We love being Australia’s premiere resource for news and information about plastic surgery and cosmetic enhancement, and we don’t do a lot of clock-watching at the Costhetics offices.
We’re certainly not oblivious to time, however. We’re definitely clock-watchers when it comes to the duration of the benefits of cosmetic injectables. When you’re searching for the holy grail of facial rejuvenation – a non-invasive anti-ageing treatment with staying power – it’s natural to ask the biblical question, “How long oh Lord, how long?”
Have you been knitting your brows worrying about this question? Stop! It will give you forehead wrinkles. Sit back, relax your muscles, and let us tell you the story of cosmetic injectables and how long they last. (It’s a story with a very happy ending!)
Cosmetic Injectables: 3 Roads to a Youthful Face
The most common types of cosmetic injectable treatments are:
- Dermal fillers
- Autologous fat transfer
These injectable treatments work in very different ways to refresh your face, but they have these popular, patient-pleasing benefits in common:
- Minimally invasive
- No downtime
- Natural-looking results
A trait shared by natural dermal fillers and neurotoxins is impermanence. These treatments must be repeated, as the results they yield are not everlasting. Impermanence isn’t necessarily a negative thing, however. In fact, it can be a plus for patients who want to ‘try before they buy’ a permanent facial alteration such as rhinoplasty or eyebrow surgery. Synthetic fillers are considered semi-permanent.
Which Cosmetic Injectable Should You Choose
Not all cosmetic injectables are alike. Each has a unique method of action and your skin care specialist will help guide you to the treatment that is best for you.
- Neurotoxins treat dynamic wrinkles – Dynamic wrinkles were given their name as their appearance is linked to dynamic muscle action such as smiling, frowning, and blowing kisses. Muscle-inhibiting injections temporarily paralyse the muscles that pull skin and create the appearance of crow’s feet, smile lines, and forehead creases. This leaves skin looking smooth and more youthful.
- Dermal fillers (natural and synthetic) treat static wrinkles – Static wrinkles are self-sustaining. As Al Pacino would say, “They don’t need no stinking muscles.” They are the results of static forces such as chronological ageing, gravity, and years of dynamic wrinkle making.
- Microliposuction/autologous fat transfers restore volume – Many specialists believe this dermal filler treatment is a superior choice for the natural look and natural feel that results. Unwanted fat from thighs and other body parts are harvested by liposuction and then injected into hollows and sunken facial skin
- Speed of Results – Improvement due to filler injections is usually visible in a matter of days after any minor swelling goes down. Neurotoxins may take up to two weeks to yield appreciable results.
- Duration of Results – More about this key point below.
Dermal Fillers: We Want to Plump You Up
Dermal fillers are also known as soft tissue fillers and injectable fillers or, as mentioned above, autologous fan transfer injections. They do what an ageing body can no longer do for itself with regards to skin health. As far as skin beauty is concerned, a body over 30 is “ageing.” At this age, the body struggles to supply collagen, hyaluronic acid and elastin to needy skin. It is also the time when skin cell turnover begins to lag, leading to permanent expression lines around the mouth, forehead, and eyes.
Most dermal fillers contain hyaluronic acid, the same substance that occurs naturally in your body and which is re-absorbed by the body over time after treatment. Other fillers use synthetic materials that are not absorbed. Injections may also contain lidocaine, a numbing agent, to ensure a comfortable treatment experience.
The goal of fillers whether they use HA, synthetics, or a patient’s own fat will:
- Reduce the appearance of facial wrinkles, lines, and folds
- Enhance facial contours
- Increase cheek volume
- Plump lips
- Correct indented scars
How Long Do the Effects of Dermal Fillers Last?
As with many aspects of plastic surgery and cosmetic enhancement, a number of factors influence results. With dermal fillers, some of those factors include:
- The area of treatment
- The patient’s unique physiology
- The specific filler ingredients being used
Hyaluronic acid filler results may last anywhere from 6-18 months. When filler is used to increase lip volume or plump nasolabial folds, the benefits tend to dissipate more quickly. Facial fat injections have been shown to keep a face full wrinkle-free for up to two years.
Neurotoxins: Stop Wrinkles Before they Happen
The world of anti-ageing treatments was turned upside down with the discovery of neurotoxins. In addition to treating signs of facial ageing, the treatment seemed to actually stop wrinkles from forming. Talk about a game-changer! Muscle-relaxing injections rely on a substance called Botulinum Toxin Type A that has the ability to block nerve impulses. When the impulses are blocked, muscles stay relaxed and wrinkles do not appear.
Muscle-relaxing injections shot to the top of the cosmetic enhancement charts because they
- Are a non-invasive approach to correct lines, wrinkles and visible signs of facial ageing.
- Can lift brows and help delay a surgical solution.
- Can be used as a preventative measure for patients in their 20’s.
Wrinkle Injections: How Long Do the Results Last?
Muscle-inhibiting injections do not take effect immediately. You may have to wait up to a week for the results to be visible. After that, you should be able to look forward to three to six months of facial rejuvenation. Some of the factors that have an impact on duration include:
- Your age
- The depth of your wrinkles
- Your skin elasticity
- Lifestyle choices such as smoking
Here’s a fun (and important) fact about muscle-relaxing injections: over time, the benefits of your injections will last long and longer. It’s not uncommon for people to be able to extend the time between touch-up appointments because their wrinkles simply haven’t returned. With repeated treatment, muscles that cause wrinkles lose their strength and become too weak to form wrinkles.
Be in the Know to Guarantee a Glow
Costhetics doesn’t have a team cheer, but we do have a team mantra: when you don’t know, ask a pro. Cosmetic injectables are brilliant at erasing wrinkles and giving your face a youthful glow, but only when administered by an experienced medical aesthetics provider. We urge you to do your homework and find an expert who has the right training and practical experience.
Make sure the clinic or medispa you’ve chosen has a platinum reputation, too. In other words, before you commit precious time, money, and your very precious facial skin to a treatment, get to know the person who will be holding the needle.
Stay safe and stay beautiful!