Still looking for the fountain of youth? Find it in fat and fillers


Two decades ago, the idea of turning back the hands of time was closely aligned with a surgical facelift to lift and tighten loose, falling skin and tissues. Today, however, we know that key to restoring youthful contour is by replacing lost volume to specific areas of the face, including the midface (cheeks), the eye area and temples. By restoring fullness to the face, skin is naturally lifted and restored to a more youthful position.

This more recent knowledge of how the face ages is only part of the solution, however. Restoring youth to an aging face also relies on newer tools and technologies we employ in practice, and the good news is, today we have more options than ever to create a natural, youthful result. Which is right for you? It depends on several factors, including desired timing for results and area of the face to be treated.

Voluma for Volume Now

Voluma is an FDA-approved filler that instantly adds volume to the midface. It was designed specifically to treat the cheek area and provides more lift and a longer duration (up to two years) than other hyaluronic acid fillers on the market. RealSelf patients give Voluma a 91% satisfaction rating, which makes it one of the highest rated treatments available today.

Sculptra for Subtlety

Believe it or not, some patients don’t want immediate results, but prefer a more gradual process that won’t instantly change their face from deflated to perfectly volumized. If this is your preference, then Sculptra is a great option. Sculptra is injectable poly-L-lactic acid, which helps to replace lost collagen, and is generally administered in three separate injection sessions, each spaced about three weeks apart. With Sculptra results are subtle and build over time, and results can last more than two years. Sculptra is also great for filling in hollow temples.

Fat for the Eye Area

As the face ages, volume is also lost around the eyes, creating a hollow appearance. I’ve found that fat is ideal for effectively filling the under the eye as well as the eyebrow area, creating a natural, permanent result. The fat transfer procedure is a little more involved, as it is a two-step process. First, fat cells are taken from a donor site (frequently the abdomen, buttocks or thighs) via liposuction. Second, the fat is processed, and reinjected into the treatment area—in this case, in the area around the eyes.

Is Surgery Still an Option?

In a word, yes. In fact, it’s a necessity for those with severe skin laxity, as adding volume only goes so far when it comes to facial rejuvenation. While you can create a lift using fillers in the midface, excess drooping skin can only be corrected with a surgical facelift. The best way to find out which options are right for you is by scheduling a consultation with a qualified cosmetic surgeon.

Dr. M
Article by
Shrewsbury Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon