Treatments For An Uneven Face & The Selfie Test!
One of the most common complaints I see in Amara clinic is an uneven face.
In various studies babies, children and adults were shown different faces with varying degrees of asymmetry. Research showed that the more symmetrical a face, the more attractive. How can you tell if a baby likes a face I wondered? Well babies will more often than not focus on what they like and 9 times out of ten they will look at the more even and symmetrical face.
Almost everyone has an uneven or somewhat asymmetrical face – in fact if you look at the most beautiful faces in Hollywood they are mostly symmetrical (although nobody’s is perfect). However symmetry isn’t absolutely necessary for beauty – One notable exception is Tom cruise as you can see from the photo below. The most handsome man in Hollywood (by several surveys) is Denzel Washington, he also happens to have one of the most symmetrical and even faces in Hollywood.
Causes of An Uneven Face
So why are our faces uneven, or asymmetrical? How come we all have a little bit of Quasimodo in us?! Well there are a number of reasons:
1. Sun damage
People who drive for a living, such as truck drivers often have more aging on the side that is exposed to the sun’s harmful UV rays. What side of the car you are driving on determines what side of your face will be the worst affected, therefore in Ireland the right side of your face will be the one that suffers the most. You can see the effect of sun damage in the image of the trucker to the right.
Tip: Many moisturisers come with a high SPF rating, wearing one will reduce the effects of aging for the Sun.
2. Sleeping on your Side
We all sleep either on our backs or on our side or front, (duh!). The safest way to sleep from an aging perspective is on your back as fluid drains to the back of the head overnight rather than to your eyes and face. When sleeping on your front or your side you also tend to turn your head either left or right. This means that you will have swelling on the side that is down on your pillow. This side also has to cope with excessive weight (from the rest of your head) resulting in more strain and hence aging.
Any injury or Bells Palsy episode can change the way the muscles on one side of the face act, which can result in facial unevenness or asymmetry.
4. Uneven or Asymmetrical Muscles.
We tend to use muscles on one side of our face and body more than the other. Repeatedly doing this will result in stronger muscles on one side (it’s working out more) This can change the size of that side of the face and also how that side of the face moves.
Is your face uneven or asymmetrical? The Selfie Test!
Have you ever taken a selfie and the photo that came out wasn’t the same as what you saw?
One day I was taking a selfie (I know, I know guys shouldn’t take selfies, but it happened). I noticed when I was taking it that the picture looked great, then I pressed the take photo button, the screen went black and then the picture came up…It looked different. It didn’t look right compared with what I had seen just before I pressed the photo button. This kept on happening and it took me a while to figure out why. On many phones, including the iPhone I was using at the time, the image you see before you take a photo is a mirror image of yourself.
When we look in the mirror, what you see is your face, but backwards to how everyone else sees it. I’ll try and explain better – you see your left as your right and your right as your left? am I making sense?
Because you are used to seeing a mirror image of yourself the phone companies decided that for the front facing camera it is a good idea to have a mirror image effect on the camera. And then when you take the photo they spin it around to show you what everyone else sees.
So a quick way to find if your face is symmetrical or uneven is to do the selfie test. If your pre photo image is very different to your post selfie image, that means you are asymmetrical. Voila!
Common Uneven Face Problems & Treatments
In my practice there are a few asymmetrical or uneven face presentations that commonly appear.
- Uneven Smile:
Often people will come for correction of a gummy smile. This is where the smile reveals more gum than the person is happy with. Sometimes this is uneven and there is more gum visible on one side versus the other. Using a little botox on either or both sides to correct the muscle that reveals this extra muscle is the way to fix this.
- Uneven cheeks on one side versus the other:
Often on one side of the face there is more fat loss than on the other side. This is often something that we get used to and don’t see until pointed out or until we take a photo and we see the difference between what we see in the mirror and what everyone else sees. To correct this it is often a case of using an uneven amount of cheek fillers. For example if there is volume loss on the cheeks on one side more than the other, it may be necessary to put 70% of a filler treatment on one cheek and only 30% on the remaining side to even things out.
- More lines on one side than the other after botox treatment:
Sometimes volume loss (loss of fat) results in uneven lines. The face has more lines on one side than the other as a result of the tissues being a little thinner on that side. The treatment for such asymmetry is to add filler to correct the difference between the two sides.