Most people start engaging in some sort of anti-aging routine by the time they hit their mid-thirties. This typically includes things like daytime and nighttime moisturizers, toners, cleansers and regular use of masks. Done correctly and with the right products, these routines can go a long way towards keeping you looking younger for longer.
However, these routines tend to focus on surface issues. And in many cases, the causes of signs of aging are buried deep. If you’ve been doing all the right things to slow the aging process but still look in the mirror and see someone older than the picture in your head, cheek volume loss might be the culprit.
Understanding Facial Volume Loss
As we age, the collagen and fat pads under your skin start to decrease. At first, this isn’t very noticeable. With time, it creates hollowness at the temples, sunken eye sockets, flat cheeks and even loose skin around the neck and jawline. All of these are changes we associate with older age.
Everyone will experience a loss of volume as they age. However, the degree to which it occurs and how quickly comes down to lifestyle and genetics. Medications, significant weight loss, stress, anxiety and sun exposure can all speed up volume loss in the cheeks. As for genetics, you can look at your family and get a good idea of what to expect in terms of volume loss for yourself.
Most people will start losing volume in their cheeks in their twenties. For many, this is a good thing as it helps to eliminate the baby-face look of childhood and adolescence. However, at this stage, the volume loss tends to be pretty uniform and doesn’t typically cause any sagging or other signs of aging. In your thirties, you will typically notice some uneven fat loss, which does age you.
Anti-Aging Cheek Treatments
You have multiple options for battling facial volume loss. Hyaluronic acid fillers are a solid place to start. These treatments are injected into the skin, offering some degree of instant results but also encouraging collagen growth that builds up over time.
You can also get other treatments that encourage the development of collagen and elastin. There are many med spa options for this, including radiofrequency treatments and microneedling.
However, at some point, non-surgical options won’t be enough. The good news is that this likely won’t be until you are in your late 50s or 60s. At this point, you can add facial volume through cheek and chin implants. These help to fill out sagging skin and create youthful definition.
Addressing Volume Loss in Men
It is important to note that the approach for treating facial volume loss is different for men and women. While full, round cheeks are considered quite beautiful in women, for men, sharper angles tend to be preferred. If you are a man wanting to combat volume loss, it is important that you work with a plastic surgeon who understands how to adapt their approach for male beauty standards.
Reo Pugao, M.D., D.D.S., FACS is a facial cosmetic surgeon who focuses on facial aesthetic procedures such as facelifts and brow lifts, as well as nonsurgical treatments like BOTOX® and fillers. Dr. Pugao joined Martin Plastic Surgery in 2019, helping men and women in Las Cruces, New Mexico and beyond look and feel like the best possible version of themselves through his perfected blend of highly-skilled technique and an artistic eye.