What are the types of Eye Wrinkles?
Our eyes are constantly opening and closing every time we blink. Plus, when we smile and make other facial expressions, our eyes have a role too. All this movement eventually causes wrinkles in the skin around the eyes. The eye is surrounded by a circular muscle that acts to open and close the eyelid. The wrinkles that result from its movement, tend to form in lines radiating from the center of the eye. These eye wrinkles can run up to the eyebrow and down to the cheek. These under eye wrinkles are better known as Crows Feet.
What causes Eye Wrinkles?
Did you ever wonder why children don’t have eye wrinkles as they are constantly opening and closing their eyes too? The answer is contained in the overall condition of the elasticity of the skin. Children have a lot of elasticity and their skin easily and readily bounces back after movement. However, as we age, we lose that elasticity and after a movement, the skin remains folded and an under eye wrinkle eventually forms.
What causes the loss of skin elasticity?
The easy answer is the sun. Damaging UV rays from the sun, damage the two main components of the skin, collagen and elastin. These proteins are the building blocks of skin and are critical for healthy, youthful appearing skin. Sun damage not only damages collagen and elastin in the skin, but also decreases their production. The result of the loss of collagen and elastin is skin that loses its elasticity and allows eye wrinkles to form.
What can we do to treat eye wrinkles?
There are several approaches to treat eye wrinkles. The first involves relaxing the circular eye muscle around the eye that causes them. Our goal is to relax the muscle’s movement, not paralyze it. Botox and Xeomin, are well known neuromodulators that can serve this purpose. A few relatively painless injections of Botox or Xeomin placed around the eye can help to reduce eye wrinkles and more importantly, prevent new eye wrinkles. Botox and Xeomin last around 3-4 months, and continued maintenance is required. If the wrinkles are real deep, then a dermal filler like Juvederm may be required. Fillers like Juvederm can fill in the wrinkles and also replace lost under eye volume. Botox and Juvederm work the best together to completely erase eye wrinkles.
The other treatment for eye wrinkles is to improve the elasticity of the skin around the eye. The easiest first step is to use an eye cream. The most effective eye cream is a retinol or retinoid based product. Retinol and retinoids actually activate the skin cells to produce new collagen and elastin, actually rejuvenating the skin. There are many other products that are complementary to retinols and retinoids like Vitamin C, peptides, etc. Of course none of these products are useful if you do not prevent more sun damage with a sunscreen.
More advanced cases of sun damage and eye wrinkles, require procedures that can stimulate even more collagen production. These procedures include chemical peels, microneedling and laser resurfacing. Chemical peels can remove several layers of skin and sun damage, replacing it with new skin. Microneedling involves the use of tiny needles that penetrate the lower layer of skin, the dermis. The dermis is where collagen and elastin are produced, and the trauma from the microneedles induces the skin cells to produce more. When the wrinkles and sun damage are severe, laser resurfacing may be needed. Fractional CO2 laser resurfacing uses tiny laser beams to not only stimulate collagen and elastic production in the dermis, but to also remove the upper layers of the skin. Each of these procedures have varying levels of discomfort and downtime, and a free consultation can help you decide on the best procedure for your needs.