We expected fine lines, the odd wrinkle. But droopy eyelids? This was not part of the plan.
The good…and I guess…bad news is that heavy eyelids are a completely natural part of the ageing process. It starts to become an issue for lots of our clients at our skin clinic when other people start to say that “you look tired” when you’re not, and when eye makeup doesn’t sit like it used to, leaving little dots of mascara underneath your eyebrows. And don’t get me started on eyeliner!
The *actual* good news is that there is a skin treatment that is both safe and effective on droopy eyelids (and general signs of ageing around the eye): Thermage.
Thermage is a radiofrequency device that we’ve been using since 2013 at our skin clinic to tighten and refresh tired-looking, ageing eyes. Jane Lewis, a nurse and our resident Thermage expert, having been the Thermage trainer in the UK, Europe, Africa and the Middle East, is ready and raring to share some of her secrets about this droopy eyelid treatment.
So, Jane how does Thermage work for heavy, droopy eyelids?
Thermage is unique in its properties of heating up the dermis (that’s the living part of the skin) and by doing that it’s going to stimulate new collagen and get rid of old collagen. It takes about 3 months for you to see the tightening and contraction of your skin and around that time you’ll be able to measure the improvement by things like mascara not sitting on the upper lid and your eyes being more open and alert.
If I also have crepiness on my actual eyelid, is this something that can be treated at the same time?
Yes. During the Thermage treatment, you can insert an eye shield that covers your eye and so you can treat, very safely, the crepy skin that’s often on the eyelid itself. Thermage will stimulate elastin and collagen so that the eyelid becomes smoother and firmer.
If my eyelids have begun to drop to the point where I am starting to see the skin in the peripherals of my vision, will the Thermage skin treatment work for me?
If you can’t see out of the corner of your eye without turning your head, then this is classed as obscuring your peripheral vision; often this is suitable for surgery rather than Thermage. I have treated some patients with this condition with Thermage and it has worked but it’ll never be the same as surgery. It may give the patient a little bit of time whilst they find a surgeon or secure treatment with the NHS. The NHS used to offer this surgery for peripheral vision but they don’t tend to now, they leave people to find their own surgeon and fund it themselves.
Thermage is an alternative to surgery but does not replace surgery. If somebody comes into the Clinic who has a lot of excess skin, then it may very well be that Thermage isn’t for them and I will always advise people as to whether surgery would be the best thing.
How many treatments of Thermage will I need?
Thermage is a single treatment, not a course. In your treatment, you have your own, one-time use, treatment tip that’s preloaded with a set amount of Thermage energy. Most of my patients will only require one tip to be used between both of their eyes. If someone has a slight obscurement of their peripheral vision from their eyelids, then possibly they can have two tips in one treatment: one tip for each eye. This is to get as much Thermage energy in there to maximise the contraction of their skin. I have noticed that unfortunately many people leave this problem until it’s too late and they require surgical treatment.
As will all treatments, non-surgical and surgical, Thermage doesn’t stop time so your skin will age in its usual way going forward. This means that should you wish, you can repeat your treatment to help maintain your results; this can be done at any time after you’ve seen your result however most people will have it done around 18 months later if desired.
Who is the ideal candidate for this droopy eye treatment?
Men or women who have mild to moderate skin laxity who are looking to help prevent or correct their skin from drooping; this usually means from the ages of 30 to 65. And those who have ruled out surgery.
Do you have any questions about Thermage? Please comment below.
If you would like to discuss Thermage as a treatment option for yourself with our expert, please do contact us.
Disclaimer: This blog is not to be used for diagnostic purposes. We are all unique which means that our results, recovery and suitability for any type of treatment will vary. Always seek the advice of a professional should you have any health or cosmetic concerns or to discuss treatments specifically for you.