Does temple filler lift eyelids?

As we age, it’s common to notice changes around the eyes, such as drooping upper eyelids, under eye bags, and hollowness or loss of volume in the temples. While eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) is an option for rejuvenating the upper eyelids, many people are interested in nonsurgical solutions. One option is temple filler injections. But can filler in the temples also provide a subtle eyelid lift? Here’s a look at how temple filler works and its potential effects on the upper eyelids.

What causes upper eyelids to droop with age?

The upper eyelids can start to droop and take on a heavy appearance for a few reasons:

  • Loss of elasticity in the eyelid skin
  • Weakening of the muscle that lifts the eyelid (levator palpebrae superioris)
  • Excess fat accumulating above the eyelid
  • Loss of volume in the temple region around the eyes

As we get older, our skin loses collagen and elastin – the proteins that keep skin firm and supple. This causes the eyelid skin to become lax. The levator muscle may also weaken and become unable to hold the eyelid up fully. Fat that normally provides fullness to the upper eyelid can descend due to gravitational changes, causing the eyelid to appear heavy. Volume loss in the temples can also contribute to an aged, hollow look around the eyes.

How does temple filler work?

Temple filler involves injecting a volumizing substance like hyaluronic acid (Restylane, Juvéderm) into the temple region – the area of the face between the eye and the upper ear.

Adding volume to a sunken temple area can:

  • Lift the outer corner of the eyebrow
  • Smooth hollowing or concavity beneath the brow bone
  • Provide a subtle lift to the tail of the eyebrow

This can create an overall refreshed, opened-up appearance around the eyes.

Can temple filler lift droopy upper eyelids?

Because temple filler does not involve injecting anything directly into the eyelid skin or muscle, it cannot achieve the same degree of eyelid lift as blepharoplasty surgery. However, some doctors propose that placing filler at the outer corners of the temples near the eyebrows may provide a mild lifting effect on the tails of the eyebrows and upper eyelids.

There are a few ways this might work:

  • Filler increases volume in the temples, filling hollows and lightly lifting the outer eyebrow.
  • The added volume can pull slightly on the eyebrow hairs, lifting the tail.
  • Lifting the lateral eyebrow can indirectly elevate the adjacent upper eyelid slightly.
  • Filler may provide some upward pull on the lateral eyelid by expanding the temple volume.

However, given the eyelid skin, muscle, and fat descend due to age and gravity, injecting only in the temples is unlikely to provide a dramatic difference in a severely droopy eyelid. The effects are likely to be subtle, if noticeable at all.

What kind of results can you expect?

Most patients see temple filler as more of a complementary treatment and have moderate expectations when it comes to eyelid lifting. Some of the benefits may include:

  • A subtle lift of 1-2 mm at the tail of the eyebrow
  • A slight elevation of the outer upper eyelid
  • A fresh, wide awake appearance in the brow and eye region
  • Smoothing of hollowing and sunken temples

Keep in mind results can vary based on individual factors like age, skin elasticity, amount of fat descent over the eyelid, and how much drooping is present. Mild drooping may see more eyelid lifting effect than moderate-severe. It’s best to have realistic expectations when considering nonsurgical temple filler.

Are there risks or side effects?

When performed by an experienced provider, temple filler injections have a very low risk of side effects. Still, there are a few potential risks to be aware of:

  • Bruising, redness, swelling at injection sites
  • Asymmetry if amounts injected on each side are uneven
  • Product migration over time
  • Rare risk of vision changes from pressure on nearby anatomical structures

Choosing an injector who specializes in temple treatments and proper injection technique can help reduce risks. Icing and avoiding blood thinners like NSAIDs before treatment can also minimize bruising and swelling. Most side effects resolve within a week.

How long do results last?

With hyaluronic acid fillers, the temple filling and any eyelid lifting effects last 6-12 months on average before the product is naturally absorbed by the body. Maintenance injections every 9-12 months can maintain your temple volume and subtle eyelid lift.

Results may last longer with thicker fillers or when only a conservative amount of filling is required. In some cases, the effects can persist up to 15-18 months. Discuss your individual case with an experienced injector.

Who is a good candidate?

The ideal temple filler candidate is someone who:

  • Is in their 30s-60s with early signs of aging around the eyes
  • Has mild-moderate upper eyelid droop and hollow temples
  • Wants a nonsurgical approach to eyelid rejuvenation
  • Has reasonable expectations for subtle improvements
  • Is not significantly overweight with thick eyelid skin and fat
  • Does not have excess eyelid skin requiring excision
  • Is not prone to keloid scarring

People with good skin elasticity, bone structure, and facial fat distribution tend to see optimal results. Severe eyelid drooping requiring eyelid skin removal may not improve as significantly with just temple filler. A lower face lift may be recommended in conjunction for some people.

Is it better than blepharoplasty surgery?

For moderate-severe eyelid drooping with excess skin, blepharoplasty is likely required to achieve desired results. However, temple filler has advantages including:

  • Much lower cost than surgery
  • Faster recovery with no downtime
  • No scarring risk
  • Adjustable – filler can be dissolved if results are inadequate
  • Potential to prolong need for surgery

For people not ready for surgery, temple filler can be a great option. It is not as invasive or risky, and can subtly improve eyelid appearance. However, for reconstructive eyelid lift surgery, blepharoplasty is still the gold standard.

Can temple filler be combined with blepharoplasty?

Yes, temple filler can complement blepharoplasty. Dermal fillers may be used:

  • Before surgery – to buy some time before undergoing blepharoplasty.
  • In conjunction with surgery – to address hollow temples while surgery lifts the actual eyelids.
  • After surgery – to maintain or extend results by preventing recurrence of temple hollowing.

Performing a subtle temple lift before blepharoplasty means more conservative eyelid skin/muscle excision may be required at surgery. Temple volume restored after blepharoplasty helps support surgical results longer term. This combined approach can provide both eyelid lift and temple rejuvenation.

What about lower eyelid fillers?

While temple fillers may provide some upper eyelid lift, injectable fillers are also commonly used in the lower eyelids to reduce:

  • Under eye hollows
  • Tear troughs
  • Dark circles

Lower eyelid filling helps restore a smooth, youthful appearance under the eyes without surgery. Fillers like Restylane can temporarily fill under eye hollows and build structure. Hyaluronic acids are preferred for their safety profile when injected near the delicate under eye area.

What other nonsurgical options are there?

If you are not ready for blepharoplasty, temple filler is one option. Other nonsurgical treatments include:

  • Brow lift – using Botox or surgical sutures to lift the eyebrows, indirectly opening the eyes.
  • Eye creams – some peptides and growth factors may tighten eyelid skin.
  • Radiesse/Sculptra – denser fillers for longer-lasting temple lift.
  • Fat grafting – injecting fat harvested from your body into temples.
  • Laser resurfacing – improving eyelid skin tone and wrinkles.

However, no topical product or nonsurgical treatment can duplicate the results of blepharoplasty surgery for significant eyelid hooding. But many options exist for milder cases aiming to postpone surgery.

The Bottom Line

While temple filler provides a subtle nonsurgical eyelid lift for some patients, its effects should not be overestimated. With moderate-severe eyelid drooping, blepharoplasty will likely be required to remove excess skin and tighten muscles.

However, temple filler may lift the eyelids 1-2mm in younger patients with good skin elasticity and mild drooping. This nonsurgical approach also adds volume to hollow temples for a refreshed look. Candidates with reasonable expectations get the best outcomes from temple filler.

In many cases, temple filler can briefly delay blepharoplasty. But for reconstructive upper eyelid lift surgery, no treatment other than blepharoplasty itself truly replaces surgery. Nonetheless, temple filler remains an attractive nonsurgical option for people aiming to prolong the need for invasive procedures.

Pros Cons
Non-invasive Small eyelid lift for mild cases only
No surgery risks Still may need blepharoplasty later
Fast recovery Results not permanent
Smooths hollow temples Doesn’t address excess eyelid skin
Low side effect risk Repeat injections needed

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