The Difference Between Botox® and Dermal Fillers

Have you noticed that you just don’t look quite like yourself anymore? Maybe your eyes always look tired, no matter how much rest you get. Maybe you have furrow lines between your brows that make you look unfriendly. Perhaps your once pouty lips have become thin?

Great news! There are two injectable treatments that can restore your young, vibrant look — without a big price tag or a long recovery period. Botox and dermal fillers are popular nonsurgical treatments that can be used individually or in combination to give amazing results.


Botox® is the commercial name of the most popular botulinum toxin used for cosmetic purposes. Other well-known brands include Dysport® and Xeomin®. Botox is used for the treatment of dynamic wrinkles and lines that appear when we make certain facial expressions, such as frowning and smiling. It works by partially limiting the movement of specific facial muscles to ease these wrinkles, and sometimes even eliminates them entirely.

Botox is commonly used to treat:

  • Deep creases that run parallel between the eyebrows (often called “elevens”)
  • Lines next to the eyes (called “crow’s feet” or “laugh lines”)
  • Forehead lines
  • Chin dimpling
  • Muscle (platysma) bands on the neck
  • Downward turn of the corners of the mouth
  • Lines on the side of the nose (sometimes called “bunny lines”)

What to Expect with Botox

The injection takes just a few minutes and there is absolutely no downtime. You can go back to work right away. In fact, some people get it done during their lunch break. It takes about seven days for the treatment to begin taking effect, and full results are seen at about ten days. Results last three to four months, and sometimes up to six months, depending on how strong your facial expressions are.

Dermal Fillers

Dermal fillers are injectable gel treatments that actively fill in deep wrinkles and add volume where facial fat has disappeared. There are different types of dermal fillers. The most common and safe products are made of hyaluronic acids (HAs). Popular hyaluronic acid fillers include Restylane®, Juvederm®, Voluma® and Belotero®.

As we age, our facial muscles weaken and we lose some of our facial fat. This can lead to things like deep wrinkles, thinning lips, and sunken-in eyes or cheeks. Fillers can reshape the face and “lift” the tissues to restore a youthful appearance.

Dermal fillers are commonly used to treat:

  • Dark under eye circles
  • Lack of volume under the eyes
  • Lack of volume in the upper cheek
  • Lack of volume in the jawline
  • Thin lips
  • Nasolabial folds
  • Marionette lines (running from the corners of the lips to the chin)
  • Vertical lines around the mouth

What to Expect with Dermal Fillers

Filler injections take minutes to perform and you’ll see the results right away. You can see how it looks as its being injected and actively participate in deciding your final look. There may be some swelling and occasionally some light bruising after filler injections. Typically, you’re asked to avoid intense exercise the day of treatment but can expect to get back to your normal routine the next day. The length of time results last varies depending on the type of filler used and where it is injected.

How to Choose a Qualified Botox or Dermal Filler Provider

With the popularity of cosmetic procedures skyrocketing, there’s been a surge of providers offering services. But just because Botox and dermal fillers are nonsurgical procedures doesn’t mean you don’t want a qualified and experienced provider performing your treatment.

Cosmetic surgeons have undergone intensive, specialized training and have acquired a deep understanding of the facial structure as well as the full spectrum of cosmetic procedures. They can offer invaluable insight and guidance into which procedure, or combination of procedures, is right for you. If the results you’re hoping for require surgical techniques, they can educate you about the pros and cons of those procedures as well.

Choosing the right provider will ensure the best results. Do your homework and make sure you’re choosing a qualified cosmetic surgeon to perform your procedure(s).

Emory Aesthetic Center

Emory Aesthetic Center offers Botox treatments, dermal fillers and a wide array of other cosmetic procedures. Schedule your complimentary consultation today with one of our qualified expert cosmetic physicians.

About Gabriele Miotto MD, MEd

Gabriele C. Miotto, MD is an Assistant Professor of Surgery in the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the Emory University School of Medicine, and the Associate Program Director of the Emory Aesthetic Center Fellowship program. She is fellowship trained in aesthetic and oculoplastic surgery and certified by the Georgia Composite Medical Board as well as the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and Brazilian Society of Plastic Surgery. Dr. Miotto is also certified by the National Board of Medical Examiners.


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