Lip Augmentation Overview
Women in search of dramatic change to the shape of their lips may desire to have lip implants. Known also as a lip augmentation, this cosmetic procedure creates plumper, fuller upper and/or lower lips. At Scottsdale Plastic Surgeons, we use fat grafting that provides long-lasting fullness. For patients wanting a painless, nonsurgical way to fuller lips, there are many injectable fillers on the market to consider as well. Each option can be discussed during the initial consultation with our board-certified surgeon, Dr. Holden.
Lip Enhancement Options
- Lip Implants: This is a surgical procedure that provides a permanent increase in lip size. There are two alternatives available that most surgeons use, including PermaLip, which is a solid silicone material that offers a natural, soft result; and Advanta Lip, which uses a synthetic Gore-Tex material that offers a fuller result with a firmer feel.
- AlloDerm: This is a popular surgical method to enhance the lips. It consists of components from the most durable part of the skin, known as the dermis. It is harvested from cadavers and placed within the lips through tiny incisions. It integrates with the natural tissues and fibers within the lips to create a smooth, natural appearance.
- Fat Filler: This is a nonsurgical injection, also referred to as a fat transfer. The process involves removing fat through liposuction from the patient’s body, filtering this fat and then transferring it to the lips.
- Injectable Filler: This is a nonsurgical injection that is made to the lips to create a fuller look. There are a variety of filler products available including those made of collagen, hyaluronic acid, calcium hydroxyapatite, etc. These are marketed under various brand names and offer varying results
"Rhinoplasty - Scottsdale, AZ - I couldn't be happier with my new nose.I hated my nose for as long as I can remember, when I looked in the mirror or at pictures of myself that's all I saw. The first time I met with Dr.Holden he pin pointed my exact issues with my nose with out my having to tell him. He was very kind and patient and answered all of my questions. While talking to him it was obvious he knew what he was talking about and was an expert in his field. I felt so comfortable and confident with him that I canceled my other consultes (with another surgon I used in the past) and scheduled by surgery for the next week. Dr.Holden also saw me at every one of my follow up appointments, not some nurse, which was very important to me and helped with my post surgery anxiety. With being 34 years old and a mother of 3 it was very important to me for my new nose to look natural. It does. I am thrilled when I look in the mirror and the people close to me have all remarked how wonderful it looks. While people that I haven't shared my surgery haven't noticed or at least not enough to say "oh my gosh you got a nose job!" I still look like me. :)"- S. / RealSelf / Jul 30, 2015
"I Couldn't Be Happier! - Dr. Holden is a very talented physician. Not only is he exceptional at facial plastic surgery, he is kind, compassionate and caring. I am extremely pleased with my eye lift and face lift, I couldn't be happier. He makes you feel comfortable every step of the way explaining the surgery and recovery in detail. He has the best bed-side manner of any physician I've encountered!"- S. / RealSelf / Nov 28, 2018
"Dr. Holden for Rhinoplasty! - I had a rhinoplasty procedure yesterday, after years of wanting to have one, but not actively pursuing to do so. I wanted a small refinement to my profile. I chose Dr. Holden because of his warm and caring nature, and his close attention to detail. In the initial consultation and meeting with Dr. Holden, I knew I had chosen the right doc for the job. Not only is he a fantastic plastic surgeon..."- A. / RealSelf / Oct 18, 2018
"Dr. Paul Holden is a Very Gifted Plastic Surgeon. - Dr. Paul Holden is a fantastic plastic surgeon. I would highly recommend that anyone needing facial plastic surgery use him. My results were outstanding. Arizona is very fortunate to have him as a resource in our area."- D. / RealSelf / Sep 19, 2018
"Walking through the fear! - I initially went to talk to Dr. Holden in May of 2016 about straightening my septum and removing a bump on my nose from when it was broken when I was young. I got nervous and opted not to do it. A friend of mine went to see him for a similar surgery and went through with it. After seeing the results and the success that my friend had I opted to go through with it in March of 2017. Tonight I..."- B. / RealSelf / Sep 16, 2018
Lip Augmentation Surgical Technique
The technique used to perform lip augmentation will vary depending if the patient is having a surgical or non-surgical procedure. Patients who are having a surgical procedure with fat grafting will have their fat harvested from a donor side on their abdomen or thighs. Incisions are placed on the outer corner of the mouth. These incisions allow the surgeon to create a tunnel within the lip where their fat can then be placed. The same approach is used for AlloDerm. Once the implants and/or tissue are in correct placement, the lips are then sutured and the incisions closed. These sutures are dissolvable.
Lip enhancement procedures that use an injection will take place with a local numbing anesthetic. These injections are made through a syringe that is placed inside the lip. The substance that is used is injected in layers until the desired fullness has been achieved. Some patients will need to have this process repeated several times depending on how quickly the body absorbs the injected material.
Lip Augmentation During/After Surgery
Lip augmentation (surgical and nonsurgical) is performed as an outpatient procedure in our surgical facility. The surgical process for fat grafting requires sedation in most cases. Lip augmentation using an injectable filler is performed in-office and usually takes about 30 minutes. A numbing cream is generally used for injections. The lips will be sore and swollen for a few days. This subsides and the results are fuller, soft lips.
Lip Augmentation Expected Cost
Lip augmentation will vary in cost. Some injections can average between $450-$550 per syringe, while lip augmentation using implants can run between $3,000-$6,000.
Plan Your Procedure
Lip Augmentation FAQs
Implant or Filler?
The good news to this question is that there are many choices and alternatives, each one offering specific benefits to meet each patient’s goals and desires. Women who wish to have permanent results will probably be better suited to have implants or some sort of filler treatment that produces longer lasting results. Some patients may not be sure how they will feel following lip augmentation, and may want to take baby steps with their lip enhancement. Luckily, there are many procedures they will offer a fuller lip, but that won’t last forever. During your consultation, all of these techniques will be discussed so that the right decision can be made.
Does fat grafting Look Fake?
Augmenting lips with fat results in a natural look and feel. After a few weeks when swelling is gone, the lips maintain a fuller appearance. Most patients remark that their new lips look and feel both natural and soft.
Is This Reversible?
Patients who do not like their fat grafted lips can have the fat removed. It’s important to make sure all swelling has subsided before making the decision to have them altered. Injections will slowly absorb into the body and thus the lips will naturally become smaller when an injection is involved.
What About Scarring?
Scarring is very minimal with a lip augmentation surgery because the incision is placed on the outside of the mouth in the natural crease of the lips. Once healed, the incision is barely noticeable at all.