In decades past, options for dermal fillers were limited mostly to collagen replacement treatments, the effects of which typically lasted less than six months. Today there are a number of new formulations and key ingredients that have ushered in long-lasting dermal fillers that can last up to two years. Juvederm offers a family of technologically-advanced fillers that have become top-rated products by dermatologists everywhere.
These products are delivered via ultrafine needles just under the skin to improve facial contours and restore volume where collagen has been lost. Each product in the family is uniquely formulated to target different areas of the face. Dr. Ver Halen at Ver Halen Aesthetics and Plastic Surgery in Colleyville, TX takes great pride in offering these products on his comprehensive menu of restorative services.
What Is Juvederm Made Of?
Each product in this family of products is made from a modified form of hyaluronic acid (HA). Hyaluronic acid is a molecule that occurs naturally in the skin but begins to diminish as we grow older. It can hold up to a thousand times its weight in water, so it is an important agent of hydration for the skin. Thus, when its production slows down our skin can dry out and lose its elasticity.
Since this molecule is already a naturally occurring component of our skin’s biology, adverse reactions are rare. When they do occur, the cause is usually other ingredients in the product, such as lidocaine. Because they are generally well-tolerated, hyaluronic acid products are suitable for just about anyone.
The Chemistry of Hyaluronic Acid
Along with its hydrating effects, some research suggests that (with long-term use) HA can stimulate the body’s own production of collagen. The molecule is a polysaccharide, a chain of sugars that aid in stabilizing skin structure and maintaining water balance. These variables make HA a unique ingredient for skin rejuvenation therapies.
As a humectant, HA attracts and holds water in the skin, making it an ideal molecule to treat common problem areas around the lips, eyes, cheeks, nose, and chin. The skin in these areas is thinner and more fragile than lower-mobility areas, so HA’s stabilizing and volumizing effects are instantly noticeable in facial contouring. It also encourages nutrient transfer as skin volume is restored.
The HA molecules in Juvederm Voluma, Volbella, and Vollure are modified using a patented technology called Vycross. By linking lower-weight and higher-weight HA molecules, this process results in a stronger, more durable HA formula. Because of this, these products resist breaking down in the body and last almost twice as long as other fillers.
As the Vycross technology bonds HA molecules of various weights tightly together, the resulting gel is stable and does not migrate once injected into the skin. The higher the percentage of HA, the thicker the gel, and the longer the product lasts. Over time, these long-term benefits help promote faster healing and skin resilience from ultraviolet exposure and environmental damage.
The Juvederm Family
Voluma is the thickest of all the gels in the product family, so it is injected more deeply into the dermis. Because of this, it is the first FDA-approved product to be formulated with lidocaine, an anesthetic that minimizes any discomfort and thus enhances the patient experience. Because it is thicker, it is the longest-lasting of all the gels and resists breaking down in the body longer than most other HA products.
In addition, it is highly moldable, making it a good option not just for the cheeks and surrounding skin, but also for the jawline, chin, mouth, and lips. It stays in place longer, saving time and money on office visits and maintenance treatments. It’s effects have been shown to last as long as two years.
Vollure has a thinner consistency than Voluma but is durable enough to withstand the muscle movements in high-mobility areas such as the mouth, chin, and nasolabial folds (NSFs). Unlike Voluma, this product is designed for spreadability so that it can stretch and fold with the skin for more natural facial expressions. Studies show Vollure can last up to 18 months.
Volbella XC and Ultra XC both treat the lips, but Volbella is thinner and highly spreadable. This makes it ideal for treating “lipstick” lines and the fragile skin around the mouth. Because of its low water affinity, it won’t plump the skin like Ultra, but it works like a charm at smoothing fine wrinkles near the lips and allowing for natural movements. Despite being the thinnest of the gels in this family, it still lasts for up to one year to enhance the skin around the mouth and lips.
Ultra XC is also used for lip enhancement but is designed to enhance suppleness. It augments moderate to severe facial lines for almost-instant results. Unlike Volbella, it has a high water affinity so the main effect of this product is to lift and plump the lips for a fuller contour. While it is intended for the mouth, it is also used for firming the smile lines and nasolabial folds. Studies show this product remains in place for up to a year.
Juvederm products are longer-lasting, smoother, and more durable than other HA treatments. Because they are injected directly into the first two layers of skin, their effects are immediate. After just one treatment, sunken, hollow areas of the face are brightened and lifted. In addition, these products hide other flaws such as acne scars, exposed blood vessels, and sun damage.
After some time has passed (2-3 weeks), many patients report continued improvement in their skin’s appearance once the HA settles more into the skin. While some temporary redness and swelling may be visible, these shouldn’t last longer than a week. It is important to follow Dr. Ver Halen’s aftercare guidelines to get the best results possible. Most people can resume their normal skin care regimen and makeup application within 24 hours of treatment.
Since many people turn to dermal fillers because they prefer not to have cosmetic surgery, these products are an effective non-invasive alternative. Despite being injectables, the gels are delivered just under the skin by ultrafine needles, which decreases surface area and increases accuracy. Most patients report a quick and painless experience with instant results.
Considered an outpatient treatment, sessions last between fifteen to 60 minutes, depending on the product used and areas being treated. After the session most people can immediately return to their normal daily activities, making it not only non-intrusive but also convenient. There is little to no downtime, and fewer office visits are required since Juvederm products last longer than their rivals. Fewer office visits mean savings on both time and money.
Pairs Well With Other Treatments
Hyaluronic acid treatments can be combined with other types of facials and cosmetic services. Dr. Ver Halen and his team are experts at developing individualized plans that include companion products and treatments such as chemical peels and laser treatments. Because of their low-risk profile, HA products are highly recommended by dermatologists as safe to combine with other therapies that will help maximize your desired results.
Due to its Vycross technology, Juvederm products are more stable and longer-lasting. The cross-linking of higher- and lower-weight HA molecules enhances durability and creates a high-concentration gel. Because of this, many people have seen results lasting up to two years, depending on the product used and the area treated.
By increasing hydration and supporting nutrient transfer through the skin’s tissues, HA products have been shown to stimulate the body’s own collagen production over continued use. In addition, since they are also smooth to inject, biodegradable, and even reversible, these treatments take less of a toll on the skin than the collagen replacement therapies of decades past. Restoring hydration, elasticity, and volume to sagging, dull skin can make permanent, positive changes to skin quality that can last for a lifetime.
The Treatment Process: What To Expect
Who Is the Ideal Candidate?
While the majority of people who seek treatment are over age 30, men and women of all ages can experience lost collagen and sagging skin for a variety of reasons. Weight loss, hormone imbalances, and heredity can cause even the youngest patients to suffer from the effects of thin, dull skin. That being said, almost anyone over the age of 21 who is dissatisfied with their skin quality can benefit from HA treatments.
In addition, many people want to avoid (or are not good candidates for) cosmetic surgery, and turn to dermal fillers as a more acceptable option with long-lasting benefits. Because of their safety, effectiveness, and convenience, the popularity of these products has grown exponentially. Whether you are new to cosmetic treatments or have never received them before, Dr. Ver Halen and his qualified team can develop the perfect treatment plan for you.
Before Your Session
During your consultation, Dr. Ver Halen will examine your skin and take note of any skin problems such as acne or eczema. It is important to come to your appointment prepared to answer questions about your medical history and any prescriptions you may be taking. If you are immunocompromised in any way, Dr. Ver Halen will advise you on the best way to proceed with treatment.
In addition, over-the-counter blood-thinning medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) can increase your chances of redness and bruising after treatment. You may be advised to stop taking these in the weeks leading up to your session. Minimizing any activities that could increase skin sensitivity, such as waxing, tanning, or bleaching can also help to maximize your results.
Your Juvederm session should last less than an hour, and Dr. Ver Halen and his compassionate team will make your comfort a top priority. They will encourage you to express any concerns and ask any questions you may have to make you feel at ease. Most patients report a comfortable experience, and sessions are typically short and convenient.
During your session, Dr. Ver Halen will inject the gel into your skin and gently massage the area to encourage a smooth and symmetric application. Some temporary tenderness and redness is normal, but shouldn’t last longer than a day or two after treatment. Applying an ice pack to the area several times a day for the first 48 hours can help, as well as avoiding alcohol, intense heat, and exercise.
After Your Session
In the days and weeks following your session, it is important to take especially good care of your skin. Continuing to follow the same guidelines as in the pre-treatment stage will lengthen the longevity of your results. Drinking lots of water and eating healthy meals will ensure that your skin receives the nutrients it needs.
Regain Your Confidence
Dissatisfaction with thin, sagging skin no longer has to be a source of low self-esteem or deflated confidence. Botox vs Juvederm products are safe, convenient, and highly effective. If you are ready to learn more and get started, call Dr. Ver Halen at Ver Halen Aesthetics and Plastic Surgery in Colleyville, TX to schedule a consultation today.
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