Troubled by eye bags, lines under the eyes, and dark eye circles? Here we explain how under eye (tear trough) dermal fillers can improve these issues that make you look tired and sullen.
Because the skin around the eyes is extremely thin, the area under the eyes is one of the first areas that show signs of ageing. With medical advancements, this can be treated without going for surgery.
Under eye (tear trough) fillers, in particular, can help lighten the shadows in dark eye circles, fill up the hollows under the eyes, and improve the appearance of lines and wrinkles around the eyes.
Find out more about eye bags, tear trough deformities, dark eye shadows/circles and their causes
Most under eye (tear trough) fillers are soft gel-like substances composed mainly of hyaluronic acid, a compound found naturally in the body’s connective tissues and skin.
Some common brands of under eye fillers available in Singapore are Restylane, Juvederm, Belotero; the list goes on. For a list of brands and prices or cost of under eye fillers available at SL Aesthetic Clinic, head on down to the bottom of the article.
Before under eye (tear trough) fillers came along, the only treatment options to treat sunken eyes and to remove eye bags were surgery; blepharoplasty or a fat transfer by a plastic surgeon.
Now, you can get your eye bags or eye shadows fixed without going under the knife with various non-invasive treatments. Under eye (tear trough) fillers is one example where the under eye areas can be treated safely, effectively, with little downtime, to give immediate results.
Under eye fillers can help improve the appearance of dark eye circles and shadows caused by a loss of volume in the area that produces sunken eyes. By adding volume with dermal fillers, the area under the eyes does not appear as hollow as before. This reduces the shadows with a plumped up tear trough. In addition, as hyaluronic acid is a water-loving molecule, it attracts water to the treated area to hydrate and plump up the skin.
With that said, however, dark eye circles can also appear due lifestyle factors such as a lack of sleep and/or alcohol consumption. It could also form with the thinning out of the skin and collagen loss with the ageing process. Nasal allergies can also lead to a dilation of the blood vessels in the tear trough area, giving it a dark purplish appearance. Dark eye circles can also be attributed to genetics and can be hereditary.
With treating eye bags, under eye fillers are carefully injected around the eye bags, specifically the lines and grooves that form the perimeter of the eye bags. This helps camouflage the eye bags so they look less conspicuous.
Eye bags can form with age and loss of collagen. With ageing, the natural fad pads, or fat deposits around your eyes sag and droop, which can result in eye bags forming. Many times, the doctor may use a combination of treatments for a more comprehensive approach. This can include other collagen stimulating treatments such as the Fotona SmoothEye Laser, Thermage Eye Firming, or Eye Bag Thread Lifting.
That will depend on how your eye shadow or eye bag is formed. If you have sunken eyes or a tear trough that looks deep with fine static lines that appear without movement, then dermal fillers are the most suitable treatment.
On the other hand, if your condition looks more like the skin under your eyes are sagging, then collagen stimulating treatments such as Thermage, Fotona SmoothEye Laser or Eye Bag Thread Lifting may be more for you.
To know for sure, we recommend discussing your concerns in a consultation with our doctor to determine the optimal treatment option for you.
A tear trough is a groove or line that develops from the inner corner of the eye (Class I) and extends all the way to the other side of the eye (Class III).
A significant indicator of ageing is when the groove lines or hollowing of the under eyes are paired with a pair cheeks that have flattened.
How this tear trough deformity appears during ageing is when fat loss occurs and cheek plumpness gradually fades, which eventually leads to the fat pads under the eyes to reduce and move, forming the tear trough grooves.
With dermal fillers we can immediately improve the appearance of deep tear troughs. Fillers are used to fill up lost volume in the area, which levels out the hollows and reduces shadowing.
Because improvements can be seen right after treatment, patients look refreshed and less “tired”.
However, treating the tear trough alone may not be sufficient. As volume loss in the cheeks is a contributing factor to tear trough formation, we also recommend a combination of cheek fillers as added support to the under eye area.
Under eye dermal fillers are carefully injected using a micro-cannula needle to the tear trough area of the under eye to volumise the hollows surrounding the eyes. This makes the eye bags less apparent.
Before treatment, the doctor will determine if the under eye dermal filler is a suitable treatment for you. Thereafter, anaesthetic numbing cream is applied to the under eye area for about 30 minutes or less. On top of the topical anaesthetic, the under eye filler itself also contains anaesthetic properties for added comfort.
There are 2 types of needles used for under eye filler injection: a sharp but short needle or a blunt but long micro-cannula.
While there is no difference in results between either needles, the bluntness of the micro-cannula gives it the advantage of having less potential to injure blood vessels under the eyes that may cause bruising and/or swelling. This is important because the skin in the under eyes is extremely thin and any bruising can be very evident, especially near the eyes.
At SL Aesthetic Clinic, we generally prefer to use the micro-cannula. What may have been a bruising and hence social downtime of up to 7 days with the sharp needle, the blunt microcannula can minimise this to up to 2 days of mild redness.
Typically, patients only notice tiny red marks on each side; these are the entry points of the cannula. They usually dissipate within 2 days. Make-up can be applied immediately after treatment to conceal the marks.
For faster recovery in your under eye area, you may be given a recovery cream.
With the skin under the eyes being thin, we also prefer to under fill the amount of filler. This takes into account the inevitable swelling as part of an injectable procedure. Once the swelling has worn off after a few days, we will then touch-up with more fillers to complete the under eye (tear trough) treatment. This step helps us avoid over-filing the under eye, reducing the risk of a pair of unsightly “sausage” eye bags or lumps appearing.
While you can see improvements immediately after dermal fillers are injected into your under eye area, this is not the full result as there may be some swelling. This is common with any injectable procedure. The non-surgical eye bag removal results will fully realise after approximately 1 to 3 days.
The final under eye (tear trough) filler result can last anywhere from 9 to 12 months, depending on several factors, including but not limited to:
Under eye fillers can only treat dark eye circles that appear due to a tear trough hollow or sunken eyes, as well as eye bags.
Under eye fillers cannot treat dark eye circles formed from a pigmentation of the skin in the under eye area. This however, can be tackled with the appropriate anti-pigmentation treatments such as lasers, topicals, or oral medications.
With dark eye circles that appear due to multiple causes, we recommend a combination of treatments for optimal results.
Yes, when performed by a doctor familiar with the procedure, under eye filler is a safe and effective treatment. When it comes to injectable treatments such as under eye (tear trough) fillers, Botox, and Thread Lift, the doctor’s knowledge, experience, and technique are key in determining a successful treatment with natural looking results.
Always do your research when it comes to your selection process. If in doubt, speak to the doctor in a consultation to learn not only about the procedure, but about the doctor as well.
Under eye (tear trough) fillers may be unsuitable in the following circumstances:
The under eye (tear trough) area is a very delicate area on your face. It can be a challenging area for filler treatments, especially amongst inexperienced doctors. Always seek treatment with a doctor familiar with under eye filler treatments.
When performed by a trained doctor, side effects are kept to the minimal as much as possible.
You may experience some common but temporary side effects. These include redness and swelling in the treatment site, which should resolve in a few hours or up to a day. Make-up can be applied to conceal the injection marks.
However, some rarer side effects may occur later during the recovery period such as:
And some very rare side effects and risks include:
These very rare side effects can be avoided with a good grasp of the detailed anatomy of the undereye region.
Apart from alcohol, you must avoid consuming the above medications and supplements at least 3 days before your under eye (treat trough) filler treatment. If you have any uncertainties, seek the advice of our doctor.
In the best situation, there can be virtually no social downtime. Any injection mark or minor bruising can be concealed with make-up.
Sometimes, with some swelling, patients may need 1 to 2 days to recover.
However, there is also a small risk of bruising, that may take up to 3 to 5 days to recover and dissipate.
With that said, we recommend that patients plan ahead and only have under eye filler treatments done 1 week and a half before any important social events.
In general, we recommend under eye filler treatments be done every 6 to 12 months to maintain results.
As individual metabolisms, lifestyle habits, and constitutions differ, some patients see their fillers disappearing within 4 to 5 months, while others see their fillers lasting for more than a year.
In addition, fillers used for the under eye (tear trough) area are softer compared to fillers used for the chin, cheeks or even nose. This is due to the delicate nature of the under eye area, and also why under eye fillers do not last as long comparatively.
We recommend patients to monitor their results at the 4-month, 5-month mark and consult the doctor in person to determine if there are any residual filler left and the best time for a touch-up treatment.
Yes. This is one of the key advantages of using dissolvable hyaluronic acid dermal fillers.
Should you not like the results they can be dissolved with hyalase/hyaluronidase
The price and cost of under eye (tear trough) fillers can range from $750 to $800 per treatment, including touch-up.
Most patients require approximately 1 syringe per type or brand of tear trough filler. Doctors sometimes use 2 brands or more of dermal fillers to achieve a more holistic under eye filler result, treating both the deep and superficial compartments. Any unused fillers can be kept for up to 1 month for touch-up treatment.
Some brands of under eye dermal fillers we use at SL Aesthetic Clinic include:
Reduce the appearance of your eye bags and improve dark eye circles with under eye fillers that address volume loss around the eyes.
Shake off that tired look with under eye (tear trough) fillers and achieve a refreshed you that looks more awake, alert, and youthful.
[20 Aug 2019] Written by Dr. Ashley Yuen
Dr Ashley Yuen obtained his medical degree from King’s College, London. He returned to Singapore where he honed his medical and surgical skills across various specialities and disciplines, before focusing on accident & emergency medicine and aesthetic medicine.
Ashley’s passion for aesthetic medicine stems from a desire to enhance one’s physiological wellness and esteem, and boost one’s self-confidence and quality of life. He sees a strong link between good emotional and physical well-being and is committed to helping patients look better and feel better.
With Ashley’s experience in patient care and aesthetics, he has an interest in using traditional aesthetic treatments to solve lifestyle and health ailments such as bruxism, skin tag, lumps and mole removal, skin pigmentation as well as in improving aesthetics using injectables like fillers.
A national rugby player and a model in his youth, Ashley can be found at the gym pumping iron. Happily married, he is a proud fur-father of two schnauzers.
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