Nasolabial fold

Everyone gets them more or less pronounced: The nasolabial folds running from the wings of the nose to the corners of the mouth. They develop at a young age, more or less in secret, simply because of your facial anatomy. They only become clearly visible with increasing age. But then often perceived as a flaw.

  • It runs on both sides of the nostrils as a furrow down to the corners of the mouth.

  • Their development is based on the natural aging process, with the expression increasing with age.

  • Cosmetic and medical treatments can smooth them out and make the face look fresher again.

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Nasolabial fold: Simply explained!

The term is derived from the Latin words “nasus” (nose) and “labium” (lip). Other names are nasal lip furrow and cummerfold. Furrow is quite apt, because pronounced nasolabial folds look more like furrows than narrower wrinkles. Calling them cummerfolds is a bit paradoxical, since nasolabial folds, just like crow’s feet, are favored by frequent laughter. However, when pronounced, they sometimes give the face a sorrowful, sad or even haggard expression.

At a young age, the line running from either side of the nostrils to the corners of the mouth usually does not show at all, or only during certain facial expressions such as laughter. More clearly visible, even when the face is at rest, is the nasolabial fold at 30 to 40 years. The main reason for this is your facial muscles, which are active in the mouth-nose region when you speak, laugh, but also when you chew. By the age of 40, the nasolabial fold may extend even further beyond the corners of the mouth, depending on predisposition. At the same time, it merges into the marionette folds and runs down to the chin on both sides of the corners of the mouth.

When the nasolabial fold becomes a problem

As is so often the case with facial wrinkles, they appear differently in youth and young adults. They subtly stand out when you laugh, frown or wrinkle your nose, giving your face an individual expression. The same applies to bunny lines. But skin aging progresses and more and more clearly wrinkles remain completely without facial expression. Nasolabial folds are among the first to give your face an altered expression.

Are you a cheerful person and known for your warm, open laugh? Then those furrows can give the opposite impression: they may make your facial expression look bad-tempered, disapproving, or troubled by grief. And who wants that? Even looking in the mirror doesn’t necessarily lift your spirits when you’re suffering from nasolabial folds that are becoming more and more obvious and can barely be concealed with makeup.

Once you realize that these wrinkles are bothering you, it’s time to think about having them removed. Because one thing is certain: the expression does not decrease with age at all, but increases.

What causes the nasolabial fold

Facial muscles are constantly active in the mouth-nose area and with their activity comes movement in your facial expressions. Skin and tissue are repeatedly pushed into specific positions. Moisture, collagen and elasticity allow youthful skin to return to its tight position after every movement. However, as soon as collagen, elasticity and the moisture depots decrease with age, the facial areas lower. However, only as far as retaining ligaments in the tissue allow. These pull from the skin directly to the bone and fix the skin and fat pad in the appropriate place. With age, however, the ligaments slacken, so that the entire tissue moves downward. The result: Especially the furrows between the wings of the nose and the corners of the mouth deepen. Its formation is therefore a completely natural process, even if the expression of the nasolabial fold is different for each person.

What are the first signs

Since the nasolabial fold is initially only visible with certain facial expressions, you will not notice it for a long time. What favors their later expression can even be perceived as charming in youth: Plump round cheeks, which become even more prominent when laughing, are part of it. However, if the elasticity of the skin and fat pads diminishes, the cheek area that follows gravity sinks down, making the nose lip furrow more prominent.

The good thing is that this does not happen suddenly. Just look in the mirror occasionally and laugh at yourself. Do you notice fine lines or wrinkles in the tissue running from the wings of the nose toward the corners of the mouth? They can also show up during yawning, talking and chewing. They are the ones that hint at the later nasolabial folds.

When should the nasolabial fold be treated

Skin naturally doesn’t get any younger and you know yourself best: do you like the wrinkles on your face and can you live with them? Do you perceive aging skin, with its signs evident in the face, as part of you and perhaps even as a beauty feature of age?

The rule is: the sooner you do something, the easier it is. This is because it takes less effort to inject a nasolabial fold that is still slight than when the cheek area is drooping and your facial expression looks distressed. As soon as it appears with relaxed facial features, treatment is possible. Depending on subjective perception. Injection with hyaluronic acid specifically accumulates moisture under the skin, which plumps up wrinkles and makes the skin look more elastic again. The hyaluron degrades over time, so repeating the treatment in 6-12 months may be beneficial.

Any questions? Our FAQ section has the answers!

There is no way around hyaluronic acid in the treatment of nasolabial folds. There are two ways to do this: One is to inject directly under the wrinkle to smooth it out. The other very effective option, aimed at tightening the entire face, is a Liquid Lift with hyaluronic acid. Quasi a face lift without thread lift, but only with hyaluronic acid. In the process, we place hyaluronic acid deposits in several places on the face so that fine ligaments in the tissue are strengthened. Tapes? Yes, as you learned above, fine ligaments (retaining ligaments) fix your skin to the bone so that as you age, the skin is pulled downward only to certain points on your face. The advantage of this approach: Both the jawline and cheek area also improve, and this indirectly weakens the nasolabial and marionette folds, making your face look younger overall. And if you are already 50+, you should take a look at radiofrequency needling using Morpheus8.

Just as diet and lifestyle can positively influence skin elasticity, facial muscle training also has an effect. Similarly, skin massages can stimulate blood circulation and help a little to relieve nasolabial folds. However, the furrows cannot really be trained away. Professional medical treatment shows a much faster visible effect.

Unlike frown lines and forehead wrinkles, the nasolabial fold belongs to the static facial wrinkles. That is, it is largely independent of your facial expressions and occurs because of the aging process.

In principle, the nasolabial fold simply says that the skin is aging. It occurs in varying degrees in every person and, even if it is not perceived as beautiful, it is natural. After all, skin and tissue age along with it.

More questions? Simply make a personal consultation appointment online.


Last updated: 20.10.2023