Everyone has come to recognize the telltale signs of a lip augmentation gone wrong. Those big, puffy lips that all the “Real Housewives” are sporting have given lip enhancement a bad name among many of our clientele, who prefer to look natural. Poor techniques, practiced at inexperienced clinics and spas have sadly contributed to this undesirable trend. However, at our practice, lip injections continue to be among one of the most frequently performed procedures, precisely because, done well, lip injections can look absolutely lovely.
Just as loss of volume occurs in the cheeks, under eyes, and in temple and chin as we age, so too is loss of volume in our lips part of the aging process. Some treatment of too-tiny lips that have lost their definition should be part of proper rejuvenation of the face. Subtle augmentation, with only slight enlargement, giving a more defined border to the lip, for example, or reducing lines above the lip, can mean lipstick no longer bleeds, and the mouth looks younger.
For young women, the allure of lip augmentation is more about having the lips they always wanted but weren’t born with. For many, they are not looking for the very large Angelina Joli look anymore, but they do want added fullness. For those who are looking for substantial increase in lip size, older injection techniques often resulted in “sausage” or “duck” lips. With newer techniques we can better insure an aesthetically pleasing look. For example, in women with very small upper lips, we can now more successfully beautify the cupid’s bow, without it looking too “stuck out”. It is important to remember that with ideal facial measurements the corners of the lip should fall in line with the pupil of the eye, and the ratio of upper lip to lower lip should be PHI, that is 1.618. This was referred to by renaissance painters as the “golden mean”, and has been shown to define beauty in the modern day as well.
At MCSC we have developed our own customizable method of lip injection that we feel gives women a natural looking and long lasting result, while optimizing the lip proportion. Our brand of lip augmentation has the added benefit of comfort, without the need for any extra freezing needles, and in most cases very little bruising. This sometimes involves the application of a topical anaesthetic agent or ice. Dr. Weinberg or Dr. Schiffer will then inject the lips in a very specific fashion, often using one of the new injectable fillers, JUVÉDERM Volbella®, or Restylane Fine Lines with Lidocaine. These products are specifically known for comfort, and soft natural consistency. Volbella specifically is known for longevity in lip augmentation and is less associated with swelling than many other products, so if you’ve tried lip augmentation in the past but were put off by swelling or bumpiness, you deserve to re-try it with Volbella. The lips are then often massaged for a smooth finish, with a small amount of Cicaplast, an excellent product for healing. Finally, we often recommend a small number of units of Botox be injected above the lip. This reduces “smoker’s” lines, but also adds to longevity of the lip enhancement.