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Asymmetrical Face: Causes, Symptoms & Treatments

Tagged: Facial Treatments

Date: 21st February 2024

Medically Reviewed by:  Mr. Bryan Mayou (GMC: 1414396)

Last reviewed: 21st February 2024

What is an Asymmetrical Face?

An asymmetrical face refers to a facial structure where one side differs significantly from the other in terms of size, shape, or positioning of facial features.

When a face is asymmetrical, it means that if you were to draw a line down the middle of the face, the two halves would not be very similar or to each other, as opposed to identical or very close to identical in a symmetrical face.

While it is common for faces to have some degree of asymmetry, noticeable imbalances can affect your appearance and self-confidence. 

What Causes a Person’s Face to be Asymmetrical?

Facial asymmetry causes fall into two main types: developmental and acquired.  

  • Developmental asymmetry, often present from birth, may stem from genetic or environmental factors like prenatal habits. Relate to the inherited traits
  • Acquired asymmetry arises later due to injury or medical conditions, like facial trauma or diseases affecting facial nerves or joints.  

Some of the key factors influencing facial symmetry include: 

Genetic factors play a significant role in determining facial symmetry. Inheritable traits from parents can contribute to uneven facial features from birth, chief among these skeletal structure and the size and position of facial bones.

As we age facial muscles can relax and weaken and skin can lose its elasticity. Changes in fat distribution can also occur, and gravity can takes it toll. When taken together these age related changes can contribute to asymmetrical features.

Environmental factors such as prolonged exposure to sunlight can lead to a lopsided face as it causes uneven pigmentation, wrinkles, and sagging skin. The damage is rarely evenly distributed across your face due to the continually shifting angles that the sun hits your skin which contributes to further unevenness.

Other lifestyle choices can impact skin health and contribute to changes in facial appearance. Smoking accelerates the aging process and can cause an asymmetrical face due to reduced blood flow to the skin, leading to wrinkles and uneven skin texture. As with sun damage, this is rarely a uniform occurrence and different parts of your face can be affected more or less.

Weight gain or weight loss can also impact soft tissue placement and distribution, and create volume differences on either side of the face.  

Trauma or injury to the face, such as fractures or nerve damage, can result in permanent asymmetry to the structures of the face if not properly treated. Healing processes vary between individuals and may also lead to changes in facial symmetry.

Orthodontic treatments or dental issues such as missing teeth can affect the alignment of the jaw and lead to asymmetrical faces. 

Certain medical conditions like Bell’s palsy or strokes can cause facial paralysis or muscle weakness, leading to noticeable asymmetry. For example, most people who suffer a stroke will experience some degree of drooping to one side of their face and this is indeed one of the signs of spotting a stroke.

Differentiating between developmental and acquired asymmetry is crucial for accurate diagnosis and treatment planning. Whilst both may require cosmetic intervention, understanding the root cause can help guide which is the most appropriate intervention. 

How to Test if You Have a Symmetrical Face

One simple face symmetry test is to use a mirror to compare both sides of your face. Drawing an imaginary line down the centre can help identify any differences in features such as the eyes, ears, and nostrils.

An easier face symmetry test is to take a photo of your face from a frontal position. Print the photo, and mark important facial points on each side including:

  • Forehead peak. 
  • Bottom of chin. 
  • Widest part of your nostrils. 
  • Widest point on your face. 
  • Where your lips start at the sides. 
  • Where your eyes start next to your nose bridge. 
  • The crease at the far side of your eyes.

With a ruler, you can draw horizontal lines between the features on each side of your face and check for symmetry. 

What are Some of the Best Non-Invasive Treatments for Asymmetrical Face?

Non-invasive treatments typically aim to restore a sense of facial balance and harmony and are most effective for treating mild asymmetries.

Non-invasive treatments typically correct an uneven face in circumstances where the asymmetry is caused by soft tissues such as muscles and skin. They are less effective at repositioning uneven face features or more severe asymmetrical face symptoms which is where surgical treatments can be required.  

The effectiveness of non-invasive treatments to fix face asymmetry can vary by individual, however, and it’s important to realise that the results are usually temporary.

Non-invasive treatment options for an asymmetrical face fix should be made only after consultation with a qualified healthcare professional and a detail assessment of your condition and the potential solutions.

Here are some common non invasive face symmetry treatments to fix face asymmetry:

Anti Ageing Injectables

Botulinum toxin injections or anti-ageing injectables can help relax muscles and reduce the appearance of asymmetry caused by muscular imbalances. Each consultation takes 30 minutes and you can return to your normal daily routine immediately after.

Dermal Fillers

Injectable dermal fillers can restore volume and balance to the face by filling in areas of depression or asymmetry. Hyaluronic acid is used which is a natural component of your skin, muscles, and tendons. Sessions take 30 minutes or less and there is no downtime.

Orthodontics

Orthodontic treatments such as braces or aligners can correct dental misalignments, which may contribute to facial asymmetry. Dental issues are usually highlighted at a younger age as a result of regular dental checkups, although orthodontic treatment is also available for adults. 

What Are Some of the Best Surgical Treatments for Asymmetrical Face?

Multiple surgical treatments exist to correct a very asymmetrical face including facial implants, fat transferal, facelifts, necklifts, and rhinoplasty to name a few. These procedures usually target a specific area or facial feature such as your eyes, nose, chin, or cheeks.

Some treatments work by reshaping facial features to provide symmetry such as a Rhinoplasty or Blepharoplasty, while others work by improving contouring and reducing sagging such as a facelift or a neck lift. Other procedures like fat transfer and liposuction aim to either add or reduce volume to restore balance.

Surgical treatments have the benefit of more long-lasting results, and the ability to physically reshape aspects of your face that are uneven which is where non-invasive treatments have limitations. Finding the best surgical treatment should be a joint effort with a healthcare professional who can assess your asymmetrical face and discuss the best options together with realistic outcomes. 

Facial Implants

Implants can be surgically placed to enhance facial contours and restore balance to asymmetrical features. Specific facial implants include chin implants, cheek implants, and jaw implants. These procedures are often combined with other surgeries to address asymmetrical face causes. 

Fat Transfer to Face

Fat grafting involves transferring fat from one part of the body to the face to add volume and improve symmetry. Although this procedure takes between 30-45 minutes, it can be combined with other treatments such as a neck lift, facelift, or blepharoplasty to further improve facial symmetry. 

Facelift

A facelift can address sagging skin and tissue laxity, resulting in a more symmetrical and youthful appearance. The procedure usually takes between 1-3 hours and is performed under general anaesthetic. Three types of facelifts are offered – full facelift, micro facelift, and mini facelift. Both the mini and micro facelifts are quicker and less invasive. 

Necklift

A neck lift procedure can improve the contour of the neck and jawline, enhancing overall facial symmetry. Excess fat is removed from the neck and the skin is redressed and retightened during the 2-4 hour procedure. A neck lift can be combined with procedures like liposuction or a facelift and the typically recovery period is 6-8 weeks. 

Rhinoplasty

Nose surgery can correct asymmetry, reshape the nose, and improve facial balance. Different types of rhinoplasty such as open, closed, Septo, and rhino-tip can be used depending on the nature of your asymmetry and desired end results. 




Chin Reshaping

Chin reshaping, augmentation or reduction can create better facial proportions and symmetry in the lower half of your face. Chin reshaping is often combined with injectable fillers, and in more pronounced cases of asymmetry, surgical jaw alteration. Chin augmentation takes between 1-1.5 hours with an expected full recovery of 4-6 weeks. 

Buccal Fat Removal

If your face is asymmetrical due to your cheeks, removing excess fat pads from them can help achieve a more symmetrical facial contour during a buccal fat removal procedure. This treatment is commonly used to treat chubby cheeks but it’s highly effective at correcting an asymmetrical face too. 

Browlift

A browlift involves lifting the eyebrows which can elevate drooping eyelids and create a more balanced appearance in the upper half of your face. Excess skin is removed and the remaining skin is then tightened and reshaped. The surgery takes between 1-2 hours under general anaesthetic and a full recovery is expected within 2 weeks. 

Blepharoplasty

Eyelid surgery can address asymmetry in the upper or lower eyelids, resulting in a more harmonious look. During a Blepharoplasty, excess skin and fat is removed and the eyelid is then redressed and reshaped to remove any sagging. You can expect to take one week from work and be recovered within 2 weeks. 

Liposuction

Liposuction can remove excess fat deposits from areas such as the cheeks or jawline to improve facial symmetry. This surgery for an asymmetrical face offers one of the quickest recovery times of just one week, and a surgery time of 1-1.5 hours. 

Can Facial Exercises, Hairstyling, and Makeup Help?

While facial exercises, proper hairstyling, and strategic makeup application can temporarily improve the appearance of facial symmetry, they do not address underlying structural issues – they can be a great confidence booster though until you can discuss further treatment options to correct your asymmetrical face. 

Understand How to Get a Symmetrical Face

Achieving facial symmetry often requires a combination of non-invasive treatments and surgical procedures tailored to your individual needs. Consulting with a qualified facial plastic surgeon or dermatologist is essential to determine your most suitable treatment plan for face asymmetry correction. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Facial asymmetry can result from various factors, including genetics, environmental influences, and lifestyle habits. Consulting with a medical professional can help identify the underlying cause and recommend appropriate treatment options. 

While perfect facial symmetry is rare, subtle imbalances are normal and often imperceptible. The goal of cosmetic treatments is to enhance overall facial harmony rather than strive for absolute symmetry

Some studies indicate that people are generally more attracted to faces that are symmetrical. However, no face is perfectly symmetrical and some asymmetry is perfectly normal and to be expected. It’s these slight differences and imperfections that give our faces their individual character and uniqueness, and studies also show that are not often noticed by others anyway.  


Words From Our Founder

Mr. Bryan Mayou

While facial asymmetry is common, for some people, these differences can impact confidence. Medical conditions such as strokes may exacerbate these differnces. Treatments, such as Injectables, Morpheus8, Facial Implants or Facelifts, can help to address these concerns depending on the severity. By restoring facial proportions, patients are able reclaim their confidence and enhance their appearance.
Mr. Bryan Mayou

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