Updated: May 7, 2020
There is not a day that goes by where a “Kylie package” filler treatment bundle doesn’t pop up on my Instagram ads, or where I partake in discussing the beauty and nobility of strong jawline-d actors, actresses, and media stars that pop up on our phones, our television screens, and magazines, if people are still reading those of course.
I began to wonder one day at work, whilst discussing the ins and outs of a jawline enhancement procedure to a client, what all of this means.
I scour the internet trying to decipher the meaning of the jawline, what makes this facial characteristic so captivating and the reasons behind our quest for #jawlinegoals.
Apparently, humans have been contouring their faces for a long period of time, since the 16th century when Elizabethan actors would paint their faces to emphasise the expressions they were making on stage.
Google assists me with my search, suggesting more ‘popular’ questions than I ask – enquiries like “How do you define your jawline?” and “Can I get a jawline like Angelina Jolie?” and “How can a girl get a strong jawline?” and “Does chewing gum define your jawline?” Turns out, this topic is under review by much more people than I.
via The Queen of Jawlines: Angelina Jolie via gymneed
What is a jawline?
The jawline is a lower contour of the bone at the base of a person’s skull. This bone can develop into all kind of angles and sizes and determines a person’s face shape. Culturally, it can easily affect how other people perceive us, and this blog post is going to explain why.
The size and shape of a person’s jaw depends on a few factors including health, orthodontic development and age. Teeth grinding disorders like Bruxism can lead to an over-development of lower facial muscles and therefore a much larger jawline. As we age, the jaw can appear larger as the skin begins to sag and gather at the lower part of the face. Diet can also play a part in the size of a jawline, particularly our sodium intake.
The jaw enhancement market is thriving
Cosmetic procedures for chin and jawline procedures are on the rise, particularly with men. Retailers and social platform giants offer alternative suggestions to “selfie surgery”; Amazon and Ebay sell dubious-looking, 99 pence ‘jaw exercisers’ and WikiHow and Youtube share the ultimate ‘tricks and tips’ to chisel our faces with regular facial exercises and massage techniques.
A jaw exerciser via rebatekey
Amongst jaw exercise toys and face gym, the aesthetics world offers a wide variety of surgical and non-surgical jawline ‘tweakments’ to choose from.
A PDO thread lift transformation via candlewood aesthetics
Botulinum Toxin (otherwise known as Botox) can also be injected into the facial muscle to alter the appearance of the jaw.
Kybella and Aqualyx https://aqualyx.co.uk/ work by permanently dissolving fat in the chin area over a couple a weeks after injection. If that isn’t enough, you can go under the knife and get a spot of chin liposuction to create a permanent result.
The jawline can hold psychological meaning
In Chinese face reading, a practice that dates to 300 BC, a jawline was supposed to indicate one’s fortune. According to the philosophy, the stronger the jaw is, the more likely the person was to possess tenacity, aggressiveness and endurance.
According to the article ‘How to read faces’ published on askmen.com a strong jawline represents a strong value system, stubbornness, stamina and higher competitiveness. In contrast the appearance of a softer jawline indicates a weaker-willed personality.
It is the ultimate cliché that women prefer men with a strong jaw because it indicates a high level of testosterone and several studies debate this theory. Some insist that the larger the jawline, the higher the testosterone and more attractive a male is, whereas others conclude that the size of the jaw and hormones hold no correlation.
Four years ago, Psychological Science released the article “The Look of Leadership,” revealing interesting findings. Following some study, scientists discovered that just because somebody possesses dominant facial characteristics, it does not mean that they will act in the same way. The article mentions that despite all of this, those that exhibit strong facial contours such a chiselled jaw, are more likely to be hired in the workplace.
Another study, carried out by cognitive scientists at New York University published on scientificamerican.com, proves this theory. Subjects were asked to determine friendliness, trustworthiness and strength of faces displayed on photographs. The broader faces were deemed as the strongest.
Our jaw can represent our health
Biologically speaking, a chiselled or prominent jawline can indicate a healthy body fat ratio. In comparison to this, if somebody holds a lot of weight around the lower part of their face, it can the person is overweight. A heavy jaw can also be associated with ageing.
In a Bustle article that discusses how certain physical traits can reveal parts of our personality, Dr Michele Barton explains:
“a strong jawline indicates the ability to eat well, properly chew your food and sustain a healthy life.”
As humans, we have been conditioned to believe a strong, chiselled jawline can mean strength and dominance, success and good health but this theory isn’t entirely true as proven by more recent studies. The selfie era has conjured up a tidal wave of ego and obsession for perfection, stimulating an increase in non-surgical treatments to create contours we have always dreamed of having.
A sagging jawline? Threads will fix it.
Double chin? Forget weight loss, Kybella works quicker.
Not everyone is chasing enhanced beauty, but it doesn’t stop the common daydream of possessing a more desirable face than you own. Jawlines are the foundation to contouring and contouring is essential in today’s culture.