Let's talk lips. Do you like the way yours look? Have they always been small? Have they become smaller, lined, show your gums when you smile, or have you begun to create lines above or below your lips? Is the cupid’s bow less defined than it used to be or do your lips just blend in with the surrounding skin and have lost its definition? These and other issues may have you looking for solutions to have prettier lips.
By the age of 30, your lips are at their fullest. By this time, you can start showing signs of aging around the mouth area, including loss of volume of the lips, lining within the lips, lining above and below the lips, loss of definition of the vermilion border (or the border of the lips), and the beginning of the loss of definition of the philtral columns (the two columns that run from the nose to the cupid’s bow). In addition, the cupid’s bow can begin to lose its definition. As aging continues, the space between the nose and the upper lip lengthens as the volume in both lips declines.
There are many ways to improve the lips. Some may want that improvement early on for augmenting the natural shape of the lips. The most common way to do this is with dermal fillers to volumize the lips. Other techniques that are done use neurotoxins like Botox to slightly flip the lip upward and smooth out lines of the lip. Threads can also be placed in the border of the lip for more definition.
For restoration of the lips, many techniques are utilized to improve and enhance the lips to a more youthful appearance. The most common is the use of dermal fillers to improve the loss of volume and smooth the lips. These can restore and/or enhance/augment the lips. In addition, neurotoxins like Botox, again, can be used to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles. Ultimately, smoothing these lines and wrinkles can be improved with dermal filler injected beneath the lines/wrinkles as well as collagen stimulating treatments such as microneedling or Skinfinity RF treatments. Other treatments such as chemical peels can improve these lines as well. The improvement of the cupid’s bow and the philtral columns can be done through techniques with dermal fillers from a skilled provider.
Did you know that Botox can fix a gummy smile? What do I mean? Well, if when you smile you see a lot of gum line above your teeth, that’s a gummy smile. Botox or another neurotoxin can be placed in 2-3 spots every couple of months to weaken those muscles so you don’t expose that gumline making a prettier smile.
What you need to consider if you do want to have your lips enhanced:
- If you have small lips, they can be enhanced, but you will not want them to be grossly large, or they will look abnormal.
- Lip shape can be changed to an extent, however, again, you have a natural lip shape and changing this largely can cause you to have a very unnatural appearance.
- We are trying to achieve balance of your face.
- Be realistic.
- Don’t plan to get your lips done within 2-3 weeks of any big events. You may bruise and you will swell for several days - 2 weeks.
- In addition, you may need more lip filler in 4-6 weeks as less is better at first. Adjustments can always be done, including removal if asymmetry occurs at all. You will be expected to come back in 2 weeks and 6 weeks for follow up visits.
- 1 syringe may not be enough to get the look you desire. Price is based off the number of syringes used. Your initial lip size is a big factor in how much you need in addition to how much enhancement you’d like or need.
- Botox is a very good option for improvement of lip lines in addition to dermal filler, but it needs to be done every couple of months for optimal improvement.
- Yes, I do use a topical great numbing agent and injectable numbing to help with discomfort. In addition, ice is used if needed. Juvederm dermal filler also has numbing agent within it. This is not bad at all to have done.
Improving the way your lips look is a great way to make you feel beautiful. And masks can hide the initial swelling…
Come in for a visit.
Shari J. Twigg, MD