My face can’t be symmetrical. In fact, I don’t even want it to be.
But am I inadvertently creating imbalance to some features through activities that could easily be adjusted? Are there ways to bring a little more balance to the teeth, eyebrows and smile?
Imbalanced vs Balanced Teeth
One time I was looking at a picture of Katie Couric. Here’s one that will suffice to illustrate my point. For some reason, when I glanced at the photo, my eye went to her teeth. I saw that one of her front teeth was “bigger” than the other—that the gum was worn higher on her left front tooth than her right.
I thought, “She must brush with her right hand and focus more attention on that one.” I’m not picking on Katie—it’s just that her photo was the first one to draw my attention to this. In fact, be sure to note that the photo I selected is from People magazine’s “Most Beautiful People 2007” issue. Obviously her unbalanced teeth take nothing away—she’s stunning.
Anyway, I looked at my reflection in the mirror and saw that I’m doing the exact same thing! I leaned in, and sure enough—one tooth, bigger. I thought, “Whoa! I’ve got to go easy on the brushing!” I’ve got to ease up on my left one, for sure. In my morning fog, I’ve got to pay more attention to my ablutions.
So that’s the first tip—for more even gum-wear, pay more attention when brushing. Because the gum doesn’t grow back. And I don’t want people to point to me as illustrative of someone who is “long in the tooth.”
Okay, so the second is like it, only different.
Imbalance vs Balanced Eyebrows
One time I was talking with a friend of mine who is a tad older than I. She pointed to one of her eyebrows and said, “Look! One goes up higher than the other. See? The other hardly has any strength to lift at all!” And sure enough, she lifted one high and when she tried to lift the other, it was lethargic.
“Let that be a lesson to you, Ann.”
“What’s the lesson?” I asked.
“I think you should exercise both while you’re young,” she said. “Remember when your mom said your face would freeze that way? I think it kind of does.”
So I went home and looked in the mirror to compare my eyebrow lifting abilities. I’ve always been quite, um, expressive. When I make faces, they are big. I call my face “elasti-face” or “stage face,” as this post explains. So I can lift both eyebrows high. And I can isolate my left eyebrow while the right one stays down, doing sort of a quizzical Spock imitation.
But I can’t lift my right eyebrow on its own.
So at the advice of my friend with the weary eyebrow, I have practiced lifting just the one now and then.
To balance things out a little.
Balanced vs Imbalanced Smile
Oh, and the smile. Corner lifts are something to consider, as well. Does one side of the smile go up higher than the other? Maybe the muscles on the opposite side need a little exercise? When no one’s looking, I practice a one-sided grin. Or, well, I hope nobody’s looking—if they catch me “exercising,” they’ll think I’m smirking.
Keeping a Balanced Attitude about Balance
After 40 years of overzealous, unbalanced brushing, I won’t know if a tamer toothbrush regimen will really make a difference, or if I can one day lift each eyebrow individually, but I figure it can’t hurt.
As for the tooth, I just hope I can avoid using Sensodyne for a few more years.
Symmetry isn’t attainable; in fact, asymmetry offers some visual interest.
I guess this is more about balance.
Like rotating your tires.
I’ve been experimenting with how-to and helpful-tip posts for the past five days. If you’re curious: