Men at the height of their careers turn to medical aesthetics to continue looking like they are at their prime. We interview Dr Lam Bee Lan from Ageless Medical on what these men want.
Senior male executives at their prime — in their 40s and over — are becoming more concerned about their looks as they climb the corporate ladder. In addition to a healthy diet and regular exercise, many of them have turned to minimally and non-invasive medical aesthetics treatments to look and feel good.
However many male patients of this age group rarely see aesthetic physicians on their own unless persuaded by their spouses or when pressured directly or indirectly by their superiors and/ or colleagues. They also rarely know what to look out for, or what treatments might suit them, until they meet with their physicians. Dr Lam Bee Lan from Ageless Medical says, “Recently, I was consulted by a male patient who works as a senior cabin crew. He said that he was pressured by his senior female colleagues to go for medical aesthetics treatments as they were all going for such treatments and were looking better for it.” – you can choose to relate another experience.
She adds, “Older patients do not want to look half their age, but rather look good for their age. Younger male patients often want to correct perceived ‘imperfections’ by building up the bridge of their nose or projecting their jaw more but older patients are more concerned about correcting signs of ageing. For them, sagging facial skin, dynamic wrinkles (wrinkles caused by the contraction of muscles from facial expressions), as well as volume loss, such as that under the eyes, which may cause the patient to look tired, tend to be the major concerns. However, rather than completely erasing their crow’s feet or smile lines, older male patients want to retain some of them as these lines suggest experience and character which are crucial when working with senior people in their organisation.”
For hollowness under the eyes, Dr Lam uses hyaluronic acid fillers such as Restylane Skinboosters. “The main objective is to fill the depression under the eyes caused by volume loss due to ageing to an appropriate level. The filler will act as a buffer between the dark purple-brown muscle called the orbicularis oculi under the eye, and the skin, resulting in the reduction of hollowness and lightening of colour and wrinkles under the eyes.”
To reduce the appearance of wrinkles, particularly dynamic wrinkles, Dr Lam injects botulinum toxin A intradermally around the eyes and near the hairline. “Botulinum toxin type A such as Dysport blocks or reduces the release of a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine, which is required for muscles to contract. Without acetylcholine, the muscle’s ability to contract is reduced or entirely prevented which in turn reduces or stops the bunching of the attached overlying skin which causes the wrinkles.”
She elaborates, “And my male patients have no fear of looking frozen as the way botulinum toxins are administered has changed over the years.”
“When it was first approved for medical aesthetics use, botulinum toxin A was administered via just a few injection sites with fairly large doses per site which resulted in near-total paralysis of the muscles. Today we have learnt how to achieve more subtle effects by using the same amount of toxin but administered over many more injection sites with the objective of reducing the range of muscle movement rather than totally paralysing it.”
“Over the next few days, the muscles gradually relax. You probably won’t notice it happening – you’ll just become aware that you can’t fully contract the muscles that have been treated. However, you will still be able to frown, smile and raise your eyebrows normally and look completely natural.”
When done by an experienced injector such as Dr Lam, each treatment takes about 10 to 15 minutes. The patient is however advised to set aside an hour for their treatment as they will also need to undergo consultation, take before and after photos, apply numbing cream on the areas to be treated and give time to allow its effects to set in. Numbing cream is applied to make treatments more comfortable for the patient. Most patients can expect to resume their day to day activities immediately after treatments, something which busy executives can appreciate.
Side effects such as redness and bruising are temporary and patients are expected to follow post treatment precautions such as avoiding activities such as swimming, saunas and vigorous exercise for a few days.