The lips and peri-oral region are the central area of attraction in daily interactions. With mandatory masks requirements now, first time patients are now feeling comfortable “testing the waters” with lip fillers as they may not know what to expect. Rejuvenating the lips and peri-oral area is a very popular cosmetic procedure that can create a more youthful appearance as well as improve genetically predetermined “ thin” lips. With respect to age, as one ages the lips tend to lose volume as well as the sharpness in the outer lining and contour. Descent of the outer corners of the mouth can create a melancholy appearance. In addition, constant contraction of the peri-oral musculature over the years or smoking can lead to fine lines and wrinkles. Volumizing the lips with filler injection requires proper understanding of the nature of the problem such as age-related volume loss, the appropriate technique and right product to use to create a natural appearing result and avoid the “duck- look”.
Filler with hyaluronic acid is the most commonly used filler to enhance the volume of the lip as well as improve the shape and structure. Hyaluronic acid is a natural substance in the body that can attract water and maintain moisture of the tissue. However hyaluronic acid filler is definitely not “ one size fits all” as there are particular properties of fillers that make them more appropriate for certain regions of the body. For the lips and peri-oral regions, small particle filler and those with special cross-linking technology allows for volumizing while maintaining its natural softness, avoiding lumping or clumping of the product. Juvederm Volbella XC, Restylane Silk and a newer product Restylane Kysse are fillers that are indicated for lip volumizing.
The procedure time is typically 30- 60 minutes, adding in an appropriate time for pre-treatment numbing, if needed. After the treatment you can experience swelling and bruising that typically last anywhere from 2 days to 2 weeks. Ice can be used to minimize swelling after treatment and results typically last for 6-8 months. You should notice an improvement immediately! However, numbing medication as well as the injections needed for treatment can cause initial swelling, and may overestimate the actual enhancement of your lips. I encourage first- timers to start conservatively as you can come back in a couple of weeks once the swelling resolves to add more filler until your desired volume is reached. If you would like to know more about lip volumizing, please do not hesitate to contact our office or schedule a consultation!