09 January 2024
If 2023’s aesthetic trends were about Instagram face, body contouring (think Barbie Arm Botox and Trapezius botox injections for slimmer arms and shoulders); treatments for glass skin and skin barriers; as well as reversal Ozempic faces; what would 2024’s aesthetic trends herald? Here’s what we can expect to dominate aesthetics and dermatology in 2024.
Prominent lip fillers, angular cheekbones and V-shaped chins were de rigueur in the last decade; with celebrities like Kylie Jenner, Hailey Bieber and Fan BingBing being poster girls for the look to go for aesthetic enhancement. Simply put, the look of obvious augmentation- overfilled and overinjected faces- was in vogue.
Since 2022, we’ve seen the tide change as celebrities started to undo and remove their implants and fillers in favour of a more natural looking aesthetic. Cardi B, Amy Schumer and Kylie Jenner are some prominent faces that have gone public about their return (somewhat) to their natural looks.
This trend has also been reflected in the growing use of injectables and devices for facial balancing and to lift the face; without overt changes to a person’s natural features. Tweakments, as they are referred to in popular lexicon; refers to strategic placement of injectables (e.g. dermal fillers and Botox) to parts of the face that have sagged (e.g. Liquid Facelift and cheek fillers) or enhance facial proportions or symmetry. Instead of looking artificial or unnatural, patients look more refreshed; and their facial proportions are more balanced. As a practitioner with a “less is more” approach, I’m welcoming this trend of cosmetic enhancement with open arms.
Patients seeking aesthetic and anti-aging treatments are getting younger; and the reasons for this trend are multi-fold. Growing awareness, access, and changing beauty standards are paving the way for younger patients to address early signs of ageing; and to take a proactive approach to delaying signs of ageing.
Treating this younger demographic of patients is different from treating more mature patients. The skin and signs of ageing that patients in their 20’s face are different from a patient in his/her 40’s; and so treatment options for younger patients also have to be individualised for their specific concerns.
In the early stages, wrinkles are dynamic i.e. appearing only with facial expressions. Early, dynamic wrinkles that are not treated will progress to become fixed and etched into the skin (i.e. static wrinkles). I explain more about the different types of wrinkles in Preventative Botox and Baby Botox in Your 20’s Is Real.
To treat these early wrinkles and prevent them from becoming static, I’m a personal fan of Baby Botox. Baby botox refers to a style of Botox injections for treating wrinkles; where a smaller than usual dose of Botox is injected into the facial muscles. The intention of Baby Botox is not to paralyse the facial muscles for a frozen, artificial look; but instead, relax the facial muscles to allow for facial expressions, without wrinkles. Baby Botox is also known as preventive Botox in some publications. I share my results of Baby Botox in this video.
Collagen building skin treatments Still on the subject of prejuvenation and addressing signs of ageing is collagen building treatments for the skin. With “collagen loss” touted by spas, clinics, supplements and skincare companies alike to emphasise dreaded signs of ageing, it is no surprise that collagen building treatments for the skin will remain perennially popular.
But first, an understanding of collagen; and why its age-related decline contributes to signs of ageing.
Collagen fibers are proteins that are also the main building blocks of the skin. These fibres provide strength, elasticity, hydration, and support the healing process. As we age, collagen production naturally declines, contributing to signs of aging such as enlarged pores, sagging, dullness, and wrinkles in the skin.
Replenishing or boosting collagen levels in the skin can be achieved by procedures such as lasers (e.g. fractional CO2 lasers), injectable moisturisers (e.g. Profhilo and Skinboosters), polynucleotide therapy (e.g Rejuran Healer), Ultherapy and microneedling. There’s an abundance of options for increasing collagen fibres in the skin in the pursuit of healthier, firmer and younger looking skin- each with their own effectiveness and downsides, so it’s best to discuss with your doctor about which treatment(s) are best suited to meet your specific needs.
You can learn about these respective treatments in the following blogposts below; and I share my personal experiences with some of these treatments. My personal favourites are fractional CO2 lasers for reducing my enlarged pores; and Profhilo for regaining the glow, hydration and lift in my skin.
With so many newer treatments and devices making their way into clinics and popular media; there’s never been a better (and safer!) time for patients to rejuvenate their skin. More treatments are promising cutting edge technologies, hyper personalisation and epigenetic research to give better and faster results. The catch? Newer technologies and products may lack long term studies on safety and efficacy, for now. Only time will unveil key facts.
That said, some of the buzzy treatments that are said to be improvements of their popular predecessors. Which of these will emerge as the front runner for 2024 and beyond? I’ll update this blogpost again when we have more data.
Some of the new that are poised to takeover 2024 are:
• Daxxify: Daxxify is a wrinkle reducing treatment, just like Botox. It consists of botulinum toxin, just like Botox. However, Daxxify also contains amino acids and peptides, amino acids that rejuvenate the skin. Early studies suggest that the results of Daxxify last 2 months longer than Botox.In 2022, Daxxify received US FDA approval for treatment of glabella wrinkles. As of Janurary 2024, Daxxify is not available in Singapore.
• Skinvive: Another skin hydrating treatment to enter the arena of injectable moisturisers is Skinvive. This class of hyaluronic acid injectable fills the skin with microdroplets of hydration for moist, and plump looking skin. Skinvive has received US FDA approval in May 2023. As of Janurary 2024, Skinvive is not available in Singapore. Related blogpost: Injectable Moistruis
• Plinest: Most of you might already be familiar with Rejuran Healer; the polynucleotide treatment from Korea that repairs and regenerates the skin, reducing the appearance of wrinkles, enlarged and fine lines. Plinest is a new competitor to the scene; and employs a similar technology; using DNA fragments from Italian trout fish.
Botox is known to remove wrinkles, but what about lifting sagging eyelids or thinning lips? With some help of anatomy and physiology, Botulinum toxin can be used to gently lift droopy eyelids and reduce signs of aging in the lips- without fillers. Here’s all about the 2 breakthrough treatments with Botox- the Botox Lid Lift and Botox Lip Flip.
Botox Eye Lid Lift
Treating droopy eyelids has traditionally been in the domain of surgery i.e.blepharoplasty to repair droopy eyelid skin. However, mild or early eyelid droops can benefit from non-surgical treatment of their upper eyelids with the Botox Eyelid Lift. In this non-surgical treatment, botulinum toxin is injected into the muscles that depress (pull down) the eyelid to lift the eyelid slightly. The expected lift from the Botox Lid Lift is approximately 1-2mm; and the results can last for 4-5 months as the effects of Botox wear off gradually. I explain more about the Botox Eyelid Lift in this video.
Botox Lip Flip
2023 was all about pronounced pouts and statement lips- think overlined lip makeup, Cherry Lips and Keyhole Lips style of lip filler injections that took social media by storm. But in 2023, we also saw celebrities like Cardi B experiencing “Filler Fatigue” and dissolving away their filler injections, heralding an acceptance of more realistic looking facial proportions.
Lip enhancement with lip fillers is still far from its demise, but interest in alternatives to lip fillers has been growing. Concerns of overfilled duck lips (aka “trout pouts”) and complications like filler migration (a scrutiny of some famous famous will reveal their “filler moustaches”) have made the Botox Lip Flip a preferable choice for those wanting a mild enhancement of their lips.
With the Botox Lip Flip; a small amount of Botox is injected around the lips to gently unroll the lips for a slightly fuller looking lip. Patients can expect 1-2 mm increase in height of their lips without looking overtly pouting or having the outlines of their lips accentuated. Patients looking for a more natural enhancement to thin looking lips will find the Botox Lip Flip effective; and more natural looking than lip filler.