Just writing the word smile makes one start to appear on my face as I type. After all, there are so many things to smile about. But now, after all of those years laughing at friends' funny jokes or smirking at unbelievable plot twists in movies have started to appear as permanent parentheses around our mouths. Of course, we don't recommend you stop doing smile-inducing things in a bid to reduce them.
According to Ronald Moy, MD, a dermatologist at MFC Dermatology in Beverly Hills, while repeated motions of the face do cause smile lines over time, it isn't the only cause. Another contributor to smile lines is a loss of cheek fat and fat pads in addition to gravity as we age, he tells us.
It doesn't seem fair that experience and wisdom often come with fine lines and wrinkles, especially if something as mood-boosting as a smile or laugh are culprits. Moy also notes that those long smile lines below the nose are one of the toughest to erase and that there is usually only one option that does the trick for good: fillers.
"These lines are hard to get rid of because the repeated smiling will continue, which causes the line to persist," he says."So the best treatment is usually fillers because they can soften the smile lines." If you're not ready to undergo a procedure to get fillers—especially since Moy estimates that getting one from a recommended board-certified dermatologist costs about $600—don't frown.
"We also use an epidermal growth factor in my skincare line, DNA Renewal, that are bioengineered from barley seeds," he notes. "Its job is to boost collagen production, which in turn 'thickens' the skin. Our studies show improvement around the eye and neck as well." So how do you get rid of smile lines? We asked Moy for the five products he would recommend to treat smile lines without injections.
The key to these items, he says, is the presence of epidermal growth factor. But he also says not to forget about two other simple tips, too. "If you also add more hydrating foods and water to your diet, your skin will stay hydrated and be more resilient."
"This is a bio-engineered growth factor from barley seeds that's clinically proven to 'thicken' skin while reducing the appearance of pores, fine lines, wrinkles, irregular pigmentation, photo-damage, and texture in as little as eight weeks," he says.
"This potent age-defying serum renews, revives, and restores your skin as it moisturizes," Moy notes. "It also lessens the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and maximizes radiance and tone."
"This targets, supports, and protects healthy collagen levels to fight visible signs of premature aging," he continues. "Featuring 0.1% PSP growth factors, this face serum reinforces the skin's own reparative abilities, while amino acids and stabilized vitamin C promote firmness and elasticity. Lastly, bio-processed algae smooths and tightens facial contours, and hyaluronic acid plumps skin with lightweight moisture."
"This is an anti-wrinkle serum with a gel formula that targets the visible signs of aging," Moy adds.
"This uses growth factor to address signs of aging, and boosts collagen with peptides and amino acids," he says. "It also reduces inflammation and redness."