It isn’t uncommon to come across people who have naturally thin lips. There are also those who experience lip thinning due to natural aging. Lip enhancement procedures involving the use of fat transfer, dermal fillers and implants are becoming increasingly popular among those looking to add some structure, shape, and volume to extremely thin lips.
The ‘lip augmentation’ technique is a special cosmetic procedure that is designed to give a patient fuller and more attractive lips. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons reports that lip augmentation is the second most popular cosmetic procedure after dermabrasion in the U.S.
In the last few years, a variety of different hyaluronic acid fillers (HA fillers) has received a green signal from the government. The latest lip formulas are quite similar in their composition with only minor variations in density and longevity. At present, injectable dermal fillers are the most popular solution for lip augmentation.
Lip injections and their benefits
Today it is possible to completely change the shape and size of your lips with the help of a treatment that uses lip injections containing lip fillers. The cosmetic procedure gives you an improved lip structure and redefines the mouth contours. One of the biggest advantages of a lip injection procedure is that you get instant results and can enjoy complete control over the extent to which you wish to change the appearance of your lips.
With hyaluronic acid lip injections like Juvederm, no artificial chemical is injected into the lips as the natural tissues of the body are used for plumping up the lips of the patient. This is one of the safest techniques for lip augmentation since there are very few chances of the patient experiencing any allergic reaction vis-à-vis their own natural body tissues.
Lip injections have numerous benefits and are highly recommended for those who struggle with wrinkles and fine lines in the mouth area, have thin and poorly shaped lips or desire fuller lips and a better smile in general.
Some of the key benefits of lip injections include the following:
- Improved appearance
It is obvious that the primary benefit of a lip enhancement procedure through lip injections is an improvement in your overall appearance. With fuller lips, you are likely to look younger and this can ultimately boost your self-esteem in social and professional setups.
- Naturally fuller lips
Products such as Juvederm fillers are excellent at achieving an extremely natural look since they contain hyaluronic acid. As mentioned earlier, this is a substance which is naturally present in your body and prevents the occurrence of bruising during the procedure. There is a natural absorption of the filler in the body and the fullness of the lips can be maintained with replacement after approximately every 6 months.
- Treats aging signs
Lip injections have an additional benefit for those who wish to eliminate wrinkles and fine lines that develop in the mouth area due to factors like smoking and natural aging.
With lip injections, you have naturally fuller lips and this fullness helps tighten the skin around your lips. Hence, your mouth looks firmer and more youthful because wrinkles and fines lines are reduced.
There are numerous smokers who end up developing severe wrinkles in the mouth area over a period of time. Poor circulation in the area leads to premature aging and the early appearance of wrinkles. Lip injections with fillers are an effective solution for minimizing these wrinkles.
- Minimal side effects
Cosmetologists inform that hyaluronic acid fillers rarely cause any side effects and/or allergic reactions in patients. However, it is critical for a candidate to disclose any existing allergies and medications during the initial appointment with the clinician. This will help select the right filler for their specific needs. In case there is a possibility of a candidate being allergic to specific filler ingredients, the clinician may carry out a minor test for checking the response of the patient to the filler.
- Slow process
With natural fillers, you have the option to allow them to deliver optimum results over a period of time, by way of slow progression. People who have naturally thin lips are more inclined towards this option because they are usually unsure about the appearance of their cosmetically fuller lips. A patient could meet their surgeon over several appointments and slowly get the lips to a desirable level of plumpness without any discomfort.
- Advantage over lip implants
While lip implants offer absolutely permanent results, this is not the case with lip injections. The effects of these lip injections will last for about six months and then you would require another session to retain the volume and shape of your new lips. This means that you have the choice to ‘experiment’ with your new look.
An exciting benefit of the lip injection based lip enhancement procedure is that you can customize the treatment on the basis of your specific needs. For instance, you might decide to plump up or redefine only the lower lip or add volume to only one specific lip area. You can discuss a variety of different treatment options when working with a trained and experienced injector and get the best results.
Restylane and Juvederm lip injections
There are a variety of different dermal fillers which can be used for plumping the lips and the mouth area. Out of these dermal fillers, the most commonly used are the ones which contain a substance that mimics the nature of hyaluronic acid, a naturally occurring substance in the human body. These dermal fillers may be referred to as hyaluronic acid fillers or HA fillers.
Juvederm and Restylane are both HA-based products and do an excellent job at adding plumpness to your lips. The key point of difference between the two products is the way in which they are utilized for achieving specific goals for a patient.
Restylane Silk is a unique dermal filler that contains lidocaine and has been approved by the FDA especially for rejuvenating the mouth area and the lips. This hyaluronic acid filler is formulated with extended chains of natural sugar present in your skin. Further, it is cross-linked for creating a very soft consistency that fills up lines and offers a highly natural appearance. Being a hyaluronic acid filler, Restylane can be easily shaped and molded into a desirable contour once injected.
Juvederm, the other hyaluronic acid filler recommended for lip augmentation, is also excellent at adding volume to the lips and mouth contours. This is a ‘smooth’ filler because it offers very natural results, just like Restylane. Juvederm is available in three distinct formulations:
- Juvederm Ultra
- Juvederm Ultra Plus
Your doctor will help decide which filler is most suitable for your desired goals and current lip condition.
There are a few critical steps that you need to take in order to prepare for a dermal filler or lip injection procedure. Your doctor might prescribe a painkiller (not aspirin or anti-inflammatory medications) or apply a numbing cream to avoid any pain or discomfort during the procedure.
Allergy tests are usually unnecessary since hyaluronic acid fillers are hypoallergenic in nature. But your doctor will request you to mention any existing allergies (and medicines taken to manage these allergies) before administering the injections.
Lip augmentation using hyaluronic acid dermal fillers is a quick procedure and takes anywhere between 30 minutes to an hour to be completed. There is no downtime involved in this cosmetic procedure and you’re free to return to your daily activities and even work almost immediately. Further, you will not have to deal with any pain or scarring and the minor redness or swelling will also diminish within a short period of time after surgery.
What about the results of a lip augmentation procedure? While everyone has a different type of skin, a filler usually lasts for approximately six months and subsequent treatments are needed to maintain optimum results.
Lip enhancement with fat transfer
Besides dermal fillers, fat transfer is another popular cosmetic technique used for lip augmentation. In this procedure, the lip volume is enhanced by injecting fat into the targeted area. But the fat in question is extracted from the patient’s own body, usually from the buttocks, thighs or abdomen.
Since the injections contain the natural tissue of the patient, there is minimal risk of allergies or complications and the result is effective permanent integration. An additional benefit of the fat transfer lip augmentation procedure is that it offers plenty of room for customization. This means that the doctor can choose the exact quantity of fat that needs to be injected and achieve the desired aesthetic goals of the patient. Some of the key features of a lip augmentation procedure using fat transfer include the following:
- Outpatient procedure performed with local anesthesia
- Minimally invasive
- Instant results
- Minimal recovery period (a couple of days)