You often hear people say that the neck and hands are the telltale signs of ageing, and it’s true. Many women over 60 are self-conscious of their sagging neck and mightn’t have the money or are scared to fix it with surgery.
Luckily, it doesn’t have to come to this, and there are ways to improve a neck that looks sad.
We’ve got all the information you need to make a decision about what to do.
Why does your neck sag?
As you age many things that were once tight and firm will begin to loosen, and neck skin is one of those body parts. This is because on your neck will begin to thin and lose its elasticity as you start to lose collagen cells under the skin. Generally, the neck skin is already thinner than other skin on your body which makes it particularly susceptible to damage. Sun damage and sleeping habits play a part in neck wrinkles too.
What are some exercises to do to tighten the area?
This exercise builds strength in the chin and upper neck.
- Pout your lower lip as far as you can and hold that pose for a few seconds.
- Lower your jaw while keeping your lower lip stuck out in the pout and your face still. Repeat this exercise about 10 times.
2. Kiss the sky
You should feel this stretch your neck and under your jaw.
- Sit in a chair with your back straight. Slowly lean your head back until you are looking up at the ceiling
- Purse your lips like you are kissing the sky and hold for 3 seconds. Repeat 10 times, 3 times a day.
3. Gulping fish
Tighten your sagging neck with this move.
- Place your open hand at the base of your throat, stretched across your collarbone. Holding your hand down, extend your neck up, leading with your chin and stretch with your bottom jaw towards the ceiling. Do NOT swallow, but reach your bottom lip towards the ceiling, like a gulping fish. Make 10 gulps.
Great for lines and loose skin on the neck.
- Looking straight ahead, place the finger tips at the bottom of the neck and lightly stroke the skin downwards with your head tilted back.
- Bring the head back down to the chest and repeat two more times.
- Put your lower lip out as far as possible to pull the corners of the mouth down and place finger tips on the collarbone with the chin pointed upwards. Hold for four deep breaths.
How can I camouflage a sagging neck?
According to beauty and wellbeing expert Margaret Woodberry, there are a number of ways to disguise your sagging neck if you don’t want to resort to surgery.
- The first and most obvious idea to spring to mind is the scarf. A soft fabric in a flattering shade gently draped around the neck will frame your face prettily and mask your neck. Try chiffon, cashmere, fine wool, silk plus drapey synthetics. The neckerchief will be your neck’s best friend when dressing casually.
- Wear scoop necklines which allow wrinkles to relax downwards.
- Polo necks are great camouflage and elongate the look of the neck plus makes you look taller, but beware of wrinkles spilling over the top. A mock turtleneck is good or try turning the turnover of the polo neck inwards instead of outwards and see how it suits you.
- Avoid chokers and short necklaces, but longer, showy necklaces finishing on or below the breastbone will draw the eye downwards away from your neck; ditto for a peep of camisole lace or a hint of cleavage.
- An upturned collar will leave less of the neck showing.
What affordable surgery options are there?
Named after the famously-necked Egyptian queen, the ‘Nefertiti Lift’ uses anti wrinkle injections to make the neck muscles do the work, subtly lifting it back to where it used to be. The treatment takes 15 minutes and effects last three to six months.
Another cost effective treatment is an ultrasound skin tightening treatment. Ultherapy is a non-invasive procedure that uses ultrasound energy to treat deep layers of skin tissue to lift the neck, chin and eyebrow, as well as, improve wrinkles on the décolletage.
Do neck creams work?
Neck skin is thin and has fewer oil glands than the face so it needs constant hydration. Unfortunately creams don’t always work retroactively so a cream won’t get rid of loose skin and there’s no such thing as a miracle lifting product. The best thing you can do is use a good exfoliator a few times a week and apply an anti-ageing moisturiser with SPF everyday.
Are there any makeup tricks I can try?
Try make-up primers to help disguise wrinkles and make the skin’s surface look healthier.
Use bronzer just below the angle of your chin (where the shadow falls), to give an impression of a strong jawline, and add a highlighting cream down your throat to make it look slimmer.