2nd November 2021

Cheek Fillers: Everything You Have to Know

Last Modified: April 30, 2024

People often associate high cheekbones with personal beauty. Unfortunately, this opens up room for those who have low or barely visible cheekbones to feel self-conscious.

One way to address such insecurities is to use cheek fillers.

These fillers are a non-invasive way to plump and lift the cheekbones while eliminating the fine lines and wrinkles on your face.

Does this sound like something for you?

If so, then before you begin this treatment, you must understand ALL the aspects of it.

Our experts at Dr Aesthetica have put together this complete guide to cheek fillers:

What cheek fillers are exactly, the risks associated with cheek fillers, whether the treatment is painful, and more.

What are Cheek Fillers

Cheek fillers are a non-surgical way to lift and sculpt your cheekbones. This procedure involves applying dermal fillers to the cheek to restore its volume and give it a fantastic lift.

The dermal fillers are made from hyaluronic acid. This acid may sound scary, but it is a natural sugar found in the connective tissue of our skin. The main function of the acid is to bind water to make your skin plump and hydrated.

So when hyaluronic acid is injected into your skin, it improves the dimension of your cheeks, giving them more volume and symmetry.

Some other types of fillers contain polylactic acid.

The original cheek filler substance

Hyaluronic acid may be the most popular substance in a filler, but the history of fillers goes back hundreds of years. By looking at the past, we can understand how reliable and safe modern fillers have become.

The first filler injected into a patient's cheek dates back to 1890. This filler consisted of fat harvested from the patient's arm.

A few decades later, a more reasonable but strange filler substance was chosen: Bovine collagen. These collagens were obtained from cows and required a sensitivity test to ensure that the foreign substance was suitable for the body.

Unfortunately, this cheek filler caused severe swelling and did not produce lasting results. A better product was needed.

After intensive research, a better substance was finally found. Approved by the FDA in the early 2000s, hyaluronic acid was natural, long-lasting and caused minimal pain. It was revolutionary and is a testament to how far the industry has come.

Cheekbone filler syringe
Cheekbone filler application process

Should I get Cheek Fillers?

Cheek fillers are a good option for older people. As we age, our cheekbones become narrower. Combined with the loss of cheek fat, which provides an attractive "round" quality, our cheeks look increasingly sunken and hollow.

For such patients, a dermal filler is an excellent recommendation for rejuvenating the cheeks.

However, a cheek filler is suitable for anyone who feels self-conscious about this area of the face. For example, many younger patients come to us because one-half of their face feels "droopy" or because both cheeks have lost volume.

Lifestyle factors can also cause a hollow appearance. Extreme dieting, smoking, prolonged sun exposure and excessive stress are causes of sunken cheeks.

How long does the treatment last?

Nothing in life is permanent, not even a cheek filler. Most fillers last between 6 months and 2 years before they dissolve and pass into the skin tissue.

Such a short period of time may upset some people. But because this procedure is painless, has a short recovery time and is non-invasive, you can comfortably take a yearly injection every year to keep your cheeks plump.

Is the treatment painful?

Most doctors first coat your skin with a numbing cream before starting the treatment. This minimises the pain. You may also feel some pressure after the filler injection, but there should be no severe pain.

After the procedure, the doctor will give you some ice to relieve the immediate swelling and prevent further pain.

injection of cheekbone filler

The procedure of Cheek Fillers

Consultation

You MUST see a trained skin specialist when getting a cheek filler. If your filler is injected too high or too low, your results may look “fake”.

In addition, incorrect injection of fillers can lead to drastic changes in various facial movements, such as smiling. Therefore, it is always important to inform yourself about the clinic in advance.

If you are really unhappy with the fillers, you can have them removed. Then your doctor will inject some hyaluronidase. This is an enzyme that breaks down hyaluronic acid. The procedure is quick and the results are immediate, but it can be very painful.

At Dr Aesthetica, your dermal fillers will be administered by Dr Baldeep Farmah, one of the UK's leading experts in such treatments. For more information about Dr Farmah, click on the link here.

When you visit our clinic, your facial anatomy will be analysed and your goals discussed during your consultation. We aim to provide you with tailored solutions so you do not have to worry about getting the infamous 'overdone' look.

Once we have settled on (realistic) expectations, we will provide you with a cost estimate and make an appointment for the injections.

Procedure

It is strongly recommended that you avoid blood thinning medications - such as aspirin - prior to the procedure. Other medications and supplements that you should avoid will be explained to you by your dermatologist.

During your appointment, you will be taken to a sterilised environment. Your doctor will give you a topical anaesthetic, numbing cream or something similar. The fillers themselves often contain numbing agents as well.

The injection process is simple and only takes about 20 minutes. The results will probably be visible immediately or in a day or two (after the filler has settled in your face).

Cheek fillers are very popular with patients because of the minimal downtime. If you wish, you can return to work or other appointments immediately after treatment. However, for best results, we recommend that you do not apply too much pressure to your cheeks. Otherwise, the filler substance may be displaced.

Therefore, you should avoid strenuous exercise for the first few days (at least 48 hours). It is also advisable to sleep flat on your back to avoid putting extra pressure on your cheeks. Finally, do not touch your cheeks, but try to keep your face as clean as possible to avoid infections.

Most of our patients can drive themselves after the procedure.

What are the benefits of cheek fillers?

There are TONS of benefits of cheek fillers that make them a much more attractive option than cheek implants and surgical facelifts. The most obvious benefits of such treatment are:

The ease of treatment with a cheek filler: most dermal fillers can be performed in a dermatologist's office with little or no anaesthesia.

Long-lasting: even though a cheek filler is not permanent, it can last for more than a year. This has the added benefit that you can remove/change the filler if you are not satisfied.

Low risk: Unlike other treatments, cheek fillers have a low risk of infection as long as the patient maintains proper hygiene.

Low price: Unlike plastic surgery, cheek fillers are cheaper and more affordable than traditional fillers. We will discuss the cost of fillers in the following sections.

cheekbone filler male application

Are cheek fillers safe?

Cheek fillers have a low risk and minimal recovery time. However, all treatments have side effects, and a cheek filler is no different. Some of these side effects are as follows:

Swelling may occur at the injection site, and bruising is also to be expected due to the pressure applied to the area. While the skin is healing, itching may also occur.

Some rare side effects - the likelihood of which may be increased if the procedure is performed by an unlicensed and inexperienced provider - are as follows:

Leakage of the filler, death of some tissues due to blockage of blood flow to the face, injury to veins and arteries, loss of vision, the substance may migrate to other parts of your face. This may result in a lumpy and asymmetrical appearance.

If this does not go away after a few hours/days, the doctor may inject another round of filler to even out the face.

Cheek filler costs

Every person is unique and deserves their own skin care plan. Therefore, the price of your dermal filler will vary. However, the most important factor that determines the cost of the treatment is the amount of filler injected into the cheek.

As the loss of volume in the cheek varies from person to person, the amount of substance injected into the cheek also varies from person to person. To get a general idea of our price, please click on the link here.

At Dr Aesthetica, each treatment is tailored to your unique face.

Other ways to change the cheekbones

If injections are not an option for you, here are some other ways to modify your cheekbones.

Make-up

Let us say you want higher cheekbones but do not want to undergo cosmetic surgery. In this case, you can use make-up to make your face narrower and more concave. A combination of bronzer, highlighter and a make-up brush can achieve the desired look to a certain extent.

There are numerous videos on YouTube that explain how you can change your cheekbones with make-up, depending on the shape of your face and the products available.

Cheek implants

A permanent solution to improving your cheekbones is cheek implants. Often referred to as a 'cheek lift', these implants take the form of solid silicone and are inserted into the side of your mouth via a small incision - made by a plastic surgeon.

This procedure requires a general anaesthetic and recovery can be uncomfortable. Many people have complained of swollen faces, a few days of pain and discomfort for a few weeks. Due to the nature of the procedure, cheek implants are associated with a number of side effects.

Below are some of them, courtesy of plasticsurgery.org:

  • Numbness or other changes in skin sensation
  • Fatty tissue located deep in the skin may die (fat necrosis)
  • Poor aesthetic outcome of the donor site for fat transfer
  • Poor healing of incisions
  • Possibility of repeat surgery
  • Skin discolouration and/or persistent swelling
  • Fatty tissue located deep in the skin may die (fat necrosis)Suboptimal aesthetic outcome
  • Thick scar tissue around the cheek implant (capsular contracture)
  • Unfavourable scarring

Get your cheek fillers today!

Cheek fillers are simple and relatively long-lasting. With the help of an excellent skin specialist, you can make your cheekbones exactly the way you want them.

Not sure where to find such an expert?

Well, look no further. Dr Baldeep Farmah of Dr Aesthetica is one of the UK's leading experts in such treatments. Hyper-personalised treatment will transform your face!

Post Reviewed by: Dr Baldeep Farmah
Medically Reviewed on: 2nd November 2021
Dr Baldeep Farmah is the Medical Director and lead Doctor of Dr Aesthetica, a Medical Aesthetic Clinic.

"We want to empower everyone who walks through our clinic doors, to be able to look in the mirror and see a happier, brighter version of themselves."

For everyone that walks through our clinic doors, you may think you are alone, but you are not. Our patients all have a different story to tell but all come from a similar place.
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