What is aegyo sal (or eye love bands)?
Love bands or aegyo sal (approximately translates in Korean to “cute skin”) are the rolls you may find under the eyelashes of your lower eyelids but they are not eye bags. And not everyone is born with love bands.
Natural love bands most often come from a roll of muscle just under the eyelashes called the orbicularis muscle. It’s a sphincter that goes all the way around your eyes and when you voluntarily tighten it, your eyes close. Some people call it the orbicularis roll.
The love band sits above the area of eye bags which are caused by bulging lower eyelid fat.
Why are under eye love bands so popular?
Aegyo sal awareness is growing (especially among Koreans) because the under-eye roll is a sign of youth and it frames the eyes in a way that conveys warmth, just how smiling with your eyes or squinching is a warm and genuine-looking expression.
In U.S. cities like NYC (where I practice) with considerable Asian populations, love band procedures and surgery are becoming more common, yet many doctors are unfamiliar with the terminology and aesthetic aims.
This can be considered an extension of the the popularity of double eyelid surgery which also frames the eyes in a way that makes them look more alert and inviting. Love bands are the contours that frame the lower eyelids.
How to get eye love bands in NYC
There are a few ways you can create love bands under your eyes. Beginning with the less invasive options:
- You can use makeup to accentuate the lower lid contours and to create a lighter highlight under the eyes. Some makeup experts are able to do this very well and it actually looks three-dimensional.
- Adhesives and tapes can be used to create the love bands just as they can be used to create creases in the upper eyelids.
- Injectable hyaluronic acid gel fillers such as Restylane can be injected with a fine needle to plump up the under-eye roll to simulate a love band that can last for a year or more.
- Graft material (such as AlloDerm) can be placed in the area of the love band with 1 small incision at either end of the band. This is a more permanent solution.
- Fat injections can be done to fill in the love band using your own fat cells from a different part of your body. The permanence of the fat injections are not as predictable as options 3 and 4, but the fat is your own living tissue.
If you don’t already have a love band but you would like one, I suggest you start with a non-permanent option first (such as tape or filler injections) before doing something permanent, to make sure you like the look of a love band for your eyes.
Where to get the love band procedure
If you’ve decided to have a procedure to get love bands you have some limited options in the U.S. Your chosen doctor should have substantial experience with eyelid injections and surgery and very importantly must understand your goals. Many plastic surgeons and oculoplastic surgeons may not have heard of aegyosal or love bands so you don’t want to be their first try. Seek eyelid or facial plastic surgery specialists who know about the love band procedure and you can bring a photo showing an example of what you like.