The days of the frozen face fillers have gone! These days if you are looking to plump up those volume loss cheeks, smooth out that skin, and round out those thin lips, you are in luck! A wide variety of FDA approved dermal fillers are on the market. They are easy to get, long-lasting, and designed to be subtle. And if you go to a reputable doctor who has training and experience with the filler you want, then the treatment will be safe and effective!
Dermal Fillers, More Than Just “Wrinkle Fillers”
You may have heard dermal fillers called “wrinkle fillers.” Yes, they are great at smoothing out wrinkles, but they are also great at:
- Smoothing outlines around your nose and mouth (a.k.a. marionette lines, smile lines, and parentheses)
- Enhancing & restoring volume to sunken cheeks or temples
- Diminishing vertical lip lines
- Plumping up & enhancing your lips
- Smoothing out chin creases
- Improving the symmetry of facial features
What’s in a Filler?
Most fillers are categorized by what they are made from their base. Because of this, some fillers serve different purposes than others, and their results have different lengths of longevity.
Currently, the most favored base for a filler is:
Hyaluronic Acid (HA)
Hyaluronic acid is a substance found in your skin that keeps skin plump and hydrated. HA fillers are soft and gel-like. They last about 6 to 12 months before the body naturally absorbs the particles.
Most HA fillers contain lidocaine to help minimize discomfort during and after treatment.
FDA approved, name Brands of HA fillers are:
- Juvéderm products: Juvéderm XC, VOLUMA, VOLBELLA, VOLLURE
- Restylane products: Restylane, Restylane Silk, Restylane Lyft, Restylane Refyne, and Restylane Defyne
- Belotero Balance
HA may be the most popular right now, but there are a lot of other filler bases out there that work just as well, some of which may last longer or be used to treat different areas. The 4 other most used filler bases are:
Calcium Hydroxylapatite (CaHA)
Calcium hydroxylapatite occurs naturally in the body, primarily in the bones. The calcium particles in the filler are nearly microscopic and suspended in a smooth gel. The consistency of a CaHA filler is thicker than the consistency of a hyaluronic acid filler and typically lasts about 12 months for most patients. Calcium hydroxylapatite is usually used on deeper lines and wrinkles and can help stimulate natural collagen production.
FDA approved CaHA fillers include Radiesse®:
Poly-L-lactic acid is a biodegradable synthetic substance that is biocompatible (safe to use in the body). Known as “collagen stimulators,” Poly-L-lactic Acids are typically used to treat deeper facial wrinkles and smooth fine lines by helping your skin rebuild natural collagen. The filler gel will dissipate a few days after treatment, but the results can last more than 2 years.
FDA approved Poly-L-lactic acid fillers include Sculptra® Aesthetic.
Polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) is a synthetic, biocompatible “microsphere” or tiny ball. PMMA is not biodegradable, so once inserted, these tiny balls remain under the skin indefinitely. The filler also contains collagen to provide additional structure and firmness.
FDA approved PMMA fillers include Bellafill® (aka Artefill):
Autologous fat injections (facial fat grafting)
Unlike other fillers, Autologous fat injections require surgery. This treatment uses your own fat, harvested via liposuction. The fat undergoes a purification process and is then injected into your face to plump up cheeks, temples, lower eyelids, or other areas. The results can last for many years. An experienced, board-certified cosmetic surgeon should perform these injections.
Where to Get Fillers?
Even though most dermal fillers are non-surgical and non-invasive, these treatments are still medical procedures that should be performed by experienced medical providers. For best results, you want a provider who has extensive knowledge of facial anatomy, a good eye for aesthetics and is gifted with surgical skill and precision.
Also, make sure that the provider has a proven background in cosmetic medicine, is trained in the specific forms of injections that you want, and has a lot of experience performing them.
Providers should have before & after photos of patients that they have worked on for you to look at so, you can make an informed decision.
3 Things to Think About When it Comes to Getting Dermal Fillers
If the price seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Filler treatments can run from $650 to $2,000, so we understand why you would want to jump on a great deal. But it’s best to pause before you jump on that super inexpensive filler. For example, the average price paid for Restylane by a doctor is $250 and $350 per syringe. If you see a deal for less than that, be wary. Counterfeit and diluted fillers are out there. You have every right to look at the box to check that the safety seal is intact.
When to Hold Off on Filler Injections
Fillers are considered safe, but there are some instances when you might want to postpone an injection.
- Hold off if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
- Wait for that injection if you are battling a sinus infection.
- Keep in mind that any infection in the facial area could spread to the injection site.
- Wait to get fillers for a week after teeth cleaning or other dental treatments. You don’t want the pressure and facial stretching that happens during the dental treatment to misplace the filler.
Bad Filler Happens, But You Don’t Have to Panic!
Sometimes it happens- you aren’t happy with the way filler looks. No problem. In many cases, your provider can make adjustments and enhance the results. Your provider might inject additional filler to create balance. Or, depending on the filler type, your provider can dissolve it altogether.
We know that you have a lot of options when it comes to dermal fillers. Contact us for an appointment today, and we’ll help you determine what the best filler is to fit your needs. We’ll help you to reduce the signs of aging and get you back to having fuller, more youthful-looking skin in no time!