Facial FIllers

A Flawless Face at Any Age – Learn More About Facial Fillers

Injectable hyaluronic acid facial fillers can reduce facial folds and wrinkles and reveal a fresher, younger you.

Facial fillers are a great way to achieve a fresher, younger-looking face. One of the most common ingredients in injectable facial fillers is hyaluronic acid, a substance that occurs naturally in the body, acting as a lubricant and cushion. Below, Dr. Sean Rice, MD, FRCSC answers the most commonly asked questions about hyaluronic acid and injectable facial fillers.

Facial Fillers

What are facial fillers made of?

The most common product used in facial fillers is hyaluronic acid. This is typically what you will find in products such as Allergan’s Juvederm line, Galderma’s Restylane line and Croma’s Princess line of fillers.

What is hyaluronic acid?

Hyaluronic acid is a substance that is naturally found in the human body, with the highest concentrations occurring in the eyes and joints. Hyaluronic acid acts as a lubricant and cushion. Large amounts are also found in your skin, helping with wound-healing and water retention. One gram of hyaluronic acid alone can absorb several litres of water. This retention of water makes the skin look more soft and radiant, supple and hydrated. As we age, we lose some of our natural production of hyaluronic acid, which also leads to the development of fine lines and wrinkles. Replacing this with facial fillers can bring back a more youthful appearance, smoothing fine lines and adding lost fullness.

What are hyaluronic acid fillers used for?

Hyaluronic acid fillers can reduce facial wrinkles and lines. They can smooth out deep nasal labial folds, fill out thin lips, soften upper lip lines, soften lines on the forehead and around the eyes, shape the jawline and add volume to cheeks.

What is the difference between different brands of hyaluronic acid fillers?

All hyaluronic acid is the same. It is how the molecules are bound together—technically known as crosslinking—that distinguishes between products. The second factor that differentiates products is how much hyaluronic acid is actually in the product.  Depending on the change wanted or desired result; these variables will help determine the product best suited for you. All products listed here are Health Canada approved.

Can I use the same filler for all areas of my face?

Facial fillers are very specialized for different areas of the face. The products are designed to work within different layers of the skin. For cheeks, you want a product that gives volume; but for your lips, you need a product that is soft and moldable.

Who should inject my face?

Volume restoration with a facial filler is much more than the simple installation of a product. Your injector needs to know facial anatomy and approach your face in three dimensions, having an understanding of what product works best for each given area.

Why do some people look fake after using fillers?

Looking fake can occur when you don’t consider the face as a whole when injecting filler, or when you use the wrong product in a certain area. When doing the folds beside your nose, you need to consider how that will make your cheeks look and then, how your cheeks will make your lips appear.

How long does the product last?

The length of time a hyaluronic acid facial filler lasts depends on many factors—mainly on how it is crosslinked, or how the molecules are bound together. Generally, fillers last from eight to 12 months.

How many syringes will I need? Can I share a syringe with a friend?

It is difficult to estimate how many syringes you’ll need,  because everyone has a different facial structure. If you do not put in enough product, you will not see the desired effect. It is not good medical practice to share actual syringes, as you can easily spread bacteria between friends.

Can I use a facial filler if I am pregnant?

It is not recommended to use fillers when pregnant. There are no studies looking at safety for the fetus.

What should I do after my injection?

Avoid putting makeup on right after an injection as this may lead to infection. You should also avoid contact with extreme hot or cold temperatures right after an injection, as the area may be numb for a while.

As always, discuss what is right for you with your physician.


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About the Author

Dr. Sean Rice

Dr. Sean Rice

Dr. Sean Rice, B.A.(Hons), M.D.,M.Sc.,F.R.C.S.C., is a renowned plastic and cosmetic surgeon, a leading authority on age management and is widely recognized for his published articles in Canadian and international medical journals. Dr. Rice is frequently called upon to share his expertise as he trains other surgeons in cutting-edge techniques as well being invited to […]

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