Like any other cosmetic surgery, lip augmentation requires a lot of responsibility. You can only determine for yourself if you’re ready. We’ve included the most popular injections and implants here. This information should serve as a general overview only and should not replace your doctor’s advice. Once you’ve selected a doctor, you will communicate with him or her and decide together which option best suits your needs.
As with any medical procedure, you should tell your doctor of any allergies or any medications that you are taking and you will be required to discuss your medical history. Certain diseases such as diabetes, can increase your chances of complications. If you are a smoker, this may also be a complicating factor.
You must be in good general health overall. You are not a good candidate for lip augmentation if you have:
- Current cold sores
- Certain diseases such as diabetes or lupus
- Any scarring of the lips
- Blood clotting problems
Injections for Lip Augmentation
Your surgeon will most likely use topical anesthesia (painkiller applied directly to the lips) for injections. These are performed on an outpatient basis in our clinic and you will be sent home the same day.
Here are the options:
- Artecoll is a synthetic material that plumps up the lips. Because it’s synthetic, you are at higher risk of having an allergic reaction to it than if you got an injection of collagen or fat, but it lasts longer than either.
- Autologen is an injection of your own collagen, extracted from another place on your body. There’s no risk of allergic reaction, however, the results are only temporary. This may be good for people who aren’t ready to commit to a permanent result.
- Collagen can be extracted from cows and injected into the lips. There’s a risk of allergic reaction, so it’s best to have your surgeon give you a test dose before proceeding to the full dose. The results are temporary lasting four weeks to three months.
- Dermalogen is collagen extracted from deceased human donors. This is also a temporary fix, but your body should not reject it.
- Fascia injections use a specific type of connective tissue harvested either from your own body or from a deceased human donor. It can be implanted surgically or injected. The main drawback is that within a year of injection, your body will reabsorb the fascia.
- Fat from your own thighs or abdomen can be injected into your lips. There’s no risk of allergic reaction and you may achieve permanent results. This can also be implanted surgically (see below). If you gain weight, your lips may enlarge since the fat cells will get bigger.
- Hylaform is a material created from a natural body substances known as hyaluronic acid. There’s no risk of infection, but you will need repeated treatments to maintain the result as it’s only a temporary fix.
- Restylane is a clear gel. It contains hyaluronic acid. It’s biodegradable, so your body will absorb it within about six months of the injection.
Your recovery will depend on your lifestyle and which procedure you undergo. If you are having injections, your recovery can take just a couple days. However, any swelling or bruising can last longer.
If you are having surgical implants or grafts, your recovery can take up to two weeks after the surgery.
It’s important that you know yourself. Discuss how much time you think you’ll need for recovery with your doctor. It may be necessary to take some time off work. You will need at least three days off from work, at minimum. If you are physically active, you will not be able to exercise for a few days after injections and perhaps for a few weeks after surgical implants.
If you are a smoker, you may be required to stop smoking for a period before the procedure. You should follow your doctor’s instructions carefully on this.