Dermal filling – what is it and how does it work?

Whether you have seen it marketed as lip plumping, dermal fillers W1 or hyaluronic therapy, the dermal filler looks set to be a cosmetic procedure that is not going away. First made available in the mid 1980s, their popularity hit an all-time high in 2019 and despite the uncertainty of high street providers operating due to lockdown restrictions, there has been no lull in their popularity.

As a treatment for the signs of ageing, or the accentuation of facial features, fillers are an effective option. They are non-invasive and temporary, lowering the barrier to entry as compared to cosmetic surgery and are widely available, due to the procedure being legally categorised as a non-invasive treatment that can be administered without medical training or qualifications.

The online marketing around fillers has been patchy at best and there are a few things to keep in mind when shopping for a provider. Non-invasive status of fillers put them in the same legal framework as hair-bleaching, dyeing and chemical peels; all of these procedures use potentially hazardous materials, but when performed properly, they are very safe.


Lip fillers are reversible; most high street providers will call hyaluronic fillers semi-permanent because of the 4-6 months it takes for them to be broken down. This can be accelerated with the injection of an enzyme into the site of the fillers, allowing them to be reabsorbed in hours.

cosmetic fillers


UV light is to be avoided immediately after receiving fillers. Hyaluronic acid is unstable under UV light and can make new fillers particular volatile. The use of sunbeds should be avoided for a few days to allow your fillers to settle in. Facial massaging should be avoided. When fillers are being applied, the freshly injected filler is mobile beneath the skin, allowing it to be moved and ‘sculpted.’ If you have received fillers, massage after fillers can cause them to be moved or ‘blurred’.

Choose provider carefully

Lip fillers result in shocking and extreme changes when performed badly. It is relatively simple to inflate a person’s lips and in some beauty salons that may be the desired goal, but dermal fillers are best used cautiously and with finesse to plump tissues around wrinkles or smile lines, to give an overall naturally rejuvenated youthful appearance.

Hyaluronic acid fillers are extremely safe, but that doesn’t mean that there has not been harm done with inappropriate use. But the chances of an allergic reaction occurring are very low.

Just like finding a skilled colourist or a tattoo artist, always ask to see the clinician’s portfolio as proof of their past work and look up Yelp or other online reviews.

Have confidence

Fillers performed at dental clinics are the safest and often of the highest quality. Dentists are highly regulated and have to maintain their training and the quality of the treatment rooms, which are kept at a much higher standard than the average beauty salon. Dental teams are medically trained in anatomy and have lots of expertise in facial symmetry as well as performing cosmetic treatments, which results in some very professionally applied lip fillers with striking and natural-looking results.

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