Fine lines under the eyes are among the very first signs of aging that people notice as they get older. Sometimes, these are noticed as early as the teen years. If left untreated, they can progress into more prominent wrinkles.
According to dermatologists, this is because the tissue in this area is quite thin and the collagen and elastin fibers here are more vulnerable to damage. Skin is able to maintain its firmness and elasticity due to these protein networks .
Patients we meet here in Los Angeles, sometimes wonder if rubbing the eyes causes wrinkles. This really depends on the integrity of the collagen and elastin structures in the dermal layer.
Dermatologists would explain that if you rub your eyes, for example, the skin should be able to resume its original form. But if collagen and elastin fibers are damaged, wrinkles around the eyes are likely to appear since the skin would not be able to bounce back and regain its original form.
While there are multiple reasons for the degradation of these skin fibers, UV rays can be considered to be at the top of this list. Wrinkles are strongly linked to sun damage. Secondary to this would be free radicals from food sources.
While dermatologists would recommend that patients apply sunscreen (30+ SPF) on a daily basis to prevent fine lines and deeper wrinkles, correcting existing photo damage should be considered if wrinkles around the eyes are a concern.
Fraxel laser systems like Repair and Dual can help the skin under the eyes become tighter and regain its firmness. As wrinkle treatments, they work by applying heat to the dermal layer which then causes the skin tissue to synthesize healthy new collagen fibers. This is a more realistic way to get rid of lines, especially those under the eyes.