Plump lips, smooth skin, full cheeks: they come naturally to some people, whilst other people get a little help from their dermatologist. If you’re unsure whether your friend or a certain celebrity has them, that’s why you’re unsure. The latest injectable treatments are not only easy to acquire, but designed for subtlety and long lasting.

Dermal fillers are also perfectly safe, provided you go to a reputable doctor and do your research first. If you want to know more about fillers, here are four things to remember before getting the pump.


1. They Are Made From Properties Found Naturally in the Skin

The first thing to know is this: they are not the same as neurotoxins like Dysport or Botox. These two injections “freeze” muscles to reduce wrinkles, whereas dermal fillers smooth out the skin by filling wrinkles – read more about that here. Collagen is commonly used for this treatment, but nowadays treatments like Juvederm or Restylane, consist of hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid has the ability to store moisture, and therefore gives the skin a hydrated, plump appearance.

It’s generally used to moisturise, but a serum o cream won’t restore lost volume – only injectable hyaluronic acid return volume. After injection, it adds to the natural plumping of the skin, or will replenish your skin’s natural hyaluronic acid production, which diminishes appearance of age.


2. It Takes Effect for Several Months, and Maybe Longer

One of the reasons this treatment has become so popular is its ability to add lasting volume and decrease wrinkles with just one visit to the dermatologist. Results usually last for three to six months, depending where it is injected.


3. It Is Incredibly Subtle

Duck lips and trout pout are a dead treatment giveaway. However, when expertly applied, the treatment looks natural. “The changes we can make are so subtle that nobody would notice,” says Ava Shamban, M.D., Los Angeles dermatologist. “Instead of seeing filler, they’d say, ‘oh I never noticed your eyes were green’.” Subtlety is key, and this treatment does it well.


4. This Is Because Techniques Have Improved

Think of the lines around your mouth, for example. 10 years ago, a treatment was often injected into the nasolabial folds, or laugh lines, to completely fill the wrinkles themselves. Nowadays, the objective is to lift and plump in other parts of the face for a more natural-looking outcome.

“As you age, your bones get thinner, and the overlying fat pads slide down,” making the skin sag lower, creating deeper folds at the bottom of the cheeks, says Whitney Bowe, M.D., New York City dermatologist. Bowe typically injects Restylane Lyft right near the cheekbone to restore fullness, in turn lifting the face, diminishing the appearance of smile lines in the process.