Have you been looking for a non-surgical solution to lines and wrinkles? One of the most popular options is to use dermal fillers to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines around the face and hands. Do you also want to add volume to your cheeks and lips? Dermal fillers can help with that too. They are easy to get, cost-effective, and can last a long time. But you may be wondering just how long the filler results will last.
The answer to that question depends on the type of dermal filler you use. Some dermal fillers can last for six to twelve months, while other dermal fillers can last up to five years. It can be confusing to try and research all the dermal fillers out there, so we have put together this guide for you to help you navigate how long you can expect the results of dermal fillers to last.
The Longevity of Dermal Fillers
The FDA is the entity that determines how long dermal filler results are expected to last. They do this during their approval process. Sometimes, the actual longevity of the results may vary from the FDA’s guidelines. But the guidelines can be a good benchmark for providers when they create treatment plans for patients.
Filler results depend on the material that it is made of as different materials behave differently after being injected.
How Long Fillers Last by Location on the Face?
The following are the estimates for how long various fillers lasts on a specific part of the face:
- Around the eyes: 12 months or even longer, depending on the filler used.
- Around the cheeks: 15-24 months with touch-ups about halfway through.
- In the lips: up to 12 months or more with multiple treatments.
- Around the nose: Up to 2 years with maintenance at six months and follow-ups at approximately 9 to 12 months.
- At the corners of the mouth: 1 year with a touch-up treatment at 6 months.
- In the chin: between 15 and 24 months with touch-up treatments.
How Long Fillers Last by Type of Filler
The following are the estimates for how long various fillers lasts by filler type:
- Hyaluronic acid (HA): Naturally found in the skin, hyaluronic acid is the most popular filler material(JUVÉDERM®, Restylane®, BELOTERO BALANCE®.) The gel-like material hydrates the skin and smooths wrinkles and creases. It typically lasts anywhere from 6 to 18 months or longer. As the material gradually breaks down, it is absorbed by the body.
- Calcium hydroxylapatite (CaHA): Naturally occurring in our bones, this substance acts not only as a filler, but it triggers collagen production. Microscopic particles suspended in a smooth, thick gel typically last about 12 months.
- Poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA): This biocompatible synthetic filler is made of a biodegradable substance that was commonly used in medical devices before the FDA approved it for use as an anti-wrinkle treatment. Although the gel in which the PLLA is suspended dissipates after a couple of days, the results can last more than two years.
- Polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA): A biocompatible material that also has a long track record of being safely used in medical implants and other devices. You may know this one as Bellafill®, which is a collagen-based filler with PMMA microspheres. When administered to correct nasolabial folds, results can last more than five years because the microspheres remain even as the body absorbs the collagen gel.
- Fat injections: Facial fat grafting usually involves liposuction to harvest fat from another area of the body. The fat is then purified and used in multiple areas of the face. It is considered a permanent procedure that provides long-lasting results, but not all of the transferred fat survives the process.
Fillers Gradually Degrade
During the first few months, fillers slowly begin to degrade. But because fillers absorb water, the visible results remain. You will, however, start to notice the filler’s decreased volume at about the midpoint of the expected duration.
Extending the Duration of Fillers
To extend the duration of fillers, use a phased approach. Have your practitioner monitor your appearance and perform touch-up treatments 1 or 2 times a year. Because the filler will not already be fully absorbed, these touch-ups will likely only require 1 or 2 syringes to maintain fresh-looking results.
Why Do Dermal Fillers Sometimes Not Last As Long As Claimed?
It has to do with the amount of dermal filler used for treatment. The longevity of a dermal filler is based on a certain amount of filler, but we rarely use that amount in one treatment.
For example, 1 syringe of dermal filler equals about 1/5 of a teaspoon. The average 50-year-old woman has 25 teaspoons of volume loss. This means that she would need 125 syringes of filler to boost her skin to its original plumpness! Obviously, we aren’t going to inject that amount of filler at one time. Instead, we strategically place and efficiently use the product to work magic without using so much product. An initial treatment may start with 3-6 syringes to start the plumping up process. And as a smaller amount of filler is used, the longevity is sacrificed, but that’s okay. Frequent treatments will get you to your goal, keep you from breaking the budget, and build your look naturally.
Having this information will help you form a reasonable expectation about how long a filler will last and how often you will need to go back for treatments. It’s also important to keep in mind that our faces naturally continue to lose volume as we age. Maintaining optimal results will require adding additional volume.
Dermal fillers are the perfect solution for fine-tuning wrinkles and fine lines and pumping up cheeks and lips. These injections can be easily incorporated into any skincare regimen for smooth, hydrated, and younger-looking skin. At Neighborhood Wellness, one of our specialties is age-defying skincare! Make an appointment today, and we’d be happy to help you understand your best treatment options and achieve the results you are looking for!