Tuesday, April 16, 2024

    Experts Bust The Biggest Filler Myths

    In this day and age, its pretty much as common to get filler as it is to have a skin-care routine. Whether its lips, cheeks, chin, jaw, temple or any other array of the endless combinations available today, filler has become a commonplace, noninvasive treatment for addressing anything from skin laxity to under-eye bags and lip plumpness.

    As the popularity of filler continues to rise, many people have become more hesitant to undergo the injections, as the discourse around fillers becomes more and more muddled. From celebrities who seem to be experiencing filler migration to videos on social media sharing horror stories about botched injections, filler myths have began to run rampant.

    If you’re considering getting filler but aren’t sure what stories to believe and which are myths, we consulted the experts to help us bust the biggest filler myths.

    Featured Experts

    Myth: Filler and Neurotoxin Are The Same Thing

    Often times, people use the terms “filler” and Botox interchangeably, but Wayne, NJ facial plastic surgeon Jeffrey B. Wise urges patients to understand the difference. “One of the biggest myths that we encounter in our office is that people fundamentally believe that fillers and Botox are essentially the same,” he begins. “The reason that people think that they’re the same is because they are often linked together as office-based same-day procedures, but dermal fillers and neurotoxins are substantially different. Neuromodulators such as Botox Cosmetic, Dysport, Xeomin, Jeuveau, and Daxxify are pharmacologic agents that relax muscles. By relaxing muscles in certain areas of the face, it creates a reduction in dynamic wrinkles, which are wrinkles caused by muscle motion.”

    As Dr. Wise continues to explain, the areas in which fillers and Botox are injected also differentiate the two. “Classic spots for neurotoxin injections are around the eyes, the glabella, forehead and crow’s feet. Dermal fillers, on the other hand, do not address dynamic wrinkles. Rather, they add volume to areas of the face where volume is either insufficient or has been lost through the aging process. Typically, duration for the neurotoxins is three to four months and dermal fillers can last as little as four months but as long as two to three years when properly utilized.”

    Myth: Filler Is a Substitute for Surgery

    For New York plastic surgeon B. Aviva Preminger, MD, one of the most common filler myths she encounters in her office is that filler is a substitute for surgery. “At a certain point, if you have too much facial skin laxity, trying to overfill the loose skin leaves you looking swollen, distorted, puffy and unnatural,” Dr. Preminger explains. One of the biggest draws to fillers for individuals looking to address skin issues is that the treatment is noninvasive and, when done well, natural-looking, but as Dr. Preminger explains, sometimes surgery can be the more natural option. “People are often afraid of unnatural results from surgery, but sometimes surgery is the more natural result,” she says.

    Myth: All Fillers Work the Same

    In the same way that individuals think that fillers and neurotoxins are the same, Dr. Preminger notes that another common misconception about filler is that all fillers are the same and work the same. In fact, different types of filler, like hyaluronic acid filler and PLLA fillers, feature different viscosities which impacts how they work throughout the face. “Different areas of the face require different volume restoration,” Dr. Preminger begins. “More cross-linked filler products are thicker and generate more volume or fullness, but using too thick of a filler in the wrong area can cause visibility of the filler, and using too thin of a filler may leave you with inadequate results.”

    Myth: Anyone Can Inject Filler

    From medspas to doctors’ offices, injectors are everywhere, but that doesn’t mean that you should always trust injections from just anyone. As many of experts noted, a major filler myth is that anyone can inject filler. Aside from the risk of work that is not natural-looking, Dr. Preminger explains that “filler should only be injected by an experienced and certified practitioner because real complications can occur if not and the filler may need to be dissolved to correct the problem.”

    Myth: Filler Will Make Me Look Fat or “Fake”

    Between TikTok and Instagram, we’ve all seen examples of filler treatments that look not so great, and as New York facial plastic surgeon Dilip Madnani, MD explains, a common filler myth amongst patients is that filler can cause the face to look fat. Dr. Madnani assures, though, that filler will not objectively cause the face to look swollen, as using the right kind of filler injected by a licensed expert can create the perfect amount of fullness without looking overdone.

    Omaha, NE dermatologist Joel Schlessinger, MD adds that, “When it comes to dermal fillers, I often see people in person who have had too much or had poorly placed fillers, but the ‘artists’ who perform fillers can make them look natural and subtle, while also allowing for a beautiful enhancement.”

    Myth: More Filler Means More Lift

    Another common filler myth Dr. Madnani sees amongst patients is that more filler means more lift. Filler is an incredible tool for smoothing, plumping and firming the skin, when used in moderation. As Dr. Madnani notes, it is possible for overfilling to cause the skin to look weighed down instead of lifted and rejuvenated, further emphasizing the importance of choosing an experienced and licensed injector.

    Myth: Fillers Are Painful

    A reasonable myth to believe—I mean, it’s needles in your face after all—Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains that the pain level of fillers is not something to be too worried about. “The pain level of fillers is usually correlated to who is on the other end of the needle. When I perform fillers, I try to distract pressure from my patients and introduce the needle in a less painful manner. It all comes down to technique. We also use a special anesthetic on the skin and one that we add to the filler, which makes it less painful. I want my patients to feel comfortable and pain control can make all the difference.”

    Myth: Fillers Constantly Have To Be Redone

    Fellow Omaha, NE dermatologist Daniel Schlessinger explains that, “While fillers have a general expectation of how long they will last, these are very rough guidelines and are nearly impossible to predict, from area to area and person to person. I have patients who are runners who go through filler like crazy, while there are others that I see come to me who do wonderfully for years with a reasonable amount of filler. It all depends on your metabolism and how you process fillers.”

    Myth: Facelifts or Lasers Are Better Than Fillers Because They Last Longer

    Dr. David Schlessinger explains, “Lasers and facelifts last longer than fillers (in general, depending on which is done), but they simply can’t produce the same result that well-placed and artistically performed fillers can. Facelifts tighten, but they don’t enhance and lift in the same way that fillers can improve the look. There is absolutely no comparison to the natural appearance that fillers produce when compared to a facelift. Facelifts can look good, but they often ‘change’ the look of any individual in a way that doesn’t look like a previous version of themselves. Fillers, on the other hand, when done correctly, can do exactly that. The other thing that fillers do is to improve the quality and look of the external skin without any other ‘work’—something that is unique to fillers due to their ability to stimulate collagen.”

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