So, what exactly are neckbands? The platysma muscle is a flat muscle surrounding the front and sides of the neck. As we age, these muscles tend to pull apart and take the form of soft tissue, which appears as horizontal or vertical lines in the neck.
Since the layer of skin on the neck is thinner than the layer on our face, we rapidly lose collagen and skin elasticity on the neck, leading to sagging skin. This is the perfect concoction for aging platysmal bands to become increasingly visible, leading to necklines, double chin, or the turkey neck. Neck bands commonly appear as lines or creping in your 30s and 40s and form deeper folds in your 50s.
Now, let's talk about some factors that affect the prominence of neckbands. Genetics plays a big role in the development of neck bands. Similarly, rapid weight loss can also make bands and lines appear more prominent because of the sudden loss of fat deposits in the neck. Some studies have also shown that vertical lines and bands may result from stress, anxiety, and teeth or jaw clenching. The platysma muscle is activated when we clench our teeth and jaw due to stress. With frequent clenching and contracting, these muscles will become increasingly visible over time.
What can you do to reduce the appearance of neckbands? For starters, preventing collagen loss and maintaining elasticity. If you're worried about the firmness and elasticity of your neck, limit your UV exposure by wearing sun protection (such as wide-brimmed hats and sunscreen), and avoid tanning beds. Also, extend your skincare routine from your face to your neck. This includes applying facial serums, retinoids, and moisturizers to your neck. Wrinkles and signs of aging are less likely to prominently appear on hydrated skin – so keep that neck moisturized.
Another tip: avoid neck strain. We know this seems like an odd one, but it's true. With so much screen time at your disposal, be mindful of the muscle strain you're exerting on your neck by repetitively looking down at your devices. Secondly, try to relax your neck when working out. We tend to contract our necks during higher-intensity workouts (e.g., lifting heavy weights), making vertical neck bands emerge more prominently over time. Next time you're lifting weights, look in the mirror - not just to ensure good form but also to watch your neck area. You might notice that your neckbands are sticking out because of the strain you unknowingly put on your neck! Remember to relax your neck.
If you're looking for non-invasive cosmetic treatments to reduce the visibility of your neck bands, T/A offers some great options, such as the following:
Botox will help relax the neck muscles, preventing strain and unnecessary muscle activation.
Fillers can fill deep horizontal lines on the neck, making the skin appear more plump. Fillers can be used along with Botox.
In addition, you can also do things at home to help reduce the appearance of neck bands. Regularly massaging your neck to improve circulation and promote lymphatic drainage is a straightforward option. You can also use firming creams and serums specifically designed for the neck area to help improve the skin's elasticity. Contact T/A today if you're seeking non-invasive cosmetic treatments for your neck bands.