You’ve heard of injectable dermal fillers for the face but did you know that you can get a fat transfer—of your own healthy fat!—that provides you with all-natural, better-looking, and longer lasting results as well?
Fat transfer to the face is usually a great option for anyone looking for a secure, long-lasting way to restore decreased volume around the lips, cheeks, midface, and other soft regions of the face. It is considered to be one of the safest methods to improve your facial appearance, as it utilizes your own fat to restore facial volume (rather than dermal fillers, some of which are prone to rare but very real complications.)
Facial fat transfer fills in lines and wrinkles, improves or corrects facial asymmetries, and replaces lost volume in soft tissue gaps.
If you’ve been considering getting a fat transfer, there are several benefits and drawbacks to the technique that you should be aware of before you go through with it, the most important of which we have outlined for you here.
Pros of Facial Fat Transfer
Since there are so many benefits to facial fat transfers, why not start with them? Here are the best of the benefits and ‘pros’ of facial fat transfers:
1. Adds Facial Definition And Contour
This procedure’s ability to give the face more contour and a more chiseled appearance is one of the major reasons patients choose it. You may use this to give your cheekbones a more defined shape or to sharpen your jawline. It makes it possible for the surgeon to provide you with the precise outcomes you want.
Due to the utilization of your own body fat in this technique, there is no or very little chance of an adverse response. This is a fantastic opportunity to replace lost volume in the face for most individuals who are not candidates for dermal filler.
3. Restores Lost Volume
As previously said, fat transfer may help you restore the lost volume to your face and do so permanently as well. Additionally, this will greatly increase your self-confidence. Even if you cannot turn back the hands of time, you may nevertheless combat the unwelcome effects of aging with this effective and safe rejuvenation procedure.
4. Natural Looking Results
What could be better than receiving a face rejuvenation procedure that gives you results that appear natural? Indeed, nothing. Filling an area with your own body fat helps you seem more natural since this treatment doesn’t include artificial gels or solutions.
5. Less Cost Over Time
You may think that this treatment is far more expensive up front than those temporary dermal fillers. However, face fat grafting is economical due to the permanent nature of the grafted fat. There’s no need for you to repeat treatments every six to nine months as you would with dermal fillers, because fat transfers to the face provide basically permanent results which equates to less expenses overall.
By “basically permanent results,” we mean that fat transfers to the face can last as long as 10 years, though they do age just like the rest of the skin, fatty tissue, and body. However, because you are adding new healthy fatty tissue to an area of the face that may have lost it over the course of 10-15 years, you are basically reversing the aging in the treated area by 10-15 years, since it will take about that long for the face to again rid itself of the new fat over time.
6. Faster Healing Time
Contrary to artificial fillers, interestingly, fat settles easily into the transplanted area after the treatment. Additionally, once the fat is placed and experiences a regrowth of the new blood supply, it will provide more results over time.
By doing this, this living tissue adapts to its new environment in which it will continue to thrive and provide you with anti-aging effects for a longer duration of time. To note, the treatment feels similar to dermal fillers and causes no pain or severe discomfort.
7. Enhance Results From Previous Surgeries
Other facial rejuvenation procedures like facelifts and eyelid surgery may also benefit from this treatment. Fat transfer may restore lost volume and improve your results from those prior surgeries if you’ve discovered that they aren’t quite the same years after your initial surgery.
8. Removes & Uses Healthy Fat From Another Body Area
Though fat transfers to the face don’t require large amounts of fat, they do pull what fat they require from other areas of the body! That means less fat in another area of your body, perhaps the abdomen, or love handles. Since a little fat goes a long way in the face, you won’t be seeing super dramatic results in the area it’s taken from—called the “donor site”—but it’s still pretty novel that you can target an area of stubborn fat and use it to your advantage.
Cons of Facial Fat Transfer
Now that we’ve covered most benefits of this unique treatment, we will go over some drawbacks of face fat grafting.
1. Only Certain Amounts Of Fat Can Be Transferred
Your surgeon can only transplant a certain quantity of fat at any one time. This is to ensure your safety and the success of your results. This may mean that to get the results you want, you could need more than one treatment. Some of the added fatty tissue is also absorbed naturally over time, thus more fat is usually added than is needed, in order to account for this.
2. Recovery Time
Recovery from facial fat transfers is not all too complicated (compared to, say, facelift surgery, or a nose job), but it does typically involve about 5-7 days of mild to moderate adjustment to your daily routine.
3. Symptoms After Treatment
Nodules and lumps are possible as a result of facial fat transfers, though they generally disappear within a few weeks. For this reason, you may not feel as comfortable being out in public if you have more severe symptoms.
4. Avoiding Everyday Activities
This is quite normal for cosmetic treatments, but for a few days after a facial fat transfer, you will be unable to (or more specifically, will be advised against) engaging in any severe physical activity. Compared to dermal fillers and other injectables, the recovery period is typically only a bit longer with a facial fat transfer.
While there are pros and cons to this type of procedure, with facial fat transfer you can say goodbye to deep nasolabial folds, hollow-looking eyes, thin lips, and pitted scars.
The benefits of this face reshaping surgery usually surpass the drawbacks when you compare the two.
Here’s to the best of luck in putting your best face forward!
Photo by Andre Furtado