Tips: 6 Ways To Make Botox And Dermal Fillers Last Longer

Written by Jennifer Gordon, MD, Board Certified Dermatologist on May 3, 2021 52 Comments

make dermal fillers last longer

Originally published August 31, 2017. Updated on May 3, 2021 with additional information

Injectable products like Botox and dermal fillers are a great way to reverse common signs of aging. However, the effects of fillers and neurotoxins, while long-lasting, do eventually wear off as they are naturally degraded by the body.

Depending on the type of injectable used, the positive results of an injectable treatment can last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years (see our dermal filler guide to compare the average longevity of various types of fillers). These injectable skin care solutions are made of natural substances that are eventually reabsorbed by the body.

Want to make your Botox or dermal filler last longer? Here’s how you can you can achieve maximum results and extend them for the longest period possible.

What Causes Botox and Dermal Fillers Results to Fade?

Neurotoxins (Botox, Dysport and Xeomin) are derived from botulinum toxin, which might sound scary, but is a natural substance produced by a bacteria. Dermal fillers also contain ingredients found in nature, such as collagen and hyaluronic acid. These substances don’t stay in place forever, separate from your body, but eventually become reabsorbed. The rate at which this happens is different for everyone, and it depends on a few things:

Location of the Injection

Injectables such as toxin or filler wear off more quickly in areas of the face that are more active. Neurotoxins do not last as long with very strong muscles (think scowl, forehead and around the eyes for some people) and will last longer in thinner muscles and less mobile areas.

From a filler standpoint, your face is most active around the mouth and lips. Filler placed deep in your cheeks or in the tear troughs often can last longer because they are placed on bone, underneath muscles.

Dosage of the Injection 

It may seem like common sense, but small dose injections will dissipate more quickly than larger doses. Areas that require multiple injections placed closely together will also retain the injectables longer.

The Type of Neurotoxin or Filler

Fillers have multiple properties so are used to achieve different effects (filling fine lines vs _ bone) and therefor have to be designed differently to integrate into the appropriate tissue for the desired result. Depending on the filler used, it will be reabsorbed at different rates, anywhere from 4 months up to 2 years. Neurotoxins are all the same toxin, however have different (or no) proteins surrounding the toxin. Some people (for unknown reasons) metabolize different brands of neurotoxin more quickly. If this occurs, you might want to try a different brand or switch it around every so often.

Your Environment

External factors that prevent results from lasting longer include UV radiation and air pollution. Skin damage from free radicals can accelerate skin aging and diminish the results for Botox or fillers. Products that you put on the areas of injections can also play a big role.

Your Unique Body

Everyone processes proteins differently. Genetic factors and even your age will influence the rate at which your injectables dissipate. Often very active, athletic people will metabolize both toxin and filler more quickly, but don’t use that as an excuse to stop!

Ways To Make Botox And Filler Results Last Longer

Unfortunately there’s no way to make them last forever, but there are things you can do to extend the results of fillers and neurotoxins. Here’s why results fade and what you can do to extend the effects of injectables between touch-up visits:

Immediately After Your Neurotoxin Injection

While massage or pressure directly on the injection site is not recommended, gentle movement can help. Immediately after your injection, do some gentle facial exercises to help the toxin spread and evenly distribute. This not only helps Botox work faster, but can prolong your results.

Within 24 Hours of Your Injection

With either toxin or fillers, refrain from touching your face or putting pressure on the treatment site for at least 24 hours. Avoid rubbing when you wash your face, and stay away from exfoliation. This helps keep the product in place by preventing the drugs from dissipating away from the treatment site. With fillers, you want to try to avoid sleeping on that area of your face for at least 1-2 days. Most injectors will also recommend patients refrain from physical exercise following injection.

1. Stay Hydrated

Hydration not only keeps wrinkles at bay, but helps maintain your injections. In addition to drinking water, hydrate your skin with topical treatments. Choose a moisturizer with hyaluronic acid to reduce inflammation and slow the process with which your body breaks down your injectables.

2. Practice Good Skin Care

The benefits of injectables (like many other cosmetic treatments) will last longer for individuals who properly take care of their skin. Patients who moisturize daily and stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water will enhance the water-absorption effect of hyaluronic-based fillers, helping treated areas remain plump and wrinkle-free! There are a few products that were designed as an adjunct to toxins and fillers as well. Examples include Skin Better Treatment Lines, which helps maintain hyaluronic acid in areas and Revision Revox 7, which helps relax fine muscles to make your toxin last longer.

In addition to moisturizing, choose skincare ingredients that stimulate collagen production and protect your skin from free radicals. A stronger skin structure helps prolong the effects of toxin or dermal fillers. Antioxidants like Vitamin C also protect against damage from sun and pollution.

Look for collagen-boosting ingredients such as retinol or collagen peptides. You’ll find these ingredients in moisturizers, cleansers and serums.

3. Avoid UV Exposure

Did you know that overexposure to the sun’s UV rays can actually reverse the benefits of your injectable treatment? This is why we encourage all filler patients to practice sound sun protection, especially post-treatment. Maintain your results for longer by using a high-quality broad-spectrum sunscreen, avoiding the outdoors during peak UV hours, and wearing a wide-brimmed hat.

A sunscreen containing Vitamin C can help protect you from the sun, as will avoiding sun exposure. The damage caused by UV light leads to inflammation. As your skin tries to heal itself, your Botox and fillers will also be broken down.

Blue light is not UV light, but exposure to screens also has a detrimental effect on your skin cells. Purchase a blue-light screen filter or turn down the brightness of your screens.

4. Eat Right

The food you eat can directly affect both the appearance and health of your skin. In terms of maximizing the results of your filler we encourage patients to stay away from processed and packaged foods, as well as limiting the amount of sugar in your diet. Increased inflammation caused by these foods in your body is translated to your overall skin health.

5. Take Extra Zinc

Some studies have shown that Botox efficacy is linked to zinc levels within the body. Also, many individuals tend to have a slight zinc deficiency. Regularly taking a zinc supplement after your Botox treatment may prolong the anti-aging effects.

6. Stay Stress-Free

Stress is a common factor of day-to-day life. Whether stemming from your career, relationship, or finances, stress can negatively affect the body in many ways. In terms of the skin, high stress levels release of cortisol and other hormones which accelerate the aging process and rapidly enhance common unwanted signs of aging. To extend the benefits of your injectable try to reduce unnecessary stress-inducers form your life while incorporating stress relief techniques like meditation or yoga into your day.

Why Choosing A Skilled Injector Is Important

The best way to lengthen time between appointments is to choose a board-certified, experienced injector. Appropriate dosing and precise injections lead to longer-lasting results. An experienced, skilled injector may cost you more up front, but it will pay for itself in results you love and less frequent touch-up visits.

Beware of Exercise Effects

Unfortunately, people that are avid workout-aholics may go through toxin and filler more quickly. There is no “fix” for this (and please don’t stop being active) but if you take precautions to not squint or scowl while working out (easier said than done) then you might not have as bad of an effect. One easy attempt is to wear hats or sunglasses while outside to avoid the strain of the bright sun.

Maintenance Sessions: What About Touch-Ups?

Maintenance appointments are recommended to help your injectables last longer. The best way to extend the life of your Botox or filler results is to regularly undergo “maintenance” treatments before your results wear off. Recurrent treatments are especially useful for Botox as they may actually train targeted muscles respond to the neurotoxin for longer periods of time.

A touch-up session is a quick, less-expensive appointment in which your doctor re-injects a smaller amount of toxin or filler. This is often not recommended for neurotoxins but can be useful for filler at times. Make sure to discuss a maintenance plan with your injector prior to undergoing treatment.

Jennifer Gordon, MD

Dr. Gordon is Board Certified by the American Board of Dermatology and is a member of the American Society of Dermatologic Surgery (ASDS), the American Academy of Dermatology, the Dermatology Foundation, the Texas Medical Association and the Travis County Medical Society. Currently, Dr. Gordon oversees our South Austin location.

52 Responses to “Tips: 6 Ways To Make Botox And Dermal Fillers Last Longer”

  1. Avatar Tyler says:

    I like that you recommend undergoing maintenance treatments before the full effects of the procedure wear off. It makes sense that professional treatments and touch-ups can make botox last a lot longer because they’d catch any deterioration or problems that are happening earlier rather than later. Thanks for the post; we’ll probably share this with our patients here in Idaho!

  2. Avatar David says:

    Your article points out many of the issues us adults have with our skin – I didn’t have acne as a teenager got them later as an adult 🙁 I am from Vancouver BC & tried – they did magic on my skin! Just wanted to put that out there for any other people in Canada who might come across this great article!

  3. Avatar Steele says:

    I had no idea that my eating habits can directly influence the life term of botox fillings! I am considering getting botox injections as I am already 50 and have some skin issues. I will make sure to reduce the amount of sugar in my diet so that the fillers will last longer.

  4. Avatar Kiel says:

    Great article girl! You point out all the skin problems that many adults facing as of this moment.

  5. Avatar Roger says:

    My wife has been deciding whether or not to get dermal fillers and we haven’t known if it’s the right choice for us. I liked that you had mentioned that it can be important to take care of your skin and drink a lot of water to make sure that you can get the most out of the fillers. We’ll have to start looking around for a professional that can handle these for dermals and we’ll be making sure that she gets enough water.

    • Avatar Inoa says:

      Shouldn’t it be your wife’s choice what she does with HER body.

      • Avatar Ramona says:

        Inoa, I was thinking the same thing. “We” haven’t decided if it’s the right choice for “us” for my wife to get fillers? Roger, do you “both” decide what she’s going to wear, how her makeup looks, what she eats, etc? I understand consulting your partner when doing something that may alter your looks somewhat, but, at the end of the day, isn’t it her face and her decision whether or not fillers are right for her? Something about that comment was very unsettling.

        • Avatar Tatiana says:

          I think you two are just looking for issues – plus someone else’s marriage is none of your business… If the polygamous community van have a tv show the let these strangers manage their marriage as they see fit. Do you want a stranger telling you how to live in your marriage? You are clearly personalizing the post because you admittedly have no idea what the posters life is like….did you consider the poster is a woman (lesbian)? When I got fillers I insisted my husband be involved (much to his dismay). I was in my mid 30’s and we have been together since high school. He’d been hearing about any insecurity for 15+ years. He was also more objective than me – reminding me that an insecurity wasn’t age related but had been there since my teens – which saved us (yes, us) from wasting money on something that wasn’t going to be impacted by fillers. Although I had his blessing to spend the money – I was spending a couple thousand dollars. If he spends that kind of money I would be angry if he didn’t involve me since it is our shared money. Plus if it all goes wrong it’ll be my husband who will be my caregiver and my husband who will fight for me if I am too weak (physically or mentally). If something goes wrong the funds to repair the negative outcome will come from our joint bank account. If I am too depressed or physically injured to leave my bed then my husband will need to take over whatever responsibility I no longer perform. Fillers are a personal choice but in a marriage with good communication…the actual decision to have the medical procedure must be made with your spouse. If partners don’t make potentially life changing decisions together then are they really partners? Being married means you are part of a team.

          Plus – it is advisable, in my opinion, that every filler patient have a proxy who can advocate for them, ask questions they may not think of and help keep them grounded and objective, while reminding them not to feel pressure to do more than they want. Some injectors want to make patients look the way they want vs the way the patient wants.

          By judging such a personal choice you, yourself are guilty of what you are accusing the poster of.

          • Avatar Gwinn says:

            I love your post that is exactly what more people need to hear or read .it is so beautifully written .I’m not fortunate enough to have a caring spouse but i grew up seeing my parents live there life like that 55+ years and still to this day anything they do they decide together because they are partners.its nothing to do with being controlled or anything like that. I’ve never commented to anything on the internet but your post is so true and tastefully written. Thank you

      • Avatar Sondra says:

        Yes. First of all he didn’t say ” I” haven’t decided. He said we. Which I think shows a beautiful, healthy relationship. I’d rather my husband consider us as a we then a he or me. You 2 are probably not married or are on your 3rd or 4th. That was a rude comment to make when he is shot owing clear concern about his wife’s health. That’s all it was. That’s all it was ladies!!

        • Avatar David says:

          Ugh, I couldn’t agree more. What a bunch of venomous trolls! My partner and I make decisions together all of the time. Both of us are men, and both of us are individuals, and both of us contribute to helping the other weigh out the pros and cons of our actions. Healthy couples enjoy doing that. Maybe spend a bit more time learning the value of caring for each other and less time about burning bras.

  6. Avatar Bethany says:

    I never took into account that processed foods and high amounts of sugar could make your dermal fillers not last as long. My neighbor is starting to age and is getting saggy cheeks. She’s thinking about getting dermal fillers, so I’ll definitely share this will her, so she knows how to properly care for them.

  7. Avatar Juiliana says:

    Thanks for this recently had dermal fillers done and want them to last as long as possible. There are some great points there and the zinc is one I have not heard of before so thanks for that.

  8. Avatar Jay says:

    I will make sure to eat zinc rich foods, just like you suggest, I really want to stave off aging as long as I can. I just love looking young.

  9. Avatar Elaine says:

    Did not know that the more activity you do the quicker the treatments wear off. Surely this could be counterproductive, you get botox done to look and feel better about yourself then work out to help and it has a detrimental effect on the life of the botox treatment !!

  10. Avatar Camille says:

    It’s useful to know beforehand that you should invest in maintenance treatments. I didnt really think of that but now I’ll have to consider it before getting my first filler done.

  11. Avatar Brianna says:

    You are right that Botox and dermal fillers are a great way to reverse common signs of aging. And now a days it’s too common question that “how can I make my botox last longer?” Once you start botox injections, In order to maintain your smooth, wrinkle-free complexion you should typically be retreated every six months.

  12. Avatar Christiane says:

    It says here that working out effects botox but in another article on this site “7myths about botox” myth 3 says that it does NOT effect it. I am confused?

    • WD Staff WD Staff says:

      Hi Christiane,

      Thanks for reading our posts and good catch on that contradiction. I believe it is true that workout addicts do not necessarily need more Botox for the treatment to be fully effective. However, there is a correlation of physical activity and the length of time Botox stays effective. So more active individuals may need a “maintenance” treatment earlier than non-active people. I’ll work with our physicians to get that changed.

      Thanks again for bringing this to our attention!

      WD Staff

  13. Avatar Sam says:

    I was unaware of the fact that many individuals have a slight zinc deficiency. Dermal fillers are a great option for those seeking to improve the overall quality of their skin. If I were to get dermal fillers, I would contact a medical facility in my area that is known for administering the best cosmetic procedures.

  14. Avatar Gerty Gift says:

    Thank you for explaining that eating right is really important if you want to keep your fillers looking great. I never thought that this would affect any operations or things I injected into my face. It’s definitely something that I’ll think about and work on after I get the work done.

  15. Avatar Dawn says:

    I’m walking proof if you’re a gym rat and do intense cardio, your fillers will not last. They last me maybe 4 weeks. So aggravating.

    • Avatar Kam, NP says:

      HI Dawn,
      Just wanted to share, that it could be the type of Hyaluronic acid that was used on you. Some people metabolize certain brands faster than others. What lasts long on one person may not last as long on another. Try a different one and maybe you won’t have the same result. I’m curious to know where you had enhancements and how fast did it metabolize?

  16. Avatar Ai Lin says:

    Sleep late will cause filler lost?

    • WD Staff WD Staff says:

      Hi Ai Lin,

      Thanks for reading our post and submitting your question. In general, excess sleep should have no negative effect on Botox. However, you’ll want to sleep with your head elevated for the first couple of days post-treatment. We also recommend sleeping with a skin saving pillow like Save My Face.

      We hope that helps!

      WD Staff

  17. Avatar Carol says:

    I do 30 minute aerobic dance Monday to Friday but it releases my stress and releases the feel good endorphins and my body is perfect I also do 10 minute abs 2 or 3 times a week and 10 minute thigh and hips on the alternate days plus s lovely stretch routine as needed. I’m gonna be 59 soon but I look like I’m 41! I’ve had a little Botox on Fine last bed in the forehead but I drink 6 glasses of water and eat healthy and have used sunscreen and exercise for 41 years. I do NOT agree with your statement I’m not a gym rat I simply tweak my body shape I call it maintenance and I look better than most women half my age I know coz 25 and 35 year old guys are always trying to pick me up!! Okay I’ve had my say

  18. Avatar Shayla says:

    I never knew that Botox injections could last between six months and two years! My skin is definitely starting to wrinkle and sag a bit, and I’ve started becoming self-conscious about it. I’ll definitely need to consider getting some Botox. Hopefully I can find a great business in my area that can give me a great, long-lasting product!

  19. Avatar Skylar says:

    Can facial massages or facial exercises extend the results?

    • WD Staff WD Staff says:

      Hi Skylar,

      Great questions! We’re not aware of any link between facial massage or facial exercise and Botox or filler result duration. In fact, doing either may actually help the body cannibalize the injectable, leading the results to wear off slight quicker.

      Hope that helps!

      WD Staff

  20. Avatar Greta says:

    Thank you for informing me that keeping your skin hydrated will help your skin stay plump and wrinkle-free!

  21. Avatar Jennifer says:

    This is such great information, thank you so much! I know that when I first started having cosmetic injectables done, I was not a great patient. I had injectable fillers and did not do what I needed to in order to make them last. I wish I’d had this article back then! I mean, sun protection is a given, but extra zinc? I would have never known that on my own.

    And thank you for mentioning the maintenance treatments. I thought they were recommended as a way to get more money out of my pocket, but I can see now that they are useful in helping treatments to last longer. Thanks again for all of this awesome information!

    I also found other great info on fillers on this blog, please feel free to share with your readers if you thin they can benefit!

  22. Avatar Ron says:

    Who knew healthy eating can help botox last longer, I guess its another reason to give up the fast food haha

  23. Avatar Faylinn says:

    It makes sense that you explained that the food that you choose to eat can have major impacts on the appearance and health of your skin. My aunt has been feeling quite sad recently, and I think it is because of her recent divorce, so as a treat I would like to pay for her to get cosmetic procedures done that could help her feel confident again. Hopefully, she will agree with me and we will find a doctor that can take care of the botox injections that she would like to have done soon.

  24. Avatar Rachel says:

    I would like to offer one more suggestion for a better experience as far as bruising is concerned when getting Botox and fillers. This is something I would never have known if it hadn’t happened to me the last time I received injections. I highly recommend not scheduling your appointment any time around your premenstrual time of the month. The difference not only while receiving injections but at least for the week following was huge in comparison to any other time I’ve ever had injections. For starters I do have a high pain tolerance and have never felt any pain whatsoever during Botox and as far as lip fillers I did take the topical numbing gel but had always felt I would be just fine without. When getting injections on pms I have to admit I almost wanted her to stop before she was finished with my forehead, and my lips I imagine felt as if I hadn’t had any numbing cream. The person administering my injections somehow recognized by my reaction to the pain as soon as she began she asked me if I was premenstrual and that was the first I had ever heard of the adverse effects because of this. After my appointment I noticed my forehead had lumps the size of nickels at each injection site and I had quite a bit of bruising from both. My whole face actually kind of hurt and was puffy all over throughout that week as well. So I definitely recommend not scheduling appointments right before your period and just want to add that I have never ever had any pain or adverse reactions to any injections ever over the past probably 20 years I’ve been having injections done. I’m kinda surprised that I had never been advised of this before and so that’s why I wanted to share in case others were unaware of this.

    • WD Staff WD Staff says:

      Hi Rachel,

      Thanks so much for taking the time to share this with our community, this will be very helpful to others interested in injectables. We will look into doing more research on increased pain around menstruation and will create a full blog post to make it more visible.

      Thanks again for all your time and willingness to share!!

      WD Staff

  25. Hi Jennifer,
    Thank you for sharing the amazing tips. Fillers can give you better results if you make sure about taking care of pre and post activities. Enjoyed reading the post.. informative one and keep writing.

  26. Avatar Diona says:

    Hello,i recently got fillers on my lips and i was wondering when is the perfect time to have a retouch on my fillers?
    Ive gotten 1ml done and i was wondering if i should go for 0.5 ml next time.
    Thank u for the post it was very helpful!

    • WD Staff WD Staff says:

      Hi Diona,

      Retouching can differ greatly from patient to patient and also depends on the type and amount of filler used. Usually you’ll want to reach out to your provider once you start to notice the treatment area begin to return to it’s per-treated state. It’s important not to delay, you’ll want to get in for the session as soon as possible!

      In terms of amount, that would depend upon you goals. If you feel that this first session (where 1ml was used) provided to much of an enhanced outcome you can try to lower it next time. Definitely recommend discussing that with your provider during your next session.

      We hope that helps!

      WD Staff

  27. Avatar Conrad says:

    Thanks for these great tips, always looking to make my filler last longer haha

  28. Avatar Dr. Barry says:

    Excellent resource!

  29. Avatar Mary says:

    You offer great tips!

    Can liquid collagen extend the results of Botox or other fillers? Or help to maintain good results?

    I am considering using Biocell Skin (type II collagen, chondroitin sulfate and hyaluronic acid) which I understand has micromolecules that allows our body to digest the collagen better.

    I appreciate your insight!

    • Avatar Adam Paddock says:

      Hi Mary,

      Thanks for your great comment. I ran it by Dr. Gordon and this was her response:

      True studies are very limited and while theoretically collagen could help skin health, there is no proof. The idea is that the collagen would actually be digested and get to the skin internally and then actually integrated into the skin, so it is a long journey. However, anecdotally, many people say they see it being helpful. There is no actual mechanism I can think about that would make toxin or fillers last longer for that reason, since both are not related to collagen, however if you have healthier skin, that in general may make the effects last longer.

      We hope that helps!

      WD Staff

  30. Avatar kirsty says:

    I had botox the beginning of December for the first time and due the pandemic, I was unable to receive my top up two weeks later and I am conscious that now it is wearing off. My question is, does anybody know whether liquid collagen would have a negative affect of the botox or would it be ok to take?

    • WD Staff WD Staff says:

      Hi Kirsty,

      Thanks for the great question. The answer may depend on the specifics of this case. As such, you should definitely bring this up with your injector. In fact, you may want to discuss potentially doing another round of Botox even though its been a few weeks.

      WD Staff

  31. Avatar Kate says:

    Zinc huh, that’s very interesting. I have not heard that one.

  32. Avatar Kate says:

    Great tips on the sun protection, can’t tell you how many people get that wrong. Sun exposure can really shorten the life of fillers

  33. Avatar Barbara says:

    My last Botox and fillers were Spring 2019 and lasted 18 to 20 months. Today I received Botox and fillers by my dermatologist and I feel great! I did use collagen powder sporadically for the last almost 2 years, stayed well hydrated and since April of this year I became vegan. I am interested to see what a clean plant-based diet does to further enhance and prolong the treatments.

  34. Avatar Susan says:

    I got fillers in my upper lip and I hate it. It has been 4 days and it seems like the swelling is still there but not sure if it is swelling or if it is the fillers. Will it go down or is there anything I can do to make it go down. I have been icing it. I only had a tiny bit put in. Thanks.

    • WD Staff WD Staff says:

      Hi Susan,

      We’re sorry to hear about that. Some degree of swelling over the first few days is normal, and you may continue to see improvement over the next few days. However, you may want to reach out to your injector and see if they can assess you in person. That might be your best bet.

      WD Staff

  35. Avatar Eldarjvk says:

    Daxxify looks pretty interesting

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