Tailoring Plastic Surgery for the Individual

The story behind ‘ageing well’

I want to look less tired…  refreshed but not altered. This is the most commonly expressed sentiment of people at our Melbourne plastic surgery clinic.

The fear of looking ‘altered’ stops many people from even considering surgery. And these fears are understandable because looking altered is the worst possible surgical result. Even the word ‘facelift’ worries people.

Immediately, we think of those beautiful actresses who looked increasingly terrible through successive facelifts, ultimately becoming almost un-recognisable. Their lovely individuality was lost and the image of their altered faces is a stubborn reminder of people’s worst fears.

Paradoxically, ageing itself alters our appearance and reduces our youthful individuality; that’s why people look for solutions.

Overwhelmingly, people say they simply want to ‘age well’. They don’t mind paying respect to the passing of the years – but they do dislike what ageing has done to their face, most often in key areas, around the mouth, eyes or neck.

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Facial Symmetry – Plastic Surgery in Melbourne, Australia

People worry a lot about facial symmetry. It is actually one of the most frequent concerns of plastic surgery patients, and one we hear in our Melbourne plastic surgery office.

However, a degree of asymmetry is both completely normal and not such a bad thing. In fact, the human eye is attuned to a degree of facial asymmetry; without being aware of it we tend to find it more pleasing than absolute symmetry.

New research is proving this, but the classic portrait artists of the past knew it too.

The new research is based on taking a full-face photograph of someone famous and dividing it into two, then making a new portrait using a composite of two left or two right side images, one the mirror of the other.

We’d expect the look to be perfect … except that it isn’t. These images, show how much more pleasing a normal face looks (in the centre) before perfect symmetry has been imposed upon it.

The images at each side show the effect of ‘mirroring’ either the left or the right side of the face to achieve an image of perfect symmetry. The middle image is unaltered, showing naturally existing asymmetry.

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