What Are Dermal Fillers & What Do They Do?

Woman smiling after dermal facial fillers

What’s the real deal with dermal fillers? At my Scottsdale, AZ, facial plastic surgery practice near Phoenix, these injectables make facial rejuvenation possible without the invasiveness or risk of surgery. Just a few injections in strategic locations, and suddenly you look younger, fresher, and like a more refined version of yourself. There’s a reason these treatments have become so popular in recent years!

In this blog post, I’ll be answering all your questions about dermal fillers, from how they work to how much they cost to whether they can really replace plastic surgery. Read on to get all the details!

What Are Dermal Fillers?

Dermal fillers are injectable gels that add volume just below the skin. They’re one of today’s safest and most versatile tools for contouring and rejuvenating the face. There are tons of creative uses for fillers, but they’re most commonly used for a few highly popular treatments.

Lip Augmentation

In this treatment, also called lip injections or lip fillers, we inject filler into the lips to add volume and smooth away vertical lip lines.

Cheek Augmentation

Fillers in the mid-face restore volume lost during the aging process, giving the cheeks a youthful lift. This is a great nonsurgical alternative to cheek implants for the right candidates—more on that below.

Chin & Jawline Augmentation

Want to add projection to your chin or define your jawline? For the right candidates, all it takes is a few injections to delay the need for facelift surgery.

Minimizing Lines & Wrinkles

Adding volume to areas such as marionette lines, smile lines, and other wrinkles around the face smooths them away.

Hand Rejuvenation

Your face isn’t the only part of your body that may be aging you! We use fillers to offset boniness in the backs of the hands to keep them looking young and fresh, too.

Filling in Tear Troughs

If you look tired even when you’re fully rested, you may benefit from a little under-eye filler to fill in hollows or disguise puffy bags. This serves as a nonsurgical alternative to lower blepharoplasty.

What Are Dermal Fillers Made Of?

There are a few different formulations of fillers on the market, but our favorites contain either hyaluronic acid (HA) or calcium hydroxylapatite (CaHA).

Hyaluronic Acid

This sugar, found naturally in your body, attracts and retains water. In gel form, it provides volume that your body will safely dissolve over time. The JUVÉDERM® and Restylane® families of fillers all contain HA.

Calcium Hydroxylapatite

This filler’s calcium microspheres serve as a scaffolding for collagen, encouraging ongoing rejuvenation in addition to an initial volume boost. RADIESSE is one of the most popular CaHA fillers.

How Long Do Dermal Fillers Last?

The longevity of fillers varies depending on the formulation used and the area injected. Most fillers last anywhere from 6 to 24 months. People often choose to get touch-ups once or twice a year to maintain their results.

Can Dermal Fillers Replace Plastic Surgery?

Dermal fillers aren’t always an adequate replacement for plastic surgery, but they may be a good alternative for you if:

  • You have early signs of aging and mild to moderate concerns.
  • You aren’t ready to commit to surgery.
  • You’re OK with temporary results.

In other cases, fillers work better to enhance surgery or maintenance after a procedure. Learn more about fillers as an alternative to cheek implants in this blog post.  

What Is the Difference Between BOTOX® & Dermal Fillers?

BOTOX and fillers both treat wrinkles, but they do so in different ways:

  • BOTOX smooths away “dynamic wrinkles,” which are caused by repeated muscle movements over time. It interrupts signals from the brain telling certain muscles to contract. This signal interruption allows crow’s feet, forehead lines, frown lines, and more to relax and become barely visible.
  • Dermal fillers work by adding volume under the skin to treat wrinkles caused by volume loss and skin laxity.

Often, the best approach to rejuvenation is combining both of these treatments to tackle multiple forms of wrinkles at the same time.

Which Dermal Filler Is the Best?

Because there are so many safe and effective dermal fillers out there, the question is less about which filler is the best and more about which filler is the best for you.

It all depends on the areas you’re looking to treat. Here are my recommendations for a few common concerns:

  • Best for lip injections (lip volume and lip lines): Restylane Silk, Restylane KYSSE™, JUVÉDERM Ultra XC, JUVÉDERM VOLBELLA™ XC
  • Best for cheek augmentation: Restylane Lyft, JUVÉDERM VOLUMA™ XC
  • Best for chin and jawline augmentation: Restylane Lyft, JUVÉDERM VOLUMA XC
  • Best for smile lines and nasolabial folds: Restylane Refyne, JUVÉDERM VOLLURE® XC
  • Best for deep wrinkles or folds: Restylane Defyne, RADIESSE®
  • Best for tear troughs: Restylane
  • Best for hands: RADIESSE

The right formulation for you might vary depending on the severity of your concerns and the results you’re looking to achieve. Your nurse injector will spend plenty of time discussing your unique case with you before selecting your perfect filler or combination of fillers.

How Much Should I Be Paying for Dermal Fillers?

The cost of fillers varies widely depending on the formulation and the amount injected. Fillers are priced per syringe. The average cost for one syringe typically falls between $500 and $700 and up to $1,500 for longer-lasting fillers like VOLUMA.

Our injector team will talk through your expected costs with you after drawing up your custom treatment plan. We want to make sure you’re aware of and comfortable with your price point so you can focus on enjoying your results.

What’s Next?

If you have more questions about dermal fillers and want to discuss your options with a facial plastic surgeon in Scottsdale, please request a consultation online or call (480) 214-9955.

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