Lines, wrinkles and furrows on the face can cause a prematurely aged look. Dermal fillers are less invasive, non-surgical procedures to temporarily smooth lines and plump up areas of the face for a younger, fresher appearance. Cosmetic fillers are injected after consultation with a dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon and require little or no downtime. There are currently two main dermal fillers on the market that offer varying advantages.
About Hyaluronic Acid
The two leading choices for dermal fillers, Juvederm and Restylane, are both made from a substance called hyaluronic acid, which is a natural molecule found in the body. When it is injected into the skin, hyaluronic acid binds with water and expands to fill out and plump up the wrinkle from the inside. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, as injectable hyaluronic acid is similar to the type found in the body, the risk of an allergic reaction or an inflammatory response is minimal.
Both Restylane and Juvederm are approved by the Food and Drug Administration to be safe and effective cosmetic injectables. Both of these dermal fillers contain hyaluronic acid that is synthesized by bacteria and not extracted from an animal source, as is commonly believed. Restylane and Juvederm are used for injections in the nasolabial folds (the grooves between the nose and the lips), the marionette lines (creases extending from the nose to the corners of the mouth), the lips, frown lines around the brow and other areas. These cosmetic fillers add volume to the dermal or deep layer beneath the skin, helping to prop up the skin above
According to Dr. Richard Weiss, a cosmetic surgeon in Newport Beach, California, Restylane has a firmer consistency, making it the preferred choice for areas such as the lips and deep lines that require more support. Juvederm is a smooth consistency gel while Restylane is a particulate or granular gel. Additionally, Juvederm contains 35 percent more cross-linked hyaluronic acid than Restylane, which may be why it can be longer lasting.
Restylane fillers are able to plump up lines and wrinkles for an average of six months before being completely absorbed by the body. Juvdern and a second type called Juvederm Ultra Plus last slightly longer: from nine to 12 months. However, the duration of any type of filler also depends on the individual. Some people may have faster rates of absorption than others. The average cost of Juvederm is also higher than Restylane, as it is expected to last slightly longer.
The procedure to inject the fillers into the skin usually takes under 30 minutes for both types. According to Dr. Weiss, as Juvederm is softer and more malleable, it is easier to inject and any swelling and bruising will subside within 24 hours. Restylane may cause swelling in the area of injection for up to three days. Patients may also experience mild tenderness and redness and, as with any injection, there is a minimal risk of infection.