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It goes without saying that high, well-defined cheekbones have become one of the most sought-after facial features in the 21st century. While sharp features are mainly attributed to genetics, they can also be achieved cosmetically through the use of dermal fillers. Apart from enhancing the cheekbones, cheek fillers can also help restore facial volume loss and reduce fine lines and wrinkles, giving rise to a more rejuvenated, youthful appearance. Before proceeding to get cheek fillers done, however, you must first have a thorough consultation with a cosmetic specialist. At Canova Medical in Wilmslow, Cheshire, our cosmetic experts are more than happy to discuss dermal fillers with you and recommend any alternative options that may suit you depending on your particular situation.

More on cheek fillers

Like all dermal fillers, cheek fillers are injectable solutions composed of biodegradable hyaluronic acid (HA), a naturally occurring substance in the body that works to hydrate the skin cells and provide much-needed support and structure. These injectable fillers give a boost of HA to the skin, restoring volume and vigour for a youthful-looking appearance.

Apart from cheek enhancement, cheek fillers can also be used to:

  • Improve the appearance of under-eye circles: Sagging cheeks can cause under-eye circles to appear darker and more prominent. Strategic placement of the cheek filler in close proximity to the nose bridge can add more plumpness to the under-eye area and drastically improve its appearance.
  • Reduce the visibility of smile lines: As we age, the production of collagen and elastin decreases — these are two key proteins responsible for giving the skin its elasticity and firmness. As these proteins decrease in production, the skin in and around the cheek area starts to loosen up over time, giving rise to smile lines. Fillers can help lift the cheeks and make smile lines less noticeable.
  • Restore volume loss in the temples: Loss of cheek volume can also contribute to loss of volume in the temples. Strategic placement of the cheek filler in the location where the cheekbones and temples intersect can fill in the temple area and visibly improve its appearance.
  • Act as a sub-in for makeup: Placing the filler in a location where natural light shines directly on the cheekbones provides more lift to the cheeks, effectively eliminating the need for makeup contouring and highlighting.

It is important to note, however, that cheek fillers are a non-surgical treatment that only provides temporary results. As such, filler effects are typically expected to gradually fade over time, which means touch-up sessions are necessary to maintain your results.

Am I a suitable candidate for cheek fillers?

You may be a good candidate for cheek fillers if you are a non-smoker with no chronic health problems. However, it is highly recommended that you avoid getting cheek fillers done if:

  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding
  • You have autoimmune or bleeding disorders
  • You have certain infections or skin conditions
  • You are allergic to the substances present in dermal fillers

During your consultation at Canova Medical, we will conduct a thorough review of your medical history to determine your candidacy for dermal fillers.

What is the cheek filler treatment like?

Prior to getting cheek fillers done, you will be asked to discontinue any blood thinning medication two weeks before the procedure is scheduled to be performed so as to minimise the risk of bruising. The entire procedure usually takes up to 30 minutes to complete and you can expect to feel minimal to no pain throughout. The steps are typically as follows:

  1. The treatment area(s) will be thoroughly cleaned prior to applying a topical anaesthetic (in some cases, the injectable filler will already be mixed with a numbing agent)
  2. Small amounts of the filler will then be injected into various areas of the cheeks
  3. Cool packs may then be placed onto the treated areas after administering the injections

You can expect to see some improvements immediately right after the procedure is complete; however, in some cases, it may take days, weeks, or even months to see the final results. Additionally, since there is little to no downtime for recovery, you can resume your normal activities straight away. While you may experience some pain, discomfort, redness, swelling, or bruising over the next couple of days post-procedure, these side effects will gradually subside over time.

What you should avoid after the treatment

Although there is next to no downtime for recovery, there are a couple of things you need to avoid doing immediately after getting cheek fillers done. Most notably, you should avoid:

  • Exposure to the sun: This is very important to ensure the healing process is not disrupted. If you do need to go outside, make it a habit to wear protective clothing such as a hat and apply sunscreen with an SPF of at least 50.
  • Touching your face: If harmful bacteria happens to make its way onto the treated areas, this may increase your risk of infection and impact your results; hence, you should avoid touching your face for at least two to three days post-procedure.

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  • Sleeping on your cheeks: Although rare, sleeping on your cheeks may cause your fillers to migrate out of position. As such, you should try sleeping on your back to prevent this from happening.
  • Strenuous exercise: Engaging in high-impact physical activity may also cause your cheek fillers to be displaced from their original position. Therefore, you should wait up to at least 48 hours for the fillers to set in place before performing any strenuous exercise.

How long do cheek fillers last?

Cheek fillers are typically expected to last for as long as two years but this depends on several factors, such as how often you smoke, your alcohol consumption, and your diet. Those who smoke and consume large amounts of alcohol tend to be at risk of premature skin ageing which will affect the results obtained from filler treatment. A nutritious diet that is rich in vitamins and low in fatty food products can prolong your results as it will help provide protection against free radicals that cause premature ageing. Regularly attending touch-up sessions can also help extend your results.

Cheek Augmentation: A surgical alternative to dermal fillers

While the effects from dermal fillers are temporary, there is indeed a way to achieve permanent results — this is done via cheek augmentation. Cheek augmentation entails treatments such as fat grafting and cheek implants, both of which are surgical procedures that provide long-lasting results.

Fat grafting

The process of fat grafting is very simple, with the initial step involving very carefully harvesting fat cells from a donor site such as the abdomen or thighs. These fat cells will then be purified in a sterile environment before being inserted into syringes for injection into the treatment areas (i.e. the cheeks) in small amounts. Injecting in small amounts ensures a successful, smoother-looking outcome.

Fat grafting is a painless procedure as anaesthesia is often administered beforehand, and rejection by the body as a result of the treatment is very unlikely. Downtime for recovery is necessary, with most patients needing up to two weeks or more before returning to normal activities.

Cheek implants

Like fat grafting, anaesthesia is also administered prior to the cheek implant procedure to ensure you remain comfortable throughout. Incisions will then be made either in the lower eyelid area or just inside the mouth for insertion of the implants before finally being closed up with sutures or skin adhesives.

Unlike fat grafting, however, rejection might occur as the implants may be identified as foreign objects by the body, thus starting off a negative response from the immune system. Infection might also occur after the procedure which may require implant removal. In some mild cases, this can be treated with antibiotics. Downtime is also necessary with cheek implants, and patients may need up to two weeks of recovery before returning to their regular activities.

While fat grafting and cheek implants provide permanent results, the main advantage of dermal fillers is the non-requirement of downtime for recovery, making it a rather convenient procedure to consider getting done.

Looking to enhance your cheeks with dermal fillers? Schedule a consultation with Canova Medical today!

From dermal fillers to fat grafts to implants, there are many options to choose from when it comes to cheek enhancement, which can make the selection process seem rather daunting. This does not have to be the case, however, so long as you consult an experienced cosmetic specialist who will help determine which option best suits your particular needs.

If you are looking to get more information on cheek enhancement and you are located in or around the Stockport, Manchester, or Cheshire area, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at Canova Medical located at 36A Alderley Road, Wilmslow SK9 1JX. To schedule a consultation at our clinic, you can call us at 01625 529942 or book your consultation online today.