A Simple Guide To Lip Fillers

Sadly, many of us aren’t blessed with the full, beautiful lips we would like. This could be making you feel insecure about your appearance, especially since such an emphasis is put on the lips these days (cheers Kylie Jenner). The signs of ageing also contribute to loss of volume in the lips, so as we age our lips can become thinner and less defined, even if they were once pouty and full.

If you’re considering fillers, you’ll need to make sure they’re right for you before you go ahead with treatment.


Dermal fillers, also known as lip fillers, are gel substances that can be injected under the skin to add volume, smooth out fine lines and wrinkles and add structure to the face. Nowadays, the most popular, safest and most effective dermal fillers are usually made from Hyaluronic Acid (HA), which is a naturally occurring substance in the body.

Hyaluronic Acid is perfect for giving a plump, hydrated look to the skin and lips, as it can hold up to 1000 times its own weight in water. It is also a safe material, as it naturally biodegrades over time, and is very unlikely to cause a reaction as HA already exists in the face and body.

There are a variety of types and brands of HA fillers, but some of the market leaders are Juvederm and Restylane, which are both FDA approved and are popular with practitioners and clients alike. It’s worth noting that not every clinic that offers fillers will use the same brands of fillers, so you should ask to make sure you’re getting a high quality product. Many professional places will tell you without you having to ask. 

Lip fillers can be used to:

  • Add volume to the lips.
  • Balance uneven lips.
  • Add definition to the lips, including around the lip border, philtrum and cupid’s bow.
  • Restore volume loss in the lips related to ageing.

Be Sure To Visit A True Medical Professional With Experience

However, the benefits will only be truly seen if you visit a qualified medical professional with experience performing this kind of treatment. You could get the dreaded ‘duck lip’ or more of a ‘shelf’ for a lip if you visit somebody who is not medically trained. Many of these people call themselves ‘aesthetic practitioners’ as it sounds fancy and often people won’t stop to think that there’s a chance they shouldn’t actually be performing the treatment. These people are not medically trained and usually have undertaken a one or two day course. This is nowhere near long enough to learn and perform a treatment like this.

Even somebody who is medically trained can produce a less than desirable result with the wrong product or technique, but at the very least, they will know what to do if you suffer an adverse reaction or blocked artery.

It’s essential you visit somebody who knows what they are doing, even if it means paying more. Package deals and cheap fillers are not a good idea. Your lips can literally turn black and the tissue will die if you suffer an occlusion, so it’s not something you should try to get on a budget.

Scouring the clinic’s portfolio of lips and knowing what to look for will help you be sure you’re visiting the right place.

The Process

During a lip enhancement or lip filler treatment, the smooth gel of the hyaluronic fillers is injected into the lips, in a short, relatively painless treatment that can take as little as half an hour. Often, a numbing cream is available to help make the treatment more comfortable, and some types of fillers have an anaesthetic included in the actual filler formula to help improve your comfort. Many advanced practitioners will offer a dental block rather than a numbing cream, as they are more effective and make the treatment completely painless. Your practitioner will inject the filler and then massage it to create a smooth, even appearance.

After a lip filler treatment, you can get back to your day almost straight away, though you should avoid aspirin and hot drinks for 24-48 hours after treatment. You might feel a little stinging and see some light redness and bruising for a day or two, and in some cases, you might notice a very swelled appearance. This will depend on you as a person, but it’s usually nothing to worry about. However, if you notice any pain or are in any doubt, it’s always worth checking back in with your practitioner to be 100% sure. 

How Long Do They Last?

Lip fillers aren’t permanent, as the hyaluronic acid is broken down by the body over time. As one of the most mobile areas in the face, lip fillers can be broken down more quickly than other types of dermal fillers. Though it varies from person to person, and is affected by the type and amount of filler injected, lip fillers usually last anywhere from six to eighteen months, after which you can have a top up treatment to keep your lips looking their best.

Lip enhancement can be a good treatment for anyone wanting to boost their volume or balance their lips. It’s an impermanent procedure, with little risk involved providing you visit the right person or clinic. Do plenty of research on the treatment and clinic before going ahead! 

Amie Scott