Frown lines, or glabellar lines, are the vertical lines that occur between the eyebrows when we frown, and involve activation of the corrugator and procerus muscles. The lines are formed by repeated contraction of the corrugator and procerus muscles. In aging skin, these frown lines are often visible even after we have stopped frowning, which is due to loss of elasticity in the skin. Permanent glabellar lines generally have a negative affect on appearance as they tend to make you look tired and slightly grumpy.
Botox injections complimented, if required, by injectable dermal fillers, are often used to reduce the appearance of glabellar lines. Dermal fillers can be permanent or, more usually, temporary, in which case they are absorbed by the body. Temporary dermal fillers are commonly collagen, which has been derived either from the skin of cows or hyaluronic acid – a naturally existing ‘complex sugar’ found in the body. This latter type is particularly favoured in the United Kingdom because it is less likely to cause an allergic reaction than its bovine based counterpart.
A more drastic invasive approach to the reduction of glabellar lines would be to have a brow lift. There are several different types of brow lift available. A ‘direct brow lift’ involves removing a section of skin and muscle just above the eyebrows and hiding the scar in the eyebrow area. This procedure is most suited for bald men with bushy eyebrows. A ‘mid-forehead lift’, used to address deep forehead wrinkles, involves removing excess skin, fat and muscle by cutting along the trough of one of the wrinkles. A coronal forehead lift involves an ear to ear incision across the forehead, pulling the whole forehead up and hiding the scar in the head hair. The most modern method, an ‘endoscopic forehead lift’, is performed using a surgical telescope and involves very small incisions made behind the hairline.
However, if invasive procedures are not your cup of tea, what alternatives are there? There are a few easy and simple anti aging things you can do to help prevent the formation of frown lines. These include:
- Eating a healthy diet – make sure you eat plenty of fruit and vegetables to help to fight off the free radicals.
- Regularly getting a good night’s sleep – try to get eight hours’ sleep if you can.
- Using a sunscreen – Sun damage often leads to wrinkles and gives the skin a dehydrated appearance, emphasizing the appearance of existing wrinkles.
- Wearing sunglasses- squinting causes you to strain your eyes so always wear sunglasses when you are out and about in bright sunlight.
- Using a moisturizing cream and drink plenty of water and fruit juice and reduce the amount of coffee you drink. Well-moisturized skin is plump and smooth. Skin that is dehydrated shows more frown lines and does not have the luminescent look of younger skin. Moisturize your skin internally and externally.
- Using a facial scrub – a regular exfoliating scrub should be done to remove dead skin cells. Doing this will help you achieve a more vital, youthful looking skin.
- Stop smoking.
- Treating yourself to a facial massage.
It might also be worth trying a regular routine of facial exercises. Facial exercise tones and tightens facial muscles and increases circulation and the supply of oxygen to the muscles, which improves skin tone.
Marja Putkisto, of Method Putkisto advocates the use of facial exercises to “eliminate double chins, reduce puffiness and wrinkles, and improve skin texture”. To reduce the appearance of glabellar lines she suggests pressing your forehead with both index fingers above the eyes and pushing up against them ten times with your eyebrows and then repeating this five times.