What Are the Different Types of Dermal Fillers?
Injectable dermal fillers are gel-like substances that are injected under the skin to restore volume, smooth fine lines and wrinkles, or improve facial contours. The popularity of dermal fillers has grown rapidly in recent years, as they produce dramatic, rejuvenating aesthetic improvements that were previously only achievable through surgery. Additionally, dermal fillers are less expensive than surgery and have limited or no recovery time. While the effects of dermal fillers are temporary, the newest fillers on the market are formulated to last up to 2 years.
In 1981, bovine collagen became the first formulation approved by the FDA for cosmetic injections. (Facial Plast Surg. 2009) Since then, the FDA has approved a variety of dermal fillers that vary in their chemical composition, duration, and softness. For example, lips use softer fillers, while firmer fillers may be needed to enhance cheekbones. In general, dermal fillers are classified by the substance they are made of. Below are the various categories of dermal fillers and examples of each type.
Calcium Hydroxyapatite occurs naturally in human bones as a mineral-like compound. It is commonly used for:
- Moderate to severe wrinkles such as nasolabial folds, marionette lines, and frown lines
- Enhances the fullness of cheeks and other facial contours
- Improve volume in thinned areas of the face, such as may occur in HIV-positive patients taking certain medications
Calcium Hydroxyapatite is produced biosynthetically, which means no animals or animal products are used. This reduces your risk of an allergic reaction and does not require skin testing. This type of dermal filler is known to produce very natural results, does not migrate and has very few side effects. This dermal filler was first used in dental and reconstructive surgery and has a long safety record.
Hyaluronic acid injections can be used to improve skin contours and reduce dimpling of the skin caused by scars, injuries or fine lines. You can see potentially significant improvements in:
- Acne scars
- Sunken cheeks
- Crow's feet around the eyes
- Deep laugh lines (also known as nasolabial folds) that run from the sides of the nose to the corners of the mouth
- Wrinkles between the brows
- Mouth puppet lines
- Redefines lips
- Scars include those from burns, acne, and wounds
- Smoker's lines; vertical lines on the mouth
- Some scars on the face
- Worry lines on the forehead
Hyaluronic acid is a natural substance found in your body. High concentrations are found in the soft connective tissue and fluid around the eyes. It's also found in some cartilage and joint fluid, as well as skin tissue. It has been extracted and reformulated and is now one of the most popular injectable fillers. If the term sounds familiar, it's because the same substance is often injected into the painful joints of arthritis patients to relieve pain and provide extra cushioning.
Polyalkylimide is a semi-permanent dermal filler that is often used by plastic surgeons for:
- Treats deeper wrinkles such as nasolabial folds or sunken scars
- Plump thin lips
- Enhances cheekbones and jawline, and replenishes facial volume lost with age
- Treatment of facial atrophy caused by HIV drugs
Polyalkylimide has little reaction to human tissue, which means it is biocompatible and does not require allergy testing. It is radio transparent, which means it does not interfere with X-rays.
After the injection, a thin layer of collagen will slowly form around the area over about a month. The gel ends up being completely surrounded. A single program can inject large amounts. This product is considered very stable over time and can even be removed if necessary.
Polylactic acid is a synthetic dermal filler that is injected into your face to allow your body to produce collagen on its own. This type of dermal filler is called a stimulant. This non-toxic, biodegradable substance has been used as a suture material for more than 40 years.
PLA has been known to work especially well on the lower half of the face and is used for:
- Fill in lines caused by laughing
- Plump thin lips
- Treatment of deep nasolabial folds
This substance is different from other dermal fillers because it does not produce immediate results. Instead, it stimulates your own body's collagen production, so results begin to appear over several months.
You may need about three months of treatment to achieve your desired results. Each treatment re-stimulates your own collagen. It may then take four to six weeks to see the full effect. Although this type of dermal filler is considered semi-permanent, you may still need occasional touch-ups.
Polymethylmethacrylate Microspheres (PMMA)
PMMA is considered a semi-permanent filler and is most commonly used to treat moderate to deep lines, folds and lines, especially nasolabial folds. It can also be used to fill in sunken scars and enhance thin lips.
When a longer-lasting facial wrinkle solution is desired, PMMA is often used instead of collagen replacement therapy or hyaluronic acid therapy. PMMA has been used in permanent surgical implants for many years. Therefore, your surgeon may underfill the first treatment and add more later if needed.
One of the downsides of PMMA is that multiple injections are required to create volume and it can take up to three months to achieve full effect. It may also be visible under the skin. To avoid any adverse outcomes, it is important that your plastic surgeon is familiar with proper technique, which includes injecting at the subdermal dermal junction using the threading or tunneling method.
For many people, using "off-the-shelf" fillers can be a simple office-based procedure that can do a great job of improving their appearance. These dermal fillers are very predictable and come with relatively few risks and side effects. If you want to know more about dermal fillers or you are planning to buy dermal fillers, please contact us.
Hyamax is a professional hyaluronic acid products manufacturer with more than ten years of experience. Our range of dermal fillers includes cross-linked hyaluronic acid injectable fillers, micro-cross-linked hyaluronic acid injectable fillers and non-cross-linked hyaluronic acid injectable fillers. Millions of cases of products have been sold to more than 70 countries around the world, providing consumers with safe, effective and elegant aesthetic experience.