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“I wear not my dagger in my mouth,” wrote William Shakespeare in the fourth act of his play, Cymbeline.
He may have been referring to sharp words; however, the mouth never should be portrayed as a negative aspect of the face. In today’s spas and medical spas, the emphasis usually is on the skin, eyes, crow’s-feet and worry lines. With all the focus directed to these high-impact areas, the mouth can become something of an afterthought. Nevertheless, no one ever has said that the mouth was the window to the soul. There are specialized eye masks, serums for tough forehead wrinkles and décolleté creams, but the mouth often is not given the care that the rest of the face receives. When this happens, it whispers a vital secret your clients don’t want the world to know—their age.
The aging mouth
The mouth ages in three basic ways, just like the face: by thinning, sagging and wrinkling. Drooping skin around the mouth can create a fatigued expression or make a person appear to be depressed. “The problem comes when these expressions are not the reality of how one feels, but are symbols that inaccurately convey the mood, personality or physical condition of an individual,” says Byron Poindexter, MD, partner and surgeon at The Austin-Weston Center for Cosmetic Surgery in Reston, Virginia. He adds, “For instance, you are immediately drawn to believe that a tired or unhappy expression means that the person is tired or unhappy. Ideally, the face in repose should be neutral from emotion, and reflect a youthful and rested condition.”
Pre- and post-operative skin care
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