By: Dr. Corey Hartman, Skin Wellness Dermatology
With all the injectables and dermal fillers on the market today, it’s hard for patients to know which is really going to help them achieve their goals. From the areas they’re looking to enhance, to the amount of downtime they’re willing to spend, there are many factors that need to be taken into consideration. That’s why I’ve outlined our top three injectables below, what they’re primarily used for, and how to know if they might be right for you.
Botox – People typically get Botox to smooth the lines and wrinkles in their forehead, around their eyes, and in between their brows. While Botox is a one-time treatment, you do have to refresh it every 3 to 4 months. After the first treatment, it takes about a week for the reaction to take place, though with subsequent treatments, you’ll see the results within a couple days – three days at the most.
As for the side effects, there’s a little bit of pain associated with Botox because it’s administered with a needle. Right after the treatment, each place of injection will have a little mosquito bite-looking bump that’ll go away in about ten minutes. Then, depending on the injector, there’s always a chance of bruising if a blood vessel is injected, but that will go away within a week. For most patients though, right after the treatment, they go right back to their daily routine without anyone knowing they just anything done.
Botox might be right for you if: you’re looking to reduce dynamic wrinkles, or wrinkles around the face or neck that are caused by movement, rather than treat deeper facial lines.
Juvéderm – Juvéderm is often used to fill in the lines around the nasolabial fold, which are the parenthesis that run down the sides of the face from the nose to the corners of the mouth. While there are actually five different Juvéderm products, it can also help replace lost volume and smooth out wrinkles around the cheeks, temple, lips, and jawline. These results can be seen immediately, and one treatment will last about a year, thought if it’s injected into an area where there’s more movement, it might metabolize faster.
As for the downtime, I say three days just to be on the safe side, and this is just to let the redness fade and the swelling go down. Whether or not you have a lot of swelling really depends on what area we’re treating since some areas tend to swell more than others. For example, the lips swell the most while under the eyes typically swells the least. Some patients may also have some bruising depending on the injector and the medications they’re on, and that can take about a week to go away. There may also be some pain depending on how well you’re prepped, and what your pain tolerance is like.
Juvéderm might be right for you if: you want to actually alter a feature of your face, like doing a non-surgical nose job, and like the fact that Juvéderm is a hyaluronic acid or HA filler, meaning it can be reverse with an enzyme if you don’t like the results.
Sculptra – Unlike Juvéderm, Sculptra is a poly-L-lactic acid, and it’s used for full facial rejuvenation. I like to say Sculptra is for the “patient patient,” and that’s because while you’ll see the results immediately, they are short lived. You’re going to look amazing for a day, but you’ll go back to looking like you did before once all the water and lidocaine is absorbed. Then, over time, your body will start to build collagen on the filaments that were injected, and you’ll start to see tightening and firmness of skin and an overall better structure. So, it’s good for patients who don’t want to be obvious about the areas they’re treating and are interested in stimulating collagen over time.
Sculptra results last about two years after receiving the three recommended treatments, and there really isn’t any downtime. There is a higher risk of bruising since the needle is a bit larger, but again, a lot of that’s dependent on the injector and their ability to avoid the vessels. You’ll also have numbness a bit longer because the product is actually tiny filaments that are suspended in lidocaine, but this also allows for less painful injections.
Sculptra might be right for you if: you’re looking for a long-term facial improvement that’s more global, don’t want people to know you’ve had anything done, and want little to no downtime.
As you can see, our three most popular injectables differ tremendously on the results they can deliver. Along with the help of a certified dermatologist, you must take many factors into consideration when choosing what’s best for you. Of course, I encourage you to schedule a consultation at Skin Wellness Dermatology of Alabama where we can discuss your goals and find the perfect solution to work towards the enhancements you’re trying to achieve.