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Different Types of Dermal Fillers: Comparing Facial Fillers

Different Types of Dermal Fillers: Comparing Facial Fillers

April 08, 2022

12 min read

When people think about reversing the aging process, Botox often comes to mind first. Botox is ideal for smoothing wrinkles and can help you appear younger. However, dermal fillers are ideal for addressing issues that Botox cannot. The desired outcome defines which type of filler would work best in different areas. Let’s explore the types of dermal filler injectables and how they can add a fresh appearance to the face.

What Are Fillers Made With?

There are many types of dermal fillers each with subtle differences. Fillers can vary in consistency from very fluid and watery to thicker gel. Our injectors determine which filler to use depending on where the placement will be, patient goal outcomes, and clinical indication. Here are some considerations to keep in mind depending on your desired results.

Temporary Fillers

Temporary fillers slowly dissolve over time, many lasting anywhere from months to years.

Hyaluronic Acid (HA) Fillers

Hyaluronic acid is a substance that occurs naturally in your skin, helping it to stay hydrated and plump. HA dermal fillers are soft and resemble gel, lasting anywhere from 6-12 months depending on where the filler is placed and how the body metabolizes the products. Many of today’s HA fillers are infused with lidocaine to keep pain to a minimum during treatment. HA dermal filler brands include Juvederm products such as Voluma, Volbella, and Vollure. Restylane products such as Kysse, Lyft, and Silk are also HA fillers.

Collagen-Based Fillers

Collagen-based fillers are also popular as our body naturally contains collagen, a natural protein that helps add structure and strength to the skin. Although collagen-based fillers were the first to hit the market, they are slowly becoming less popular due to the rise in popularity of HA fillers.

Calcium Hydroxylapatite (CaHA) Fillers

Calcium hydroxylapatite is naturally found primarily in the bones of the human body. When used in a filler, the calcium particles are so microscopic and result in a smooth, gel-like formula. This filler is known commercially as Radiesse. Although the consistency of CaHA fillers is by comparison thicker than other filler types, the results last longer. Most patients see their results for about 12 months. CaHA helps to stimulate the body’s natural collagen production as well.

Semi-Permanent Fillers (Poly-L-lactic Acid)

juvederm lip filler

Another dermal filler type (Sculptra) is referred to as semi-permanent. The material is a biocompatible acid that is safe to use in the human body although it is synthetic, hence dissolvable stitches contain this material, for instance. Technically speaking, poly-L-lactic acid stimulates collagen, acting to smooth fine lines and rebuild your body’s natural collagen levels. This type of filler is ideal for treating deeper facial wrinkles and may last 2+ years depending on the individual.

Permanent Fillers – Polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA)

Another option for dermal filler injections is more permanent (Bellafill). Polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) takes the form of a tiny ball referred to as a microsphere that sits beneath the skin. This microsphere helps to provide continued support to the treatment area. In addition, this type of dermal filler contains collagen to help provide structure and firmness. A common brand name of PMMA includes Bellafill.

How to Choose the Best Dermal Filler Before You Use

So, with so many options on the market, how can you choose the right dermal filler for you? In addition to factoring in your budget and aesthetic preferences, you’ll want to choose the right filler based on your individual skin needs. For example, maybe you have some sun damage or maybe your skin is quickly losing its elasticity. These factors will all play into the ideal option for you, something that your provider can talk through with you during your consultation. Though the choice of filler usually remains on the provider, it’s always better to do your research beforehand, so you can choose the best fit for your needs as the provider will guide you through the process and procedure.

Fillers are not one-size-fits-all and it’s important to do your necessary research and follow the guidance of a professional injector to help determine which filler variety is best for you. Don’t choose the type of filler thAt fit your friend or family member. Metropolitan Skin Clinic recommend that you come in for a consultation before you make up your mind about any dermal filler. Our injectors can evaluate your candidacy and options and guide you to the best decision to meet your goals.

One of the most common compounds found in dermal fillers is hyaluronic acid (HA). Hyaluronic acid-based fillers are ideal for treating a variety of skin concerns including:

  • Contour and check restoration caused by deep fat pad loss or bone loss
  • Smile lines that run from the side of the nose to the corners of the mouth
  • Redefining the lip border or adding subtle volume to the lips
  • Marionette lines at the corners of the mouth
  • Restoring hydration to the lips or mid-face
  • Earlobe restoration
  • Smoker’s lines that have developed on the mouth
  • Tear trough, infraorbital hollows, and dark undereye correction

Because HA is naturally occurring in the body, it is completely safe to inject. In fact, the body’s connective tissues and the fluid surrounding the eyes contain HA in rather high concentrations.

JUVÉDERM® Ultra and Ultra XC

juvederm filler

Juvederm filler is one of the most popular brands on the market. Ultra and Ultra XC injections may treat mild to medium-depth wrinkles that are located from your nose and extend to the corners of your mouth. Juvederm may also be the right choice to smooth depressed scars and enhance the lips. If you are hoping to smooth subtle wrinkles or plump areas that have experienced fat loss, Juvederm Ultra and Ultra XC may be an excellent choice. This filler’s results last up to 12 months.


Volbella is another Juvederm filler type made from a blend of molecular weights of HA. It works best to increase the fullness of the lips and soften the lines surrounding the mouth. Due to its thinnest and most spreadable gel, many opt for Volbella to fill in acne scars and smooth the delicate under-eye area. How long does this Juvederm variety last? Volbella typically lasts up to 12 months depending on the patient.


Next in the Juvederm filler variety is Vollure. You can think of it as the middle child of the Juvederm family as it is a mixture of spreadable yet durable products. It allows for natural facial expressions after the injection has been made, making it ideal for targeting nasolabial folds and marionette lines. Those looking to fill in moderate wrinkles and to give the lower portion of their face a refresh often opt for Vollure XC. This is one of the longest-lasting hyaluronic filler types on the market with patients noticing results for up to 18 months following the injection.


Voluma is the strongest and thickest variety in the Juvederm family and it is ideal for treating deeper injections into the cheeks. If you have noticed that you’re losing volume in your face, consider Voluma XC as a solution. Juvederm cheek filler injections such as Voluma XC can last for up to two years and there is no downtime after the procedure.

How Do Facial Fillers Work?

As we previously mentioned, the main ingredient in dermal fillers such as Juvederm is hyaluronic acid, sugar in the body that helps provide moisture, volume, and elasticity. With time and the natural aging process, the skin loses its volume which makes underlying wrinkles more likely to appear.

HA, as soon as injected, acts like a sponge and attracts water to the skin. The results are plump, full skin that looks refreshed.

Benefits of HA injections include:

  • Near-instant smoothing results
  • Increase in collagen production
  • More adaptable as a natural element in the body
  • No risk of an allergic reaction hence it is found naturally in the body

Schedule a Consultation Today!

If you’re looking for a reliable medical professional in the Minneapolis and Twin Cities area to help walk you through dermal fillers, the Metropolitan Skin Clinic is only a phone call away. In addition to injectables, we also offer laser treatments and general skin care treatments to help you look and feel your best. Don’t hesitate to schedule a consultation with our incredible team!

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