Skin Deep

New filler, Voluma, is best one yet

Get a more youthful looking face in 30 minutes!

Dermal filler injections have literally changed the face of aging and have given dermatologists and plastic surgeons the ability to reverse the visible effects of time instantly.

In exciting news, the Food and Drug Administration recently approved Voluma to temporarily correct age-related volume loss in the cheek area. It is the first and only filler approved to enhance cheek volume.

Although comprised of hyaluronic acid (HA) like other injectables on the market (such as Juvéderm and Restylane), Voluma is formulated using VYCROSS™ technology that produces a filler with more lift and a longer duration than other fillers on the market. Voluma was designed to restore facial volume as opposed to just filling wrinkles.

The best news is that Voluma can last up to two years and the results are visible immediately after the injection. Over the last three years, I have been involved in the FDA trials that led to Voluma’s approval, and I think it’s the best filler I’ve ever used because it flows easily and consistently, allowing me to sculpt the face and lend a fuller, more youthful appearance.

How to make the face look younger

Loss of volume in the cheeks leads to sagging skin and an aged, hollow appearance.

Combining dermal fillers and botulinum toxins (like Botox), skin-tightening procedures such as Ulthera and Venus Legacy, and using a proper skincare regimen that includes retinol and vitamin C can make you appear years younger and healthier. Add in a healthy diet, regular sleep, an exercise program and a positive attitude and your endorphins will pitch in on your quest for a youthful appearance.

In the past, dieting and exercise would sometimes lead to a thin face and an aged appearance. It is no longer necessary to choose between your face and your body.

With Voluma, you can have the athletic body you want but keep a full youthful face.

How to find a doctor?

Visit for a board-certified dermatologist in your area. Of course it is crucial to choose a well-trained doctor with an artistic eye. This is not a time to count pennies—this is your face and it leaves a lasting impression upon those you come into contact with.

The goal of Voluma is to give the face a natural youthful appearance, not to create a fake-looking bloated face. If you see someone who looks overdone, ask them whom their doctor is and do not go to him or her!

What are the risks of Voluma?

As with other injectable fillers, side effects can occur. In the research study that led to FDA approval of Voluma, the temporary side effects noted were tenderness, swelling, lumps, bumps and pain. Bruising is always a potential side effect, but this can be minimized by avoiding aspirin, ibuprofen, omega-3s, salmon and red wine prior to your appointment.

Although Voluma contains an anesthetic, a topical numbing cream anesthetic can be used for optimal comfort.

What are the other options to increase face volume?

Voluma is the only HA filler approved to treat loss facial volume. Sculptra was approved around 2004 to treat the facial atrophy seen in HIV patients, but it can result in hard bumps under the skin. Other HA fillers such as Restylane, Perlane and Juvéderm exist but are not FDA approved to increase facial volume and do not last as long as Voluma does. I recommend that you stick with HA fillers and avoid fillers that cannot be easily reversed.

What is hyaluronic acid?

Hyaluronic acid is a sugar that occurs naturally in the skin and gives it a plump appearance. Levels of HA in the skin decline with age. HA is dissolved with a naturally occurring enzyme called hyaluronidase. Free radicals due to sun exposure and cigarette smoking can also decrease levels of HA in the skin.

Hyaluronic acid is used in other areas of the medical field. For example, it is injected into arthritic joints to help with movement and discomfort.

You can find HA in supplements but these are not effective because stomach acids break down the HA. Glucosamine supplements may help the skin make its own HA. HA is placed in many topical creams but its large molecule size limits its ability to be absorbed. Injecting HA is the most effective way to get HA into the skin.

Voluma is the latest and longest lasting injectable HA filler to hit the market. Welcome Voluma! We have been waiting for you.

Dr. Leslie Baumann is a board-certified dermatologist and the CEO of the Baumann Cosmetic & Research Institute in Miami Beach.

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