Lip Fillers & Lifting
Why do narrow lips, whether we’re born with them, or develop them as the years pass, always have a negative connotation? It’s even right there in our language, with phrases like “tight-lipped”, “pursed lips” and “close-lipped” associated with disapproval, suppressed emotions, sadness and reticence.
In some cases, this can be true, but for the rest of us, it’s not. What’s common to both situations, though, is that thin lips often result in a lack of confidence and a reduced self-image. This is compounded by the opposing belief that fuller lips are associated with seduction, beauty and all the good things.
Fortunately there are ways to plump up narrow or thinning lips and enjoy the softness of fuller ones. It can be done with minor surgery, or with temporary or permanent fillers.
Reasons for lip augmentation
Aesthetically, narrow or thinning lips not only affect the look of the mouth itself, but also lengthen the distance between the nose and the lips. This can alter the appearance of the entire face by changing the lower half. In the same way, augmenting the lips can change both the full face and the profile view for the better by bringing the teeth, lips and nose into a more pleasing balance.
The size of our lips, whether full, narrow, or somewhere in between, is born with us. In some instances, the lips naturally miss what’s considered as the perfect volume ratio which aims at the balance of having a bottom lip one third larger than the top one. However, factors like age, sun exposure, or a smoking habit, influence not just that ratio, but also the Cupid’s bow in the top lip, and the arch shape between the lips.
Non-surgical options: Lip Fillers
Called Lip Fillers, non-surgical injectable solutions are similar to the ones used to fill facial wrinkles in a bid to combat signs of aging. They are less costly than surgery, involve less downtime, and the results show almost immediately. The wide range of different types and strengths of fillers available these days enables just the right degree of fullness to be obtained, and, depending on the filler used, results are reasonably predictable.
Some filler treatments keep the plumped-up look lasting longer than others, depending on their main ingredient. However, the less permanent ones have their own advantages.
The most popular and most commonly used fillers contain the naturally occurring protein, hyaluronic acid. Their effectiveness as a treatment is not as long-lasting as others, so will have to be repeated every now and again. The advantage of this type of filler, however, is that if the result doesn’t match expectations, it is reversible with another injection immediately – or the current “new look” can be changed for a different one when it wears off naturally.
The more permanent filler option is an injectable one which includes calcium hydroxyapatite instead of hyaluronic acid. It can last far longer, extending the life of new-look lips to years, instead of matter of months. However, the outcome is not as predictable, and it is not as easy to change the look if it isn’t quite what was expected.
Surgical Lip Lifts
Permanent lip augmentation, called a Lip Lift, can be achieved with minor surgery which, literally, lifts the top lip to shorten the length between the nose and the beginning of the red part of the upper lip. Not only is more of the lip exposed, making it look fuller, but the tips of the teeth are more likely to be visible when the lips are slightly parted. This will add a fresh and younger touch to the smile.
There are three different methods of doing this, all of them involving the removal of small amounts of skin tissue from the area between the nose and the lip. The choice of which method is used depends on the results required. In some instances, a second surgery can be combined with the Lip Lift procedure to raise the corners of the lips, something the basic lip procedure doesn’t do.
Making the choice
The choice of which route to take with regard to lip augmentation, depends on exactly what outcome is required and the degree of the problem. Fillers are able to give lips a fuller look, quickly and more cheaply, but are not lasting. Surgery, on the other hand, is necessary if the nose to lip length and drooping corners are the main cause of concern.
A plastic surgeon will be able to give advice on the best process to follow.