If you have an interest in facial fillers, then you’ve probably already heard of Juvéderm®, one of the leading hyaluronic acid facial fillers. Juvéderm®’s family of fully FDA-approved facial fillers have earned a reputation for being safe, long-lasting, and highly effective. Recently, Juvéderm® added a new filler—Vollure—to its existing line of products, and we’re proud to offer it to our patients here at Brookside Aesthetics by Dr. John Silverton.
How do Dermal Fillers Work?
Most dermal fillers consist of a compound called hyaluronic acid (HA). HA isn’t a harsh synthetic chemical; on the contrary, this substance is already found throughout your body. HA naturally occurs within the skin and connective tissues, where it assists in the production of collagen and the retention of water. It’s one of the major components of the extracellular matrix that supports the skin, keeping it firm, supple, and hydrated. Unfortunately, as we age, our bodies produce less and less HA. This leads to a subsequent reduction in collagen production and overall weaker, drier, and looser skin.
Dermal fillers combat the signs of aging essentially by replacing what we’ve lost. During dermal filler treatment, viscous HA gel is injected below the skin in key problem areas. The thickness of the gel provides an immediate boost to the skin’s volume, filling in lines, wrinkles, and hollows. Then, over the months to come, the HA stimulates collagen production in treated areas. This creates further improvements in the tone and texture of the skin and helps to prevent the formation of wrinkles.
The HA used in dermal fillers is similar to the HA found in the human body (that’s why allergic reactions to HA fillers are very rare). However, researchers have discovered that by slightly altering the molecular composition of HA gels, they can produce gels with different properties. They can create very thick, firm gels that are ideal for sculpting applications, for example, or produce thinner gels that blend in well with surrounding tissues—perfect for filling in hollows under the eyes, cheekbones, etc.
What Makes Vollure Different to Other Dermal Fillers?
Up until recently, most dermal fillers fell into one of the categories described above: They were either thin and spreadable, or thick and pliable. Vollure was designed to operate in the middle ground between these extremes; it has a medium consistency that allows it to blend in well with surrounding tissues, but it’s still thick enough to tackle deep lines. The scientists at Allergan, the makers of Juvéderm® discovered that this unique consistency makes Vollure ideally suited to treating “smile lines”: The deep lines that tend to form within our nasolabial folds as we get older.
The development of Vollure is significant because the nasolabial area is notoriously difficult to treat. Decades ago, plastic surgeons would attempt to stretch this region of the face during facelift surgery, but doing so usually stretched the corners of the mouth upwards. This created an unnatural-looking and unflattering “joker smile,” so the practice has long since been abandoned. Modern facelift methods provide some lifting of the nasolabial folds (via lifting the SMAS), but it’s not uncommon for patients to be left with slight “smile lines” after the procedure is complete. For these patients—and those patients who wish to forego surgery altogether—Vollure provides the perfect solution to lines around the mouth.
Vollure also has the benefit of being extremely long-lasting. During clinical trials, Vollure was shown to last fully 18 months in over half (59%) of patients. Other patients enjoyed benefits that lasted from between nine months to one year. Furthermore, Vollure injections can be repeated annually in order to produce permanent improvements.
Is Vollure Right For Me?
Most people make excellent candidates for treatment with HA-based fillers. Unless you have an allergy to HA or lidocaine, an autoimmune condition, or a compromised immune system, this treatment is probably safe for you. However, dermal fillers are not recommended for use by pregnant or nursing mothers.
What Should I Expect During Vollure Treatment?
Vollure treatment is administered via injection, and appointments usually do not take longer than about half an hour. Local anesthetics will be used to numb your skin prior to the administration of Vollure so that you don’t experience significant discomfort. Most patients do not report experiencing much pain during or after treatment with Vollure, though some mild soreness, redness, and bruising may occur. These symptoms can be effectively treated with over the counter pain relievers and the application of a cool compress. This procedure does not require any “down time” and patients can return to work immediately after having Vollure.