- Sagging jowls: What can you really do to lift your lower face?
Scrutinising our faces on endless video calls has caused a spike in searches for facial exercises for jowls as well as jowl treatments. Here’s what the pros recommend
After staring at our own reflections on Zoom for more than a year, it’s no surprise that clinics have seen an uptick in interest in treatments from hooded eyes and creased necks and now especially for sagging jowls. Video calls are particularly unflattering for the lower face as the wide-angle lenses on our laptops and smartphones create distortion, making the bits of us closer to the screen, such as our jaw, look bigger (our ears, on the other hand, look tiny!).
“Jowl treatment has peaked since the first lockdown," confirms Dr Munir Somji, medical director of Dr MediSpa in Knightsbridge. "Not only are patients looking down during Zoom calls, they’re perhaps also having greater fluctuations in weight due to a change in diet and exercise regimes [which can affect jowls].”
Aesthetic doctor Dr Tapan Patel, of London's Phi Clinic and a regular on Channel 5’s 10 Years Younger in 10 Days,said that 90 per cent of his clients ask for jowl treatments. It's a similar story for Prof Khanna, founder of Dr BK Clinic in Reading, who reports a more than 100 per cent increase in enquiries for jowl treatments. Our pros explain the options.
What causes sagging jowls?
Jowls happen as we lose elasticity in the skin with age and the skin below your chin or jawline drops, saysDr Rita Rakus of the Dr Rakus Clinic in Knightsbridge. “As we age, almost everyone will experience this sagging chin. Sagging jowls occur when your skin becomes thinner and the elasticity of the skin decreases.”
Age-related bone loss also comes into play, as Dr Patel explains. “As we age our bones get smaller; our jaw might start to shrink and the skin that used to be taut across the area begins to sag.”
Jowls start to appear in our forties and fifties,adds Dr Tracy Mountford of The Cosmetic Skin Clinic in London . The extent to which we have them can be genetic, though lifestyle factors such as extreme weight loss, chronic stress, or smoking can speed up the arrival of jowls.
Best non-surgical tweakments for jowls
Facelifts are considered the gold standard for ridding yourself of jowls according to Dr Patel, but there are plenty of non-surgical tweakments too. He recommends three treatments in particular to treat jowls, with varying degrees of results. Hifu (High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound) as maintenance to press pause on ageing, radiofrequency microneedling as the middle ground for results over a time to tighten and improve skin texture (Dr Patel uses Secret RF machine) and lastly the Endolift which uses a laser to reduce fat and tighten skin and produces the most dramatic results with a noticeable lift.
Endolift.The ‘as seen on TV’ jowl treatment
Endolift involves a laser fibre just bigger than a human hair being inserted under the skin in the area you want to treat to tighten the skin and remove fat too. Dr Patel performed it on 10 Years Youngerearlier this year and there’s been a spike in Google searches of the treatment since the show aired. After a local anaesthetic is applied (the same kind injected at the dentist) an incision is made in the skin with a needle and the fibre is put under the skin and transmits heat energy, which encourages new collagen production.
The Endolift tightens the skin and removes fat too. It takes an hour to do, and Dr Patel says it’s well tolerated by most but will produce swelling for two or three days.Generally, just one session is needed and results last between two and five years.
Morpheus8:The celebrities favourite jowl treatment:
Judy Murray's skin transformation made headlines when she announced that she had been treated with Morpheus8 to tighten her ‘turkey neck’. Amanda Holden and Kim Kardashian are fans too. Morpheus8 combines radiofrequency with microneedling.
Microneedling creates minuscule injuries to the skin, stimulating a natural healing response of new collagen and elastin fibres which tighten and smooth the skin, explains Dr Somji. “It also delivers fractional radiofrequency energy deep into the dermis, which further enhances skin tightening," he says.
Results are long-lasting and continue to improve months after treatment, as new collagen and elastin develop. You normally need one to three sessions.
HIFU: to press pause on sagging jowls
HIFU is an ultrasound treatment, (it stands for High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound) that delivers ultrasound waves to a precise depth in the skin where thermal energy stimulates the growth of new collagen. Results are noticeable almost immediately in some cases, and continue to improve for up to a year after treatment, with no downtime.
Dr Patel recommends HIFU to clients who don’t want to look vastly different but instead want to press pause on their ageing. “It’s a maintenance treatment rather than something that will give you ‘before and after’ picture results,” he says. “Having one session of HIFU once or twice a year will sustain how you look.”
Ultherapy for jowls: The insider favourite
Ultherapy has been around for several years and like HIFU it uses ultrasound energy to lift and tighten the neck and jawline by remodelling collagen and elastin at a deep level in the skin to support the neck and jawline. In the early days, it was excruciatingly painful (it feels a little hot) but the technology has moved on a great deal and a numbing cream is applied pre-procedure. Because it doesn't disrupt the surface of the skin, it’s suitable for all skin tones and types.
It's one that experts use on themselves. Harley Street rejuvenation specialist Dr Sabrina Shah-Desai of the Perfect Eyes Clinic says she has it herself to address saggy jowls and thinning skin , while beauty director Rosie Green told us she has Ultherapy at The Cosmetic Skin Clinic every year to lift jowls and give her skin youthful plumpness.
Ultherapy shows impressive results with one session takes less than an hour and has zero downtime. Some patients see an initial lift after their first treatment but real results become more apparent over three to six months as new collagen builds which gradually lifts the skin, lasting a year or more. “I recommend maintenance treatments performed every year to eighteen months depending on your age and lifestyle,” says Dr Tracy Mountford.
The difference between ultherapy and HIFU lies in the ultrasound used. Ultherapy usesmicro-focused ultrasound (MFU) beams, while HIFU stands for High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound. Ultherapy uses a more focused ultrasound beam so targets a smaller, more precise area at a time.
Ultracel: for an immediate jowl lift
Ulracel is combination of high-frequency ultrasound, radiofrequency (RF) and fractional radiofrequency microneedling . The trio work on all levels of your skin, reducing sagging by tightening the skin with the RF and microneedling as well as stimulating collagen production thanks to the ultrasound.
It’s a pain-free procedure performed with a handheld gun that is moved across the treatment area. It delivers instant results as well as long term collagen stimulating effects and has no downtime, according to Dr Rita. The procedure takes between one and two hours and you leave the clinic feel rejuvenated.
Best at-home jowl treatments and beauty tools for jowls
Experts are divided as to whether at-home treatments make a difference to jowls. “With significant jowls, no home treatments will really be of huge value but it is always worth trying things that will help at home as a preventative measure,” says Dr Tracy Mountford. “Facial exercise can help to strengthen the lower face muscles and lower jaw and this will help."
She also suggests trying radiofrequency home tools to stimulate collagen but the results will be much less than in-clinic treatments.
Facial exercise for jowls
Dr Munir Somji sings the praises of facial exercises to help with jowls."Place your hands either side of your face and put four fingers just above your jaw, then place your thumbs under the sides of the chin," he says. "Pinch your jowl with your fingers at the top and squeeze with your thumbs. Smile and touch your tongue to the roof of your mouth. Repeat daily for six weeks."
At-home tools for jowls
Dr Somji also recommends combining facial exercises with devices such as the NEWA , £239, an at-home radiofrequency device that rebuilds and remodels collagen to tighten and lift the skin. Dr Sophie Shotter of the Iluminate Skin Clinic in Kent recommends using at-home radiofrequency tools daily to see results.
Gua sha for jowls
Fans of gua sha will be pleased to learn it can help with jowls, as Katie Brindle and founder of the Hay'ou explains. "Gua sha can help with the jowls by releasing stored tension in your facial muscles and boosting the microcirculation and helping the production of collagen and elastin."
"Start by using the double-endededge of your gua sha tool along the jawline at a 45 degree with a gentle to medium pressure, eight times each sidemaking sure you hold the skin to support," she says. "Then with your Hayo'u Precision Tool , £35, use the curved edge upwards, outwards starting at the chin applying light to middle-pressure strokes going from the jawline to the cheekbone for 30 seconds."
DaVisage Visagerfacial exerciser for tightening jowls
Think of this slingshot-shaped tool, £220, as a resistance band for the face. By placing it on different areas, in this instance under the neck, it provides resistance to make the facial muscles work harder and tone up.The Visager comes in a high-tech box with a video screen showing the exercises for your to follow.
Place one of the Visager prongs under the chin, open your mouth and press your tongue against the roof of your mouth. The lower jaw pushes against the Visager, hold for three seconds.
This wishbone-shaped tool has many a five-star review on Cult Beauty with users saying it transformed their face and neck and lifted sagging jowls. The rotating noduled massagers reduce puffiness by draining toxins, which in turn delivers a post-facial glow. It mimics the tapping, pinching and knuckling movements Sarah Chapman performs in her facials, which are loved by Victoria Beckham.
MORE GLOSS: The best creams for firming your decolletage and neck
There are several options for treating sagging jowls or reducing how saggy or droopy they appear. Surgical procedures, such as neck lifts, can tighten your skin and make it look less saggy. Nonsurgical procedures, such as thermage, lasers, and peels, can change the composition of the collagen in your skin.
There are a few different non-surgical treatments available to remove sagging jowls. These include fillers, anti-wrinkle treatments, a thread lift or radio frequency radiated heat energy treatment (Pelleve). The best treatment for you will depend on your individual goals and the amount of sagging tissue that you have.
For some reason, people seem to forget that facial muscles also need to be exercised on a regular basis in order to maintain a healthy muscle tone. Exercising the lower face and chin and jaw muscles may help prevent jowls or loose, sagging skin around the jawline as you age.
- Eat a healthful diet full of antioxidants and healthy fats.
- Drink plenty of water to hydrate your skin and flush out toxins.
- Apply a quality firming cream that contains retinoids, Vitamin E, and Vitamin C.
- Get enough sleep.
- Reduce stress.
- Stop smoking.
- Reduce alcohol intake.
Using a patented device, researchers have shown that jowl massage by mechanical stimulation of the face can trigger biochemical mechanisms that lead to skin remodeling in the aging face. To be reminded that time is indeed undefeated, one just needs to look in the mirror.
As we age gravity pulls on our lower face, leading to sagging jowls, decreased elasticity and hanging skin of the chin, neck and lower face. Injecting Botox® in this area can provide a subtle lift, helping you look younger and refreshed.
Using a dense filler like Juvederm Volux, a treatment specially formulated for the chin and jaw area, we can create an elegantly defined jaw, hide jowls, and assist tightening of the lower face. It can also help to restore lost volume by underpinning the face.
The final facelift cost for jowls usually includes any necessary anesthesia, medical supplies, the use of a surgical facility, and the surgeon's fees. However, depending on your type of procedure, the total cost can vary: Mini Facelifts cost between $4,500-$8,000. SMAS Facelifts cost between $8,000-$11,000.
A face-lift can give your face and neck a more youthful look. But face-lift results are not permanent. With age, the skin on the face may begin to droop again. In general, a face-lift can be expected to last 10 years.
Jowls develop as the skin becomes less elastic with age because of elastin and collagen loss. Jowl development is also affected by various other factors including certain lifestyle choices and facial movement habits, genetic predisposition, exposure to sunlight, and chronic stress.
To treat jowls at home, you can try doing daily exercises to strengthen your neck and jaw muscles. Several times per day, open your mouth as wide as you can, then slowly close your teeth while keeping your neck muscles tensed. You can also grin, then move your head slowly up and down.
Almost everyone develops at least minor jowls as they age and their skin becomes less elastic. Several factors, including heredity, stress, repetitive facial habits, and lifestyle choices, can cause more pronounced jowls at almost any age.
- Exercise. Saggy skin on the body caused by moderate weight loss or pregnancy can be improved through exercise. ...
- Topical treatments. Creams, lotions, and serums that contain ingredients such as retinol may improve elasticity around the eye area and on facial skin. ...
- Lifestyle changes.
Skin tightening treatments can be done in-office or at-home, and results will be less significant than if you were to have cosmetic surgery. Laser skin tightening is a minimally invasive cosmetic procedure to help firm loose skin. As men and women age, the shape of their face goes through changes.
Botox works by relaxing the muscles around the mouth, but it cannot soften the deep folds in the nasolabial area. In this case, a volume-adding injectable like dermal fillers is often the better choice because it can fill the deep wrinkles and smoothen the skin.
One of the main benefits of microneedling is that it can help stimulate collagen production, which can lead to firmer, smoother skin. This can in turn help reduce the appearance of jowls. Microneedling is usually performed in a series of treatments, spaced out over several weeks or months.
A specially designed thin needle is used to insert the threads into the skin, minimizing patient discomfort. Patients sometimes experience mild soreness and swelling for a few days after having this procedure, but it can usually be managed with over the counter pain relievers.
The Quick Lift is a procedure that tightens and eliminates saggy skin on the face. It is a minimally invasive procedure that offers a quick recovery time, unlike traditional face lifts. This type of lift is performed by elevating the SMAS with a particular type of suture.
On average, patients require between 2 – 4 threads on each side of the face for a mid-face thread lift. An additional 2 – 4 threads may be needed for the lower face and/or neck.
- Chemical peels.
- Dermal fillers.
- Laser skin resurfacing.
- Microneedling (collagen induction therapy), which increases the production of collagen to add volume and improve lines.
- Thread lift.
Laser resurfacing This is the most effective procedure for tightening loose skin. Unlike the laser treatment described above, this procedure requires some downtime. You'll need to stay home for 5 to 7 days. Laser resurfacing also gives you the fastest results.
Neck Lift. Neck lift surgery (platysmaplasty) is the most effective, but also most invasive, treatment for jowls. It may be the only option available to patients with severe jowls or substantial laxity.
- vitamins A, C, D, and E.
- coenzyme Q10.
- epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG)
Does Weight Loss Cause Sagging Jowls? Extreme weight loss creates sagging jowls earlier or more drastically than typical. As you lose weight, you also lose fat from your face. Hence, the skin will be looser and you're more likely to see the jowls sag.
The most common treatment to reduce jowl fat is liposuction. ATX-101 (deoxycholic acid injection), a minimally invasive treatment approved for submental fat reduction, may also be an effective treatment for jowl fat.
- Botox. Injectable therapies like Botox (botulinum toxin type A injection) can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles. ...
- Fractionated ablative laser treatment. ...
- Injectable dermal fillers. ...
- Kybella. ...
- Radiofrequency-based devices. ...
Neglecting Neck Skin Can Cause Sagging Neck and Jowls
As we age, our bodies decrease their natural collagen production, which causes a loss in firmness and elasticity of facial tissues such as the jawline. Poor diet, stress, and smoking are additional factors that can take a toll on your skin.
- Perform facial exercises. Also called “facial yoga,” facial exercises tone the facial muscles for a more youthful appearance. ...
- Apply aloe to your skin. ...
- Eat aloe. ...
- Apply apple skin care products. ...
- Eat apples. ...
- Apply glycerin and rose water to your skin. ...
- Apply honey to your skin. ...
- Eat honey.
Dr Mountford explains in the article that jowls form over time as our skin becomes less elastic. A drop in our collagen and elastin levels results in a loss of volume around the cheeks, resulting in sagging skin that forms into jowls. Dr Mountford comments: “Jowls start to appear in our forties and fifties.
Facial fillers are a top treatment choice for eliminating jowls as they can be used to rebuild the structure of the face whilst rebooting the skin's natural supply of hyaluronic acid and smoothing the jawline.
While chewing gum can help you strengthen your jaw muscles and, over time, help create a larger and squarer-looking jawline, it may not be noticeable without additional considerations such as weight loss in the face. In addition, regular gum chewing can contribute to unwanted side effects.