Injectable wrinkle fillers, unlike Botox injections that relax the muscle under a wrinkle, fill the line, crease, or area with one of several different substances. As a result, trouble spots nearly disappear.
Wrinkle fillers can also be used as “volumizers,” plumping and lifting cheeks, chins, jawlines, and temples; filling out thin lips, and plumping sagging hands.
The treatment is fast and easy. But all wrinkle fillers have a downside, including the risk of allergic reaction and the formation of tiny bumps under the skin. In some cases, those bumps may be permanent. And sometimes, a bluish skin discoloration known as the Tyndall effect happens. The color change can last for several months, but there are treatments available. In very rare cases, skin cells may die if the wrinkle fillers are not used properly. There have also been a few reported cases of blindness, scarring from skin loss and nerve paralysis. Typically, the wrinkle fillers that last longer are the ones more likely to cause side effects.
Not every wrinkle-filler is right for every type of wrinkle. The least risks and best results come from using the right one correctly. That’s why you should only have fillers injected by a board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon with ongoing, special training.
Here is a breakdown of available wrinkle fillers. It includes their basic ingredients, how they work, their pros and cons, and the best areas for treatment. Your doctor can help you choose the right one for you.
Hyaluronic Acid Wrinkle Fillers
The most popular category of wrinkle fillers is hyaluronic acid. Each type works in a slightly different way with varying results.
Side effects are rare but can include redness, swelling, and bruising at the injection site. The filler may also show up under the skin as tiny bumps. This is a problem that often improves over time.