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Nasolabial folds – treatment for the inner cheek lines

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What are nasolabial folds?

Woman with nasolabial folds
Nasolabial folds extend from the side of the nose to the corner of the mouth.

The word nasolabial fold is composed of the Latin terms for "nose" (nasus) and "lip" (labium). This naming already indicates the localization of the wrinkles: nasolabial folds (or nasolabial lines) appear between the lower outer edge of the nose and the corner of the mouth. 

Until some time ago, another name was in common use: the "cummerfold". A thoroughly ironic name, considering that people who laugh a lot often suffer from particularly deep nasolabial folds. One of several reasons why this name is now considered outdated and is no longer used by experts. To combat the development or deepening of nasolabial lines, the active ingredient hyaluron is particularly suitable. The ingredient both prevents nasolabial folds as well as it treats already existing ones. In this article, you will learn more about the causes and treatments of nasolabial folds and how to stop them from deepening further. 

How do nasolabial folds develop?

From the age of 20, the skin begins to slowly lose moisture. Depending on predisposition and lifestyle, nasolabial folds can become noticeable at a relatively early stage, though they tend to be very fine at first. From the age of 40, a visible deepening of the nasolabial folds can be expected. The main reason for the formation of the nasolabial fold is the cumulative muscle activity, for example, when eating and drinking or – as mentioned before – laughing. 

Other causes for the development of face wrinkles such as nasolabial folds, crow*s feet, and smile or frown lines are: 

  • Loss of moisture in the skin 
  • Degradation of the structural protein collagen and elastic fibers 
  • Reduction of the skin's own hyaluronic acid content 
  • Strong facial expressions or 
  • High UV radiation. 
  • After the age of 40, dimples become much more visible due to a greater lack of hyaluronic acid, collagen and moisture. 
  • Rapid weight loss or severe weight fluctuations can also promote the formation of cheek lines and nose wrinkles such as nasolabial folds. The cheeks start to get saggy when weight is lost, and the subcutaneous fatty tissue recedes. As a result, the face is less plumped up. 
  • Genetic factors also play a role: the development of wrinkles can be accelerated by a family predisposition, for example if collagen production is inhibited by metabolic disorders.  
  • In addition, those who expose the body to stress and excessive alcohol and nicotine consumption favor the development not only of nasolabial, but of all kinds of lines and wrinkles. The free radicals released, and the oxidative stress caused by smoking and drinking significantly accelerate skin aging.  
Woman in her 40s laughing
Face wrinkles like nasolabial folds mainly develop because of cumulative muscle activity.

What kind of nasolabial fold treatments are there?

There are (invasive) treatments that promise wrinkle-free skin. Such treatments can reduce nasolabial folds and even temporarily plump them up so that they disappear - but permanent removal is only possible if the folds are regularly injected or through surgery. The most common nasolabial fold treatment method for temporary removal is through injections with hyaluronic acid

Nasolabial fold treatment with fillers

A woman talking to her doctor.
Only a dermatologist or trained cosmetician should inject hyaluronic acid into the skin.

This is a minimally invasive treatment option: a dermatologist or trained cosmetician injects hyaluronic acid into the skin of the cheeks directly above the nasolabial fold using a thin syringe. The acid acts as a filler: The immediate effect is visibly smoothed, plumped-up skin. The treatment is almost completely painless but needs to be performed continuously at intervals of about six months to maintain a consistent result. Also, this type of wrinkle smoothing is relatively expensive, and the injection of hyaluronic acid also carries risks such as swelling and redness of the treated skin areas. 


Nasolabial fold treatment with fillers

Womans face being prepared for plastic surgery
Surgery for the removal of nasolabial folds should be considered only as a last resort.

Nasolabial folds and other wrinkles can be removed by surgery: Options like face lifts or fat transfer (removing fat from one area of the body and transplanting it to another) are far more invasive than the injection of a filler or cosmetic solutions and hold high risks for swelling and follow-up infections due to poor healing. Consider the pros and cons of plastic surgery carefully and discuss them with your dermatologist in advance. 

However, there are also cheaper, non-invasive, and more natural treatments to reduce nasolabial folds and prevent their reformation, for example with the Hyaluron-Filler care products from Eucerin, which were specially developed for aging skin.

Dermocosmetic alternatives to nasolabial fold fillers

Try these natural treatments with care products containing actives like hyaluronic acid to reduce and/or conceal nasolabial folds and other facial lines like forehead wrinkles: 

1. Creams and serums with hyaluronic acids 

Creams and serums containing the active ingredient hyaluron are particularly effective and can act as a nasolabial fold filler almost as much as an injection. Also, the use of appropriate skin care products can be a good complement to the minimally invasive treatment with hyaluronic acid. For example, the Hyaluron-Filler + Volume-Lift series from Eucerin provides a visible lifting and plumping effect for sagging skin suffering from loss of volume: Long-chain hyaluronic acid binds moisture in the skin layers where the nose-to-mouth wrinkles appear, and the magnolol activates the volume-giving skin cells. The deepening of first nasolabial folds can also be prevented by regularly applyingthe Eucerin Hyaluron-Filler Skin Refining Serum. It refines pores and reduces lines with active ingredients like hyaluronic, glyconic and lactic acid.

2. Soften nasolabial lines with make-up

Especially the first nasolabial lines can be concealed well with the right make-up. A moisturizing and covering foundation can smooth the skin in addition to the daily face cream. Here, too, you should pay attention to active ingredients with a proven anti-aging effect. Our tip: Use a concealing care with hyaluronic acid


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Can nasolabial folds be prevented?

The good news is that there are several ways to prevent the development of nasolabial folds. The following three are very simple to incorporate into your daily routine and easy to apply. 

1. Use sunscreen all year round

Woman in the sun
Protect your face from UV rays by unsing sunscreen with a high SPF.

Especially for fair and sensitive skin types, a day care with a high sun protection factor – such as Eucerin Hyaluron-Filler Day Care SPF30 – is recommended already on sunny spring days. On summer days, it should be a sun cream with high SPF for the face, e.g., the Eucerin Sun Fluid Photoaging Control SPF 50, on sunny winter days a day cream with a light SPF like the Eucerin Hyaluron-Filler Day SPF 15 with 3x Effect for dry and aging skin

2. Use the regenerative power of a healthy sleep

Young woman sleeping
Healthy sleep supports the skin's natural protection and repair processes.

The skin regenerates best at night. With a healthy sleep of approximately 7 to 8 hours a day, the protective and repair processes of the skin can be supported. However, side sleepers should keep in mind that their sleeping position will become noticeable over time. Especially on the preferred side, mouth and eye wrinkles as well as nasolabial folds are more likely to form. To prevent this, you can use special anti-wrinkle pillows. These are shaped to keep you lying on your back at night.

3. Yoga for the face against wrinkles

Woman practicing facial yoga
You can fight nasolabial folds and other facial wrinkles with facial yoga and light massages.

Exercise your facial muscles! Just a few minutes a day are enough to actively prevent nasolabial and other facial wrinkles with so-called facial yoga. In addition, light massages in the cheek and forehead area stimulate blood circulation and thus tighten the skin. 

With our simple tips and a good skin care routine, you can delay the appearance of nasolabial folds from a young age. Even if you're already affected by initial or advanced nasolabial folds, you can still work against them. The earlier you start prevention, the greater your chances of at least delaying their formation. 

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