It wasn’t long after the invention of the syringe that medical professionals began experimenting with the idea of facial fillers. The first injectable filling agent used was paraffin wax. Paraffin proved to be a less than effective option as migration, embolization (wax particles entering the bloodstream), and granulomas (small masses of tissue under the skin) were common after treatment.
In the mid-1900s, silicone injections were used to help achieve a smoother, more youthful appearance. However, this too was short-lived as the type of silicone used still caused granulomas.
It wasn’t until the 1970s that animal collagen was introduced and tested. Bovine collagen was the first agent to be approved by the FDA for cosmetic injection in 1981. Bovine collagen showed much promise, but there were still a few drawbacks. Allergic reactions and swelling occurred for some people when using bovine collagen, and results were not long-lasting.
Hyaluronic acid, a natural substance that is already found in our bodies, was FDA approved in the 2000s and has been a mainstay for dermal fillers ever since. Dermal fillers with hyaluronic acid (HA) last much longer than bovine collagen and this substance is less reactive in the body.
- Fill in deep lines and wrinkles around the nose, mouth and chin
- Restore and enhance volume in the lips and cheeks
- Reduce acne scars
Although fillers offer temporary results, they can now last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years depending on the formulation and are easily maintained.