Get My Good Side
Instyle UK|October 2015
Can you change the features you're born with? Contouring says yep, you can. From skin care to surgery, here's everything you need to know.
Jess Lacey

So here I am...aged 30, dreading the inevitable arrival of forehead lines and crow’s feet, when along comes another – apparently far more pressing – issue to worry about: facial sculpting.

Now, I’m acutely aware that my jawline could be sleeker, my eyes wider and my cheekbones higher. I’ve never loved my round face, and for every photo I adopt my signature three-quarters on, head cocked pose. The ‘turtle, tuck, tilt’ method was passed on to me by an equally self-conscious friend, and involves sticking your neck out like a turtle to stop a double chin, tucking it down to make your jaw look sleeker, then tilting your head to give the camera your best angle. And it turns out we’re not alone: angles have now overtaken wrinkles as the number-one ageing concern for British women. We’re not only keen to improve the texture of our skin, but also the entire structure of it – bones and all.

Only a few years ago, contouring was just something that Kim Kardashian did with her hardcore, complicated-looking bronzing application techniques, but now it’s an entire industry. The re-sculpting craze is everywhere: in surgery, super-facials, make-up, state-of-the-art skincare, and even a worrying iPhone app called Facetune.

Having never had any cheekbones to speak of, I’m rather excited about this trend. Changing the angles of your face, enhancing your best features and playing down the dodgy ones – what’s not to love?

THE SURGICAL SOLUTION

If you want true changes that last in the long term, you’re looking at the sharp end of a scalpel – but, crucially, without appearing like you’ve been anywhere near one. 

‘There was a time when the face-lift was over-stretched and over-cushioned, but UK clients certainly don’t want others to know that they’ve had surgery,’ says Dr Julian De Silva, a facial cosmetic plastic surgeon based in London who champions the natural approach to facial augmentation (londonfacialplasticsurgery.co.uk). ‘I make people look natural. I’ve refused to do “cats’ eyes” – I just do the subtleties.’

So, can Dr De Silva give you cheekbones that look like you were born with them? ‘There’s a point in the cheek where if you give more curve and fullness, it will make any woman more beautiful,’ he says. ‘It’s the area towards the outside of cheek, about two thirds along. People don’t look at you directly straight on, or even side on; their line of vision is at a half-turn viewpoint, so volume there will be most effective.’ The cheek implants he refers to are high-grade silicone imported from California, which last a lifetime. There’s no scarring, either, because it’s done internally, creating tiny pockets in the roof of the mouth. 

So prominent is facial sculpting right now that last year a seemingly niche treatment – the chin implant – was among the fastest growing surgical procedures in the UK. ‘It’s simple: recess chins make the face look weak,’ says Dr De Silva. ‘They’re usually because the bone hasn’t grown forward enough, so we use sculpted silicone that sits on the bone to bring it forward. Plus, small chins make noses look bigger – it’s all to do with bringing the face back into balance.’

Derm clients are also queuing up for fillers used in a different way. ‘Fillers are less about lines now, and are used in facial sculpting,’ says renowned cosmetic dermatologist Dr Adam Geyer, from Tribeca Park Dermatology in New York City. ‘It’s to do with rebalancing, rather than over-volumising, and my clients want to look refreshed. I use Sculptra, Juvederm Voluma and an injectable hyaluronic acid called Belotero on cheekbones and along the jawline, all of which last about a year.’

THE SKINCARE SUPERHEROES

Surgery is one thing, but can the right skincare products actually change your face shape? Well, Estée Lauder suggests it can help with its New Dimension collection, developed to sculpt, support and strengthen every layer of the skin. In trials, the Shape + Fill Expert Serum (£62, esteelauder.co.uk) has proved it can increase natural collagen production by 294 per cent in just two days. I’ve been using it for 48 hours as I type, and I can detect that my skin looks a little plumper already.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM INSTYLE UKView All

Seriously Selena

Icon. Multi-million-dollar brand. Single and happy about it. Selena Gomez just grew up pretty fast. Justin who?

7 mins read
Instyle UK
January 2016

Rose Leslie - Gypsy Heart

Be brave and embrace the eclectic. Game Of Thrones warrior woman Rose Leslie wears it her way.

4 mins read
Instyle UK
January 2016

Abbey Clancy On Fashion, Football And Mrs Beckham

With a Premier League footballer husband, Abbey Clancy could happily never work again. But then that's just not her style. Over a bacon sandwich (white bread) she talks money, motherhood and her new role as a judge on Britain's Next Top Model. 

8 mins read
Instyle UK
February 2016

Pure French Perfection with Clémence Poésy

Sporty separates give floral prints a cool, masculine edge. Clémence Poésy works a modern twist on spring’s perennial favourite.

4 mins read
Instyle UK
April 2016

Meet the UK's Coolest Rising Stars

They’re starring in the movies, dramas and shows we’re all talking about. Meet the newest, hottest, most exciting names on the Brit acting block.

10+ mins read
Instyle UK
April 2016

The 90's are Making a Comeback!

At which stage are you in your sexual relationship: tri-weekly, try weekly or try weakly? Anupama Bijur lists the highs and lows your sex life will course through, starting from the wedding night

4 mins read
Instyle UK
May 2016

Reese...Her Most Funny and Real Q&A Yet

That flash of blonde locks - that's Reese Witherspoon, the Southern belle turned impresario, movie star, mother of three, and budding lifestyle guru. Catch her if you can.

8 mins read
Instyle UK
August 2015

Emily Ratajkowski - 'I've Never Been Shy Of My Body'

Actress, art aficionado and music lover: theres way more to Emily Ratajkowski than that music video.

7 mins read
Instyle UK
October 2015

American Woman - Zoë Kravitz

Mum and Dad are hot, stylish and uber-talented, so does it go without saying that Zoë Kravitz will be off-the-scale gorgeous, too? (Spoiler alert: totally)

4 mins read
Instyle UK
November 2015

Chloë Grace Moretz: Why We All Want to Be in Her Gang

Chloë Grace Moretz has gone from child star to fierce, feminist fashionista. She tells Monica Corcoran Harel how she did it.

8 mins read
Instyle UK
June 2016
RELATED STORIES

We Heard You're Sensitive…

"Sooo your skin is freaking out. Don’t panic, we’ve got your back. And your face."

4 mins read
Girls' Life magazine
February/March 2022

Popping a pimple the *right* way

The newbie’s guide to…

3 mins read
Girls' Life magazine
February/March 2022

Eyebrow Trends In 2022

Celebrity Makeup and Hair Artist, Christina Flach, is the creator and CEO of Pretty Girl Makeup. She is also a, health enthusiast, Sepsis awareness advocate and grief expert.

5 mins read
Women Fitness
January 2022

Talented CJ Perry Gearing Up For The New Year

Catherine Joy "CJ" Perry best known in WWE, under the ring name Lana is a multi-talented wrestler, model, actress, dancer, and singer.

10 mins read
Women Fitness
January 2022

Dermatologist - Dr. Sandy Answers 3 FAQ On Skin Care & Cancer

A board-certified physician with specialist training in Dermatology, Dr. Natasha Sandy is the first graduate of the Clinical Dermatology Fellowship at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.

1 min read
Women Fitness
December 2021

Eye Makeup

Palette For Spring/Summer 2022

4 mins read
Women Fitness
December 2021

Yes, Beauty Sleep is a real thing.

Let’s face it: Breakouts, a dull complexion and looking like an exhausted raccoon is basically the stuff of nightmares.

4 mins read
Girls' Life magazine
December/January 2022

Finding You Perfect Foundation Match

Makeup brands (finally!) have huge ranges of foundation shades. But now with so many to choose from, picking the perfect product can feel daunting. Allow us to introduce your new base bestie...

2 mins read
Girls' Life magazine
December/January 2022

Makeup Fixes For Women Over 50

Fifty may be the new thirty, but that doesn’t mean your makeup routine shouldn’t evolve over the course of the years.

6 mins read
Women Fitness
July 2021

Live Your Best Brow Life

Thanks to 2020, you've mastered the at-home mani and can trim your bangs with your eyes closed (well, almost). Next up? Maintaining your brows…without a drop of wax, spool of thread or a spare set of hands.

3 mins read
Girls' Life magazine
April/May 2021