Restylane is an FDA-approved injectable dermal filler proven to smooth moderate to severe wrinkles and folds of the face and hands. Its hyaluronic acid (HA) formula augments areas of the skin where collagen has been lost, and its low-risk safety profile has brought it to the top of the list of treatments recommended by dermatologists. Our medical professionals at Athena Plastic Surgery in Stuart, FL are proud to offer this treatment along with many other top-quality cosmetic services that can be individualized to your specific skin needs.
Where Is Restylane Injected?
This hyaluronic acid gel is delivered just under the skin via ultrafine needles. Because they are tiny and cover such a small surface area, they are highly accurate and non-intrusive. While most of the products in the Restylane family are specially designed to treat different areas of the face, one product has recently become approved for treating both the face and hands.
The Restylane Family
The first of its kind, Lyft is the only hyaluronic acid treatment FDA-approved for use in the hands. Formulated for augmenting the skin around the midface area, cheeks, and backs of the hands, it corrects collagen loss and dull, sagging skin. Studies indicate that effects may last up to six months.
Since this product is specifically formulated to treat the lips, it is smoother and thinner than the other gels in this family. It is the first FDA-approved product for this purpose, and its silky consistency allows for easier spreadability and more natural facial expressions. Research shows that this product will last for up to six months for most people.
Like Silk, this product can be used to plump and lift the lips, but it can also treat the nasolabial folds and the surrounding areas. Because it is a thicker gel, it is delivered more deeply into the skin than the others, giving it greater durability. It resists migrating and breaking down in the body longer as well, allowing it to last up to 18 months.
Refyne and Defyne
Both of these products use XpresHAn technology, which links HA molecules in a way that creates a stronger, more durable gel. Because of its molecular structure, it is highly spreadable, while also resilient. This makes it perfect for high-mobility areas such as the mouth, NLFs, and marionette lines. Research shows that these products are effective for up to 12 months.
Your Skin: An Overview
In order to understand how hyaluronic acid improves your skin, it’s important to know a little about your skin’s functions. Skin is a layered structure, each layer having its own important job to do. As time wears on, changes in hormones, skin quality, and environmental damage can impair our skin’s resilience.
As our skin grows more delicate, scars become more prominent and age spots begin to appear. Hydration diminishes as our sweat glands and sebaceous glands produce less oil and water. Blood vessels weaken, making bruising and bleeding more likely. The thin stretches and dries out, which is just one of the reasons many people turn to dermal fillers.
The Dermis and Epidermis
The outermost layer of skin, called the epidermis, acts as a waterproof barrier that miraculously regenerates itself (making it unique from many other types of cells in our body). It also protects us from radiation exposure, harsh weather conditions, and harmful bacteria and viruses. Unfortunately, it also takes the most damage over time.
The dermis is the layer that lies just beneath the epidermis. It houses nerve endings and receptors that allow us to feel pressure, pain, and touch. This is also where the sebaceous and sweat glands are located, making this layer responsible for hydration as well. Most injectable dermal fillers are delivered into the dermis.
Also called the hypodermis, this innermost layer of skin is made up of fats and connective tissue that regulate temperature and act like the body’s shock absorbers. It also contains blood vessels that keep the skin strong and healthy by transporting nutrients to and from the body’s organs. Any loss of fat in this layer means lost support for the layers above, compromising the resilience and elasticity of the skin, especially in the face.
About Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid is a polysaccharide, made up of a chain of sugars that attracts and binds water. It occurs naturally in the body, but like many things, begins to diminish as we age. Because it can hold nearly one thousand times its weight in water, it is an important agent of hydration in the skin.
As production of HA slows down, we begin to see many of the signs of aging, such as lost elasticity, dryness, and sunken areas near the eyes and cheeks. Reintroducing HA helps restore these areas and supporting more supple, hydrated skin. In addition, since it’s a substance already occurring in the body, the HA in this product assimilates easily into the skin.
The hyaluronic acid used in this family of products is formulated using a technology called XpresHAn, which crosslinks hyaluronic acid molecules of various weights to create a smaller, more flexible molecule. This, in turn, creates a smoother, softer gel that can be used in high-mobility areas of the face, where iit allows for more natural facial expressions than other fillers.
Does Restylane Work Immediately?
As soon as the gel is delivered into the skin, results are typically noticeable right away. Fine lines and severe wrinkles are filled and smoothed out as the product spreads under the skin’s layers. There is an immediate restoration of elasticity and improved facial contours, giving the convenience of fast results. Results are instantly noticeable as fine lines and severe wrinkles are filled and smoothed out upon injection of the gel. Restylane supports underlying tissues and lifts sagging skin. Even one treatment will plump the skin and restore elasticity and glow to your face.
What Makes Restylane Different?
While there is often an immediate improvement in the skin’s volume after treatment, long-term benefits include supported collagen production and nutrient transfer. With continued use, HA stimulates the body’s own restoration of volume and hydration. Over time, skin quality begins to improve on its own. In addition, the XpresHAn technology creates an HA gel that resists breaking down in the body longer than other HA products.
The hyaluronic acid in this product is plant-sourced and is highly biocompatible. For this reason, allergic reactions (or any other kind of reaction) are very rare. If a reaction, does occur, it is usually due to another ingredient in the gel. In fact, research has shown that long-term use of hyaluronic acid products may even make permanent beneficial changes to the skin.
Because this family of products uses the XpresHAn cross-linking technology, the product lasts much longer than its rivals. This means fewer office visits and touch-up maintenance treatments, which in turn means less time and money invested. In addition, this treatment is considered an outpatient service, and the sessions last under an hour with minimal downtime. Most people can immediately resume their normal daily activities.
Time and time again, research has shown that HA treatment has a low-risk safety profile and a history of long-lasting results with minimal risk. Many patients notice continued improvement in their skin even two to three weeks after treatment, as the HA settles further into place. It not only works by plumping and lifting skin, but it also hides flaws such as acne scars, exposed blood vessels, and skin damage.
The Treatment Process: What to Expect
Who Is a Good Candidate?
While most people who seek treatment are over 30, many young people also experience dull, sagging skin due to hormonal imbalances, weight changes, or skin damage. Therefore, anyone over the age of 21 is likely a good candidate for hyaluronic acid treatment. In addition, many people seek treatment when they discover that they are not good candidates for cosmetic surgery and want a safe, non-invasive alternative.
How Many Sessions Are Needed?
The true answer to this question is: it depends. There are many variables involved in determining the longevity of a treatment plan, such as general health, age, body chemistry, and skin condition. Our talented team of specialists will address your individual concerns and develop a maintenance schedule that will help you maximize your results.
Our doctors at Athena Plastic Surgery will inquire about your general health, lifestyle, concerns, and skincare routine at your initial visit. We will develop an individualized treatment plan and maintenance plan that will best achieve your desired results. As with any initial medical appointment, you will be advised on what to do prior, during, and after your treatment in order to get the most from your sessions.
At your consultation, our doctors will examine your skin in-person and inquire about your medical history, any skin treatments you have received (or will be receiving), and any prescribed or over-the-counter medicines you might be taking. Hyaluronic acid treatments pair well with other cosmetic services, such as chemical peels and facials, but it is important for our doctors to be aware so that they may work with the timing of these treatments. Over-treatment can have the opposite effect of your intended results.
This is the time to be thinking about any questions or concerns you might have for our doctors, as your comfort is our top priority. It may be beneficial to write down these questions in preparation for your session so we can offer you the most compassionate and comprehensive care. In the weeks leading up to your appointment, you may want to consider avoiding blood-thinning medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). These can lead to an increased risk of bruising and bleeding. In addition, you may also want to avoid alcohol or any face products that could be drying or irritating.
During Your Session
Your session should last less than an hour. Our doctors may offer you a topical analgesic to increase comfort and will inject the gel just under the skin using tiny, ultrafine needles. Most people report little to no discomfort and are able to return to their normal daily activities immediately after their treatment.
You should be able to return to your daily routine with little to no downtime after treatment. It is a good idea to continue following the guidelines outlined in the pre-treatment stage, including avoiding alcohol and NSAID medications. You may also want to avoid any heavy exercise or intense heat for the first few days as well.
Call Us Today
Don’t wait to learn more and get started. Restylane’s low-risk safety profile has ranked it at the top of the recommendation list for dermatologists everywhere. Call Athena Plastic Surgery in Stuart, FL to schedule your consultation today.