The Most Common Lip-Filler Questions, Answered

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The Most Common Lip-Filler Questions, Answered featured image


While the trend may slowly be shifting from large, pillowy pouts to a more understated smile, lip filler is still as popular as ever. Whether it’s your first time or tenth, there are many questions that might fill your head before heading into your provider’s office for a lip-enhancing dose. Ahead, top plastic surgeons answer the five most common questions surrounding lip filler.

How long do lip fillers last?

Hyaluronic acid-based lip fillers can last anywhere from six to 18 months. In some individuals, they may last shorter or longer. “In my experience, lip fillers typically last up to one year,” says New York plastic surgeon Mokhtar Asaadi, MD. “Because lips are constantly moving while we are talking and speaking, they go away faster than other parts of the face. Their longevity also depends on how much of the filler is initially used. More filler typically means longer results.”

Is there pain involved in getting lip fillers?

“You do not need to be fearful of getting lip fillers today,” says Newport Beach, CA plastic surgeon Sanjay Grover, MD, who adds that there are many ways to make a patient comfortable with a few simple tricks. “Some things that can make a patient comfortable include topical anesthetic cream, a ‘dental’ block and even ice. Another helpful trick is to use a little vibrating tool that is placed fairly close to the injection site. These vibrations trick the brain to register non-painful signals and miss out on the painful ones. Also, a blunt tip cannula—as opposed to a sharp needle—is sometimes used, which is also a gentler way of shaping beautiful lips. Finally, almost all fillers these days are mixed with some topical anesthetic already blended in. So, don’t be fearful of getting your lips done anymore!”

What is the typical cost for lip fillers?

Cost varies by location and provider, but Grand Rapids, MI plastic surgeon David R. Alfonso, MD says the typical cost of lip filler in his office runs between $450 and $700 per syringe. “The cost is also based on the amount of filler needed to achieve the desired end result,” he explains, which also varies from patient to patient.

What are the different types of lip fillers?

There are multiple types of lip fillers that are used for enhancement, including Restylane, Juvéderm, Radiesse, Voluma, Belotero and RHA newcomers from Revance. “In my opinion, hyaluronic acid fillers work brilliantly for the lip area,” says New York plastic surgeon Elie Levine, MD. “For those looking for long-lasting results, I have also had great success with silicone using a micro-droplet technique and fat transfer.”

Can lip fillers ruin your lips?

“If too much filler has been injected or has been placed in the wrong location, then you will have a temporary problem that can be corrected by dissolving the filler,” says Westborough, MA facial plastic surgeon Min S. Ahn, MD. “If the filler is placed into a blood vessel and blocks it, then you may have a permanent problem. The lip and the skin near it can lose its blood supply and become ‘necrosed,’ meaning it dies. This will result in a scar and an abnormal-looking lip that is hard to correct.”

New York plastic surgeon B. Aviva Preminger, MD advises starting slow with your lip injections so as not to overdo it or run into any issues. To avoid complications, Dr. Ahn recommends having the treatment performed by an experienced, highly recommended and board-certified injector. “Don’t look for the less-expensive option, as you may end up with a more costly problem.”

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