When patients walk into Dr. Jason Emer’s office for the first time, many of them want to know how their favorite celebrities achieve a sculpted, lifted, and chiseled look. As we age (thanks to gravity, stress, hormones, and a host of other factors), our faces begin to lose shape, contour and volume, the skin begins to sag, and fine lines and wrinkles become more prominent. And yet, television personalities and film stars maintain their elevated, sculpted, modelesque cheeks.
The secret to those stunning, sculpted cheeks: Fillers.
According to Dr. Jason Emer, a board-certified dermatologist specializing in facial rejuvenation and body contouring, sculpting with fillers is a painless, non-surgical approach to reclaiming your facial contours. The quickest way to make your signature features “pop” is to heighten and define the cheekbones. Cheekbone chiseling with dermal fillers — ideal for those with longer, thinner faces — is a safe and effective treatment that can help enhance your features without the cost or downtime involved in a surgical facelift, facial implants, or fat injections.
In addition to providing lift, definition, and contouring in the midface, cheek fillers can also improve the under eye area, the nasolabial folds (or smile lines), and fine lines and wrinkles. The result is a less tired, well-rested appearance and a more youthful beauty.
How does Dr. Emer do it differently?
Each dermal filler has its own distinct purposes and advantages. Just as an artist selects the perfect materials for his sculpture, Dr. Emer puts his experience and unique artistry to work by crafting a patient-specific treatment plan and choosing the best filler(s) to produce the desired results. “Thicker” fillers — such as Juvederm Voluma or Vollure, Radiesse, Restylane Defyne, and Bellafill — offer a substantial volume increase or noticeable lifting in areas that tend to fall or droop as we age, such as the cheeks.
Using an imaginary line drawn from the corner of the lip to the ear as a guide, Dr. Emer injects his filler of choice under the cheek pad (where we all tend to lose height). His specialized layering technique involves deep injections on the cheekbone to give lift and lateral contour, followed by superficial injections in the fat and skin layer to soften the nasolabial folds, shape the under eye, and improve the area around the eye and eyebrow.
The key to successful facial sculpting is to understand each patient’s goals and desired look — and to inject each filler meticulously and strategically without making the patient appear unnatural or “overdone.”
Are cheek fillers for men, too?
Yes! An experienced and skilled injector like Dr. Emer recognizes that men and women often have different aesthetic goals and therefore require different techniques. Because Dr. Emer addresses the whole face in a single treatment (and not just a single feature), he will often balance a male patient’s cheek lift or cheek augmentation with projection of the jaw and chin, creating a wider, more square, and more defined masculine jawline.
Both female facial sculpting and male facial sculpting require a mastery of and strategic placement of fillers, a depth of knowledge of facial anatomy, and a significant level of artistry. By addressing all areas of the face simultaneously — the cheeks, chin, jawline, nose, lips, temples, brow, and under the eyes — Dr. Emer is able to achieve a harmonious, youthful look.
What are the most popular cheek fillers?
JUVEDERM VOLUMA for Cheek Augmentation
Juvederm Voluma is the go-to, gold standard HA filler for cheek augmentation. Voluma is FDA-approved for midface volume loss and is also used laterally on the cheeks to provide definition, enhancement, and lift. Upon injection, Voluma fills the tissue and plumps up the cheek. Over time, water fills the area, surrounding the filler and giving improvement in contour, shape, and lift. Dr. Emer also uses Voluma to treat the lips, smile lines, jawline, and temples.
Patients may experience minimal swelling for up to 2 weeks after treatment, and the results last for up to 2 years after injection. However, younger, active, and athletic patients tend to metabolize HA fillers more rapidly with weight or hormonal changes, exercise, and dieting, so fillers like Juvederm Voluma may require more frequent touch-ups to maintain the results.
RADIESSE for Cheek Augmentation
Radiesse is a calcium-based injectable that is composed of microspheres suspended in a sugar-based gel, making it much more dense than HA-based dermal fillers. When Radiesse is injected into the skin, it forms a bond with the skin and the bone, allowing it to augment facial structure, immediately lift areas of the face, and volumize larger areas of volume loss, such as the nasolabial folds and cheeks.
For months after injection, Radiesse continues to work with your body, stimulating the natural production of collagen for a more refreshed appearance. For most patients, Radiesse results can last up to 12 to 15 months and is less likely to be influenced by diet, exercise, or weight changes.
RESTYLANE LYFT / DEFYNE for Cheek Augmentation
Both Restylane Lyft and Restylane Defyne are FDA-approved HA fillers, which Dr. Emer employs in the midface, cheeks, chin, jawline, nasolabial folds, and marionette lines (drooping mouth corners). Restylane Lyft is specifically designed to plump and add fullness to the cheeks or midface area, while Restylane Defyne is engineered for mid-to-deep injection into the facial tissue to smooth out facial wrinkles and folds. Both products are designed to move as you move, so the fillers don’t often migrate and tend to last longer in the treatment area.
Restylane Lyft and Restylane Defyne improvements have been shown to last for up to 12 months. Both products are great fillers for active individuals who exercise frequently as well as those who have a lot of facial movement or expression.
BELLAFILL for Cheek Augmentation
Bellafill is a semi-permanent injectable filler designed to improve rolling acne scars and nasolabial folds (smile lines). Bellafill can also be used to lift and contour areas of the face (such as the cheeks, jawline, chin, and temples) for prolonged improvement that is less affected by exercise or metabolism. Dr. Emer refers to Bellafill as the “spider web filler”: as the product leaves the syringe, it has a tendency to cling to the end of the needle. This same clinging effect occurs beneath the skin, as the filler binds with the skin tissue to build a “web” of collagen and a scaffold to plump and lift the skin.
A natural collagen stimulator, Bellafill adds volume over time and creates healthy, resilient skin long-term. The results have been shown to last up to 5 years for nasolabial folds and up to 12 months for acne scars in clinical studies.
SCULPTRA for Cheek Augmentation
Dr. Emer injects Sculptra (a natural collagen stimulator made from poly-L-lactic acid) into various parts of the face, including the lateral cheek, midface, temples, jawline, nasolabial folds, and chin, to provide subtle lift and volume in areas where fine lines, wrinkles, folds, or hollows may be present. This added volume rejuvenates the look of the skin, giving it a “glow” and significantly reducing the signs of aging. For patients who use dermal fillers for sculpting, contouring, and cheek chiseling, Sculptra is the perfect complement to build a long-term, collagen-rich foundation beneath the skin.
Sculptra results may last for up to 2 years; however, most of the improvement occurs 3 to 6 months after treatment as the collagen rebuilds beneath the skin. Dr. Emer recommends that a small amount be injected 1 or 2 times per year after optimal correction to sustain collagen production and keep the skin lifted over time.
Are there other options for cheek augmentation?
While fillers can create dramatic improvements quickly and with minimal pain and downtime, they are certainly not the only option available to those looking to augment their cheeks or enhance their facial features. Some patients find that they do not respond well to fillers, while others are looking for more permanent improvements. For these patients, Dr. Emer may suggest a fat transfer to the face (below), Renuva synthetic fat grafting, or surgical implants.
Am I a good candidate for cheek fillers?
To determine if you are a good candidate for cheek augmentation — or to learn which method(s) would be most effective for you — it is best to schedule a formal evaluation with a board-certified dermatologist and facial sculpting expert like Dr. Jason Emer who can assess your unique needs and develop a tailored treatment plan that addresses your aesthetic goals.
Individuals with round faces will need lifting and contouring of their cheeks to give their face a more lifted and “heart-shaped” look; on the other hand, those with thinner faces may need less projection laterally and more filling in the temples or under the eyes to give subtle lifting and shaping without appearing “overdone.”
What is the downtime for cheek fillers?
There is no downtime for cheek augmentation with injectable fillers. While you may experience some redness and/or swelling in the area for a few days following the procedure, you can return to your daily activities immediately. Bruising, swelling, and/or irritation can occur up to 2 weeks after any injectable treatment.
How do I schedule a consultation with Dr. Emer?
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Emer in Beverly Hills / Los Angeles / West Hollywood, California, please reach out to our concierge to schedule an appointment. Call 424-800-4140 or email us at [email protected]