When people think about plastic surgery, the first procedure type that comes to mind is likely not going to involve the earlobe, but earlobes are in according to the fashion publication. Earlobes are the newest frontier in plastic surgery, according to Vogue magazine.
People are opting to have dermal fillers injected into their earlobe to plump up this small segment of skin, and demand for the procedure is growing. This is because the earlobe, like the rest of the skin, can sag. While gravity usually spares the earlobes, individuals who have worn heavy, dangling earrings for many years often experience noticeable earlobe elongation.
Earlobe elongation does not necessarily lead to looking older, but it can leave patients feeling self-conscious.
“When the skin is stretched repeatedly, eventually it will lose its ability to retract and hang down,” Dr. Jack Peterson, M.D., said.
Peterson is a Topeka, Kansas, plastic surgeon. Peterson performs dermal filler injections for patients looking to rejuvenate their skin.
Typically used in the lips, around the nose and mouth or near the brow, dermal fillers fill out areas where volume has been lost.
“As we age, we lose fat volume in our face,” Peterson said.
Losing facial fat volume causes the skin to hang loosely and sag. Over time, sagging causes wrinkles and creases to develop.
Saving Skin with Dermal Fillers
Injected into the earlobe or into the face, dermal fillers are one of the most popular plastic surgery procedures in the United States. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgery, there were over 2.6 million injections performed in 2016 of skin rejuvenating products like Juvederm and Restylane.
The reason for their popularity is that they are minimally invasive, and while the results of the injections can be long lasting, they are not permanent.
“Dermal fillers are a great way for patients to try out skin rejuvenating, anti-aging treatments to see if they like the look without making the commitment to a more invasive surgical procedure,” Peterson said.
Dermal fillers made up of collagen go beyond filling out the face. Collagen is a protein essential for elastic skin. Once injected, these fillers improve skin quality and also signal the body to increase collagen production.
The combination of filling out the face and collagen production leaves the skin tightened and the face plump.
Dermal fillers that are made up of hyaluronic acid, like Juvederm, Restalyne or Belotero, also have an additional benefit beyond smoothing sagging skin. Hyaluronic is an essential amino acid to the skin. It gives the cells their structure and also attracts water to the skin to keep it hydrated.
Hydrated skin looks more youthful and fresh, and is also more supple than skin that is dehydrated. Hydrated skin also has the ability to stretch and retract and not become damaged.
A Little Dermal Filler Goes a Long Way for Anti-Aging
Patients who choose to have dermal fillers do not have to have a lot of product to achieve the results they want.
“Many people are surprised at how little it takes to see dramatic results in the appearance of their face,” Peterson said.
These dramatic results often keep patients coming back for more. Results of dermal fillers last anywhere between three months to one year.
The injection procedure takes just a few minutes, which is a major plus for patients who want results fast.There is also minimal downtime and risk associated with dermal fillers, another benefit for individuals who want to get back to normal routines quickly.
“Since many fillers contain elements naturally found in the body, the chance of reaction or rejection is reduced,” Peterson said.
Patients may experience redness or slight swelling at the injection site. These effects go away within one to two days after the injection.
Vogue. The Deeply Vain Ear Issue That Is Driving You Crazy—And How to Fix It. Vogue 27 September 2016.