When considering best practice in facial aesthetics treatment there are a number of factors to be mindful of, and one of the most important of these considerations has always been gender. Physiological facial composition differences in males and females alongside societal ideals of beauty have long informed both how aesthetic treatments are performed for male clients compared with female clients; as well as the typical treatment objectives. In more recent times, however, practitioners may have noticed a shift in the perception of beauty as society gradually embraces a more fluid approach to gender, and patients feel less confined by rigid definitions of attractiveness in males and females. This adds further complexity to the matter but also allows us to break down boundaries as injectors, as well as create beautiful results that are tailored to client desires on a totally individualised basis.
In their recent article ‘Gender and the Lower Face’ published in the esteemed Aesthetics Journal, Dr Eleanor Reid, and Acquisition Aesthetics’ directors Miss Lara Watson and Miss Priyanka Chadha, looked at the issue of gender and its implications on treatments of the lower facial third, which are becoming increasingly popular with both male and female patients.
The article looks at a number of gender differences in physiology and facial anatomy, highlighting those at the bony, muscular, and soft tissue levels. Also discussed are the differences between genders in terms of ageing and how this defines differing techniques and approaches. ‘Practitioners should be aware of the distinct characteristics of gender-specific ageing in order to deliver effective and appropriate treatment.’ The authors go on to mention the well-known disparity in the process of facial ageing between males and females at skin level, with the effects commonly being more apparent in females. ‘Due to a higher level of adipose tissue at the subcutaneous level, women are more likely to develop fine surface lines, as opposed to the deeper rhytides seen in men.’
When injecting both males and females, a number of technique factors are concerned with outcome, for example when treating the mandibular body and angle, “...filler should be placed more laterally along the body in the male patient to add definition and a masculine lateral flare to the mandible.” This will enhance the traditionally masculine square jaw, as opposed to “... placement of filler along the inferior border of the mandible... to add definition and contour without increasing the bigonial width...” for the more feminine contour. However, even when considering non-traditional treatment goals, some technique factors will continue to be determined by gender defined biological and metabolic differences - for example, the amount of toxin product required is typically higher in male treatments in the lower facial third due to the comparatively larger muscles.
The expert faculty of Acquisition Aesthetics are proud of their commitment to academic research, publication and the advancement of education and standards of practice in the aesthetics field. They remain interested and invested in the current trends of society and the implications of these on their practice and the industry at large.
As society evolves and the population continues to partake in open conversations around gender and sexuality, it is undeniable that an understanding of current topical issues will be beneficial to any practitioner working within this field. The extended LGBT+ community are becoming increasingly present and celebrated across the media and on social media platforms. Societally it is becoming clear that gender is a far wider spectrum of identity than the binary definitions that existed historically would suggest. It is worth remembering, therefore, that the key to achieving desirable outcomes and satisfied clients is to ensure a full personal consultation is carried out for each client, to discover what beauty means for them; and not allowing treatment to be bound by traditional ideals such as what constitutes an attractive male or female appearance.
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