How can I lift the corners of my mouth to look happier?
Hi Laura – I was just at the International Master Course on Aging Skin (IMCAS) and this issue came up fairly often. As we age, the corners of the mouth tend to droop which creates a grumpy look even if we don’t feel unhappy.
Sadly, neither Ultherapy, Thermage or Fraxel can address this problem well. Here are some thoughts for you:
- If there is a lot of sagging through the cheeks (think jowls), then the cheeks need to be repositioned back higher either through surgery or good filler placement (in the U.S. Voluma or Perlane most effective for this);
- If there is not a lot of sagging, using a filler like Juvederm Ultra Plus or Restylane to support and lift the corners of the mouth usually gets a good result. The key is to lift from above and support from below;
- At IMCAS, some newer techniques were presented which also involved releasing (with a needle) some of the attachments at the corners of the mouth. Experts only on this please;
- Also effective is to put a small drop of Botox/Dysport in the muscle that pulls the corners of the mouth down – the DAO (depressor anguli ori). Done correctly, this lifts the corners. Done poorly and some of the muscle next to it (labii oris) can be affected making you look like you had a small stroke. Experts only please on this.
Hope this helps, Dr. I