There's nothing worse than looking in the mirror and realizing your skin has begun to sag. How can you have lost your strong jaw and sharp cheekbones seemingly overnight?
Unfortunately, these are some of the many inevitable signs of aging that make an appearance on our faces, whether we like it or not! But fear not, no one is totally doomed to develop droopy cheeks and a saggy neck. There are ways to reduce the appearance of jowls and, if you act soon enough, you can help prevent them from forming in the first place.
So if you're wondering how to get rid of jowls, this article is for you.
We're going to show you how to amp up your skincare regimen with exercises, treatments, and the best skin care products to get rid of jowls.
What Are Jowls?
Jowls are a form of sagging skin that forms around your jawline and below your chin. You might notice lines forming from the crease of your nose down to your mouth, as the skin begins to droop downwards from your cheeks.
While this might be a cute look for your neighbor's Saint Bernard puppy, most of us humans are less happy to see jowls appear on our own faces!
Unfortunately, we are all prone to a certain amount of sagging skin as we age. It happens because our skin becomes more brittle and thin over time, and it loses some of the volume and stretch that keeps it in place when we're younger.
Jowls, however, are not a totally lost cause, and some lucky people may never develop jowls. There are a number of factors that cause sagging jowls, many of which we can have an impact on.
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What Causes Them?
There are a number of reasons the skin around your cheeks begins to lose volume and sag. Let's take a closer look at the causes of jowls:
Loss Of Collagen and Elastin
This is a natural cause of sagging jowls that comes with age.
Collagen and elastin are the two proteins that form connective tissue throughout the body, and they form the structure of your dermis. Over time, these proteins begin to degenerate through both intrinsic and extrinsic aging.
Intrinsic aging is the natural process of age, where your body gradually produces less of these proteins over time. After the age of 20, we produce approximately 1% less collagen each year, and in the first 5 years of menopause, women will lose approximately 30% of their collagen. 1
Extrinsic aging is the degradation of elastin and collagen fibers thanks to external forces like sun damage, environmental pollutants, exposure to chemicals, poor nutrition, and cigarette smoking.
When the intrinsic process and the extrinsic process come together, elastin and collagen levels decline, and our skin loses many of the structural fibers that typically keep it in place. When our collagen and elastin become weak and brittle, so does our skin. At the same time, we tend to lose fat as we age, and this loss of fat and volume causes the skin to droop.
This combination of brittle skin fibers and lost volume leads to fine lines and wrinkles, sagging skin, and (you guessed it) jowls.
More helpful reading: What is elastin?
We touched on this slightly already – sun damage is one of the main factors that contribute to the extrinsic age process.
When we are exposed to the sun's UV rays, free radicals are generated in the body and these unstable molecules then cause oxidative stress on our cells. Our bodies produce melanin to try to stave off these free radicals (hello, tan!) but the excess of UV radiation and free radicals also wreaks havoc on our collagen and elastin, breaking down these essential fibers and making them brittle and dry. This leaves us prone to sagging skin and the formation of jowls.
This kind of sun damage is why sun-worshippers and tan-seekers will experience that typical leathery skin when they get older, while those who protect themselves with SPF and parasols will have smoother and more youthful complexions.
For an added heads up if you want to avoid premature wrinkles and sagging– there is also such a thing as blue light skin damage. It is caused by the light emitted from your phone and computer screens and it has a similarly damaging effect on your skin's collagen.
Gestures & Facial Expressions
Although we are all dependant on our smartphones on a daily basis, looking down at your phone all the time isn't helping your quest for a jowl-free complexion!
Facial movements that put pressure on the fat and skin around the jawline, chin, and neck areas play a role in the formation of sagging jowls. Looking down all the time will cause the skin around your neck to stretch which, over time, can affect your jawline and make jowls more pronounced.
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When you lose a lot of weight or if you lose weight too quickly, you might see some loose skin that has too much space beneath it. This loose skin is stretched thin, and without the extra fat volume beneath it, it can sag.
When the weight loss is prominent on your face and your cheeks lose a lot of fat, the loose skin left behind will sag and form jowls that drop below the jawline.
This, among other health reasons, is why it's important to navigate weight loss at a slow and healthy pace.
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Cigarettes and Alcohol
These habits aren't just bad for your health, they impact your skin, too.
There are over 4000 chemicals in cigarette smoke that cause damage to your skin by attacking your elastin and collagen fibers. So if you're a smoker, you are more likely to see wrinkles and sagging much earlier than your non-smoking counterparts. Smoking also tightens the blood vessels and restricts blood flow, which makes skin look more dull and faded.
Drinking alcohol in excess also causes inflammation that translates to crow's feet, droopy under-eye bags, and jowls.
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Last but not least, there is one other uncontrollable factor that can increase your likelihood of developing jowls, and that's just plain genetics.
If your mom or dad has jowls, you are more likely to develop jowls. The severity of the jowls and the age at which they begin to appear are also influenced by genes.
How To Get Rid of Jowls: 7 Tips For a Firm Jawline
Aside from wearing sunscreen, avoiding sudden weight loss, and giving up alcohol and cigarettes, there are some changes you can make to your skincare regimen to minimize skin sagging and tighten your jawline.
Here are our top 7 tips for tightening your jawline and getting rid of jowls:
1. Replenish Your Collagen and Elastin Supplies
Boosting your collagen supplies is the number one way to get rid of jowls, and if you can pre-empt the appearance of jowls with this tactic, even better! You can increase collagen in your skin with a topical skincare product, a collagen treatment, or a collagen supplement.
There is a limit to the effectiveness of topical treatment, as it can be difficult for collagen peptides to penetrate deep enough into the dermis. If you are buying a topical collagen treatment, make sure it contains hydrolyzed collagen peptides, which means that the collagen in the product has been broken down into small enough molecules to effectively reach your dermis.
A collagen treatment like Thermage can help stimulate collagen production in your skin cells. Thermage is a laser treatment designed to stimulate collagen production, using red light to do this. A treatment like Thermage is effective and has zero downtime, however, it can be expensive and it requires at least eight sessions to see results.
Collagen supplements are a great option as they can work from the inside out to promote collagen production in your entire body, having positive effects on your skin, ligaments, hair, and nails. The right collagen supplement offers a natural, healthy way to replenish your collagen without any expensive and time-consuming trips to the dermatologist.
How a Collagen Supplement Works
A supplement like Taut Premium Collagen Drink works to replenish your collagen supplies using hydrolyzed collagen peptides, which enter your bloodstream via your digestive system and trigger a wound repair response in your cells. Your body detects the collagen peptides in your bloodstream and this triggers specialized cells called fibroblasts to produce brand new collagen.
You can also be sure that Taut's formula is the best in the game because it contains a high potency of properly hydrolyzed marine collagen peptides. Every bottle contains 13,000 mg of marine collagen peptides, alongside elastin peptides, hyaluronic acid, vitamin C, grape seed extract, vitamin B6, and ceramide, which work synergistically to nourish and rejuvenate your skin from within.
When you replenish your collagen supplies, your skin is given the structure it needs to remain firm and supple. A collagen supplement like ours can help you lift and tighten the skin around your jawline, plumping and boosting volume for a firmer, fuller complexion with fewer wrinkles and reduced jowls.
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2. Facial Exercises
It might sound a little strange, but exercising the muscles in your face could be the key to more taut, toned skin.
There are 57 muscles in your face and scalp, all of which play a role in the structure of your complexion. The idea behind facial exercises and the latest face yoga trend is that strengthening and toning the muscles around your face and neck can make you look younger, as a natural alternative to a facelift.
The goal is to lift and tighten sagging skin, and exercises that target the cheeks, jawline, and neck could be particularly helpful if you are trying to get rid of jowls.
Tempted? Try starting with these exercises:
- Lift and tilt your head back and raise your chin towards the ceiling. While holding this position with your neck skin stretched nice and tight, make a wide smile with your mouth and hold it for 10 seconds, then release. Repeat 5 times to give your jaw a workout!
- Lift and tilt your head back, just like the last exercise. Now hold your tongue against the roof of your mouth and swallow – you should feel this one working on your neck muscles right away!
- Take a deep breath in through your mouth and hold it, blowing your cheeks up like a blowfish. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, then release, and repeat 5 times. This one aims to tone your cheeks to prevent sagging.
3. Stay Hydrated
Keeping your skin hydrated is one of the best ways of maintaining its elasticity and keeping it supple and soft. Well-hydrated skin will wrinkle and sag at a slower pace than dry skin.
Drink plenty of water, not allowing yourself to stay thirsty for long. Although "eight glasses per day" is the often-quoted rule, the amount of water you need will depend on your lifestyle, weight, and diet. So just keep your water bottle handy and sip throughout the day. Eating plenty of fruit and vegetables will also help keep you hydrated, which will also add vitamins and antioxidants to your diet that will give your skin an added boost.
Of course, you will also need to hydrate your skin from the outside, with good quality serums and moisturizers. Look for hydrating lotions containing humectants, which are ingredients that attract and retain water in your skin. Examples of these include hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and ceramides.
More helpful reading: Does drinking water help your skin?
How Hyaluronic Acid Supplements Can Help You
A hyaluronic acid supplement like Taut Hydrate can help keep your skin hydrated and healthy, boosting skin elasticity and reducing the likelihood of sagging jowls.
Hyaluronic acid is the gooey gel-like substance that keeps our skin, eyes, and joints lubricated. It functions in the skin to fill out the free spaces between elastin and collagen fibers (on their own, elastin and collagen don't have much stretch).
Every capsule of Taut Hydrate contains a winning combination of 120 mg plant-based hyaluronic acid to improve skin elasticity, plus 120 mg of grape seed extract, an antioxidant that brightens your skin and protects your existing collagen supplies.
Together, these ingredients can protect and enhance your skin's internal structure, boosting elasticity and reducing the risk of sagging jowls.
More helpful reading by RenewSkin Inc.: What is hyaluronic acid?
4. Facial Massage
Massaging your face with your hands or with a derma roller can help treat jowls, improve circulation, and boost blood flow to your face.
Not only does a face massage feel amazing, but it also works as a type of acupressure to relax the muscles, nerves, and lymph nodes in your face and neck. Facial massage can help reduce tension, tone the muscles in your face, and lift and tighten skin.
A derma roller or a trip to your esthetician's office for a massage treatment can be especially beneficial at preventing and treating the saggy skin below the neck, and it could be your next best secret for getting rid of those jowls.
5. Jawline Masks
You can also use sheet masks to give your face a topical boost of the nutrients it needs to tone and tighten skin. You can find sheet masks designed specifically to treat your jawline and neck, or you could simply use a full-face mask as long as you make sure your jawline is properly covered.
Sheet masks are infused with a rich ampoule or essence that contains a potent concentration of active ingredients, designed to penetrate deep into the dermis. The sheet forms a barrier layer to prevent any key ingredients from evaporating, ensuring that they remain in contact with your skin long enough to be fully absorbed and effective.
Taut Collagen Mask is a sheet mask designed to firm your skin with a boost of collagen, hyaluronic acid, and antioxidants. The potent hydrolyzed collagen peptides in our formula work to plump up and boost the volume of your skin, which in turn can make your skin firmer and less prone to sagging.
Pro tip: After removing the mask, massage the remaining essence into your cheeks, jawline, and neck for a concentrated boost of skin-loving ingredients in the jowl area.
6. Dermal Fillers (Soft Tissue Fillers or Collagen-Boosting Fillers)
If you find that natural, at-home remedies are not working for you, there are a number of types of fillers and treatments available at the dermatologist's office that may be able to help.
Dermal fillers, or soft tissue fillers, are hyaluronic acid injections that can fill in jowls and make your neck appear less saggy. You can also find collagen-boosting dermal fillers that use poly-L lactic acid to stimulate collagen production in the skin.
Ultherapy is another treatment option that uses ultrasound technology to stimulate collagen production. Ultherapy may be a good procedure for anyone who may want a facelift without the pain or recovery time. For best results, try an Ultherapy treatment that specifically targets the jowl area.
However, many of these fillers and Ultherapy procedures can be costly, and they are often a temporary fix that will only last for up to 6 months. If you do decide to try fillers, Ultherapy, or another cosmetic treatment, just make sure you visit a board-certified dermatologist who is properly qualified to deliver the procedure.
7. Cosmetic Surgery
If you have very pronounced jowls that most other treatments and procedures cannot fix, then cosmetic surgery may be for you. However, we recommend you try more natural, less-invasive options before deciding to go under the knife for any surgical procedures with a plastic surgeon.
To get rid of jowls with cosmetic surgery, you can try a facelift or neck lift that specifically targets the jowl area. A facelift is a surgical procedure that involves removing some fat from the face and chin, tightening muscles and tissues, pulling the skin up and backward toward the hairline, and trimming excess skin. This procedure is quite invasive and many patients find it has a long recovery time. 2
You could also try jowl liposuction, a surgical procedure in which a plastic surgeon uses a tool called a microcannula to suck the fat from your chin and neck before tightening the skin along the jawline.
Unfortunately, although these types of cosmetic surgery are effective, they also come with risks of complications for some patients. These surgical procedures also require patients to go under general anesthetic, they can take weeks to recover from, and they can be very costly.
If you are interested in cosmetic surgery to get rid of jowls, make sure you do your research and speak with a reputable plastic surgeon to make sure you have all of the information before proceeding with the treatment.
The Best All-In-One Program For Getting Rid Of Jowls
Our Ultimate Transformation Program is the perfect package of skincare products to help you get rid of jowls and achieve smoother, firmer, fuller skin in just 24 days.
The Ultimate Transformation Program is a skincare bundle containing 24 bottles of Taut Premium Collagen Drink, 1 box of Taut Hydrate, and a box of our signature Taut Collagen Masks.
No need for any surgical procedure or costly injections! Together, these three skincare heroes work to replace lost volume on your face, lift your skin, fight back against sagging and jowls, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Just drink one bottle of our delicious collagen drink and 2 capsules of Taut Hydrate every day for 24 days, and watch how the combination of hyaluronic acid, elastin, and collagen can completely rejuvenate your complexion.
Top this off by using our Collagen Mask once or twice a week, and your skin will feel brand new!
Still not sure? Try our skincare quiz to find out which products are best for your needs.