• Hyaluronic acid is a natural substance that is used in dermal fillers.
  • It can be used to restore lost volume and reduce the appearance of dark circles under the eyes.
  • Results usually last for six to nine months.

Hyaluronic acid is a substance that occurs naturally in the human body. It is commonly used in aesthetic treatments as an injectable dermal filler to temporarily add facial volume and combat signs of aging. Hyaluronic under-eye fillers are injected under the eyes to plump up the area and create a more youthful appearance.

What Under-Eye Fillers Can Treat

Dark circles

While dark circles under the eyes can sometimes be the result of fatigue, allergies and dehydration, they are most commonly caused by the natural aging process. As you get older, your body produces fewer new skin cells, which can make the skin under your eyes thinner. You also start to lose the fat and collagen that help keep your skin elastic. As a result, the blood vessels under your skin become more visible, which can lead to darkening around the eyes.

Hyaluronic acid can be injected under the eyes to restore volume in the tear trough area. This essentially provides a layer between your blood vessels and your eyes, which helps reduce the appearance of dark circles.

Wrinkles

Hyaluronic acid can also be used—often in conjunction with other treatments such as laser resurfacing—to treat under eye wrinkles. As you age, your body’s production of collagen, fat and elastin starts to decrease, which can lead to wrinkles under your eyes as the surrounding skin loses its elasticity. Hyaluronic acid works by restoring volume under the eyes, temporarily reducing the appearance of fine lines and static wrinkles.

What Under-Eye Fillers Can’t Treat

Hyperpigmentation

In some cases, dark circles under the eye are caused by hyperpigmentation rather than volume loss. Fillers cannot resolve hyperpigmentation. Instead, you may want to consider laser treatment or a chemical peel. Talk to an experienced cosmetic provider for more information.

New wrinkles

While fillers are often used in anti-wrinkle treatment, they don’t actively prevent new wrinkles from forming. Depending on the specific circumstances, botulinum toxin-based products such as Botox, Dysport and Xeomin may be a more effective option.

» Learn more about how botulinum toxin can be used to treat under eye wrinkles.

The Injection Procedure

A hyaluronic acid injection is a non-invasive procedure typically performed in your provider’s office. The procedure usually takes 30 minutes or less from beginning to end.

Your procedure will begin with your provider cleansing the injection site with an antibacterial agent. Your provider may also apply an anesthetic to help reduce discomfort, although most people find that the injections are not very painful. The injections themselves take just a few moments, and are followed by a gentle massage while your provider positions the filler for best results.

Post-procedure, you may be given an ice pack to help minimize any potential swelling. Your provider may tell you to avoid touching the injection site for a few hours after treatment, and ask that you refrain from alcohol and strenuous exercise for the next few days as these activities increase the risk of bruising. For safety and best results, it’s important to always follow your provider’s instructions exactly as directed.

Before and After Pictures of Under-Eye Fillers

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Reviews of Under-Eye Fillers

Hyaluronic acid injections are typically very effective for treating dark under-eye circles, with the vast majority of people saying they were satisfied with the results.

For example, research published in JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery studied the satisfaction rates of patients who used hyaluronic acid filler to treat infraorbital hollowing (volume loss around the eyes that causes dark circles). About 71% of patients were satisfied with their results, leading researchers to conclude that the treatment “has a high patient satisfaction profile and an acceptable safety profile for the correction of infraorbital hollowing”.

How Long Do Under-Eye Fillers Last?

It’s important to note that dermal fillers are not a permanent solution to dark circles under the eyes. You can expect results to last for roughly six to nine months, after which time the hyaluronic acid will break down and be absorbed into your body. You can repeat the treatment if you wish to maintain results.

Side Effects and Concerns

Under eye filler injections are generally considered to be very safe. Nevertheless, there are still a few important risks and side effects to be aware of.

Bruising

Bruising is one of the most common side effects associated with hyaluronic acid injections. According to research from the University of California, some studies have found that bruising occurs in 19-24% of patients, while other investigations suggest the rate may be as high as 68%.

Most patients find that bruising and swelling tend to disappear within a few days. Your doctor may recommend using Arnica cream to help reduce bruising and discoloration.

Hyperpigmentation

There is also a risk that the treatment may cause hyperpigmentation (darker patches of skin) due to how the skin reacts to trauma. According to research published in Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology, people with darker skin are at greater risk of hyperpigmentation.

Irregularities

Dermal fillers can also cause bumps, lumps and other irregularities. Sometimes, these issues will resolve themselves within a few days, but if they persist you may need to follow up with your provider. Hyaluronidase can be used to safely dissolve hyaluronic acid fillers and reverse the effects of treatment.

Recommended Brands for the Under-Eye Area

The most popular filler brands used for under-eye injections are Restylane and Juvederm. The brands are very similar in terms of price, effectiveness and duration of results. Most providers choose their fillers based on their professional preferences and which product they have the most experience with.

Over-the-Counter Cream Alternatives

There are a number of over-the-counter creams that contain small amounts of hyaluronic acid. Many people experience satisfactory results with these products, but bear in mind that they’re nowhere near as effective as hyaluronic acid injections.

Want to incorporate a hyaluronic acid cream into your beauty routine? Here are three of the most effective products available on the market today:

Cost of Under-Eye Fillers

The cost of under-eye dermal filler injections can vary quite significantly depending on your location, the experience of your provider, and the amount of filler that will be required for your specific treatment. Below are some general guidelines:

LocationCost
New York$850-$950
Los Angeles$800-$900
Miami$700-$800
Houston$700-$800

Providers Near Me

Under-eye fillers are a proven way to reduce the appearance of dark circles under the eyes and create a more youthful look.

If you’re thinking about getting hyaluronic acid injections, it’s crucial that you engage the services of a cosmetic professional you can trust. Use the Zwivel search tool to connect with experienced, board-certified dermal filler providers in your area.

References

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About The Author

Articles by

Emma Stone, PhD, is a contributing health and wellbeing writer for Zwivel.

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