Lips can define our beauty. When we are younger, the lips we have are presents from our parents. Full well defined lips make us appear youthful, attractive, filled with vitality. Time takes it toll. With aging, sunshine and smoking we lose the volume and definition of our lips. The upper lip tends to flatten as it rolls downwards and inwards. The outer corners of our lips start to descend, giving us a more unhappy look. The distance from our nose to our upper lip also increases with age, taking away that youthful show of our teeth when we smile. Vertical wrinkles start to appear in the skin above and below our lips. Frightful, huh?
I use several techniques for enhancing lips. The choices of techniques depends on many factors including your anatomy and your desires. A common procedure is placement of fillers to define the lips and/ or to increase the volume of the lips. They can be used to help drooping corners of the mouth and the small vertical wrinkles that inevitably appear above and below the lips. The most popular fillers are the hyaluronic gels- Restylane, Perlane and Juvaderm. They provide a reasonably long lasting result and and are smooth and gentle enough for the precision needed for lips. Newer techniques in injection and numbing have made these one of the most popular cosmetic treatments.
Other techniques that we sometimes employ are fat tranfers to the lips or lip implants. These can increase the volume of the lips but are not for defining the lips. Fat transfers and implants are more involved than simple injections but do have the advantage of longer results.
Lip lifting techniques do just that. They lift the lip. For those that have a longer distance from the bottom of the nose to the top of the lip, which can lengthen the face and hide the teeth when smiling, a central lip lift may be indicated. This office technique elevates the central part of the upper lip by removing excess skin above the lip. The scar is hidden at the base of the nose.
A lateral lip lift is also known as a corner lip lift or a Valentine lip lift. This procedure is used when the corners of the mouth are drooping to an extent that fillers are unable to correct. Occasionally a wee bit of Botox or a procedure known as a DAO resection can also help.