Tip #: 

20

For the next 1-2 weeks, I am going to give you quick useful tips that you can use throughout your life, whether you are a teenager or someone older. After that, I will get back to some more substantive tips including acne scarring, treatment of increased facial pigmentation and other topics that many of you have inquired about.

During my surgical fellowship training, my fellowship director, Dr. Roy Grekin, used to play this game with me. He would ask me, “What side does this woman sleep on?” This “test” taught me several things, including the importance of being a detailed observer of even the most subtle facial features; how the deeper anatomy of muscles, fat and bone structure affect the way the skin drapes over these structures and ultimately effects the way skin ages; and how habits also affect the way the skin ages over time. I eventually got to be pretty good at this test and continue to use it as I evaluate women’s skin today. Which brings me to today’s tip. This tip is the least expensive but may be the most difficult thing you can do to avoid deep facial lines as you age. What is it? Sleep on your back!

Over years of sleeping on your side, vertical and diagonal lines develop on the side of your face that you sleep on. These lines are usually most noticeable on the area between your nose and your cheek. Sleeping on your side can also deepen the nasolabial fold and cause lines anywhere on your cheek depending on your deeper facial anatomy and where your skin creases over those deeper structures while you sleep. They start out very subtly in young women and may be faint in the morning and disappear within hours, but by middle age these wrinkles start to be pronounced and permanent. You can often get rid of them with a facelift or soften them with filler. But this can be expensive…so why not just avoid these lines all together! Sleeping on your side is a very difficult habit to break, but if you can, it’s a free way to prevent wrinkles as you age!!!