A Sneaky Girl's Guide to Plastic Surgery

Hallie Gould
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First of all, know you're beautiful—no one needs (or should feel the pressure) to nip, tuck, or inject anything. Especially now, it's important we understand our worth beyond our looks or age. That being said, you should never feel shame or guilt about wanting to look and feel your best. I choose to feel empowered by it.

If you're interested in a few not-so-obvious cosmetic procedures, keep reading. "We're not using the Botox to make a line or a crease go away; we're using it in smaller, more subtle, more broad strokes to reposture and rebalance muscles," New York–based plastic surgeon, Scott Wells, MD, says of the practice. The idea is not to change the way you look—giving your face characteristics that were never there. That's when things get dicey. Instead, it's about rejuvenating the features you have always had. Each one is surprisingly quick, has little to no downtime, and tweaks the small issues you consistently correct with an Instagram filter or makeup.

To smooth frownlines

Over time, expressions that we frequently make will strengthen those muscles and cause imbalances. "For me," Wells explains, "it's all about rebalancing the face into what is a more youthful posture." He adds, "Botox will diminish the deterioration of the skin by weakening the muscles that continually pull on the skin."

In this case, your depresser anguli oris muscle (which allows you to frown) gets in a tug of war with your smile muscles—and the result is frown lines. A small amount of Botox injected in the muscle will alleviate that tug of war and soften lines.

In the meantime, try La Prairie's Anti-Aging Rapid Response Booster ($300)

To contour your jawline

"Skin is a fabric," Wells explains. "When we're young, skin is like Lycra. Everyone wears Lycra to the gym because that tight, elastic supportive nature shapes beautiful contours. Well, the beautiful contours of youth are in large part due to the shaping quality of the elasticity of skin. As we age, and the skin loosens up and loses that support, some of the volume starts to drop and disappear."

Your masseter muscles (chewing muscles) strengthen and look thicker the more you chew gum or suck on candies. If that's the case, a small amount of Botox or filler (depending on your desired result) can be used to contour and define along your jawline, adding support and tightening where the elasticity has been lost.

In the meantime, try this lifting and sculpting facial.

To banish dark circles

"As the mid-face ages, it begins to bottom out a little bit, Wells says. "The skin gets a little looser, and the tissue has less support. "[Smile lines] begin to sag, and what's above it, the under-eye bags, begins to show more. The crease is a symptom of the sag. A subtle correction is not injections into that line, but injections higher up to create lift in the mid-face. And that does two things: It lifts the smile line and creates more of that roundness. Most importantly, it improves the lower eyelid." 

You can also use a hyaluronic acid filler, like Belotero or Juvéderm, just below the eyes to fill out and plump the area. 

In the meantime, try derma-rolling.

Thinking about other, more permanent procedures? Read up on why I got breast reduction surgery and never looked back.

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