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Lip Augmentation

Lip Augmentation InformationLip Augmentation Before and After Photos

What is Lip Augmentation?
What are the costs of lip augmentation?
What are my options in lip augmentation?
What will the recovery be like?

What is Lip Augmentation?

Lip augmentation procedures increase the size of the lips and may reduce fine wrinkles around the mouth. The upper or lower lip may be treated alone, or both lips may enlarged at the same time. Lip augmentation can be achieved by injecting or surgically implanting materials into the lips. Some procedures are temporary, others are permanent.

According to The American Society of Plastic Surgeons, surgical lip augmentation (not including lip augmentation by injectables) was performed 17,143 times in 2010.

What are the costs of lip augmentation?

Lip Augmentation costs between $300 and $5,000 depending on the techniques used.

Cost Range: $300-$5,000

Cost per procedure:
Collagen injection $333
Lip augmentation (surgical) $1,683

Average Total Cost : $2,200
Surgeons fee: $1,800
Facility fee: $400

* Fees generally vary according to region of country and patient needs. Source:

What are my options in lip augmentation?

Anesthesia: Local
Location: Office or surgical center
Procedure time: 30 minutes - 2 hours

Collagen injections: Prepared from the collagen found in cow skin, collagen injections are used to temporarily augment the lips. Although it is purified, this collagen may cause allergic reactions in some people. For that reason, a sensitivity test should be performed before the actual lip augmentation procedure. Collagen is injected into the lip with an ultra-fine needle. Because the body slowly absorbs the collagen, the results generally last between one and three months. The procedure may be repeated as needed.

Fat injections: Fat can also be injected into the lip. The fat is harvested from another area of the body (often the abdomen or thighs) and is purified before it is injected into the lips. An advantage to this procedure is that there is no possibility of an allergic reaction. As with collagen, results are temporary but usually lasts longer than collagen injections.

Artecoll injections: Artecoll is composed mainly of tiny synthetic beads (polymethyl methacrylate) that stay in the lips, and raise them. This technique lasts longer than fat or collagen injections.

Autologen injections: Autologen is collagen extracted from the patient’s own skin, often from excess skin removed in a facelift. The results are relatively long lasting, and there is no risk of an allergic reaction.

Dermalogen injections: Dermalogen is extracted from donor material. The effects are temporary, and are similar to the effects of collagen injections.

Fascia injections: Fascia (white connective tissue) from donor tissue can be injected or surgically implanted.

HylaForm injections: Tissue made up of a molecular component of the human body from donor material.

Restylane injections: Restylane is a clear gel; the hyaluronic acid in Restylane is similar to that naturally found in the body.

Radiance: Radiance contains calcium hydroxylapatite, a synethetic solution suspended in a gel that has been safely used for years. Results from Radiance should last between three and five years.

Juvéderm: Juvéderm is a hyaluronic acid-based clear gel. Results last 8 months to a year.

AlloDerm: Alloderm is the most popular material for lip augmentation. It is a natural collagen sheet harvested from cadavers and is screened and highly processed. The standards by which it is processed are very strict. The risk of infection is approximately 2%. Under a local anesthesia, the material is inserted through tiny incisions made in the inside corners of the mouth. Stitches are used to close the incisions. AlloDerm eventually becomes integrated with the natural tissues of the body. The material can be absorbed, so the results are only temporary, lasting from 6 months to a year.

Synthetic Implants: Gore-Tex, SoftForm and soft ePTFE are other synthetic options with permanent results. They do not shrink and are never absorbed into the body. They also remain in place because scar tissue forms on either end. To insert the implant, a small incision is made in the inside of the lip. The material is then made into the shape of a small tube and it is inserted with a small needle. Synthetic implants are foreign substances and may become infected or be rejected by the body. If this occurs, the implants can be removed.

Fat grafting: This procedure has permanent results in approximately half of the people who try it. Although it is possible that the body will reabsorb it, many people choose fat grafting because they are most comfortable with using the fat from their own body. The fat is harvested from another area of the body, often the abdomen. It is then prepared and inserted with a needle into the lip from more than one point.

Local flap grafts: Local flaps bring material from inside the mouth outside to enhance the lips. Results are temporary. An incision may be made inside the mouth to push the tissue inside the mouth upward, and outward, into the lip, sometimes in conjunction with grafting. Or, an incision may be made along the upper lip line. In this case, skin above the lip is removed, and the lip is then stitched along the line of the incision.

What will the recovery be like?

Topical anesthesia is generally used before lip injections, so that the procedure is painless. Local anesthesia is normally used during grafts and flaps. The procedure is painless during the operation, but there may be some discomfort afterward. It takes longer to recover from a surgical procedure than an injection.

Injections: Recovery takes about 1-2 days. Bruising and swelling may last as long as a week.

Grafts and flaps: Recovery takes about 1-2 weeks. During this time, you may experience some drooling. You may also experience some temporary stiffness in your lips.

For faster recovery:

  • Keep ice packs applied to your lips for the first 48 hours
  • Limit talking and chewing should be limited during the first 48 hours
  • Limit smiling and laughing for the first week
  • Sleep in a semi-upright position for the first week or so (do not sleep on your stomach)
  • To avoid unnecessary swelling or bleeding, do not bend over, strain, exercise or do any other activities that could increase pressure to your lips
  • Avoid strenuous activities for 1-3 days
  • Keep the lips clean to avoid infection (antibiotics may also be dispensed)

These are general recommendations. You should always follow your doctor’s advice, as they know your individual case best.

Related Links: Costs of Plastic Surgery | Lip Augmentation Before and After Photos | Find a Plastic Surgeon | Plastic Surgery Guide