Plastic surgeons offer a range of procedures to enhance facial beauty, including the facelift. The Philadelphia area’s Dr. Timothy Greco explains that although just about everyone recognizes a pretty face when they see it, not everyone understands what makes one person’s face more visually appealing than another’s. It’s said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder—and indeed, the societal perception of what is physically attractive differs in various cultures and in countries around the world. As time goes on, beauty standards also change.
However, one of the things that has remained consistent throughout history—in most cultures, and regardless of gender—is facial symmetry being considered one of the most desirable traits. A perfectly symmetrical face would be one with two sides that exactly mirror each other. Another geometric facial proportion used as a theory for determining facial beauty is the golden ratio, an equation that reads when written out as φ, or (1+ square root(5))/2. Also known as the Divine Proportion, this is the same calculation that famous architects and artists from the European Renaissance were said to use to construct their works. It’s also found in science, nature, and music.
Nevertheless, these formulas are just theories and suggestions. Ultimately, what is defined as beautiful is based on individual preferences and taste.
With that in mind, having an asymmetrical face is not only normal, it is very common. Many people don’t even realize that they have any kind of facial asymmetry. There are several possible factors that can contribute to this characteristic of asymmetry, including genetics, aging, lifestyle choices, sun damage, dental work, trauma, smoking, and other health conditions. Certain facial features (hump on the nose or a weak chin) can run in families, so chances are good that if your relatives have them, you may as well.
Some studies also suggest that aging is directly associated with increased asymmetry between the two halves of the face, especially in the lower two-thirds. The cartilage that makes up the ears and nose may enlarge over time, even if your bone structure diminishes. Unprotected sun exposure, smoking, and dynamic asymmetries are other factors that may make one side of the face look different.
If you’re bothered by your facial features, or believe that the asymmetry you have looks more pronounced than you’d like, there are some treatments that can create a more balanced look.
In addition to their ability to reduce the depth of wrinkles, soft tissue fillers are a non-surgical method that can quickly create symmetry to your appearance. When cheek or lip fillers are added below the surface of the skin, they act as a replacement for bone or connective tissue. Patients can use them to make their lips more balanced or to lift and add fullness to the cheekbone areas.
Neuromodulators relax facial muscles to reduce tiny wrinkles around the eyes and visible lines on the forehead. They are also useful for various off-label applications, including fixing uneven or sagging eyebrows, smoothing a dimpled chin, and reducing a gummy smile by allowing the lip to unfurl over the upper row of teeth.
We lose bone and muscle in the face as we age, and the skin begins to get thinner and sag when it no longer has as enough collagen to keep it supported. Facelifts reposition the skin and tissue of the face to improve jowls, double chin, and sagging around the jaw area.
Since the nose is at the center of the face, it has a major effect on a person’s overall appearance. Any nasal asymmetry can be noticeable or look out of place. A nose job allows you to fix crooked areas due to injury, correct a bump on the bridge of the nose, or address other irregularities, while improving your ability to breathe through your nose.
A chin or jaw that’s very small and underdeveloped can make your face look out of balance. Implants can improve this, as well as correct asymmetries caused by skeletal deformity or trauma.
If you’re interested in planning your facelift or another form of facial plastic surgery, as well as nonsurgical treatments, get in touch with Dr. Timothy Greco’s practice to find out more about what’s involved. Call (610) 664-8830, or submit a contact form to request a consultation.