Everyone’s body changes naturally. Your nose grows with age, but only to a certain point. After that, it may change in size and shape not because of its growth, but because of changes in the bone, cartilage, and skin that give your nose shape and structure, according to Very Well Health.
In order to determine how the nose changes over a lifetime, researchers in one study examined 3D analyzes of images of nearly 900 study participants aged between 4 and 73 years.
The researchers examined many of the nose’s “landmarks”, such as height and bridge length, nostril lengths, tip to nose height ratio, nose width, and tip angles, and then sorted the data by age and gender.
They found that all measurements are significantly affected by age – specifically, increased nasal volume, area, and linear distance. In other words, they found that the nose looked larger and longer over time.
In childhood and adolescence, and perhaps early adulthood, the nose definitely grows. Think about your nose when you were a kid, and what it looked like later as a teenager. Your nose has obviously gotten larger, as it has grown with the rest of your face and body.
Exactly when the nose stops growing is debated among experts. Some researchers report that the nose stops growing at age 12, while other researchers report an older age, around 16 or 17, or even early puberty.
Once you reach adulthood, the nose stops growing. Therefore, the “bigger” nose cannot be attributed to growth, but rather to the deterioration of the major structures inside the nose.
- As we age into adulthood, the nose undergoes many structural or anatomical changes, such as:
- Thinning of the skin of the nose and loss of its elasticity.
- Drooping of the tip of the nose.
- Weakness and softening of the nasal cartilage.
- Nasal cartilage ossification, making it fragile (in some cases).
Although the nose is not a health concern, it also holds an aesthetic value to many, as it is a prominent feature of the face. Cartilage and skin changes may be cosmetically unattractive to some. As such, some people choose to have surgery on their noses to improve their appearance or quality of life.