Unlike topical skincare products, where new ones hit the market seemingly daily, the world of skincare injectables is much more limited. You have the big names, of course—Botox, Juvéderm, and the like—though it’s rare that you hear about anything entirely innovative on the scene. As of late, even the newest launches have been variations on the same theme, like Daxxify, a new neurotoxin treatment. So it makes it even more exciting when there’s something completely unprecedented on the horizon that has dermatologists buzzing.
Profhilo is exactly that, a new type of hyaluronic acid injectable that’s currently available in Europe and is expected to be approved by the FDA and show up stateside at some point in the future. To that point, while you can’t get it just yet, it is an exciting new treatment worth knowing about. Ahead, top dermatologists explain everything you need to know about Profhilo.
What Is Profhilo?
“Profhilo is a novel hyaluronic acid injectable product designed to pump and remodel the skin,” Zeichner says. “It falls into a new category of injectable skin boosters, which improve texture and radiance rather than adding volume or structure,” he adds. Basically, whereas traditional hyaluronic acid fillers (like Juvéderm and Restylane) are meant to fill, the effects of Profhilo are slightly more subtle. You can think of it as a long-acting, internal moisturizer that can affect cells in your skin that a topical moisturizer couldn’t reach, according to Doft.
How Does It Work?
Profhilo and other hyaluronic acid fillers are made from the same thing—hyaluronic acid. As a quick reminder, hyaluronic acid is a top-notch hydrating ingredient, a molecule that attracts and can hold 1000 times its weight in water. However, not all fillers are made with the same type of HA, leading to the aforementioned differences. “The hyaluronic acid in Profhilo is not cross-linked,” Doft explains. “Cross-linking is a method of bonding the hyaluronic acid strands together that makes the formula more gel-like.” In short, Profhilo has a more liquid consistency, one that’s also very smooth and flexible and easily distributed evenly under the skin—hence its overall effects of smoothing and plumping your complexion.
As Doft said, Profhilo delivers effects like a moisturizer: plumper, smoother, glowier, generally healthier, and younger-looking skin. It’s just happening on a deeper and more long-lasting level. She says that while you will see some results immediately afterward, the full effect usually kicks in after two to three weeks. And there’s actually a long-term benefit, too. “The body reacts to the placement of HA by stimulating collagen, which in turn increases firmness, tone, and reduces fine lines, making your skin appear younger and more luminous,” Doft explains. But it’s worth noting that this effect will take three to six months to show up.
What to Expect
Since this is an injectable treatment, you can expect a bit of prodding with needles. “The goal of treatment is an even distribution of the product throughout the problem areas, so there are significantly greater numbers of injection sites with Profhilo as compared to traditional injectable fillers,” Zeichner notes. You’ll also probably need two treatment sessions, spaced one month apart, Doft adds.
Potential Side Effects
The potential side effects are nothing out of the ordinary. As with any injectable treatment, you risk temporary bruising, swelling, or lumpiness near the injection sites. However, Doft says this will dissipate within a week or two. If symptoms persist beyond this timeframe, it’s best to consult your dermatologist immediately.
The cost of Profhilo is still TBD, as it isn’t available in the United States yet. However, Zeichner notes that pending FDA approval, it should be available in the States within the next few years. But it’s pretty safe to say that, as with all cosmetic injectables, your total price tag will depend on how much product is used, your provider, and where you live.
Zeichner says your aftercare routine should include icing the affected areas to minimize bruising or swelling. Additionally, avoiding wearing makeup for at least 24 hours after your procedure is recommended to prevent clogging the injection sites. Similarly, you’ll want to refrain from vigorous exercise or drinking alcohol for 24 hours, which can increase bruising. Lastly, avoid exposing your skin to extreme heat or cold following your procedure.
Profhilo vs. Skinvive
There’s one other skin booster, Skinvive (by Juvéderm), available on the U.S. market now. What’s the difference between the two? “Skinvive contains lidocaine, a numbing agent, to help with post-injection pain and discomfort, and streptococcus bacteria in it, used to help synthesize the hyaluronic acid,” Doft explains. Zeichner adds that other subtle differences include the molecular weight and density of hyaluronic acid, along with the presence of other ingredients, like antioxidants or vitamins. Still, the overall benefits and end result are likely going to be very similar.
The Final Takeaway
Profhilo is gaining traction internationally for a reason. The hyaluronic acid skin booster helps plump and smooth skin, leading to a more radiant and healthier-looking complexion. In other words, you can think of it as a more intense moisturizer that works internally. While it’s not yet FDA-approved, it’s worth familiarizing yourself with Profhilo, as we believe it’ll make its way to the States in the future.