While all scars are a natural part of the healing process, some may be more visually unappealing than others, leading to a desire for their removal or improvement.
The decolletage is easily damaged by UV rays (photodamage), resulting in signs of sun damage. These signs include lax skin, lines, wrinkles, pigmentation, redness, textural inconsistencies, dryness and visible blood vessels. The decolletage is the chest area from the neck to the breasts and includes cleavage lines that develop over time.
We use different treatments in combination for effective chest rejuvenation, with each symptom typically addressed alone or as part of a broader treatment. We usually combine strategies for optimal outcomes.
Decolletage treatment options include:
Damage to the decolletage occurs when UV rays damage DNA. Because the skin of the chest covers largely only ribs, there isn’t much to soften the impact of photodamage once it starts to appear.
Skin starts to sag, wrinkles and creases appear, and pigmented spots emerge. The chest skin can become red, visible veins can start to appear, and skin may become rougher and dryer. Each person will have a combination of symptoms and a unique decolletage repair plan.
Chest imperfections impact women more often than men due to clothing choices that reveal the decolletage to UV rays, combined with the impacts of heavy breasts and cleavage on creases and wrinkles.
It’s important to include treatments to the decolletage while treating the face and neck since a very abrupt visible change might be seen where treatment transition edges are. We see this a lot in people who only wear sunscreen religiously on their face, but the rest of their body is tanned.
The goal is to improve the appearance of the chest skin and blend the neck, shoulder, and facial skin seamlessly. The chest area has far fewer oil glands than other body areas, opening it to dryness and damage. Factors influencing the chest skin include age, breast size, sleeping position and cumulative sun exposure.
Most patients get the best results using a combination of treatments that address multiple factors, such as sun damage and skin firmness.
Sunspots and other pigmented areas respond well to the picosecond or Fraxel lasers, alongside broader treatments such as IPL and chemical peels to refresh the overall area. Each treatment has its recovery times, required treatments, and efficacy in treating sun damage.
When treating the chest, more frequent and less powerful laser treatments may be required due to the lack of oil glands in the area – gentler treatments may be required over a more extended period, depending on the treatment type.
IPL treatments treat signs of photo-ageing, including fine lines, pigmentation, texture and redness. Studies show a 75-100 per cent improvement in hyperpigmentation after 1-5 monthly treatments in over 80 per cent of patients.
Generally, we would recommend 3-4 IPL treatments at monthly intervals, but we can also combine a laser treatment in the same appointment. This combining of treatments results in fewer required treatments and faster results.
Nonablative lasers improve sun spots, pigmentation, fine lines and texture and work well on all skin types. You may require repeat treatments every 4-6 weeks until you’re happy with the results.
We can effectively correct redness across the decolletage area with IPL, with studies showing significant improvements in 1-5 monthly treatments from 75-100 per cent in 80 per cent of patients.
When there are solitary blood vessels or vascular blemishes, we may use other effective treatment options that focus on a single area, such as dermabrasion or the Excel V laser. We assess each person individually and develop a unique treatment plan.
Creases appear on the chest due to volume loss – fat, muscle and collagen – from internal factors (age, breast size, sleeping position) and external factors (UV damage). At ENRICH Clinic in Melbourne, we have a range of decolletage wrinkle treatment options to fill or soften creases.
The decolletage wrinkles that emanate in a fan-like pattern from between the breasts into the upper chest tend to be deeper than other areas. Thus we treat these decolletage wrinkles differently. We may incorporate several decolletage wrinkle treatments, such as dermal filler injections, laser and ultrasound.
At ENRICH Clinic in Melbourne, our very own Dr Michael Rich has developed a range of skincare that we use on the neck and chest area to improve skin quality. Because of the lack of oil glands across the chest, a good moisturiser helps keep the skin hydrated and helps maintain the results of your treatments for longer.
The one factor that will maintain your great results and prevent further damage is sunscreen – always use 50+ sunscreen on exposed skin. Sun protection measures are most important in the weeks after treatment as your skin heals.
Your doctor will explain this range of prescription-only products to enhance your decolletage treatment results. If you’re not happy with your decolletage, get in touch – we can help!