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Lip Filler for Uneven Lips and Smile: Treatment Options

Lip Filler for Uneven Lips and Smile: Treatment Options

lip filler for uneven lips before and after treatment with HA filler

Lip augmentation is a popular treatment in our office, and we’ve seen many patients with concerns ranging from genetically and age-related thin lips, to uneven or asymmetric lips. Lip asymmetry is a common concern for patients.

Causes of Uneven Lips

Some people have it from birth, and it became more evident as they grew older. In some cases, the asymmetry could have been caused by a lip augmentation treatment that placed too much volume into the lip, resulting in an uneven result. 

In certain cases, so-called “permanent” remedies such as lip implants, fat grafts, or liquid silicone injection caused asymmetry, among other difficulties. I’ll explain how I evaluate lips, and provide my patients an idea of my technique for maximizing their beauty and balance.

Helping people deal with facial concerns so they can look their best is an important aspect of my work. Lip enhancement is a popular procedure that needs expertise in determining how much volume to add, as well as technique to avoid bumps, bruises, and promote faster healing.

People get lip augmentation for a variety of reasons, including correcting natural asymmetry, balancing unevenness, or wanting to further enhance their appearance by highlighting specific regions to appear better.

botox for uneven lips before and after
lip anatomy illustration

The Art and Science of Lip Enhancement

Looking at lips and determining what to do and how to do it requires a high level of understanding of lip anatomy. Areas I consider during evaluation include the volume in the upper lip, volume in the lower lip, the vermilion border, the corners of the lips, the curve that shapes the center of the upper lip called cupid’s bow, the tips that point the upper lip upward called the G and K points, and the philtrum. You can see that there are many areas where fillers can be placed.

My approach to lip augmentation is to enhance lip volume in such a way that it still looks natural and appropriate to a person’s face. The first thing many of our patients say is that they want to avoid the appearance of “duck lips” which then is followed by listing celebrities who they feel have this attribute. 

I explain that evaluating the dimensions of the face, and understanding how the size of the lips complements the rest of the face. According to psychological studies, we look at faces with an inverted triangle-shaped focus, beginning with the eyes and moving downwards toward the chin, which encompasses our lips. This indicates that the appearance of your lips influences how others perceive your age and beauty.

Speaking of balance, I apply principles based on the Golden Ratio. The Golden Ratio, is a proportion of beauty and balance found throughout nature. The Golden Ratio refers to the ideal proportion ratio of 1:1.6. For lips, that works out to about one-third lip volume of the upper lip, and two-thirds of the volume at the lower lip. Applying the Golden Ratio helps create proportions that we naturally see as attractive.

phi golden ration on lips illustration
lip enhancement before and after

In my practice my patients find lip augmentation to be a simple procedure. It helps to have a sense of artistry and experience when using filler. In a way, the filler is the material being applied like a sculptor with a vision of what the lips should look like, and knowing how to work with the filler to achieve this result. In our practice, we use softer fillers for the lips such as Restylane-L, Restylane Silk, Juvederm Ultra XC and Juvederm Volbella. The improvement seen with use of these materials lasts about 6 to 12 months.

Lip Asymmetry Correction

When patients come to us seeking to correct natural lip asymmetry, in which one side of the lip appears thinner or less full than the other, the logical approach is to inject filler into the area of the lip that lacks volume. 

This is a dynamic process because when I observe progress, I realize how other aspects might be improved to achieve the best possible outcome.  Technique is critical when it comes to having precise control of volume placement

The lips are sensitive, so it’s important to minimize trauma to minimize swelling. I select specific blunt cannulas, which cause much less trauma than needles. In addition, the strategic use of cannulas minimizes the amount of pokes needed to deliver the filler.

My patients are often pleasantly surprised by how good their lips look immediately. I usually see my patients two weeks after the procedure to see how the material has settled, and at this time see if enhancement would be indicated. I find it’s always better to start conservatively, and add more later if needed.

lip augmentation before and after procedure by Dr. Amiya Prasad
lip filler before and after procedure at Prasad Cosmetic Surgery

How to Fix Bumpy Lips After Lip Augmentation

Sometimes, people come to us with concerns of uneven volume or bumps on their lips after having lip augmentation elsewhere. This often occurs when filler is placed superficially in the lip. In these situations, if the shape has not improved with time and massage, I dissolve the filler with the enzyme hyaluronidase.

Other Causes of Uneven Lips

Sometimes, uneven lips may not be due to lip volume, but because of the dynamics caused by the relationships of the muscles around the mouth as well as natural bone structure asymmetry. One side of the mouth may be higher than the other, or the mouth just appears frowning. In such cases, we can do a different injectable treatment commonly called a Botox lip lift.

Botox for Lip Lift

I use a neurotoxin such as Botox, Dysport, or Xeomin to relax a muscle called the depressor anguli oris, which results in a lift of the outer corners of the mouth.  The same concept can be applied to relax one side of the mouth for a more even, symmetric smile. 

The effects of Botox and other neurotoxins can last about 3-6 months. With proper technique, we can get patients to look pretty good right after the procedure. However, even with the right technique, swelling from lip fillers can last about a week before the appearance is stable, so allow at least a week before a big event.

With the Botox lip lift, the effects of the neurotoxin may take about 3 days to take effect, but peak effects are seen about 2 weeks after treatment. Whether Botox or lip fillers are used, or both, I regularly see patients in follow-up after two weeks to assess their results, and see if more enhancement may be needed.

Botox and filler for uneven lips before and after
lip filler before and after

Can uneven lips be fixed?

Yes, having thin, uneven or asymmetric lips can be something you feel should be treated, but there are understandable concerns about looking unnatural or overdone. As you’ve seen, proper analysis with strategically placed fillers and neurotoxin using minimally traumatic, quick recovery techniques can give you the natural looking lip enhancement that’s right for you.

Lip Enhancement Manhattan NYC and Long Island, New York

Dr. Amiya Prasad is highly skilled and experienced in lip enhancement and lip augmentation. He is a Board-certified cosmetic surgeon, and a Fellowship-trained oculofacial plastic surgeon with over 25 years of experience. He specializes in creating natural-looking and beautiful lips that suit your facial features and preferences. Whether you want to correct asymmetry, unevenness, or volume loss, or simply enhance your lip shape and fullness, Dr. Prasad can help you achieve your desired results. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Prasad, complete the form below or contact any of our offices in Manhattan at (212) 265-8877, Garden City Long Island Office at (516) 742-4636, or Vienna, Virginia, at (703) 356-1336 or (703) 821-2683.

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