In the great big world of facial fillers, two of the most popular—Restylanë and Juvéderm—often get conflated. Patients often ask, “Is one better than the other? Do they both work in the lips, cheeks? Does one last longer than the other?” We turned to the pros for the breakdown.
The two fillers are created by different companies—Allergan makes Juvéderm, and Galderma produces Restylane—but both are forms of hyaluronic acid (HA) that add volume to depressed areas and help boost collagen over the long-term. “While each filler has its own unique properties—the HAs have a different cross-linking structure—I don’t think one is superior to the other,” says Bannockburn, IL dermatologist Heather Downes, MD.
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Fort Lauderdale, FL dermatologist Dr. Matthew Elias says some dermatologists may prefer one brand over another, “especially for certain areas like the tear troughs or lips, but for the most part, they’re considered interchangeable.”
For example, Fort Lauderdale, FL dermatologist Dr. Igor Chaplik explains that Juvéderm tends to attract water from its surroundings, so he likes placing it in areas he would want to swell, hydrate or be more pillowy, such as the lips, temples and mid-cheeks. “I would not use Juvéderm under the eyes or on the jawline,” he adds. “I find Restylane to be better for support and definition, so I prefer using it on the jawline, lateral cheekbones, philtrum [vertical groove between the nose and upper lip], and occasionally under the eyes.”
Germantown, TN dermatologist Purvisha Patel, MD says, “In my experience, I do see more immediate swelling with Restylane, but the end result is the same. I’ve also seen that Restylane can create more of a Tyndall effect [the skin takes on a blueish color] when placed too superficially in the tear troughs, but that is of course due to the person wielding the syringe rather than the filler itself.”
Danville, CA dermatologist Jerome R. Potozkin likens the two fillers to Coke and Pepsi and says, “no matter which product is used, what’s most important is the person doing the injections.” Pittsburgh dermatologist Dr. Ashley Kittridge agrees. “The bottom line: Patients should be making sure they are getting a legit product purchased within the U.S. from a legit injector with the experience and knowledge to be able to select the safest, most effective treatment. A board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon will know these differences.”
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Each brand also has its own suite of products “that span the range from least volumizing for superficial wrinkles to most volumizing for deeper placement,” says New York dermatologist Robert Finney, MD. There’s not only Juvéderm, but also Juvéderm Ultra, Juvéderm Voluma, Juvéderm Vollure, Juvéderm Volbella, etc. Each one has a unique molecular structure and indication. The newest products in the portfolio—Voluma, Vollure and Volbella—feature vycross cross-linking technology that experts say causes less swelling.
“Juvéderm Ultra was my workhorse for years before Voluma was made—Voluma lasts longer [ up to 18 months] and works wonders in the cheeks and temples,” says New York dermatologist Lilly-Rose Paraskevas, MD. Volbella is a popular option for the lips, as “it gives them a soft, natural look that isn’t as easy to achieve with other fillers,” says Dr. Kittridge.
The same multiproduct situation goes for Restylane: Other fillers in the toolkit include Restylane Refyne, Restylane Defyne, Restylane Silk and Restylane Lyft. “I prefer the newer products from Restylane, such as Refyne and Defyne,” says New Orleans dermatologist Mary Lupo, MD, noting that they also feature the modern cross-linking method.
“I have found that they produce less swelling and maintain a natural look more so than other products. I love Refyne for under the eyes and in the lips, whereas I use Defyne more often in the smile lines. Restylane Lyft is a thicker filler that can be placed deeper, often on the bone, to provide nice support in the jawline, chin or cheeks.”
If you're wondering about pricing, it's not as straightforward as you think. The cost for each depends on the area you’re having treated, how many syringes are used, and often, the region you live in. Your doctor can give you a more precise idea of cost during your consultation.