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Want a permanent alternative to lip filler?

Practically all women want fuller lips. Full lips have always been associated with youth and vitality. And with the influence for such such social media stars like the Kardashians, fuller lips have also been seen as part of sensuality. By far, the most popular treatment remains fillers. Though there are some permanent fillers, vast majority of experts still recommend dissolvable fillers like hyaluronic acids. Unfortunately, you will need to repeat injections every year, and there is that rare devastating vascular occlusion complication. An alternative permanent option exists, and it has been “under our nose” this entire time. I’m talking about the surgical procedure lip lift.

What is a lip lift? It is a surgical procedure that elevates the upper lip by removing skin between the nose and the border of the top lip. By shortening the distance between the nose and the top of the lip, the redness of the lip starts to roll outward, creating a more volumized look. The purpose is to either shorten this distance [between the nose and the lip] or to increase the size of a naturally very thin lip.

Lips come in all sizes and appearance. But some common concepts exist for lips to be attractive. We like our female lips to be voluptuous (in the younger patient), and full in the more mature patient. The upper white lip (the part between your nose and the top part of your red lip) should be about 1/3 of the distance between your nasal base and chin base. There are no absolute measurements that define a beautiful lip. But typically, an “ideal” lip should be about 11 to 13 millimeters in women, and about 13-15 millimeters in men. As we get older, the white lip starts to elongate and makes you look older. But there are also young patients with longer white lips they were born with. There are no injectable treatments or lasers, etc that can shorten the white upper lip. The only way is an upper lip lift.

This is a very simple procedure that can be done in the clinic. The most popular technique is the “bullhorn” technique, named after the resemblance of the planned excision to a bull’s horn. It’s very important your surgeon plans the incision precisely so that the scar is hidden in the natural curves under your nose. It’s critical your plastic surgeon does not remove excessive skin. If too much skin is taken, then you can’t completely close your mouth at rest, and there will be a constant opening where everyone can see your upper teeth. It’s extremely difficult to correct an over resected upper lip. So tt’s better to be more conservative. One can always remove more skin to fine tune your results. Less common variation includes the corner lip lift, where a small segment of skin at your corners of mouth is removed to lift just the sides of your lips. One disadvantage is this scar may be more visible than the bullhorn lip lift.

The procedure can easily be done in the clinic under local anesthesia. The worst part is the injection of the anesthesia. But once that takes effect, you won’t feel any pain. You will feel your surgeon dissecting the tissue, and you will smell cauterization of bleeding vessels. The wound will be closed in layers and your surgeon will tell you when to return for suture removal. The scar heals extremely well if you take care of your wound carefully. The procedure is very safe, with the main complication being unfavorable scars or appearance.

Achieving a full and beautiful lip is one of the most popular desires in today’s women—young and old. Don’t think your only option is fillers. An upper lip lift is a great option to consider that can achieve your goals, and is permanent. In addition, for some people, a lip lift plus fillers can achieve amazing results over just fillers.

For more information about San Antonio lip lift or plastic surgery, please visit our interactive website at Dr. Kenneth Yu Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery is a qualified team of experts serving the San Antonio, Texas area. To schedule a consultation, please contact our Concierge Patient Coordinator at (210) 876-6868 or