The Best Natural Ways to Get Rid of Smile Lines
In this article:
- The Lines When You Smile
- What Leads to Smile Lines
- 3 Exercises & 2 Ingredients to Get Rid of Smile Lines
- Prevent Smile Lines with These Easy Tips
You have a beautiful smile, that’s one of the most flattering compliments anyone could hear from a stranger. As a common facial expression that only occurs when we are at ease, feeling joyful and relaxed, smiling doesn’t just convey our own happy feelings but also make others feel the same.
We often say that smile is the best medicine. It is true. Studies have shown that smiling can boost your immune system because the immune system improves its function when you are more relaxed. Smiling can also release dopamine and serotonin to elevate your mood naturally. In addition, smiling often appears to lower blood sugar, relieve stress, and most importantly, make you stay positive.
And the downside of being a big smiler? Smile lines. Have you ever noticed the two folds sitting on both sides of your nose? In the beginning, they might be just harmless fine lines and tiny creases that you ignore. Over the years, these fine lines gradually turn into face wrinkles and eventually stay as deep skin folds.
Why are we getting punished for feeling good? Does that mean we should never express happiness with our face ever again just like all those real housewives? Smile lines are tricky to tackle, but it is not impossible to get rid of them. Now keep reading and learn how to take care of your beautiful smile with us.
The Lines When You Smile
Once we’ve reached a certain age, all sorts of wrinkles and fine lines come out to party when we smile. Crow’s feet, the tiny creases radiating from the outer corner of the eyes, is a major contender. Bunny lines, the cute nose wrinkles at the inner corner of the eyes, are another one. But when we talk about smile lines or laugh lines, we are usually referring to nasolabial folds.
Nasolabial folds, or simply smile lines, are skin creases that stretch from both sides of the nose all the way to the corner of the mouth. Usually presenting in a radiating manner, they are deep folds when you smile and sometimes accompanied by other small wrinkles and fine lines. When you are young, smile lines just look like you are bunching up your cheeks as you break into a big smile. As time passes by, two folds will slowly etch upon your skin, and you will need to put some extra care on those new face wrinkle additions.
What Leads to Smile Lines
Smile lines are in fact caused by, drum rolls please, smiling. Smile lines are a well-known type of dynamic wrinkles, wrinkles formed by facial movements which are consequences of frequent contraction of skin and muscles. To eliminate the root problem of smile lines or any face wrinkles, the obvious solution is to keep a poker face at all times. When Kim Kardashian was asked about her secret to ageless skin, she simply replied “don’t smile.” Jokes aside, there are many other contributing factors behind smile lines, we will take a look at the most prominent few.
"Smile lines occur due to the natural loss of volume that occurs in the face with age. Our cheek compartment has seven fat pads that descend and shift with time. The smile lines become more prominent due to the way these fat pads shift and move." – Kavita Mariwala, an NYC-based dermatologist.
Loss of Collagen Due to Skin Aging
What happens to our skin as we age? The short answer is that every skin function will decrease and eventually shut down. Skin aging is defined by loss of collagen, wrinkling, dehydration, and rough skin appearance. Some other causes can speed up skin aging, which will lead to even more wrinkles, uneven skin tone, and rough skin texture.
One of the major reasons why face wrinkles form apart from facial expressions is the loss of collagen. With skin aging, the skin gradually loses its ability to produce more collagen and elastin, while the existing collagen and elastin break down over time. Without these two major components that keep our skin firm and tight, repeated contractions of muscles and skin will leave noticeable marks.
Believe it or not, some people were born with smile lines. Genetics play a big part in the health of our skin, and the pace of skin aging. You might have noticed that some people are prone to acne, some people look older than their age, and some people have naturally small pores – these are all influenced by the unique genetic makeup of each individual.
If you think you are too young to have deep smile lines sitting on your cheeks, take a look at your family members, ask your parents for their childhood pictures, and you might find smile lines started early on their faces too. If that’s the case, you don’t have to worry too much about skin aging, but rather, spend more time on taking care of your skin properly to prevent further wrinkling.
Sun exposure can cause premature wrinkles and worsen the appearance of any face wrinkles. Even though the primary causes of smile lines are skin aging and facial expressions, frequent exposure to UV radiation can speed up the skin aging process which leads to more and more collagen loss.
Sun damages to the skin have similar results as aging. Both are inevitable natural causes that we can’t control, if we don’t take proper sun care measures, the accumulated damages could be huge.
Smoking is a big no-no, for the sake of our skin or our overall health. Smoking can cause serious health conditions from heart attacks, lung issues to various cancers.
Lip wrinkles, or Smoker’s Lines, are results from smoking. If you purse and pout your mouth frequently to suck on a cigarette, dynamic wrinkles will form all around the lips. Smile lines, another form of smile wrinkles located in the same area can also be worsened by the repeated action of smoking. Besides the facial movements, the nicotine and other chemicals inside cigarettes destroy the collagen and elastin content in the skin. Over time, your skin will lose its suppleness and shine due to the slow yet constant act of poisoning.
Stress, Anxiety & Lack of Sleep
Stress can kill you, and we are not being dramatic. Even without experts weighing in, we can all tell from our personal experiences how stress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health issue affect our health and the appearance of our skin.
Studies have shown that stress is responsible for a chemical response in your skin that makes it more sensitive and reactive. It can also worsen your existing skin problems such as wrinkles and acne. When you are stressed, insomnia often ensues, and without proper rest time for skin to recuperate, the skin will sag, wrinkle, and become weaker.
We might smile less when we are stressed out, but wrinkles can form anywhere and anytime if our skin becomes fragile. Smile lines should at least be a consequence of being happy, not sleepless nights, anxiety attacks, or never-ending pressure.
3 Exercises & 2 Ingredients to Get Rid of Smile Lines
The Puffer Fish Face (Courtesy of Faceyogamethod)
Step 1 – Fill up your mouth with air and close your mouth tight and push the air towards your lips
Step 2 – Move the air to the right
Step 3 – Move the air to the left
Step 4 – Move the air to the upper mouth
Step 5 – Move the air to the lower mouth
During each step hold the air for 5 seconds. You should feel the resistance on the cheeks, upper mouth, and lower mouth.
The Mouth Lift (Courtesy of Stylecraze)
Step 1 – Using your index fingers, hook the corners of your mouth, and gently pull towards the sides.
Step 2 – Don’t overdo the stretch; only around ¼ inches.
Step 3 – Hold this position for a few seconds. Now work on the opposite side.
Step 4 – Draw the corners of your mouth toward each other, resisting the movement using your index fingers again.
Step 5 – Relax and repeat the exercise 25 times.
This exercise helps to strengthen the orbicularis oris - a muscle on the face that is hardly ever used. By strengthening this particular muscle, we are able to prevent and reduce the appearance of smile lines.
The Anti-Smile Lines Smile (Byrdie Skin)
Step 1 – With lips partially separated, pull the corners of the mouth back toward the face.
Step 2 – Pull back, as far as possible, while keeping the lips parallel.
Step 3 – Hold for about 10 seconds.
Step 4 – Relax and repeat.
Step 5 – Try to do 10-25 reps.
Have you ever tried to smile so big that your muscles on the cheeks are trembling? Yes, smiling itself is a great facial muscle strength training too. By doing the big, controlled smile exercises, you are able to engage all the muscles around the mouth to reduce the occurrence of smile lines.
Antioxidants for Skin
Over-the-counter skin care treatments with anti-aging purposes can be used for treating smile lines. As long as the products are formulated with known anti-aging ingredients, your skin will benefit more or less from them.
The best ingredients to combat skin aging are antioxidants. Antioxidants are powerful, natural vitamins and minerals that protect the skin from free radicals - harmful molecules found in the environment damaging the skin collagen production such as pollutants and harsh chemicals. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals and replenish the skin, calm down irritations and boost collagen production. The most famous duo retinol (Vitamin A) and Vitamin C are the best anti-aging ingredients seen across top-notch skin care products. Oia’s Vitamin C serum has a super blend of both retinol and Vitamin C, with only a few applications every week you can see a brightened skin complexion as well as a reduced appearance of face wrinkles and fine lines.
Peptides for Skin
Another great topical treatment ingredient is peptides. Peptides are amino acids that are needed by many proteins in the skin. Collagen for one is made of three types of peptides. Feeding the skin peptides is essentially increasing the amount of collagen present in the skin.
However, collagen itself can’t be absorbed by the skin due to its large molecule. Peptides, on the other hand, can be applied topically to boost collagen production.
The great benefits of using peptides in skincare include a strengthened skin barrier, reduced wrinkle appearance, increased amount of collagen, and elastin. If you are troubled by smile lines or any types of face wrinkles, make sure you add peptides into your routine!
Prevent Smile Lines with These Easy Tips
Because sun damage is causing our skin to wrinkle and age, applying sunscreen is an obvious solution to a wrinkle-free skin appearance.
For taking care of face wrinkles such as smile lines, an important step is to make sure that nothing would worsen the appearance of said wrinkles. UV radiation is everywhere, cloudy day, indoor, on a plane, even if the sun is not visible in the sky. Make sure sunscreen is the last step in your skincare routine and reapply frequently if you are exposed for a long time.
More often than not, we develop wrinkles because our skin is dehydrated. Dehydrated skin is fragile, flaky with a weakened barrier, thus making it prone to wrinkle formation. Smile lines are no exceptions. As the unfortunate byproduct of a frequent facial expression, smile lines can deepen further and easier if the skin lacks moisture.
Finding a working moisturizer for your skin type is crucial in defeating smile lines. A good moisturizer strengthens the skin’s barrier while replenishing with nutrients and antioxidants skin needs. Don’t ever go to bed with dry skin, or go out with a bare face, always remember to moisturize even in the hottest summer or the coldest winter days.
Face masks, especially masks that target specific areas on the face are highly recommended by specialists as at-home facial treatments. Besides, they are easy to use and super affordable, you can expect noticeable results if you use them regularly.
Oia’s Anti-Wrinkle Silicone patches are loved by many people with wrinkle concerns. The silicone technology flattens the wrinkled skin and minimizes the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines overnight. Our anti-wrinkle patches for eyes & smiles are specifically designed to tackle smile lines and crow’s feet - two major smile wrinkles. Almost 100% of our long term users believe they have seen a difference since they started using these silicone patches!
Because stress, anxiety, and lots of other things can bring us down in life, a stressed mentality doesn’t do our skin good. Enjoying life to the max, staying positive, and keeping a great attitude towards everything can give us the “glow” that no amount of money and surgeries can buy. A happy person with a great smile is often complimented for being radiant whereas no one wants to be described as a picture of stress. You know what, most people have lines when they laugh, so as long as we are all laughing together all the time, no one has to worry about smile lines!
Whenever a celebrity says “don’t smile” is the cure to smile lines, take it with a grain of salt. Fillers and injectables are more likely to be the answer to their smooth, youthful skin. Although surgical options deliver faster, more optimal results, they come with high costs, side effects and the results are only temporary.
Apart from skin aging and other environmental factors, smile lines are caused by muscle movements, hence training therefore strengthening facial muscles with regular face exercises is a great way to reduce and prevent smile lines. To aid those exercises, applying the right topical treatments to improve skin health will help you see results faster.
Because we take pride in our knowledge and technology for face wrinkles from crow’s feet to smile lines, there are various products we want to recommend for the benefit of your skin. Besides our silicone face patches, try our Derma Face Lifting Mask - a fun mask infused with Vitamin E, seaweed extract, and collagen. It can visibly lift, firm, and tighten your jawline and chin, good for preventing and smoothing out smile lines too!
Let us know how you combat smile lines or any other face wrinkles. How do you take care of your smile lines, what are you doing now to prevent smile lines? What are the other big skin obstacles you have met so far? A positive mindset is more important than anything when you are on the journey to better skin, so keep smiling and carry on.