If you open any woman’s magazine, you are sure to see ads for JUVÉDERM®, Restylane® or Radiesse®. These are all safe Injectables that are made in a laboratory (not from animals or cadavers). Fillers are used to “fill in” creases like nasolabial folds. Three common fillers are similar but made by different companies: Belotero® Balance, JUVÉDERM® Ultra and Restylane® and Perlane®. Some of these fillers can be used close to the surface, others just below the skin or deeper. They are all made of hyaluronic acid, a chemical that is familiar to our bodies as the building block of collagen. These fillers can be used to plump up lines, fill depressions or smooth natural folds.
Fillers for Lines at the Nasolabial Fold
As the face ages, most of us will see a little more fullness at the nasolabial fold. This happens to a lesser extent and usually at a later age if you have high cheekbones. Adding filler can soften the transition from the cheek to the lip, so there is less shadow. When others look at us, lines from the nose down or from the lips to the chin give an “aging appearance.”
You might intelligently ask, why do these “lines” suddenly appear? Actually, it’s not sudden, but so gradual that we hardly notice until one day when we look in the mirror and realize they’re there.
The Culprits that Create these Lines
There are two causes of these telltale signs of aging: the sun and the genes. Even though laying out in the sun makes us feel good, sun is not good for the skin. (More about that in another post!) Aging is a predetermined process that is part of our genetic makeup (would you really want to live forever?). What is very gradually sneaking up on you is a natural deflation of facial volume. Think about the pillow that loses some of its feathers over time. Some of our youthful volume sags, some of it just disappears. Like the pillow, while our “material” (our skin) is stretching out, our “stuffing” is disappearing. Ouch! This is where fillers and fat grafting can come to the rescue.
Imagine 3D Makeup
So maybe now it is making sense. Filling works like makeup, but in three dimensions. You replace what is lost, and you can restore the youthful facial shape you once had. Yes, that is really possible. Fillers come prepackaged, they are safe and quick to inject in the office. Sometimes, small amounts can plump up in just the right area. You might need to fill a crease, restore a highlight or correct a “dark circle.” The changes are subtle but noticeable and last for about a year. With the hyaluronic acid fillers, you can “reverse” or dissolve the filler if you don’t like the change.
In summary, we have looked at the uses and considerations of Botox and injectable fillers. In Part 3, I will explain fat grafting and complete the basic information you should have to select the correct injectable procedure for you.
Dr. Jeffrey Ditesheim is more than a credentialed plastic surgeon. He is a sensitive and experienced professional whose focus is always to help his patient feel more beautiful and confident. Learn more about Dr. Ditesheim and read our reviews.