There comes a time in everyone’s life when the inevitable happens; crow’s feet, laugh lines, circles under the eyes appear, and skin loses its “bounce.” These changes are due to a depletion of collagen and elastin in the skin. These changes start around age 30 and we lose a teaspoon per year of volume. But what about the lips? We’re here to explain the basics of lip augmentation.

Lips age unfairly

This same process that removes volume from your face is also what causes our lips to thin. But here’s the deal: the gradual loss of thickness actually starts in your twenties. During the next twenty or thirty years, the loss of collagen also causes the V-shape of the upper lip (known as the “cupid’s bow”) to flatten.  While the flattening occurs, the corners of the mouth start to turn downward. The lips become longer and thinner, resulting in a deflated, droopy appearance.

Other factors that can cause lips to lose collagen more quickly are:

  • smoking (the number one cause)
  • regular drinking from a straw (good news for the turtles!),
  • sun exposure
  • genetics.

A silver lining

The good news is that you can restore lost lip volume! However, lip filler has been given a bad rap by the overfilled Hollywood and Housewives of Wherever crowd. When people are wary of having a lip enhancement, it’s usually due to a misconception that all lip injections are over the top.

Techniques and products have considerably evolved, and the goal at Refine Dermatique is to restore your lips to a natural and more youthful appearance. Our lips are a big part of our facial aesthetic, and it is always fun to see clients’ reactions after their lip enhancement. They can’t believe how much younger they look with their lips returned to their previous shape and volume. In addition, they usually respond that they can’t believe they waited so long to do it and didn’t realize how much volume they had lost.

A natural, aesthetic look

For the most natural-looking results, the injector must take a holistic approach to your mouth and facial anatomy. The overall shape of the lips and their plumpness have to be addressed in relation to your unique facial features. Without assessing the face comprehensively, a lip augmentation looks obvious and unnatural. This is why it is essential to find a skilled injector with proper training in facial anatomy and aesthetics. 

Another concern with lip injections that many people fear is perhaps an obvious one, pain. At Refine Dermatique in Sartell, Minnesota, we try to make your lip treatment as painless as possible. A topical numbing agent is applied to the lip prior to injection, and the filler itself has Lidocaine in it to make it less painful. Although everyone has a different pain tolerance, most clients find it to be much less painful than they were anticipating.

What to consider before a lip augmentation

If you are planning to have a lip augmentation done, a few things to consider before your appointment. Lips tend to swell on most people immediately after injection, and the swelling can generally last for 24-48 hours. We recommend gently icing the lips every few hours to keep swelling at a minimum. Another consideration before treatment is knowing that bruising is a possibility for anyone. Generally, the bruising can be covered with makeup. We also recommend pretreating for two days prior with Bromelain and Arnica, two supplements that can aid in reducing swelling and bruising.

In addition, we recommend that you discontinue the use of fish oil, aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil), naproxen (Aleve), and alcohol ten days prior. These thin your blood and can increase your chance of bruising. If your physician has prescribed any of these things, we recommend checking with her or him before discontinuing anything. As a rule, we tend to tell clients not to have injections right before a big event or trip due to the chance for swelling and bruising.

If you have been considering having your lips injected, now is a great time! You can restore your natural-looking pout just in time for Valentine’s Day – who knows what might happen!