I have hereditary dark circles under my eyes. The skin underneath is particularly thin and sunken, and growing up I got a fair few mean comments about how I looked "sick" without makeup. After high school I largely let them quit bothering me because I otherwise am happy with my appearance, and there didn't seem to be anything I could do about them. But I still don't like to leave the house without at least some concealer.
Ten years later, Restylane and similar fillers have been on the market long enough that I feel comfortable using them around my eyes. The fact that the effects aren't permanent sealed the deal, and as a 30th birthday gift to myself I started getting consultations.
I saw three different MDs, and all three had the same news: it would take FOUR syringes of Restylane to get real results, and even then, I'd still have "my face" (read: circles). I opted to go with the doctor who best explained the mix of fillers he'd be using and why: Use a syringe of Restylane Lyft, the denser formulation, in each cheek to fix a little volume loss and to bring the area up to meet the under-eye. Then the other two syringes would be the thinner Restylane Silk in the tear trough area.
So far, I've only done an initial treatment of two syringes. I wanted to see how I reacted to two before going with four all at once, and I'm glad I did. After 2-3 days my eyes were pretty swollen, I think any more and I would've looked like I'd done 12 rounds. I got a half a syringe of Lyft in each cheek, and half a syringe of Silk under each eye. After my follow-up, the doctor decided that my cheeks really didn't need any more and we would finish up using 2 syringes of Silk instead (as you can see in the pics, especially the side view, most of the help I need is really just under the eye). I'll be going in for that second round of injections in a month.
I will say this: it's not magic, but it's doing pretty much exactly what I want it to. I wasn't expecting miracles after getting only half the recommended amount, but there's a marked improvement and I've gotten comments about how rested I look from people who don't know I've had the procedure. My circles are deep enough that I'd rather stop at 4 syringes and still have some hollowness than to run around with a whole section of my face being almost entirely filler.
What I am curious to see is what happens to the dark coloration. The darkness under my eyes isn't pigmentation as far as I can tell, it's just because the skin is so thin. When the swelling all but erased the hollow areas, I still had the same dark circles, and I'm wondering if that goes away over time. From what I can see so far, in the outer area where I got the Lyft, the darkness does seem to be fading. Or it's just hopeful thinking.
ALSO! I did have one unpleasant side effect. At one point during the injection process, when he was doing my left tear trough, I felt pins and needles in my upper lip. The doctor said this was referred numbness from a nerve near my inner eye/nose. The numbness was fairly persistent for about a week on the right side of my upper lip, and three weeks later it's almost entirely gone. I wasn't too freaked out about it because it didn't effect my speech or appearance, and improved over time, but just know that this is something that can happen.
And! The quoted price of $2600 is for all four syringes and not counting any rewards program credit. I paid about $1300 for the first two, and because I registered for the Galderma rewards program while I was at the office, that should save me about $60 on my next visit.
I'll follow up after the second round of injections, my biggest worry is that I can expect to bruise a lot.