Summary: Cosmetic surgery, by its nature, puts the focus on immediate appearances, whether that means wanting to look younger, boost your bust size or finally get rid of those love handles. Yet, the best plastic surgeons understand that cosmetic procedures aren’t just about today’s results, and instead plan ahead for how your new look can age into the future.
By Dr. Glenn M. Davis
For example, many younger women want very high, full breast implants. While this look is just fine in your 20s, women in their 40s may look more obviously augmented due to the natural changes that occur in breast shape and profile with age. It’s important to choose options with longevity in mind, not just instant gratification. To illustrate this point more clearly, let’s look at a typical patient who’s interested in facial rejuvenation.
Stage One: Minor Improvements
The late 30s and early 40s is a very popular age range for patients to seek out their first consultation on surgical and non-surgical cosmetic options. By these years, the faint lines and wrinkles that were visible through the earlier 30s are often deeper and more visible. At the same time, this may be one of the most vibrant, exciting times in your life, filled with the hustle and bustle of balancing a career with raising a family. So many men and women in this age range feel that their outer appearance no longer matches their inner vitality level.
At this stage, surgery is rarely necessary. Instead, most plastic surgeons will turn toward minimally invasive treatments, such as BOTOX® Cosmetic injections to smooth away crow’s feet or dermal fillers to erase laugh lines. The added benefits of these options include a less expensive treatment, zero downtime and a brief appointment that’s conducive to a busy daily routine. Early treatments of BOTOX® also work proactively to help prevent new wrinkles from forming, and also keep existing lines from deepening too quickly.
Stage Two: Taking the Next Step
By the late 40s to early 50s, patients may notice other changes in their facial structure, beyond lines and wrinkles. Sun spots and other irregular pigmentation may be more prevalent, while skin and muscles are losing some firmness and looking more lax. While injectables continue working their magic, patients may become interested in additional treatments, such as chemical peels or laser resurfacing to rejuvenate skin tone and texture. Resurfacing not only cosmetic benefits, but actually improves the health of the skin, removing damaged surface cells that could lead to more serious concerns and helping to promote long-term skin health.
This is also a common age for eyelid surgery which corrects sagging eyelids and removes puffy bags from below the eyes. Although a comparatively minor surgery, an eye lift can make a big difference in your appearance for a younger, more refreshed look that’s not obviously surgical.
Stage Three: Cosmetic Surgery
The 60s remain the most popular decade for a facelifts and neck lifts. As most of the signs of aging through the face and neck are at this point due to structural changes in the supportive musculature and ligaments, surgery is the next logical step for correction.
What would have been an unnecessary level of correction 20 years previously can now create a more youthful look through the lower face and jaw line by eliminating “turkey neck” and deep-set lines and wrinkles. The upper face may benefit from a brow lift, or eyelid surgery (if not performed at an earlier time). Regardless of chronological age, the focus should always be on delivering the results that will enhance your appearance into the future as well as today.