Enhancing the lips with Dermal Fillers is an art in itself, and at Anticlock Medispa, we use our vast experience and aesthetic sense to give you individualized results that look natural and sensual. Dr K M Kapoor has been a pioneer in the field of injectables in India and was amongst the first plastic surgeons to introduce dermal fillers in his practice. Over the years, he has trained hundreds of doctors in India and abroad in the 'Art of Lip Fillers' and has treated thousands of clients with his unique approach and effective injection techniques.
With the rising popularity of non-surgical cosmetic procedures, more and more people are opting for dermal filler treatments. Of these, 'lip fillers' are the most popular treatments, but unfortunately, people harbor so many myths about this treatment. We have therefore answered a list of 'frequently asked questions' about this procedure, to help you understand everything about the procedure.
(These FAQs pertain to the HA-based temporary Dermal Fillers. We do not use permanent lip fillers at Anticlock Medispa.)
Q: What is 'lip enhancement' or 'lip augmentation'?
A: Lip augmentation or enhancement is a procedure that changes the shape of lips by making them look fuller either by surgery or by use of dermal fillers. The popularity and ease of getting dermal fillers injections, has made the lip-augmentation surgery almost redundant in current day and age.
In the last few years, the best practices in 'lip filler injection' have moved from an emphasis on just 'plumping' or adding volume to also correcting the structural insufficiencies, asymmetry or and working on other aspects of aging on lips. Thus, apart from restoring volume, we can now enhance the shape of lips, smooth out the smoker’s lines, correct any unevenness, and treat any scars on the lips with the use of dermal fillers.
Q: What is the need for lip fillers?
A: When we talk about aging, we often fail to consider the aging process of the lips and worry ourselves with lines and folds that show up on our faces. This is ironic because depletion of volume and hydration in lips is amongst the first signs of aging. Lips become thinner and drier with age because of the loss of fat and collagen. Eventually, the corners of our lips begin to droop leading to "the sad clown lips," followed by the development of vertical “smokers’ lines” on the skin around the mouth which causes lipstick to bleed. All these signs of aging contribute to the sad, terse, and tired look, which mostly start showing in 'middle age.' With recent advances in the technique of lip fillers, we can now address all these issues and get more supple, hydrated lips with youthful and natural plumpness. An additional advantage is that you don't need to carry that lip balm with you anymore and the lipsticks tend to stay on longer without bleeding or cracking.
In younger people, the fillers can do wonders in restoring the balance of proportions in the face and to add to the sensuous appeal to the lips by defining the structure a bit more.
One needs to tread a delicate balance to achieve this goal and only trust an experienced and trained injector who would use the right product, in the right amounts and in the right place.
Q: How do Lip Fillers work?
A: The Hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers can revitalize the whole lip when injected in proper amounts and in the correct depth of tissue! Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a 'water loving' sugar molecule which can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water, and that makes it an excellent hydrator. In the dermal fillers, this molecule is presented in a gel form, which once injected, stays there and leads to smoothening of lines, plumping and deep hydration of the lips.
Hyaluronic acid is present in our tissues naturally as well. So over time, the HA-based dermal fillers are typically broken down by the body. The kind of filler used is usually softer one which doesn't hamper our natural expressions and gives a softer and natural feel.
The technique Dr. K M Kapoor uses to inject fillers in lip involves depositing very tiny amounts in multiple structural points in the lip, so much so that sometimes 1ml of lip filler is distributed over 20 points in the lip. This allows him to create a beautiful balance and sensual plumpness that looks very natural.
Q: Who is a candidate for lip enhancement treatment?
A: Anyone who wishes to go in for lip enhancement could be a candidate for lip fillers, as long as you are an adult and have realistic expectations. At Anticlock Medispa, we try to understand your goals and expectations and try to strike a balance between your 'needs and wants'. We also discuss your medical history with you during the consultation to rule out certain absolute and relative contraindications. You must avoid dermal filler treatment if you are pregnant or are planning a pregnancy since there aren't enough definitive scientific studies proving their safety in these conditions. Same goes for breastfeeding mothers. Also, if you have an auto-immune disorder or immunodeficiency because of any other cause, you must avoid this treatment. People with cold sores on the lips should also avoid getting injected until the issue is resolved.
Q: Which areas of the lip can be enhanced with Dermal Fillers?
A: As discussed earlier, the best practices in Lip Filler have moved away from injecting just in the bulk of the lip (for a plumping effect) to injecting at multiple points to achieve an overall rejuvenation. Dr. K M Kapoor distributes the filler in the lip in a manner that the weakest points in your lip are corrected first, followed by highlighting the strongest points. All this is done keeping your aesthetic goals in mind.
With the availability of revolutionary new products that are softer and can give finer results, we can now define the lip borders, create or accentuate the Cupid’s Bow; add volume to the bulk of the lip; correct the downward turn of corners of mouth; highlight the median tubercle in the upper lip or lateral tubercles of lower lip; correct the proportions of upper and lower lip; and eliminate the smoker’s lines.
Q: What is the procedure for Lip Fillers like?
A: At Anticlock Medispa, you will have a thorough consultation with Dr. K M Kapoor, where he would do a comprehensive assessment, listen to your concerns, review your medical history and understand your goals and expectations. After that, he will discuss the suitable treatment options with you and chalk out a treatment plan.
If you visit the clinic well prepared and armed with knowledge, the treatment can be done on the same day, but if it is your first time and you need to comprehend what the procedure entails fully, we encourage you to take some time to think things over and come for the treatment at a later date.
Before starting the treatment, you would be required to sign a consent form, and pre-procedural pictures will be taken for a baseline reference point. A numbing (anesthetic) cream would then be applied on the lips so that you are not uncomfortable during the treatment. After waiting for about 15 minutes (this is the time needed for the numbing cream to take effect), a very fine needle is used to place the dermal filler at the intended points in the lip to achieve the optimum result. After that, gentle molding is done to even out the filler placement, an antiseptic cream is applied on the lips, and post-procedural pictures are taken. The injection part takes another 15 minutes, and you will see the results immediately. So, you would be looking into spending a total of about 40 minutes, including the time for pictures, numbing cream, and the actual procedure.
You should expect some swelling after the dermal filler treatment in the lips, and this could be decreased with the application of an ice pack immediately after the procedure. But we don't recommend that you do it at home as this could inadvertently cause infection since it takes a few hours for injection points in skin to completely seal. Sometimes you might have mild bruising as well.
Q: Do the lip fillers injections cause any bleeding?
A: Very fine needles are used to give Dermal Filler injections in the lips and in the skin around the lips. Most often, this doesn't cause any bleeding, and if it does occur, it is usually only pin-point and stops quickly when the doctor uses mild compression with sterile gauze.
Q: Is it painful to get lip fillers done?
A: It might be difficult to believe, but lip filler treatment is not all that painful. At Anticlock Medispa, we take all steps to ensure that the treatment is as comfortable as possible. Before starting the procedure, a topical anesthetic cream is applied to the lip to make the area numb. Most dermal filler products that we use in this area also contain some amount of local-anaesthetic; this makes the procedure almost painless. Apart from that, a flawless injection technique is also crucial to a better experience for the patient. That said, a lot depends on individual pain tolerance as well.
Q: What kind of results should I expect after dermal fillers?
A: The results of Dermal Fillers are immediately noticeable and would depend on the kind of filler used, its amount, the treatment plan, and the expertise of the injector. Since every patient is different and every treatment plan is individualized, everyone will have a different kind of result. The things you should look in for after the dermal filler injections are:
- Suppleness or volume;
- Symmetry of lip;
- The proportion of upper lip versus lower lip;
- Lip proportions with respect to the whole face;
- How the augmented lip feels.
If you feel any lumps or nodules on the inside of the lip, you should let the doctor know so that he/she can mold it into evenness.
Q: When can I see the results of a lip filler? How long do they last?
A: You can see the results right after the injection is complete. Soon after, the lips begin to swell, but it is something that is not unusual. This swelling generally subsides over the next couple of days revealing the final result of the treatment. If everything goes fine, you would need to visit your doctor for a follow-up, 10-15 days after the treatment. Over time, as the filler integrates with your tissues, the results become even better.
At Anticlock Medispa, we use only the top-of-the-line and hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers which have a proven track record for safety. Although these fillers are temporary and biodegradable, they are long-lasting. The effects last anywhere between 5 to 12 months and gradually fade over time, depending on the type of filler used and individual variations. For, e.g., in smokers, the effect of fillers wears off faster than in non-smokers. The inherent advantage of using temporary fillers is also that if you don't like the result, these can be dissolved using an enzyme injection that digests the filler.
Q: Are lip fillers safe? What are the side effects and complications of this procedure?
A: At Anticlock Medispa, we use only hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers, which have a huge acceptance worldwide and are known to be very safe. Since hyaluronic acid is a substance which is present naturally in the body and is degraded over time, these fillers are temporary. Of these HA-based dermal fillers, not all are suitable for injection in the lip area. We use softer fillers in the lip area to give a natural suppleness without hindering the natural expressions.
Injection of dermal filler is a medical procedure, and like any other medical procedure, there is always some risk of complications. However, in the hands of a qualified plastic surgeons or dermatologists who are trained in the art of dermal fillers, it is a relatively safe procedure. But you must always keep in mind that all injectable aesthetic procedures must be performed in a clinical setting with full aseptic precautions.
A good doctor will always explain to you the possible side effects or complications of dermal filler injections in the lip. With newer filler materials, allergic reactions have become very rare. It is common to see some swelling and mild bruising since lips are very vascular tissues with very delicate skin. These usually resolve in 2-4 days. Sometimes, you may also feel small lumps on the lip, in which case some molding might be required. You must report to your doctor if this happens. Over time, as the filler gel gets integrated with the lip tissues, they begin to soften up.
But we have all heard of botched lip jobs, and they could be the result of either of these things: 'wrong product,' 'wrong amount,' 'wrong placement' or 'wrong technique.' There are other infrequent complications of dermal filler injections - like tissue necrosis and vascular complications. But the point is, these can happen. Therefore, it is vital that you give due consideration in choosing your injector. In the hands of an experienced injector, who knows the anatomy very well, the risk of complications is much less, and if in case they do occur, they would know how to manage the complications.
Q: How much swelling should one expect after lip filler treatment?
A: This is very variable & depends on the amount of lip filler used (if more product is used, you should expect more swelling), the kind of product used (some types of HA fillers cause more swelling than others), the texture of your skin and the skill of the injector. Some amount of swelling always occurs, but this resolves mostly in 24-48 hours, but sometimes it might even last for a week or so. Your doctor might prescribe some medication to reduce the swelling.
Q: What is the downtime required for lip fillers?
A: Getting lip fillers done per se, does not hinder you from doing any work but most of our clients find it embarrassing to go out with the swelling on the lips. So, it is ideal to get filler injections done on a weekend so that you get the time for swelling to subside before you get back to your daily routine. But you must avoid strenuous exercise for at least 24-48n hours after the procedure as this might increase the chance of bruising.
Although it is a relatively safe procedure, you should not get the injections done right before an important occasion that you are preparing yourself for. In that case, you should plan to get fillers done at least 7-10 days before the event.
Q: Which dermal fillers are the best for the lip?
A: Not all dermal fillers are suitable for the lip area. At Anticlock Medispa, we prefer to use softer fillers like Volift from the Juvéderm Vycross range that have been especially designed for use in the lip. These give softer and natural looking results and allow the doctor to work on improving the structural aspects of the lip to provide the desired shape.
Q: How do the lips feel like after lip filler treatment?
A: In the initial couple of days, the lips might feel swollen and harder. Over the next few days, it becomes softer, and you have no problem using them functionally. The final result can be appreciated after about 15 days when they begin to look and feel completely natural. Sometimes you might feel a few lumps, but these can be softened with gentle massage by the doctor. If this happens, always fix a review appointment rather than do it yourself.
However, there should be no visible lumps in the lips, and if they do occur, they could be because of poor technique. This happens when the filler has been deposited too superficially, and this is a common occurrence when you go to practitioners who do not have enough experience or training. The treatment in these cases is usually an enzyme injection which dissolves the filler.
Q: What precautions should I take before treatment?
For good results, & to minimize the chances of bruising or bleeding at the injection points, we ask our clients to avoid all medications and supplements that could cause blood-thinning, for 3-5 days before their procedure.
This would include over-the-counter drugs like aspirin and pain killers. If you are on blood-thinners because of a cardiovascular problem, please take the advice of your attending physician before stopping the use of aspirin or other anticoagulants.
It is also better to avoid herbal supplements like vitamin E products, Antioxidant tablets, ginseng, or herbal teas.
We also ask our clients if they have a history of cold sores (Perioral Herpes) as these might erupt again after any injections in the area. To prevent these, you might have to be prescribed some antiviral therapy, two days before the treatment. If there's been a recent cold sore eruption, any rash or infection in the area around the mouth, it is better to reschedule your appointment.
You would also be asked to stop using Retinol A products or chemical peels a few days before the treatment. Basically, you should avoid any product that could cause flakiness or irritation in the skin near the injection area.
Before getting dermal filler treatment, you must also ensure that you are not pregnant or breastfeeding at that time. Although there is no concrete evidence to say that fillers are harmful to the baby in the womb, it is better to be extra cautious and not take any chance.
You must also report any history of drug allergy in the past to the doctor to ensure that you are non-allergic to any ingredients of the filler.
Q: What precautions should I take after treatment?
A: After the injection, it is essential to maintain cleanliness in the area to prevent any risk of infection. We advise you to rinse the mouth with salt water after each meal to maintain oral hygiene for the first day. You should avoid hot foods or drinks for 2-4 hours after lip filler treatment, that is until the effect of local anesthetic has worn off completely.
You should refrain from picking, massaging, or putting heavy pressure on the area for about two weeks. That is when the filler integrates with the tissues and your lips settle in their final shape. You must also avoid vigorous exercise and excessive exposure to the sun for 2-3 days after getting lip filler treatment.
Q: How much does a lip filler treatment cost?
A: At Anticlock Medispa, we only use well established, and US-FDA approved brands of dermal fillers. The cost is variable & depends on the amount and the type of filler chosen, as well as the full treatment plan.
While choosing a clinic for lip fillers, it is not advisable to base the decision purely on cost. Highly experienced injectors which have an excellent reputation might charge more for the treatment, but you will feel safer with them, trusting that they will use the best product and will chalk out the best treatment plan for you. Lip filler injections might seem like simple procedures, but, they are not. It requires a comprehensive knowledge of anatomy, a keen aesthetic sense, and a superior injection skill to precisely place the optimal amounts of filler at the right places. The practitioner should also be skillful in handling any kind of complications, should they arise and should provide you the best possible aftercare. Therefore, you would need to base your decisions on 'value' rather than the 'cost.'
Our approach with lip fillers
At Anticlock Medispa, your well-being is our primary concern, and therefore, we spend a lot of time on the initial consultation and facial assessment. Our goal is to align your needs with your wants, making sure that your expectations are realistic, and we deliver the treatment while maintaining facial harmony at all times. We give importance to the minutest of details, knowing very well how a lip filler can go a long way in uplifting your confidence.