Does Losing Weight Cause Wrinkles?

Wrinkles may occur in your skin as you lose weight because gaining that weight stretched the skin, which may not be able to return to its original shape due to age- or weight-related loss of elasticity. Wrinkles can affect the way you feel about yourself. Low self-esteem and problems with discrimination in the workplace are just two problems one might face. Americans spend more than $12 billion a year on cosmetic procedures to improve wrinkles, the University of Maryland Medical Center reported in 2008.


According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, rapid weight loss can cause the fat cells that cushion your face to decrease — and the chemicals in your body may not be able to keep up with these changes. As a result, as you lose weight your skin may loosen and sag. Rapid weight loss can thus actually causes you to look gaunt and your skin to sag away from your body.


According to Dr. J. Brian Boyd, a professor of surgery at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California-Los Angeles, functional problems may occur in cases of massive weight loss. You may suffer from sagging, wrinkled skin after you have had a significant weight loss, 50 pounds and more. Other problems may include intertrigo, chafing and personal hygiene issues.


Treatment for wrinkles will depend on the amount of weight you have lost. If you have only had slight wrinkling on your face or neck from weight loss you might choose to have Botox injections or a chemical peel. Drexel University College of Medicine reports that Botox is an excellent treatment for neck creases, which often form after weight loss. For someone who has seen major weight loss, it may be necessary to undergo plastic surgery to remove excess sagging skin.


Medical insurance may not always cover the cost of plastic surgery procedures, chemical peels or Botox injections; check with your insurance company on this matter. However, if you have had bariatric surgery, your insurance may cover costs of medical problems created by wrinkled, sagging skin.