve appearance of the thin skin without changing the skin itself.
This characteristic is particularly helpful around the eyes where the thinnest skin of the face resides. The relaxation of the offending muscles can soften the appearance of the periorbital skin, making your eyes look less tired and worn out.
The most successful and highest rated dermal fillers are based on hyaluronic acid, which is the main chemical component of human collagen. Since a major cause of facial skin crepeyness is loss of collagen, replacing your lost collagen with dermal fillers is a logical step.
The commercially available fillers have evolved over the past decade to the point where different fillers are well suited to various needs for varying thicknesses around the face. The least thick filler that I use here at Maine Laser Skin Care is Juvederm Ultra.
Juvederm Ultra is useful for areas such as the lips and around the mouth. Just enough filling is needed in these area to improve appearance, but not so much that it looks overfilled and lumpy.
Next in line in terms of thickness is Juvederm Ultra Plus. This filler is particularly useful for areas of deeper lines such as:
- the lines that form at the corner of the mouth and extend into the chin (also known as oral commissures or marionette lines)
- the lines from the nose that go around the mouth (also known as nasolabial folds or parenthese lines).
Juvederm Ultra Plus is the most common one I use. It addresses so many issues around the face, especially those related to age-related skin changes.
It has been specifically designed to be injected and placed in the mid-face and cheek area. Voluma literally replaces the volume and padding of the cheek area which lifts the overlying skin.
This action basically re-inflates the crucial middle part of the face, making the skin of the area look more full and frankly younger. Voluma also acts to lift the lower part of the face and essentially contributes to the concept of a “liquid facelift.”
Fractionated lasers treat the surface of the skin that may have been damaged by sun. They also literally drill down into the skin to stimulate your body to repair the controlled and limited damage caused by the laser itself.
While a number of companies manufacture fractionated lasers, I have chosen the Fraxel Re:store, which is the gold standard for laser in this category of treatment. I have found Fraxel Re:store to be particularly helpful when the crepeyness of the skin is extensive and the individual does not want or would not even consider plastic surgery.
Fraxel is also excellent for treating facial scars. After all, old acne scars actually contribute to crepeyness as the skin ages.
SKIN TIGHTENING THERAPIES
Basically, when your existing collagen starts to age under your skin, it loosens and becomes less supportive of the skin. This loss of foundation allows the skin to start to sag and appear less tight.
There are several methods of skin tightening that are used, but all generally use heat. Some techniques use laser energy, while others use ultrasound.
The technique of choice here at Maine Laser Skin Care is called Pelleve, which uses radiofrequency energy to heat up and tighten the collagen layer and therefore the overlying skin. Over a series of treatment, slow but steady progress can be seen especially in sensitive areas, such around the mouth and the eyes.
If you have any questions about specific methods of treatment for crepey skin, or simply want to make an appointment for a free consultation for your specific needs, call Denise or Emily at (207) 873-2158.