Dermal Fillers

As our skin ages, it gradually loses some of the collagen that it once produced in abundance. Collagen, a connecting protein whose long fibers form the mesh of tissue that holds skin cells together, is a crucial factor determining the texture and appearance of the skin. Thus, as collagen levels decline, the skin loses its elasticity and begins to sag and crease. A dermal filler injection such as Restylane®, a popular skin treatment from Dr. Mark Richards at Ageless Impressions – Plastic Surgery Institute, can temporarily mitigate this process by filling the depressions of scars and wrinkles from within. The injected solution plumps up the skin, smoothing out lines and giving it a more supple appearance. This technique can be especially effective when used to reduce the appearance of the nasolabial folds that run from the nose to the corners of the mouth.

Unfortunately, the benefits of filler injections does not last forever. The body metabolizes the injected material over time, so additional injections may routinely be needed to sustain the results. The duration of the effects varies from person to person; some find the wrinkles returning within a few weeks, while others continue to enjoy their smoother facial skin for years. While the precise mechanics of this phenomenon have not been fully worked out, it is generally accepted that a number of factors, including age, genetics, the condition of the skin, and the area treated, determine how long the benefits of filler injection treatment last.

To learn more about the dermal fillers we offer, please follow the links below. If you would like more personalized guidance, please contact our office to schedule a consultation.

Restylane® and JUVÉDERM®



Both Restylane® and our other popular dermal filler choice, JUVÉDERM™, are composed of hyaluronic acid, a gel-like substance that is naturally produced by the body. They have been refined and used by plastic surgeons for decades and are carefully formulated so as to avoid causing allergic reactions. Both have also been shown to stimulate collagen formation and thereby create long-lasting improvement with each treatment. To learn more about Restylane® options and the hyaluronic acid treatments we offer, please contact our friendly and professional staff at today.

Restylane® Lyft

Formerly known as Perlane®, Restylane® Lyft can be used to augment the cheeks to restore volume and natural, youthful-looking contour in the midfacial area. Additionally, Restylane® Lyft can soften fine lines and creases that form around the smile, called nasolabial folds, as well as other wrinkles. This treatment is FDA-approved for patients 21 years of age and older and provides instant results that can last up to a year. Regular treatment can extend the benefits, if desired.

Restylane® Silk

Thin or thinning lips and ill-defined lip contour can be a problem for patients of virtually any age. Restylane® Silk can help by restoring volume and plumping the lips with sumptuous and natural-looking results. Furthermore, Restylane® Silk can diminish vertical lines that develop above the mouth. Restylane® Silk is FDA-approved, and patients 21 years or older seeking long-lasting (up to six months or more) lip rejuvenation can benefit from this quick non-surgical treatment.

Restylane® Refyne

FDA-approved to smooth fine lines around the mouth, Restylane® Refyne is a hyaluronic acid-based dermal filler. This innovative rejuvenation method uses XpresHAn™ technology to achieve the most natural-looking results possible. Refyne is a thinner and more elastic filler that is most commonly used to soften smile lines (nasolabial folds) and creases that run from the corner of the mouth to the chin (commonly called marionette lines). However, Refyne can also be used for lip augmentation. The state-of-the-art gel formula makes it easier than ever to achieve a more youthful look while maintaining the ability to express yourself naturally. Refyne includes a local anesthetic to make your treatment as comfortable as possible, and results are virtually instantaneous. Most patients experience minimal side effects, such as bruising, swelling, and tenderness in the treated area, which should subside quickly. Refyne is for patients 21 years of age or older. The benefits typically last about a year, although your experience may vary slightly.

Restylane® Defyne

Similar to Restylane® Refyne, Restylane® Defyne is an HA-based filler that can reduce the appearance of wrinkles around the mouth. What makes Defyne distinctive is its thicker formula. Just as flexible as Refyne, Defyne offers deeper, more dramatic rejuvenation of nasolabial folds, marionette lines, and potentially other areas of concern. While Refyne is used to treat fine lines and mild to moderate creases, Defyne goes deeper to provide noticeable yet natural-looking improvement for more severe wrinkles. Defyne is FDA-approved for patients 21 years of age and above and can last up to a year. Occasional maintenance injections can extend the benefits, if desired. Downtime is typically minimal, with swelling, redness, bruising, and tenderness the most commonly reported effects. These symptoms should subside within a couple of days. Results can be seen immediately after treatment, and most individuals can return to their normal routine following the procedure.


Radiesse_LogoRADIESSE® Volumizing Filler can be very beneficial for patients looking to reduce the appearance of nasolabial folds (lines between the nose and mouth) and those who are experiencing flattening or dropping of the cheeks. This exceptional dermal filler can also smooth out wrinkles and fine lines and even improve signs of mild scarring along the face. One of the biggest advantages of RADIESSE® is that it is designed to stimulate your own natural collagen. By allowing your skin to continue replenishing itself, the results of RADIESSE® can be extraordinarily long-lasting – up to one year and even more in some cases.

RADIESSE® is FDA-approved to mix with lidocaine, which can make for a more comfortable treatment process. It is composed of many of the same minerals that are natural to the human body. The RADIESSE® injections are administered with an ultra-fine needle in the areas targeted for treatment. Total treatment time is usually only about 15 to 30 minutes. While there may be some redness and swelling in the target areas after the procedure, these effects should fade within a few days. There is typically no recovery time necessary after RADIESSE® treatment, and most patients are able to resume normal daily activities immediately. While the results of RADIESSE® are not permanent, they can be maintained with occasional follow-up treatments.


BELOTERO_LogoBELOTERO BALANCE® is an FDA-Approved hyaluronic acid-based dermal filler. Like many other HA fillers, BELOTERO BALANCE® can be used to smooth superficial facial wrinkles and fine lines with exceptional results. A unique advantage offered by this product is its soft and smooth consistency. Due to the formulation of BELOTERO BALANCE®, it is able to treat delicate areas such as crow’s feet and vertical lip lines more successfully than most other cosmetic injectables. This filler is still strong enough to address more stubborn areas, such as deep nasolabial folds, and can create beautiful, lasting results for lip augmentation. Patients can expect results to last for approximately six to nine months. To maintain results for even longer periods, Dr. Richards recommends for patients to return for occasional “touch-up” appointments.

Sculptra® Aesthetic

sculptra-logoSculptra® Aesthetic can help you regain a more youthful, refreshed appearance with very long-lasting results. Although the effects of Sculptra® Aesthetic are not immediately evident, the treatment is designed to improve facial areas targeted for rejuvenation over time. This gradual enhancement is due to the stimulation of collagen growth in the treatment areas. As the collagen is rebuilt, wrinkles and hollow areas of the face can become fuller for a healthier, more youthful appearance. In some cases, patients have been able to enjoy the benefits of Sculptra® Aesthetic for up to 2-5 years!

Dr. Richards is a Sculptra® Aesthetic–trained plastic surgeon and is utilizing this dynamic, FDA-approved treatment option for those patients looking to replace and restore their own collagen and deep soft tissue that was lost as a result of the natural aging process. Sculptra® Aesthetic is advantageous in the correction of facial folds, hollows in the cheeks, loss of jaw and cheek volume, and other contour deficiencies of the face. It’s known for its ability to gradually create attractive natural-looking results that can last well over 2 years. For most patients, a treatment regimen of 3 sessions dispersed over a period of 5 months is suggested to garner optimum results. Sculptra® Aesthetic is comprised of poly-L-lactic acid, or PLLA, which is naturally absorbed by the body and has been used safely in medicine for well over 30 years in absorbable sutures and implants.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) About Dermal Fillers

To help you find the best resources on dermal fillers, Dr. Richards has provided answers to some commonly asked questions about these innovative products. If you don’t see your question below, please contact our office to schedule a consultation with Dr. Richards.

What are the benefits of dermal fillers?

Each type of dermal filler, whether you’re interested in JUVÉDERM®, Sculptra® Aesthetic, or another option, offers unique benefits, so your treatment can be tailored to your individual needs and goals. Generally speaking, dermal fillers offer temporary rejuvenation in the treated area. Most offer immediate or quick results, and many are made with substances the body makes naturally, reducing the risk of an allergic reaction. Since dermal fillers are non-surgical, there is less concern about scarring, as there are no incisions. Furthermore, downtime is usually quite brief, as is the treatment time.

Who is a good candidate for dermal fillers?

Many women and men can benefit from dermal fillers, but not all dermal fillers are right for all people. You should be in good general health, have reasonable expectations for what can be achieved, and be interested in rejuvenating mild to moderate signs of aging on your face and/or hands. The best results typically are obtained by individuals who don’t smoke and who are committed to maintaining good skin health. Dr. Richards will evaluate you prior to treatment, and If you have any questions about dermal fillers, we will be happy to discuss them at your appointment.

Which dermal filler is right for me?

It’s difficult to guess which dermal fillers will be ideal without a thorough evaluation and conversation about what cosmetic concerns you would like to address. Some fillers soften wrinkles, others add volume to the cheeks and lips, still others offer gradual overall rejuvenation. During your consultation, we will discuss your goals and develop a customized treatment plan to achieve the optimal outcome.

What is the difference between cosmetic injectables and dermal fillers?

All injectables fall under the umbrella category of cosmetic injectables, which includes dermal fillers. That said, not all cosmetic injectables are dermal fillers. BOTOX® Cosmetic, for instance, is not a filler. It does not add, or “fill,” the skin to obtain the desired outcome, as fillers do. It’s a subtle distinction but an important one. Our medical team can go over other differences if you’re interested in learning more.

Does dermal filler treatment hurt?

We make every effort to provide a comfortable experience to our patients. Most individuals find the treatment to be quick and relatively painless. Dermal fillers often include a local anesthetic in the formula to help reduce discomfort. We can also utilize ice packs and other analgesics as needed to help make the process the best it can be.

When will I see the results?

Many of the dermal fillers we offer have the added benefit of providing virtually instant results, so you should be able to see the effects by the time you return to your normal schedule. Some dermal fillers do have a longer gestation period, and some provide additional enhancement as time goes on. We will go over what to expect during your initial visit.

For help deciding whether a dermal injectable filler will meet your needs, please take a moment to contact Dr. Richards. He and his staff will also be happy to speak with you about other procedures that interest you but are not discussed on this site.