Dr. Jacono Discusses Overfilling the Face leading to Filler Fatigue
The Dangers of Overfilling the Face
For better or worse, the modern social media user has fallen in love with facial filler. Restylane, Belotero, Radiesse, and Voluma have become household names, and dominate conversations about beauty and wellness. The reason for this is simple. These cosmetic treatments, while temporary, offer excellent results that circumvent the need for surgery. Patients can smooth wrinkles, fill hollow cheeks, and even augment their lips. What’s more, a typical filler session lasts anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, and recovery time is negligible. Most people can return to work immediately after treatment. There are also rarely any complications more severe than redness and mild swelling.
The problem with fillers, however, is that they can be overused. A persistent obsession with injectables may not only distort normal, proportional features but make a person look completely unnatural.
“These days, you can quickly spot overfilling,” says Dr. Jacono. “People who have had too much filler have faces that are as big as cabbages. I see men and women like this all the time. They’ve had too much work done, and it does them no good. Most of the time, too, they’re unhappy with how they look.”
Dr. Jacono is one of a growing number of cosmetic surgeons who feel that embracing fillers makes users look older. There are a few reasons for this, but the good news is that there are ways to prevent this from happening.
Remember: Facial Filler Isn’t a Time Machine
The main reason that people overfill their faces is a belief that injectables can solve all aging problems. The primary issue with this thinking is that it is untrue.
“The unfortunate reality is that you can’t knock more than four years off your appearance with filler,” says Dr. Jacono. “A lot of people will try to make you believe that you can, but injectables can’t compare with surgery. Fillers also have diminishing returns, which can be a major turn-off for more discerning patients. It’s frustrating to have to constantly return to your doctor for touch-ups.”
According to Dr. Jacono, some physicians fill the face too much. This makes it appear unnaturally large and wide, and therefore older.
“We associate a lack of proportion with advanced age,” he explains. “This causes real problems for the skin, as fillers act like tissue expanders. When you overfill for a long period of time, it adds weight to the skin, and also stretches it. This can exacerbate problems like jowling, wrinkling, and sagging. It’s a shame to see.”
Some dermatologists feel that such issues only occur if massive amounts of filler are injected. However, Dr. Jacono insists that this happens more than we realize. Even the most careful consumers are at risk.
“Doctors are incentivized to use more products,” he notes. “This is definitely unscrupulous, but it doesn’t stop all practitioners from doing it.”
Go Easy on Botox
When used in appropriate doses, Botox is a miracle drug. Botulinum toxin, Botox’s active ingredient, limits the movement of certain muscles. It also undoes deeper lines and wrinkles.
That said, Botox can create an unnatural smoothness. It may even make the skin look shiny and waxen. For this reason, Dr. Jacono usually uses half the recommended amount of Botox to get the most natural outcomes.
“In my view, less is more when it comes to aesthetic treatment,” elaborates Dr. Jacono. “It’s better to err on the side of caution. Otherwise, patients may come out looking overdone, and that is not want anyone wants.”
Keep a Record
It is common for filler patients to suffer from a phenomenon known as “filler fatigue.” Dr. Jacono has noticed this, especially in recent years.
“The more filler people use, the more they think they need next time,” says Dr. Jacono. “The same goes for Botox and other injectable options. To prevent yourself from overdoing things, take photos of your face after each appointment. You can also ask an honest friend with an anti-aging regimen what they think. It’s good to get other opinions and make sure that you aren’t doing too much.”
In short, it’s best to stay as measured and objective as possible. After all, there are few things more embarrassing than coming out of the doctor’s office looking like your face has expanded to three times its size.
Credit: Harper’s Bazaar, May 2019—Is Your Work Making You Look Older? by Emily Listfield