Dermal fillers - a complete guide

Learn more about dermal fillers with our complete guide below, or get in touch today for your free consultation...

What are dermal fillers?

Dermal Fillers is the name given to products which can be injected into the skin to rejuvenate areas which have over time lost volume, however, they can also be used to add volume to areas that we want to accentuate, typically the lips and cheeks.

Commonly Dermal Fillers are composed of a substance called Hyaluronic Cross-Linked Acid (HA), which is something the skin naturally produces.  (There are also other Dermal Filler products that use other products such as polylactic acid and calcium hydroxylapatite, but this post concentrates on HA)

How do dermal fillers work?

Over time, our body reduces the amount of Hyaluronic acid it produces, which is associated with skin ageing. Hyaluronic Acid comes pre-packed syringes in a gel form, which is injected into the skin. This gives an instant plumping effect, however the Hyaluronic Acid also attracts approximately 500 times its own weight in water, which gives a secondary plumping effect and also gives the skin a really lovely rejuvenated and rehydrated appearance.

What areas can they be used to treat?

Dermal Fillers can be used to treat almost any problem area on the face, hands, neck and décolletage.  Typically though they tend to be used for: nose to mouth lines, marionette lines (from the corner of the mouth to the chin), cheek enhancement, lip enhancement, smoker’s lines on the top lip or any fine line or wrinkles.

What are the benefits of dermal fillers?

Dermal Fillers really do have anti-ageing properties, anecdotally people have said that even when the product has worn off the area that was treated never truly goes back to the way it was.  This is because of the positive effect hyaluronic acid has on collagen and fibroblast production.

What product do you use?

At Skin HD we tend to use the Juvederm Range of Dermal Fillers, we do this for a number of reasons; we find the products give the best effects, clients are comfortable with the products as they are a familiar brand, the products are more comfortable for the client as they contain Lidocaine.

What is the difference between Dermal Fillers and Wrinkle Relaxing Injections?

We get asked this question a lot and I think it's really important for the client to understand.  Wrinkle Relaxing Injections consist of a neurotoxin Botulinum Toxin being injected into the muscle, which causes temporary paralysis of the muscle.  Whilst the muscle isn’t moving, the skin is able to iron out and lines and wrinkles appear less obvious.  The important thing is that word temporary; after 3-4 months the muscle will start moving again, with full movement returning around 6 months later.

Hyaluronic Acid-based Dermal Fillers involve a completely natural product being injected into the skin to plump up areas which have lost volume or to areas that you want to accentuate.

Are dermal fillers safe?

The Hyaluronic Acid used in Dermal Fillers is almost identical to what is created naturally by the body, so you would be extremely unlikely to have an allergic reaction to them.

The most common side-effects include bruising, swelling and redness which typically clear up within 7-10 days.

Less common side-effects can include migration of the product from the area it was injected, which can be easily fixed by dissolving the product with an enzyme called hyaluronidase.

Very rare side-effects can include granulomas, which are little lumps created by the body as a form of reaction to the Dermal Filler, and necrosis caused by the Dermal Filler being injected into a vein.  These are very rare side-effects and in our 6 years of service we at SkinHD haven’t seen either of these two side-effects but it’s important to remember that if you are concerned about anything post-treatment you should contact us immediately; we are available by phone 24 hours a day in the event of an emergency.

All side effects will be discussed thoroughly with you in your initial consultation.

What results can I expect?

You will see an instant result post-treatment, however you will be swollen and the skin will be red in places; you may even have some bruising.  You do not swell symmetrically so it may feel as though you have had more filler on one side, particularly common with lip fillers, but don’t panic - the initial swelling will go down within 3 days, however it takes approximately 3 weeks for the product to fully integrate with your skin and the full results to be seen.

Will the results be unnatural?

Mostly with Dermal Fillers the look you achieve is natural; you don’t want people to know that you’ve had anything done, you want people to remark on how fresh you look.  Some people do like more volume than others, which obviously makes it more apparent they have had treatment.  This is down to client choice, however here at SkinHD we champion the natural look and because of that we don’t tend to get the clients who want the “fake” or “overdone” look.

How long do the results last?

Dependant on the Dermal Filler you choose you typically can expect the results to last about 9-12 months, however lip fillers or fillers on fine lines tend to last about 4-6 months.

You can choose to use the Juvederm Vycross range, which is slightly more expensive but typically lasts around 18-24 months.

The longevity of the results cannot be guaranteed as HA is a naturally occurring substance in our bodies; and as such our bodies break it down at varying rates.  People who tend to hammer the gym or burn the candle at both ends tend to break the product down faster than others & smoking and sunbeds definitely increase the deterioration of the product.

So we’re not saying you need to be a saint, but if you’re spending good money on these treatments you should look after your skin and your physical health.

What is the procedure for Dermal Fillers?

Dermal Filler treatment can be done on the same day as the consultation, if the client wishes.  We would need a fully completed and signed consultation form, a thorough assessment of the client’s needs and expectations and a treatment plan.

We always take before and after pictures of the client, which is great for you to be able to measure the success of the treatment.

We then ask you to lie on the bed and your face will be cleaned an antimicrobial cleanser to ensure that no nasties get into the skin with the injections.

Do dermal fillers hurt? Will I need pain relief?

Assuming you are not allergic to Lidocaine numbing cream, we will apply this to your skin for 15 minutes before treatment. We will also give you an ice pack which will help to reduce pain and also reduce the risk of bruising as it shrinks the blood vessels.

The Dermal Fillers also contain Lidocaine, so even if the first couple of injections sting they should get more comfortable during the treatment.  We will also encourage you to focus on your breathing or listen to the music to distract you, yet even with all that you may still find the procedure uncomfortable so we can take our time and ensure you have time to relax between each injection.

How much do dermal fillers cost?

The cost varies because not everyone needs the same amount of Dermal Filler, prices are charged per syringe and we will tell you exactly how much the treatment will be before we commence.  If you have a certain budget let your practitioner know and they can work with you to get the best from your budget.

How should I prepare for the treatment?

If you can avoid taking Ibuprofen, Aspirin or Vitamin E for 7 days prior to treatment this will drastically reduce the risk of bruising.  If you are prescribed Aspirin for a medical condition please do not stop taking it, inform your practitioner and be mindful that there is an increased risk of bruising.

What aftercare is recommended?

The best aftercare advice is just to leave the treated area alone, your practitioner will rub and massage the area during the treatment but you do not need to do this at home.

Do not apply make-up for at least 2 hours post-treatment, this allows the skin to form a protective barrier and reduces the risk of infection.

Do not expose the treated area to intense heat or UV light for 2 weeks, as your body may start breaking the product down more rapidly.

What is the recovery time?

It’s never a good idea to have any treatment close to a big event, so if you’re going to a wedding the next day your practitioner will advise you to wait until after.  Typically your initial swelling will go down within 3 days, but it could take 7-10 days for bruising to fade.

What if I don’t like the results?

If you think you don’t like the results please wait for the 3 weeks before you consider having the product removed, it really does take this time for everything to settle down and for the full results to be seen.  If you are unsure you can always come back and see us before the 3 weeks are up and we can offer advice and reassurance.

Book your FREE consultation

Get in touch with Skin HD today to book a consultation and learn more about our treatments.

Phone: 0161 974 0212

Text: 07772 041 108

Email: enquiries@skinhd.co.uk