[caption id="attachment_2238" align="alignright" width="300"] Nasolabial folds ins't always a laughing matter...
We got this question from a reader the other day about Nasolabial folds or laugh lines. They wanted to know if a cream can treat or remove these lines. As far as we know, there is no cream to remove these lines but let's start from the top.
This article will define nasolabial lines, tell you why creams don't work and suggest some alternatives that will work. So let's get into it...
What are Nasolabial folds (aka Laugh Lines) ?
Nasolabial lines are the lines that appear on your face when you smile or laugh, on either side of the nose. The lines start from the mid-part of the nose and end on either side of the mouth. When you are young and the skin still has plenty of elasticity, the lines will disappear when you stop laughing or smiling. And since they are associated with a happy, smiling face, are often viewed as cute, much like dimples on the cheeks.
As you get older, the skin loses it's natural elasticity and volume such that it does not return to a line free appearance when you stop laughing. Over time, these lines become more ingrained on the face until they are a permanent feature.
Many people don't really mind laugh lines, seeing them as giving character to the face. But of course, lines and wrinkles on the face concern everyone at some time in their life so what can be done about Nasolabial line ?
[caption id="attachment_2240" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Creams just don't cut it!
What Can Be Done For Your Laugh Lines ?
For a start, creams don't work.
By the time the lines have become a part of your face, a topical cream won't be of much use. Most skin creams with products like retinol or vitamin A may improve collagen production to some extent but too little to impact on laugh lines.
Collagen gives the skin more volume and “plumps up” the skin which stretches the surface layer of skin and thus eradicates fine lines. But Laugh lines are not fine, they are deeply ingrained and a cream won't help.
After doing some internet research, I found mention of a topical cream called Freeze 24-7. This uses a product called Gynostemma, a plant extract, which acts to help microcirculation, and assists Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA, a neurotransmitter in the body) to communicate muscle relaxation. This relaxes muscle where ever the cream is applied thus reducing lines and wrinkles in theory. I still have my doubts, especially when it comes to deep seated lines. And it should be noted that the cream only lasts for 24 hours after use.
So, what are the alternatives ?
Dermal Fillers for Nasolabial Lines
The best way to hide or remove laugh lines is by applying a dermal filler. As the name suggests a filler gives volume to the skin, much like naturally occurring collagen does in younger skin. The filler is injected into the skin under and around the lines.
Generally one session with a cosmetic surgeon will do the trick but some people will have more than one. A filler will last 6 to 9 months so in order to keep the lines away, you would have to repeat the process.
Popular dermal fillers are Juvederm, Perlane, Radiesse, Restylane and Sculptra. Most of these products are made from hyaluronic acid which binds with natural collagen and absorbs water. Both of these factors plump up the skin and reduce or remove lines and wrinkles.