Don Fontana, MD
3500 Old Washington Road
Waldorf, MD 20602
The Eyes Are the Window To the Soul
The phrase, “the eyes are the window to the soul” was first quoted by Saint Mathew around 50 AD and by many others throughout history. The eyes and surrounding structures impart either a youthful, rested look or a tired, old appearance. When meeting a person for the first time or greeting a long time friend, eye contact evokes the first impression. Not looking directly into a persons eyes implies a fear or hesitation in the encounter.
In todays competitive job market, the initial impression you convey to a prospective employer includes not only appropriate attire but also your eye contact. There are a number of procedures you can consider to make your eye contact more elegant and youthful.
What features of the eye and surrounding structures distract from a youthful look? The position of the eyebrow relative to the upper rim of the orbit defines the first impression. When the eyebrow sags, a person looks tired; if it is very high, the person appears startled. Proper brow position allows enough space between it and the upper eyelashes to give a youthful appearance. If the brow sags slightly, non-invasive procedures such as Thermage can be used to elevate the brow without surgery. If the eyebrow is positioned correctly, a plastic surgeon evaluates whether the upper eyelid skin is hooded. Sagging and hooding of the upper eyelid skin can be so severe as to obstruct vision. In these instances, surgical correction is necessary.
Women desire a deep crease in the upper eyelid in order to apply adequate makeup. Estheticians apply a white, bone or champagne shadow swept up to the rim of the brow, which gives the eyes a larger appearance. They line both the top and bottom of the eyelid margin with a dark liquid liner, making the upper line slightly thicker.
Hyperpigmentation or dark circles of the lower eyelids are very common and distract from a rested look. The cause may be age related, genetics or allergies. Treating the allergy is the first step to improving the appearance. Certain facial peels such as ViPeel can appreciably improve dark circles, though temporarily. Retinoids and eye creams with vitamin C, E and K are marketed to decrease dark circles with limited results. Estheticians recommend using pink- or peach-tone concealer to help neutralize the subcutaneous blue tone to the skin.
Swollen or “puffy” eyelids are again associated with allergies or genetics. Sometimes water retention and thyroid disorders also contribute to this condition. If the cause is not a medical condition, surgical correction should be considered for a definitive improvement. This is for the most part an easy surgical procedure performed under local anesthesia with sedation. It is done as an outpatient in a surgery center with very little discomfort and takes about one hour to perform.
The last concern for most women are those pesky ” crows feet.” which are a result of muscle contraction associated with smiling, laughing and squinting. Maintaining adequate hydration by drinking plenty of water throughout the day may help a little. Since the cause is muscle contraction, injecting Botox or Dysport blocks periorbital muscle contractions, thereby relaxing the muscle and smoothing out the crows feet. Although the treatment will last 3-5 months, most women are very happy with the improvement as exhibited by their happy smiles.
Consider making an appointment with a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery to discuss your “eye” concerns.