Just a few nights ago I was getting milk at the convenience store, and on the checkout line I saw another one of those countless celebrity Plastic Surgery magazine covers. This one caught my attention because it shows pictures of Tom Cruise with a very pronounced left lower eyelid bag, then poof!, its gone. Or is it?
Therein lies the story of smiling, fillers, and what makes a person look younger.
Look first at the small inset picture in the center. He is serious and concentrated. If you cover the upper part of his face and look at the mouth and jaw, he looks fine. Now cover the lower part of his face. He looks 20 years older! It’s the eyes that are making him look older.
Now look at the picture on the left. He is more relaxed, with a hint of a smile. You can see the left lower eyelid is worse than the right. It has a bag, and he has a line that is almost beginning to split the cheek, whereas the right cheek still looks like one unit. Most people would ask for the lower eyelid bag to be removed, but if you did that, the entire left cheek would look hollowed out compared to the right.
The picture on the right shows him smiling. As a matter of fact, when I googled for photos of Tom Cruise, in practically every recent picture, he is smiling or wearing sunglasses. The sunglasses hide his lower eyelids, which I think he realizes is his weak point. Smiling makes you look younger in the following ways. As you smile, the orbicularis muscle around the eye tightens and pushes the lower eyelid bag in. The zygomatic muscles, which run from the cheek to the corners of the mouth, tighten and bring a lot of the cheek tissues up to the area below the eye helping fill up the area below the eye.
Lesson from Tom, smile for your pictures, you’ll look younger.
Now let’s go back to the picture in the center. Tom is on a press junket for his movie Valkyrie. Has he had Plastic surgery? Well, he looks a lot better. He probably had Botox to the forehead and the glabellar areas. I think forehead Botox can backfire, sometimes making your brows inexpressive. The glabellar area; however, has a big payoff because it makes you look more relaxed, less worried.
What about the lower eyelids? I think he had Facial fillers to fill the area between the cheeks and lower eyelids. This can mask the lower eyelid bags, as well as adding volume to the upper cheek area, much like smiling adds volume to that area. The other possibility, less likely, is a type of lower eyelid surgery where you go from inside the eyelid, and instead of taking out the fat bag, you reposition it to fill out the cheek below the eyelid. Either way, the end result is that the area of the lower eyelids looks much younger.
Since people really do form an impression of your age based on the area around your eyes (see my previous post on this subject), Tom Cruise looks a lot younger having done relatively little. As you can see, you can get big mileage out of small procedures if you focus on the right areas.