BY PATRICK HUGUENIN
Unless you’re in Hollywood, a chiseled jawline is a nice-to-have. It’s not a prerequisite for manhood, but you’re not going to get cast as a superhero without it. Still, some guys are stuck on the other end of the spectrum: the weak chin. This is the barely-there nub that threatens to slide into your neck the next time you yawn… and never come back. You know there are small things you can do—clenching your teeth, for instance. But you might not know that you can go out and buy a better jaw. Here’s how you get a jawline, from minor commitment to major undertaking.
Low Commitment: Grow a Beard
It’s not just the hairiness that makes you look manlier. A beard can fill out the lower half of your face.
“If the jaw isn’t there, a beard can really bring some shape to the face,” says Jessica Candia, a hairstylist at Brooklyn’s Persons of Interest. “It’s very helpful. But it can get tricky.”
Tricky how? If you’re growing a beard to shape your jawline, you have to avoid the mistake of following your jaw too closely and ending up with a chinstrap.
Medium Commitment: Melt Your Turkey Neck
Maybe your jaw is there, but it’s obscured by jowls, or the fold of skin under your chin unflatteringly called the “turkey neck.”
If you have cash and don’t mind needles, there’s a fix. No nipping or tucking required.
“In the past, if someone hated their lower face or neck, it meant surgery,” says Marina Peredo, a board-certified dermatologist and founder of NYC’s Skinfluence. “Now we’re able to rejuvenate and enhance the lower part of the face non-surgically.”
In this case, the fix is Kybella, an injectable synthetic form of a salt normally found in your gallbladder. Your gallbladder helps you digest food. Kybella was designed to digest fat.
“It destroys the membrane of the cell so the contents leak out,” says Peredo, after which your body flushes the leakage naturally. “When you destroy fat cells, even if you gain weight there are fewer cells there, so that area will remain flat.”
This one typically involves two or three treatments, at about $1000-$1700 each. You should expect swelling and tenderness afterward, and recovery time can vary. Meaning: you might need to find a work-appropriate turtleneck.
High Commitment: Sculpt the Jaw You Always Wanted
Want to pull out the big guns? How about injecting a calcium compound onto your existing jaw to augment the bone structure? If this sounds fun, you’re looking for the heaviest facial filler on the market, calcium hydroxylapatite, sold as Radiesse.
“Calcium hydroxylapatite has the consistency of crushed bone,” says Peredo. “And it has the highest G-prime, which is what we call the ability of a filler to lift and define.”
She recommends injecting it along the jaw, or focusing on the corner of the jaw below the ear, which you can adjust to make more angular.
You can also take it on the chin, so to speak. By injecting Radiesse under the mentalis, the muscle at the tip of your chin, Peredo says she can bring the whole thing forward. So it looks less retrusive.
Like Kybella, it’s a “lunchtime procedure” requiring about 30 minutes. This one runs around $1300 per syringe, and how many syringes you need depends entirely on what you’re trying to do. The good news—at least if you’re happy with your new jaw—is that it lasts for around a year.
Sound intense? Maybe. But now you know the options.
After all, “Some guys are lucky,” says Peredo. “They won the genetic lottery and were born handsome. Others just need a little help.”