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Are you thinking about having treatment with dermal fillers, but find that the more you try to learn and research, the more confused and overwhelmed you get? There are so many different products available now that it’s hard to process and digest all the information. Dermal fillers are a complex topic and what makes one the right choice for your friend or your sister doesn’t always mean that it is a good choice for you too. So, unlike ice cream flavors, where you go in and order the one that you want, choosing the dermal filler that is right for you will depend on many factors including the area that’s being treated, the amount of volume loss that needs to be corrected and what your budget is for filler treatment.
Let us start by telling you that the menu of dermal filler products that we carry at Celibre Medical Corporation is determined by meeting a high standard of safety, duration of effect and expectations for treatment outcomes. Now, let’s dive in and talk about the products in more detail.
What’s in the Gels?
This is the first point of difference to discuss when talking about dermal fillers. There are two, different types of dermal filler gels: hyaluronic acid (HA) and calcium hydroxyl apatite (CHA). The HA gels are products such as Restylane and Juvederm. Radiesse is an example of a dermal filler that contains CHA molecules. Both types of dermal fillers are alike in that they are just synthetic versions of substances already present in our own bodies. This means that there is no allergy testing required prior to having treatment. That is really the only similarity as each has uniquely, different properties that make each useful for volume replacement in different areas.
Here at Celibre, we routinely use HA fillers for almost everything as they consistently give great results and have long track records for safety. Our typical go to products include Restylane, Restylane Silk and Lyft and the Juvederm family of products. In the right, skilled hands, these products can artfully be used to replace volume loss almost anywhere in the face!
Restylane and Juvederm are two that we will usually use around the mouth area, as they give soft, natural results with little swelling. These two, in particular, HA gels are softer, which means that we have the ability to mold and shape them after we’ve injected an area. Here, the life of these products is typically anywhere around six months. Restylane Silk is another go-to product for volumizing lips and treating finer lines and volume loss around the mouth. It is a bit smoother and softer still than Restylane, which makes it great for “fine details” in this area as well as improving the overall quality of the skin in the area around the mouth. It lasts about as long as Restylane does too.
Restylane Lyft, however, is a thicker, more stout gel that has larger HA particles. It is great for those deeper areas that really need some heavy, filling power. Hollow temples and cheeks are two areas where this product is a home run. It can also be used on the backs of the hands to soften their appearance and decrease the “veiny” look that happens to many of us as we age. Because it’s a bit thicker product, we tend to see it last around nine months or so.
Sounds great, right? Why not just use it everywhere? The reason you don’t want to do this is that it is such a heavy volumizer. Although it is perfectly safe to use, it may not be the best choice for filling in the lines between the eyebrows; a softer product might be a better choice there. Also, it’s typically not the first product to go to for filling the lips as it may look a bit stiff and cause more swelling. However, that all being said, we do trust Restylane Lyft enough that we will sometimes use it in these areas if we’ve tried Restylane or Juvederm and just haven’t seen the results or longevity that we’d hoped for. This is why finding a skilled, knowledgeable and experienced injector is so important! There is an artistry to the use of dermal fillers and unfortunately, there are a lot of people out there injecting who know very little about the nuances of all these products.
Radiesse is an example of this type of filler. In fact, it is currently the only product like this available in the U.S. Although the volumizing effect of Radiesse may be very similar to some of the HA fillers, it is a very different type of filler product. It works by containing small, little particles of CHA or calcium hydroxyapatite that are dispersed throughout a filling material which provides instant plumping and volume to the areas injected. However, as that carrier/filling material is absorbed away, the calcium micro-spheres are left behind and your body will start to build its own collagen around them.
Radiesse is truly unique because it acts as a “scaffolding” for your own body to build its own, natural volume on. This gives you amazing, lift, shape and volume that is really mostly you! More importantly, you will most likely see the improvement for a longer period of time, usually around nine to ten months. With repeated injections, Radiesse’s duration of effect will build on itself as your body just starts to make more and more of its own collagen!
As wonderful as this all sounds, there are a few drawbacks to Radiesse. You can expect more swelling after your treatment, and it isn’t the right filler for every area. In fact, you shouldn’t use Radiesse around the eyes or in the lips. There have been many cases of “lumps” or nodules that occur in the lips when it’s used there. Despite this knowledge and a warning from the manufacturer discouraging the practice, some injectors continue to do so. Beware of this…it is a big no-no. Lastly, if you need correction or smoothing of lines and creases closer to the skin’s surface, Radiesse isn’t probably your best choice. An HA filler usually works much better for this.
So, where do you use Radiesse? It is a great product for volumizing the cheeks, midface and backs of the hands. It comes in a larger syringe too: 1.5 cc of product compared to 0.8cc of Juvederm and 1.0cc of Restylane, Silk or Lyft (the HA fillers). So, while this might make the price of your treatment a bit higher than it would be with HA fillers, depending on what area you need volumized, how much volume you need and what your long-term goals are for having filler treatment, it provides an important and unique option when choosing a filler that fits your specific needs. In the long run, it ends up being a great investment for many patients who require filler treatment to look and feel better about themselves.
Bottom Line: Your Injector is More Important than the Product
We hope that after reading this, you feel much more knowledgeable about all your filler choices out there. However, please remember that ultimately, finding a great injector who has a broad base of knowledge, expert technique and that takes the time to really sit down with you and discuss your needs, wants and budget will really make the difference between a successful dermal filler treatment and just “getting filler”. Using these products takes a great amount of knowledge, skill and experience as well as an artistic eye and appreciation for the nuances of each. Here at Celibre Medical Corporation, we work with you to discuss all of your options and come up with a treatment plan that is total, 100%, customized for you. Our goal is to use the products and techniques, along with your vision, to help us shape a more beautiful, youthful you!