Let me go ahead and apologize right now. Maybe it’s because Thanksgiving will be here before we know it, but I just couldn’t help myself. I know you’ve heard the expression “turkey neck” too, so I’m just being real here. You know I wouldn’t call you a turkey anyway…right?
So…here we are…talking about how to tighten sagging jowls. We can’t simply sweep this one under the rug as we continue to take a look at skin care over 50. We’ve covered those wrinkles, pores, and fine lines on our face, but what is that we see hanging underneath?
What is a Jowl and Where Does It Come From?
Jowls are the saggy, excess skin just below our jawline and chin. This area of our neck starts to hang lower as we age and lose the elasticity in our skin.
The sagging comes when our cheeks and the skin around our mouth starts to lose their mass. This happens as a result of our skin becoming drier and thinner, causing it to lose its form and fullness. Naturally with gravity, all things go downward, so our skin settles underneath our chin.
What Causes This Unsightly Wattle?
There are many causes that attribute to a sagging jowl, also known as a wattle:
- It’s hereditary
- Not washing your face and/or cleaning too agressively
- Alcohol consumed in excess
- Lack of excercise
- Excessive weight loss
- Excessive sunburn
- Diets low in antioxidants and other nutrients
- Chronic illness
- Expressions that overwork the mouth, jawline, and cheeks
- Air pollution
- Severe trauma or injury to the face
- Too much screen time on a computer or phone
What Can We do About It?
Most of these causes and techniques sound familiar to you if you’ve been reading my posts. If not, then I encourage you to do so for more in depth detail.
Here are some techniques that will help improve the elasticity in your skin:
- Wash your face every morning and every night. Use an exfoliator at least once a week, but be careful not to scrub too hard.
- Quit smoking. It damages more than your lungs. Our skin, the largest organ, is highly sensitive to the chemicals associated with smoking. The action it takes to suck in the smoke also wears down the muscle.
- Stop drinking alcohol in excess. Alcohol is dehydrating to the skin.
- Hydrate your skin with moisturizer that contains collegan, hyaluronic acid, retinol, vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin E. Also consume plenty of water.
- Get your exercise. It gets your blood moving, which helps keep skin plump. You can also do face exercises that will help rebuild the tissue in your face, making it less saggy.
- While losing weight is usually a good thing, try to find a program that will take it off slowly and steadily. With rapid weight loss, the skin doesn’t have time to repair itself at the same rate as loosing fat, which stretches the skin.
- Wear sunscreen and protective clothing to prevent sunburn.
- Eat a healthy diet with plenty of antioxidants and other vital nutrients. Read my post on How to Reduce Wrinkles Around the Mouth for more details about eating healthy for your skin.
- Certain expressions like smiling, frowning, laughing, and scowling cause wrinkles, which lead to sagging. Please don’t give up smiling and laughing…some things are worth it…but we should all give up frowning and scowling for many different reasons.
- Sleep on your back. Sleeping on your side causes your face to be pushed into your pillow, which wrinkles up the skin. As we get older our skin has a hard time going back into place. I already sleep on my back for problems with my back and hips, so I’m up on this one.
- Limit your screen time. I know, this one hurts, but too much time on our computer and/or phone causes us to look down for extended periods of time causing a wrinkle in our neck. Put those devices down and work on your face exercises.
- There are makeup contouring techniques that will help your jowl lines look less noticeable.
- Try beauty patches to draw moisture from your deeper skin tissue to your surface skin layers, which will help to plump your skin. I use eye patches for this purpose, so maybe I’ll give cheek and chin patches a try. I’ve seen them on Amazon, so they’re easy to find.
Do You Need to Consider More Drastic Actions?
It is possible you might need to consider more drastic actions. I’m always going to discuss natural ways to make improvements at home, however. Maybe it’s a level of acceptance that there’s only so much I can do on my own or maybe it’s the thought of a need in my face. Yikes!
I do believe, though, that there are certain things we need help with beyond our own capabilities. In the instance of a large amount of excess skin, such as with weight loss (congratulations by the way) it may be necessary to visit a specialist or doctor.
One option is a filler, which is done by injection. They fill the cheeks, which makes them plumb, uplifting the skin.
Another technique is cool sculpting. With this nonsurgical process, they basically freeze out the fat. This sounds a little more doable to me.
Then there’s more involved procedures like liposuction, face-lift, and neck-lift. The liposuction requires a small incision and a local anesthesia while the later two are considered surgeries and require general anesthesia.
I recommend you look at all the options and make the best decision for you. As with everything in life, we have to weigh the pros with the cons.
The End to Turkey Talk
So…here we are. I’ve hopefully given you some food for thought…sorry turkeys…you belong on the table at Thanksgiving, not in our selfies. Goodbye turkey neck and hello gorgeous!
I hope I’ve also encouraged you to take some steps to either prevent sagging jowls are to take corrective action to get rid of them.
I do encourage you to read my other posts. Everything we’ve covered today is a result of how we take care of the other parts of our face. I’ve said this before, but skin care is not a one-time deal, especially when it comes to our face.
Please leave me a comment or a question and I’ll be happy to get back with you.
As always, thank you for your time!