As we get older, our skin starts to sag, and wrinkles start to appear week after week. You might be thinking that you should just accept this natural process of ageing and just get on with life. However, these skin issues can be a big hit to your self-confidence and could affect how you act around people.
Don’t fret! Dermal fillers are here as a valid, effective substitute for surgical procedures. There are several types to choose from, but in my professional opinion, one stands out from the rest – Ellanse dermal fillers.
What are Dermal Fillers?
Dermal fillers are injectable soft tissue fillers that help in reducing facial wrinkles and restoring smoother skin. These fillers come in several types and brands, and often people are uninformed as to the differences among all the options. Here in Singapore, the most popular brands of dermal fillers include Sculptra, Radiesse, Restylane and Ellanse.
I’ll be writing primarily about Ellanse fillers and its advantages over all the other types of dermal fillers.
History of Ellanse Fillers
Ellanse fillers are manufactured in the Netherlands and were made popular in South Korea and Taiwan several years ago. This is partly due to the viral spread of before-after pictures of patients who’ve undergone the treatment, showing that Ellanse being able to somehow make patients’ faces look 5 to 10 years younger. Because of this, Ellanse in Taiwan has been given the nickname “少女针” and has made it popular in several Asian countries such as China and Hong Kong. Ellanse fillers entered the market in Singapore around the end of 2015.
Ellanse Targets the Signs of Facial Aging
Ellanse fillers are primarily used to target the different signs of facial ageing and has had considerable success in doing so. These signs include:
- Saggy cheeks and their loss of volume
- Sunken forehead and prominent brow bones
- Hollow temples
- Deep skin lines
- Change in shape of facial contour from a V shape to a U shape
- Jowl formation and deep smile lines
Ellanse is a Non-Hyaluronic Acid Filler
A lot of dermal fillers are based on hyaluronic acid, which is sometimes called ‘instant’ fillers due to the effects of these fillers being seen almost immediately. They are great for novice doctors as hyaluronidase can be used as a kind of ‘antidote’ to dissolve the hyaluronic acid in cases where the skin is over-filled or was on the wrong spot. These fillers don’t last very long though (about 18 months the longest) and do not stimulate collagen production. It also causes considerable swelling for about 1 to 2 days after injection and oedema for 3 to 5 days.
Ellanse, on the other hand, is a non-hyaluronic acid filler. Its main component is smooth, spherical Poly-caprolactone (PCL) microspheres which makes up 30% of the filler. PCL is a bioresorbable medical polymer, which is able to be metabolized and absorbed completely by the skin. This PCL is suspended in carboxymethylcellulose (CMC) gel, which composes the remaining 70% of the filler.
After injection, Ellanse works using a 2-step process:
- The CMC gel gives instant lifting and sculpting effects, which lasts for about 90 days.
- While this is happening, the PCL microspheres stimulate collagen production in your skin. The full effects of the collagen stimulation are seen at 90 days after injection, which is just in time when the CMC gel wears off!
Although Ellanse is a non-hyaluronic acid filler, it still has instant effects thanks to the CMC. And the effects of the filler are long-lasting, which can last from 1 up to 2 to 4 years after injection thanks to PCL’s collagen stimulation.
Ellanse can be Used for Many Skin Areas
Ellanse can be used on parts of the face that hyaluronic acid fillers can treat, which include:
- Forehead augmentation
- Temple augmentation
- Cheek filling and lifting
- Marionette lines (Puppet lines) smoothening
- Nasolabial folds (Smile lines) smoothening
- Brow lifting
- Nose reshaping
- Chin reshaping
- Jawline reshaping
- Hands volumizing
Why Choose Ellanse Over Hyaluronic Acid Fillers?
There are several advantages to choosing Ellanse over hyaluronic acid fillers:
- Longer Lasting
Thanks to Ellanse’s collagen stimulation, its effects last longer compared to traditional HA fillers. HA fillers last from 3 months up to a maximum of 18 months. Ellanse fillers, on the other hand, can last up to 4 years!
HA fillers have a cheaper upfront cost, but since they only last for a short time, costs more per month when you consider its period of effectiveness. Although Ellanse fillers are more expensive, they last way longer and are cheaper in the long run compared to taking multiple HA filler injections.
- Does Not Cause Hypersensitivity Reactions
An example of this is the formation of a hardened lump called a granuloma on this site of injection. This sometimes happens with hyaluronic acid fillers especially when there are some errors in injection such as overfilling.
- Does Not Migrate
Because the Ellanse filler does not directly cause the lifting effects and instead works by stimulating collagen production, it does not migrate. HA fillers, on the other hand, rely directly on the hyaluronic acid, and there are rare cases where the hyaluronic acids migrate to a different area of the skin.
- Maintains Volume Better Over Time
Due to the 2-step process of rejuvenating the skin, Ellanse injections maintain the volume of the skin better compared to HA fillers which work gradually.
There are a few things to take note when it comes to Ellanse fillers:
- Ellanse filler injections have to be precise and accurate.
Unlike HA fillers which have an antidote (Hyaluronidase) to dissolve hyaluronic acid and fix overfilled or botched injections, Ellanse fillers have to be injected with great precision and accuracy. Each injection must be done with the utmost care and there is zero margins for error. This is done to give the best results and to avoid any complications.
- Ellanse filler injections can only be done by experienced doctors.
Because of the delicate property of Ellanse filler injections, it must be performed by a doctor with a lot of experience in dermal filler injections and has a great knowledge of facial anatomy. This is why Ellanse fillers are not offered by doctors that are just starting out. The degree of competency required to perform Ellanse injections are higher compared to HA filler injections.
- Ellanse fillers are more expensive upfront compared to HA fillers
Because Ellanse fillers are specially manufactured, they cost a lot more than HA fillers. This is reasonable though because their effects last longer and would make the total costs cheaper compared to repeated HA filler injections on the same time span.
Why Choose Ellanse Fillers Over Other Non-HA Fillers?
There are two popular non-hyaluronic acid fillers besides Ellanse – Radiesse and Sculptra.
Radiesse is an injectable filler that makes use of calcium hydroxyapatite, which consists of calcium, hydrogen and phosphate. Radiesse is actually very similar to Ellanse, which works using a two-step process also. However, Radiesse fillers last for a shorter time and are less effective in improving skin texture.
Sculptra is an injectable filler that uses poly-L-lactic acid, which is a molecule that hydrolyses to water and carbon dioxide. Unlike Radiesse or Ellanse, Sculptra has no instant volume filling effects and exclusively stimulates collagen production. You will need to wait for 3 to 4 weeks before the results start to show up. It also requires at least 3 sessions to get the best results. Unlike Ellanse which can also be used for precise contouring, Sculptra is only effective for general collagen stimulation on a wide region of skin. There is also the issue of post-treatment care where it is needed to regularly massage the face 5 times a day for 5 days.
Types of Ellanse Fillers
Ellanse fillers come in 4 different versions, each with different periods of effectiveness:
- Ellanse-S: Lasts for 1 year
- Ellanse-M: Lasts for 2 years
- Ellanse-L: Lasts for 3 years
- Ellanse-E: Lasts for 4 years
Who are Suitable Candidates for Ellanse Fillers?
If you are looking for a way to rejuvenate your face, or have some precise contouring done on your nose or chin then Ellanse fillers are always a good choice as long as you pick an experienced doctor to do the injections. The best candidates for Ellanse filler injections are:
- Patients who have previous experience with other dermal fillers and want a long-term solution.
- Patients who know exactly what they want (e.g., the specific nose shape they want), are able to communicate this effectively with a trusted doctor and are decisive with no plans of backing out in case he/she is not satisfied with the results.
- Patients who want a non-surgical, minimally-invasive procedure that has minimal discomfort and pain.
If you are a first-timer when it comes to dermal fillers, it would be advisable to try a temporary solution first (such as HA fillers) and see if you like the results. After the effects wear off, then you can consider getting a longer-lasting solution such as Ellanse fillers.
What to Expect with Ellanse Fillers in Singapore?
As long as you choose an experienced and trusted doctor to do the Ellanse filler injections, there should be very little or no pain and discomfort during the procedure.
First, a consultation will be done where the doctor assesses your exact needs and will also take some before pictures for comparison. Once both of you agree on the procedure, he/she will get you ready by cleansing your face from dirt and makeup. Some numbing cream will be applied to minimize the discomfort felt during the procedure. He/she may also inject a local anaesthetic to completely numb the area for injection.
The whole injection process lasts from 15 minutes to an hour. There shouldn’t be any pain or discomfort and any side effects, such as redness or swelling, should disappear within a day.
The doctor would also prescribe some medication to deal with the swelling and discomfort. Expect some immediate results thanks to the CMC gel, which will gradually dissolve while the PCL microspheres start stimulating your collagen production. Enjoy your newly rejuvenated skin that will last for up to 4 years!
The cost of Ellanse fillers in Singapore range from $1200 to $1800, depending on which version of the filler you take and the experience and reputation of the doctor performing the injections.
Ellanse fillers are a big step up from temporary hyaluronic acid fillers such as Restylane as they last longer and cannot be reversed. If you are unsure or want a solution that can be reversed, then Ellanse fillers are not for you.
Ellanse fillers have a proven track record in a lot of countries such as Taiwan, China and Hong Kong. It has helped change the lives of thousands of people and is a well-known and trusted solution to reverse the signs of facial ageing. Just make sure to look for an experienced and trusted doctor and you will be good to go!
Ellanse employs the best and most advanced technology when it comes to dermal fillers and has shown time and time again its effectiveness and longevity. If you want a sure and long-lasting dermal filler, you can never go wrong from choosing Ellanse.