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If you haven’t taken proper care of your skin, wrinkles can take a toll on your confidence in your 30s. Even if you try to make amends, using skincare to deal with those wrinkles can feel like putting a band-aid on a bullet wound. That’s when you turn to injectables like Botox and fillers. Here’s the most important thing you need to know about getting dermal fillers in your 30s. Unlike Botox injections that work as long as they’re there, dermal fillers help with collagen production with every injection. More on that in a bit. Here’s everything else you need to know about getting dermal fillers in your 30s. If you’re considering going in for a consultation, this guide will give you general information about the procedure so that you know what to ask your doctor.
Should you even get fillers in your 30s?
We know that we run shorter on collagen starting from our mid-20s. In your 30s, things become more visible in the wrinkles department. Important proteins like collagen and elastin as well as your body’s own lubricant, hyaluronic acid, start to decrease as you age.
All of this contributes to the look of more prominent crow’s feet, forehead wrinkles, and frown lines. But starting from your mid-30s, you’ll see other wrinkles becoming more noticeable.
The lines around the cheeks –smile lines or nasolabial folds, and the lines around the mouth -marionette lines, settle in. Botox doesn’t work on those wrinkles. Because Botox simply smooths out wrinkles where there’s mechanical action aka expression wrinkles.
For example, you raise your eyebrows and horizontal wrinkles appear. But they look smoother when you relax your face. Those types of wrinkles are great for Botox injections.
Using Botox, you “paralyze” those muscles and limit their movement. That’s how Botox relaxes wrinkles and gives you smoother skin. But the lines around the mouth stay there even if you don’t move a muscle.
Those types of wrinkles require fillers. If these are the lines you’re worried about, you can consider getting fillers in your 30s.
What are dermal fillers?
Dermal fillers are injectables that are used to fill in wrinkles, replace volume, and enhance volume. The most common injected material used today is hyaluronic acid. Before, it was collagen.
But hyaluronic acid has been proven to be superior because of longevity, fewer possible side effects, and the easy management of those side effects.
By literally taking up space, hyaluronic acid fillers plump up your skin from the inside. But also, even if the fillers start to degrade, hyaluronic acid keeps attracting water and continues to keep that area plumper.
What do fillers do?
The major purposes of dermal fillers are to fill in wrinkles by plumping them up from the inside, replacing volume, and enhancing volume.
If you’re having volume loss on the mid-face such as your cheeks, you can consider dermal fillers to get plumper cheeks. You can also consider fillers to fill in the under-eye hollows, which is a common issue in your 30s.
For enhancement, you can consider lip fillers or jawline fillers, and even chin fillers. This can improve your profile significantly.
Another use can be for the nose area where fillers can give you a straighter nose with an upturned tip. This is called a non-surgical nose job.
What are the different types of fillers?
There are several different types of dermal fillers such as calcium, polylactic acid, and hyaluronic acid. However, hyaluronic acid is the widest one used.
Just like Botox, which is the brand name for botulinum toxin, Juvederm is the brand name associated with hyaluronic acid fillers. But Juvederm has a variety of different hyaluronic acid fillers.
Think about hyaluronic acid in your skincare. You must’ve come across the words “cross-linked” or “different molecular size”. Similarly, Juvederm has different types of hyaluronic acid fillers. Each of them works best for specific areas of the face.
The concentration of these fillers has a defining role in how liquidy/tacky or how thick/thin the filler is going to be. As you can imagine, some areas of your face such as your eye area will require a thinner substance whereas your cheeks will be fine with something thicker.
In your 30s, hyaluronic acid fillers would be the safest option as your body is already familiar with it and it’s more manageable should things go wrong. You don’t want longer-lasting fillers that are way harder to manage, especially if you’re a beginner.
How does the procedure work?
After your examination, your doctor cleans the injection areas. Compared to Botox, fillers are injected deeper into the skin. That’s why it can be more painful and you usually need a numbing cream.
Additionally, your doctor can utilize vibration tools or cold press to make you more comfortable. The good thing about fillers is that you can see the results right there. So your doctor is able to feel the fillers and massage the product in to help it settle better.
Are there any side effects?
The most common side effect associated with dermal fillers is the Tyndall effect. It happens when dermal fillers are injected superficially.
As a result, the skin on the injected area appears bluish. Another side effect is the unevenness of fillers where one area looks plumper than the other or where there are visible bumps on the skin.
As with any type of injection, you can expect a little bit of bruising and swelling. You can manage that by applying a cold press after the procedure and you should avoid taking any blood thinners before and after the procedure. Because that can increase bruising.
What happens if things go wrong?
Fortunately, there are things that can be done if complications occur. Hyaluronic acid fillers can be undone. That’s why it’s preferable.
If the Tyndall effect or any sort of unevenness occurs or if you don’t like your appearance, your doctor can dissolve hyaluronic acid filler by injecting a substance called hyaluronidase.
How long do they last?
Depending on the injected area and the type of filler, dermal fillers can last up to anywhere between 6-24 months.
Are there any benefits to getting fillers in your 30s?
The best thing about hyaluronic acid fillers is the fact that they stimulate collagen production. It can all be traced back to this study where the effects of hyaluronic acid fillers were observed for a period of several weeks. In summary, it says that there was an increase in collagen around the fillers.
And this increase is attributed to several mechanisms: “The introduction of non-animal stabilized hyaluronic acid may “push” on existing fibers and thereby create a more rigid scaffold that approximates younger dermis. This provides increased mechanical tension, stimulating fibroblasts to produce new, intact collagen” (1).
Definitely check it out, it’s a good read.
So as we mentioned earlier, getting fillers actually stimulate collagen production and improve your overall look above and beneath the surface with every treatment. And who knows, you may need fewer touch-ups compared to your initial injections.
Before going in for a consultation…
There are things you should keep in mind before going in for a consultation. First of all, go for a consultation! And don’t get anything done on that day.
Be open about what you want and listen to what your doctor thinks. Sleep on it for a few days and don’t go until you’ve done your research about your doctor.
Make sure you go to a board-certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist. This is no joke. Even if fillers can be dissolved, why risk it?
Here’s the thing; doctors don’t really enjoy it when a patient comes in and gives directions on what kind of fillers they want and how much they want it based on an article they read online. I hate to say it but doctors simply don’t like it when we know stuff!
However, if you’re seeing an expert, which you should, they will be confident enough to find a common ground where you get what you want and your doctor does it in a way he/she likes to.
Because they have their own preference for the products they use as they can feel more comfortable using certain ones. You should expect that from your doctor. And here are a couple of red flags to be on the lookout for;
If your doctor’s face looks overly-done
If they bring up some other part of your face even if you didn’t say anything about that
If they insist on giving you injections on the day of your first consultation
Leave and never come back!
Hopefully, this gave you an idea about what to expect if you’re thinking about getting fillers in your 30s. Once again, always go for a board-certified plastic surgeon!
If you’re intimidated by the whole thing and don’t want to get into it, well, you don’t have to. Before trying injectables, try our round-up of the best anti-aging serums for your 30s if you want to take matters into your own hands.
- Wang F, Garza LA, Kang S, et al. In Vivo Stimulation of De Novo Collagen Production Caused by Cross-linked Hyaluronic Acid Dermal Filler Injections in Photodamaged Human Skin. Arch Dermatol. 2007;143(2):155–163. doi:10.1001/archderm.143.2.155