Don't forget your neck: Our foolproof guide

Don't forget your neck: Our foolproof guide

From the neck up

Text: Lam Bee Lan

The neck is a delicate area — in more ways than one. Find out how to keep the skin there line-free, taut and smooth with products and procedures

The neck is such a 'touchy' subject that the late film director Nora Ephron wrote an entire book about it aptly titled: I Feel Bad About My Neck. Worrying about this delicate area is only natural, after all our necks are one of the clearest indicators of our age, as lines and sagging are most prominent there. Often people feel helpless and ill-equipped when faced with the dreaded  'turkey wattle'.

On the other hand, there are others who think that their youthfulness is reflected only through their faces, and thus neglect their necks entirely, only to find that the damage is already done. So does that leave us resigned to a lifetime of wearing turtlenecks even when its 40 degrees out? The good news is there is more than one way to counteract ageing in the neck area.

For the first signs of ageing
If you feel that your lines are beginning to show but aren't too severe, you can always opt for facial creams such as the Neostrata Neck Cream which helps hydrate, firm and smooth aging skin. With pro-amino acid to stimulate pro-collagen, NeoCitrate to promote collagen, NeoGlucosamine to build the surrounding matrix and apple stem cell extract to replenish and protect the skin's essential cells, the neck and entire décolletage will look plumped-up and younger over time.

Neo Strata

Stimulate collagen
If you want to try something that works deep down the skin layers, there are treatments such aDoublo Hifu (High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound) and Reaction RF (radiofrequency). Both aid in skin tightening and lifting by delivering energy deep into the skin to stimulate collagen synthesis. Depending on your age and skin type, your doctor will usually decide which is better for you.

Get rid of spots and freckles
Not all neck issues are due to sagging and wrinkles. Laser Rejuvenation works for those who want to reduce pigmentation on their necks because, much like sunspots, they are telltale sign of ageing. A quick one such as SPECTRA XT is highly favoured by those who want a lunchtime procedure, as it has zero downtime. By utilising a unique wavelength that does not damage blood vessels, freckles can be easily removed with minimal side effects.

For quick results
For cases which require more attention, or if you simply prefer quicker results, there is Botulinum toxin injections (Dysport/Botox) to reduce neck lines and Restylane Skinboosters for deep skin hydration and the lessening of wrinkles. Both work almost instantaneously and have been proven to give amazing results. These might be on the slightly pricier side, but are worth every penny.

Everyday routine
At the end of the day, prevention is still better than cure; so don't forget to keep up with your sunscreens every day, be they oral or topical. There are great options, such as Heliocare. The brand carries sunscreens that come in gel, cream and spray forms with a high SPF of 50 for every skin type and concern. They also have pills that offer UV protection and aid in skin brightening as well.