Featured Image Caption: Facelift Surgery
Definitions of beauty have changed over time without any clear direction or reason behind them. What makes an individual physically attractive varies across cultures, as well as historical eras, suggesting that preference is based on cultural convention. However, some evidence has raised the possibility that some standards of beauty could be related to nature over culture.
Preference towards facial symmetry potentially comes from a desire for adaptability. Typically, facial symmetry is instinctually considered a sign of good health and genetic quality. These are traits often taken into account when people are selecting a partner.
Evidence shows there is a correlation between facial symmetry levels and emotional and psychological health. On the other hand, some research has reported that faces with normal levels of symmetry are more attractive than perfectly symmetric versions of the same faces.
The factors that make facial symmetry attractive continue to remain poorly defined; this is partially due to varying research findings. That said, the collective understanding agrees that symmetrical traits impact our perception of beauty. Regardless of cultural or societal influences (including the media, which plays a large role), facial symmetry is generally accepted within the normal range of variation.
Why is the balance and proportion of facial features important?
There are theories about attractiveness that suggest “good genes” are potentially demonstrated through a subtle indicator mechanism. These indicators are used to attract prospective partners by exhibiting characteristics known for being more desirable. Individuals often show a preference for reliable traits that can be inherited by future offspring.
Historically, if there were indicators of genetic benefits, individuals with them would have most likely had an advantage in passing down more of those genes. This arguably holds true today. Facial symmetry preferences affect a wide range of critical social outcomes, including someone’s choice of partners, decisions regarding platonic relationships, hiring decisions, and even social exchange.
One proposed indicator of genetic quality is an individual’s ability to develop successfully in the face of environmental pressures. Therefore, characteristics demonstrating fluctuating asymmetry—when symmetry reflects normal development and deviations from this symmetry are randomly distributed on each side—could indicate issues with adaptability. As a result, facial symmetry may express the potential for both direct and indirect benefits.
The Effects of Aging on Facial Symmetry
Signs of facial aging, including wrinkles, folds, poor skin tone, rough texture, and an imbalanced distribution of soft tissue, are known to have a significant impact on the psychological, emotional, and social well-being of individuals. These signs have the potential to affect interpersonal relationships by influencing perceived character or personality traits, even if the perceptions are false.
Positive signs of aging are typically synonymous with retaining full features, smooth facial contours, gradual transitions between facial areas, and proper proportions. When these elements begin to change, it can dramatically impact the overall symmetry of an individual’s face.
Loss of muscle tone and thinning skin may cause one side to droop or become looser in appearance. In addition, sagging skin beneath the jaw could result in the illusion of excess fat and/or skin around the bottom jawline.
Around the eyes, muscle loss can result in fat settling in the eye sockets giving a sunken appearance. This is sometimes accompanied by the development of large bags beneath the eyes.
Noticeable blotches and/or spots will eventually become more prominent as the pigment changes. Several external factors, such as sun exposure, diet, and cigarette use, can affect how the skin ages.
Facial aging is a complex process that involves a series of interrelated changes to bone, muscle, fat, and skin. This natural deterioration can result in asymmetrical features, altering an individual’s appearance. One recommendation that clinicians recommend for combating facial aging is facelift surgery, which helps restore the overall symmetry of your skin.
How a Facelift Can Remediate Signs of Aging and Restore Facial Symmetry
A facelift—also known as a rhytidectomy—is a common form of cosmetic surgery where alterations are made to improve the visual signs of aging. The treatment usually focuses on the face and neck area.
A surgical facelift is any form of surgical procedure that improves the signs of aging in your face and/or neck by repositioning or removing skin, fat, and/or muscle. A facelift can restore the following issues, as well as other signs of aging:
- Relaxed, sagging skin on your face
- Deep folds or crease lines between your nose and the corners of your mouth
- Facial fat that has dropped or is absent
- Drooping skin on your cheeks and/or jaw
- Loose skin and extra fat in your neck that seems like a “double chin”
A facelift is designed to be a restorative cosmetic procedure; it does not change the fundamental appearance of your face or stop the aging process. It also cannot reverse the effects of sun exposure, superficial wrinkles, or irregularities in skin pigment. The surgeries can, however, be tailored to suit the individual needs of every patient.
The different types of facelift surgery include the following:
- Traditional facelift: This involves incisions around your ears, hairline, and below your chin. This surgery is generally recommended for the people who want optimal improvement of moderate to significant facial aging.
- SMAS facelift: This procedure focuses on the superficial musculoaponeurotic system (SMAS), which is the muscle layer of your face. This is recommended for individuals who want their muscles tightened, and to trim excess skin in the cheeks and lower face.
- Deep plane facelift: This process generally addresses multiple areas of your face at the same time by lifting the SMAS, fat, and skin entirely as one unit.
- Mid-facelift: This focuses on treating the cheek area of your face. The fat is repositioned and the skin is tightened around your cheeks.
- Mini-facelift: This is usually recommended to people who are younger and only have early signs of facial sagging in their lower face and chin.
- Cutaneous (skin) facelift: Involving only the skin, this procedure typically focuses on the neck and lower face.
Facelifts can be accompanied by other cosmetic procedures to help support the specific needs and desires of each individual.
Meet Yourself Again With a Facelift
There are a multitude of facelift surgeries available, each one unique to the individual and their desired results. While aging is a natural process, it can also cause changes to the face that alter our raw characteristics.
Opting for facelift surgery is a way for people to take control over their appearance, and restore some of the qualities that made them unique in the first place.
By Erin Gregory
who is a blogger in Toronto. She is currently working as a Community Manager for several small businesses. She has graduated with honors from the University of British Columbia with a dual degree in Business Administration and Creative Writing.
Member since July, 2022
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