The Neck and Décolleté: Areas That Should Never Be Ignored

For so many years the focus of many cosmetic treatments targeted the face alone, while unfortunately leaving the neck and décolleté untreated. It is all too common that after treating the face with Botox, fillers, topicals, and/or laser treatments, patients return stating now that they love the appearance of their face, they also want their neck and chest to match. Instead of looking at the face alone, we must consider that the neck and décolleté are an “extension of the face” and should never be left out of our skin rejuvenation equation.

It is important to note that the skin on the neck is quite fragile and especially prone to the negative effects of sun damage. This results in the formation of fine lines, wrinkling, laxity, hyperpigmentation, and other signs of skin aging.  The neck and décolleté also have less oil production and fatty tissue when compared to the face, making them even more prone to the development of dryness and wrinkling. Submental fat, often referred to as the “double chin”, can also become more prominent as we age.

So now you make be asking yourself, what can I do to prevent the signs of aging in my neck and décolleté? Topicals, Botox, Kybella, and laser treatments are very effective in preventing and treating the signs of aging in these delicate areas. Read below for some effective treatment approaches for enhancing the appearance of the neck and décolleté.

Topical Products

Working your sunscreens, hydrating serums, moisturizers, antioxidants, growth factors, and retinols down from the face to the neck and décolleté will help hydrate the skin while preventing the breakdown of collagen and elastin. It is recommended to start retinols or tretinoin only once or twice per week to start as these areas can be much more prone to dryness and irritation when compared to the face.

Botox

Botox can also be used in the neck to relax the platysmal muscles, otherwise known as the vertical “neck bands”. The platysma is the major muscle in the neck. Since it is not directly attached to a specific bone, it is much more prone to lose its elasticity over time. The gradual loss of elastin and collagen leads to the appearance of a harsher, aged neck. By injecting the bands with small amounts of Botox, the platysmal muscle appears more smooth and relaxed.

Kybella

Kybella, or deoxycholic acid, is a revolutionary injectable product that permanently destroys fat in the submental, or “double chin” area. This results in a noticeable reduction in the fullness under the chin. Once destroyed, these cells can no longer store or accumulate fat, so further treatment is not expected once the desired outcome is achieved. Kybella also has a beautiful outcome of tightening the skin in the treatment area, leading to the appearance of a tighter, more defined jawline in many patients.

Laser treatments

Pretty much any laser treatment done on the face can also be used on the neck and décolleté. An experienced practitioner is able to customize the laser settings to effectively treat these delicate areas.

Intense Pulsed Light is an effect way to treat the skin tone by diminished the appearance of brown spots and redness.

Laser and radiofrequency procedures such as Sublative, ResurFX, and Laser Genesis can effectively treat the skin texture by softening fine lines and wrinkles and giving the skin an overall “collagen boost”.

Sublime, a skin tightening device, utilizes infrared light and radiofrequency to increase the elasticity in the neck.

If you are looking to improve the appearance of your neck and décolleté, book a consultation with one of our Advanced Cosmetic Nurse Practitioners today to discuss your treatment options.

Written by:

Carli Himelman, MSN, ARNP-C

Advanced Cosmetic Nurse Practitioner at USF Health Cosmetic & Laser Center