Guest blog: what to do when you start looking like your mother

Dr Ros Debenham is owner of Radiance MediSpa clinic in Exeter, which won the Professional Beauty Medical Aesthetic Clinic of the Year 2016 Award. She explains why growing old and looking like our mothers needn’t be a scary thing as long as we invest in the right preventative treatment

It’s natural to see ourselves in our mothers. However, as we watch her grow older it’s normal to become concerned because we see it as a sign of what’s to come for ourselves – a visual reminder of where we may suffer with deep wrinkles, folds and more.

But if we understand the ageing process early on – that volume replacement and collagen stimulation are the best treatments of choice – then growing old doesn’t need to be a scary thing. 

The problem:
The “happy lines” (also known as laughter lines) which appear either side of our nose from the midline up and outwards become more visible as we age.

This is the result of the two main causes of ageing – volume loss of fat and bone and loss of elasticity in the skin. These make the skin less tight or more stretched – a bit like taking some filling out of a plump cushion.

The tired, sunken eye look you now see is also due to the loss of bone volume around the eye, giving rise to tear troughs, with the line continuing down as the fat pad in the cheek both splits and reduces.

The solution:
I’ve found the most important treatment for many clients is deep dermal filler, high along the cheek bone to restore a happy line and give lift to the nasolabial lines. There are numerous types of dermal fillers and each company produces a range that will suit the different parts of the face; a robust one for the cheeks and a much softer one for the lips.

Fillers tend to last anywhere from six to 15 months, depending on the sort of filler and where it’s used. Filler in an area where there’s a lot of movement such as the mouth will not last as long as in the tear tough where there is little movement.

Radio-frequency treatments can stimulate collagen production and skin tightening, especially when used alongside retinol contain skincare and a Skinade supplement drink. There are many types of radio-frequency treatments such as Thermage, Omniface and Indiba, and the choice is down to price, pain tolerance and down time.

There are numerous other ways to stimulate collagen production such as chemical peels, nanopore micro-needling and laser, but alongside treatments good skin care is a must. The two elements required are antioxidants, which heal and protect the skin, and retinol, which stimulates collagen production, reduces pigmentation and reduces oil production.

Products bought over the counter or online tend to have less in the way of active ingredients, so seeing a trained professional for cosmeceutical products is advisable.