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When you smile, you might notice that the lines around your mouth look deeper. Although everyone has these nasolabial folds, also called laugh lines, they can become more pronounced with age. How can you treat nasolabial folds for a more youthful appearance or prevent these smile lines?
Before we talk about treatment options, let's talk a bit about why we develop lines like these in the first place.
The Cause of Smile Lines (Nasolabial Folds)
Nasolabial folds, commonly known as laugh lines or marionette lines, are the lines that form from the bottom of the nose to the corners of the mouth. These lines become more pronounced as the skin ages and loses its natural building block, collagen.
Normal aging causes the skin beneath the affected skin to sag, causing wrinkles and deepening nasolabial folds. Sun exposure, significant weight gain, and facial expressions can also contribute to the formation of nasolabial folds.
Keep in mind that everyone has these folds. They develop as part of the natural aging process. These are also called smile lines that run from your nose to the corners of your mouth. Smiling can make them show up more, but there are ways to stop this from happening without erasing your beautiful smile. Read on to learn about nasolabial folds treatment options.
How to Reduce the Appearance of Nasolabial Folds
To prevent nasolabial folds, it's important to wear sunscreen and use moisturizing skincare products. Skin resurfacing treatments, skin tightening procedures, laser skin resurfacing, chemical peels, and vitamin C can help improve the appearance of nasolabial folds.
Skincare specialists and plastic surgeons can provide an initial consultation to determine the right treatment plan for an individual's needs. For a more significant reduction in nasolabial folds, surgical procedures like cheek lifts or surgical removal of sagging skin may be necessary.
A skilled plastic surgeon can help guide individuals to the most effective cosmetic procedures, like fractional radiofrequency devices, to improve the appearance of nasolabial folds and achieve a smoother, more youthful-looking cheek area.
Let's look at each of these treatment options more in-depth.
1. Erase with makeup
Putting makeup on can help minimize the appearance of smile lines. Just be careful not to put too much concealer or foundation on directly in the crease. This might accentuate nasolabial folds with certain brands of makeup or if it is not applied correctly.
A small amount of concealer or foundation with the right blending and setting methods can decrease the appearance of these laugh lines.
Follow these steps to minimize face lines with makeup:
- Moisturize and allow to absorb
- Use a face primer
- Apply concealer and foundation
- Set with a setting spray
Setting with powder may cause the powder to cake in the deeper wrinkles and lines of your face, accentuating the lines rather than erasing them. So opt for a good setting spray that works for you.
2. Consider dermal fillers
Knowing how to decrease the appearance of nasolabial folds isn't always as easy as putting a bit of makeup on. Unwanted lines and wrinkles can happen as collagen production decreases with age. This can leave you with prominent nasolabial folds, especially when you smile.
Dermal fillers can help correct this by boosting collagen growth and filling in deep laugh lines for younger-looking skin. These fillers contain ingredients that stimulate collagen production, which makes skin plumper. Common fillers used to decrease nasolabial lines include hyaluronic acid and calcium hydroxylapatite.
Consult with a cosmetic dermatologist before purchasing any deals for fillers online.
3. Explore microneedling
Microneedling might not sound pleasant, but it can be a highly effective way to decrease nasolabial folds. This treatment involves puncturing the skin with tiny needles to stimulate collagen production. This results in tighter skin and reduced nasolabial crease lines.
The needles used for this procedure are extremely thin, which helps prevent you from feeling much discomfort. Numbing creams are also often applied prior to this procedure. Expect your skin to appear red for up to 48 hours following microneedling. Repeated sessions are usually required to see more dramatic results.
It is sometimes combined with radiofrequency treatment for even better results. Radiofrequency may not be best for you if you have dermal fillers, as the heat can interfere with the filler. So consult your dermatologist to see whether microneedling with or without radiofrequency treatment is best for you.
4. Look into radiofrequency
When you're learning how to do skin tightening treatment to decrease nasolabial folds, consider radiofrequency. This treatment employs a handheld device to heat skin tissue, leading to skin tightening. When heat reaches tissue, it stimulates collagen growth in your facial skin.
Radiofrequency can be a great way to decrease nasolabial folds. Keep in mind that repeated treatments (usually 4 to 8) are needed to see results. Occasional follow-up treatments are then needed to maintain results.
If you're talking to a skincare professional about how to decrease nasolabial folds, ask about ultrasound treatment options. High-intensity ultrasound treatment involves having heat applied to your facial skin and the tissue below it.
Ultrasound treatment also boosts collagen production and helps tighten loose skin. This treatment is known for having long-lasting results. It's also not invasive as other procedures, such as cosmetic surgery.
6. Do facial exercises
Did you know that you can decrease nasolabial folds with some face yoga? Giving your facial muscles a good workout with repetitive muscle movement can help tone them and might help reduce the appearance of deep wrinkles and smile lines.
What kinds of exercises should you do?
Try doing repetitions of the following:
- Pucker your lips and raise them for about 15 seconds
- Pucker your mouth in a pouting position and pull the corners out for about 15 seconds
- Open your mouth a little, then pull the corners out for a few seconds
How to Prevent Nasolabial Folds from Forming
1. Keep your skin moisturized
Moisturized skin is less likely to form fine lines and wrinkles, which can help prevent or decrease nasolabial folds. Slather on some moisturizer after showering or bathing, and you'll lock in moisture for the day.
Your pillowcase can also help your skin stay hydrated. Sleep on a Blissy Silk Pillowcase to help your skin stay well-hydrated during the night.
2. Don't lose weight too rapidly
Planning on losing weight? Avoid rapid weight loss, since this can make nasolabial folds deeper. Weight loss causes smile lines to look more pronounced, so make sure you take a moderate approach to losing pounds so that your skin has time to catch up.
Eat healthy instead of going on a strict diet, for example. Losing weight steadily rather than suddenly can help prevent or decrease nasolabial folds.
3. Stay safe from the sun
Knowing how to decrease nasolabial folds means protecting yourself from sun damage. Sun protection helps prevent UV rays from causing unwanted nasolabial folds, damaging your skin, and deepening laugh lines.
How can you make sure your skin is safe from the sun? Wear sunscreen, even on cloudy days. Apply it about 30 minutes before you go out, and reapply sunscreen every couple of hours while you're outside.
4. Say no to smoking
Smoking can increase signs of skin aging, and make smile lines deeper. Giving up smoking helps protect your skin from additional damage. Combine this with an excellent skincare routine to help prevent and decrease nasolabial folds.
Are you ready to pick out a silk pillowcase for healthier skin and less visible facial folds? Visit Blissy today to see our selection of silk pillowcases!
- Ferreira, M. (2017, July 12). The Best Treatments for Nasolabial Folds. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/nasolabial-fold
- Kumar, MBBS, K. (2021, October 28). Can You Get Rid of Nasolabial Folds? 10 Ways to Treat. MedicineNet. https://www.medicinenet.com/can_you_get_rid_of_nasolabial_folds/article.htm
- Villines, Z. (2018, February 5). Causes and treatments for nasolabial folds. Medical News Today. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320825#exercises