As a man, if you’re not too young, you have probably noted some signs of aging in your face. Whereas most of us don’t really mind getting older and wiser, we still want to look fresh and relaxed. Wrinkles and lines, such as crow’s feet and glabellar lines, can make us look old, sad, tired or angry, regardless of how we feel1,2. This can be frustrating, but it’s possible to do something about it, without ending up with a “frozen look”.
Facial aging for men: crow’s feet and glabellar lines in focus
Facial aging is a very complex process affecting several tissues. Typical for facial aging is that we lose some of the volume in our face. This is to a large part due to the loss of some of the facial fat as we get older, but also due to thinning skin and bone resorption and remodeling.
Volume loss is something that many women are troubled about, and some have filler treatments to restore a bit of that volume. For men, losing some of the facial volume – especially the facial fat – is usually not very bothersome as it leads to a more angular, masculine face. Some men have filler treatments to restore structure, for example a sharper jawline or chin, but not so often to restore soft volume.
However, like women, men can be bothered by lines and wrinkles, such as crow’s feet and glabellar lines, when they get older. So, for men these types of aesthetic issues often come into focus with age.
What are crow’s feet and glabellar lines?
Crow’s feet are the fine lines that radiate out from the outer corners of the eyes. Glabellar lines, also called frown lines, are the vertical lines between the eyebrows that appear when we frown.
When wrinkles and lines don’t show your true emotions
When we are young, crow’s feet and glabellar lines, or frown lines, appear when we express our emotions – when we smile, laugh or frown. However, when we get older, changes to the underlying structure of the skin result in folds and wrinkles that are still there, even when our faces are at rest1. Unfortunately, these lines and wrinkles can give the erroneous impression that we have certain emotions, or personality characteristics, that we don’t1.
Even if you are a positive person, deep glabellar lines, or frown lines, may give the impression that you are angry or upset about something, because it looks like you are constantly frowning. Crow’s feet can make you look tired, even when you are rested. A lot of men aren’t very bothered by crow’s feet or glabellar lines, but for some, it can be frustrating. It can also be frustrating if people are constantly asking you “oh you look tired, what has happened?” or “what are you so upset about” when you feel perfectly rested and you are having a good day, and nothing has upset you at all.
Will aesthetic treatments lead to a “frozen face”?
If you belong to those who want to reduce the appearance of crow’s feet or glabellar lines, you might have tried different types of creams to treat it. The results from creams vary from cream to cream and person to person. However, if creams had a dramatic effect, no one would have crow’s feet or glabellar lines (frown lines) at all. So, if you have tried creams, but thought you didn’t get the effect you wanted, you have perhaps started searching for aesthetic treatments instead.
A lot of people worry that aesthetic treatments, injectables in particular, will lead to a “frozen look”. They may want to get rid of frown lines but worry they will end up with stiff faces and hardly be able to move their facial muscles at all. So, it is a good idea to find out why some people end up with stiff faces after treatment.
How to avoid a stiff or frozen face
You might have seen people who you thought had stiff facial features. That is usually the result of overtreatment. It is actually quite easy to avoid overtreatment.
Before you have aesthetic treatments, you always have a consultation with the healthcare practitioner. This is your moment. Explain exactly what you want, and also what you don’t want. If you are worried about a frozen look, tell the healthcare practitioner so. He or she will individualize the treatment to your anatomy, as well as to your wishes and desires. If you want to get rid of frown lines, but still want to be able to frown a bit, just say that. A qualified healthcare practitioner knows how to use different products and techniques so that you get the result you want. Remember that the success of the clinic is based on satisfied patients so he or she will listen to you.
Tips when choosing an aesthetic clinic
Of course, you should take care when you choose a clinic and a healthcare practitioner. Here are 5 steps to find a clinic you can trust:
- Start with a broad search. Search for example in national registers of licensed aesthetic treatment specialists or listen to friends or family members who have had aesthetic treatments.
- Once you’ve found a few clinics you think could be good options, check their credentials. Make sure they work with the highest standard when it comes to patient safety.
- Make sure the clinic uses products of high quality. High-quality products are products that have gone through preclinical and clinical testing. Another sign of high quality is that the products have been marketed for many years, meaning that they have been used for a long time in a large number of patients.
- Make sure that the clinic’s view of aesthetics matches your own. People’s taste and style differ. Check the style and image of the clinic to make sure it resonates well with you.
- Book a consultation.
- Finn CJ et al. Dermatol Surg 2003;29(5):450–455.
- Carruthers A et al. J Cosmet Laser Ther 2007;9 (Suppl 1):6–10.