Balshi Blog

A Guide to Lip Augmentation

What is Lip Augmentation?

Lip augmentation is a procedure that involves injectable dermal fillers to increase the size and plump appearance of the lips. 

In present times, lip injections are about as common as going to the salon. Injectable dermal fillers are the most common method for lip augmentation. There are several different types of injectables that have been used for lip augmentation: collagen, fat injections, implants, and substances similar to hyaluronic acid. 

Collagen used to be one of the most common dermal fillers. It is used less often today and has been replaced with more safe and longer lasting options.

Similar to fat injections and implants. They are used much less today because of varying results per patient. Also, the side effects are a known greater risk with these procedures. 


Today, the most common fillers are injected in your lips and around your mouth. These injectables are products that contain substances similar to hyaluronic acid. 

Hyaluronic acid that is a natural substance that already exists in the body which helps increase volume in your lips. It’s a sugar derivative that already exists in the body and can hold up to a thousand times its weight. This substance not only plumps your lips but hydrates the skin which gives it a more natural appearance. 


What are the Side Effects and Are They Dangerous?

Any side effects from hyaluronic acid should be temporary and last only a few days. 

Side effects could be anything from:

  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Redness
  • Tenderness at the site of injection
  • Reactive cold sores or fever blisters of the surrounding area
  • Bleeding from the injection site


Although this is a quick procedure with little to no downtime, this is still considered invasive. To avoid any unnecessary risks and serious after effects, make sure to visit only a board-certified professional who is experienced in this area of expertise before making a final decision. 

Serious risks can involve:

  • Infection
  • Scarring
  • Stiffening of the lip
  • Lumps or asymmetry
  • Allergic reaction
  • Ulceration
  • Tissue Loss


For any of the more severe side effects, call your doctor immediately.

Hyaluronic Acid Fillers and Their Uses:

The effects of hyaluronic acid fillers last around six months. After about six months, more fillers may be needed to keep the volume of your lips. All products on the market are injected the same way, all with similar results. Some do contain lidocaine, which is a local anesthetic.

There are several injectable fillers on the market that are commonly used today:



The majority of these fillers have hyaluronic acid but can be different in thickness and how they look in the lip. Juvederm, Restylane Silk, and Volbella are thinner and can be used superficially.

For older patients, Restylane can reshape and sculpt the lip which fades nicely over time.

For younger patients, Juvederm Volbella can be used for volume.

Talk to your doctor about considering volume and aesthetics, to find out which injectables are right for you.


Are There Any Benefits of Hyaluronic Acid Fillers?

Hyaluronic acid fillers contain a gel that supports the tissue and shape of the lips. This helps control lip volume since the amount of the substance can be added or removed by the doctor. This supports continuous treatments over time until the desired results are achieved and any lumps or bumps created by the movement of the lips can be dissolved with ease. Compared to other dermal fillers, hyaluronic acid tends to cause less bruising. 

Also, hyaluronic acid fillers are made from substances that are already in the body, it is unlikely to have an allergic reaction in comparison to other dermal fillers. And although these are not permanent results, they are long-lasting. 


Information To Know Before Getting Lip Fillers

Bruising and swelling are a common side effect of lip augmentation procedures. In order to avoid a lot of bruising and swelling or at least make you less prone to bruising and swelling, it is recommended that ten days prior you stop taking medications that thin the blood. Medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen, vitamins like fish oil and vitamin E, and even to avoid alcohol. Also, for people who have a history of cold sores, make sure to take medication two days prior to prevent outbreaks. This way the procedure can avoid triggering a flare-up.


What Should You Expect During The Procedure?

 These procedures tend to be done with little to no downtime and in a quick timely manner. Because patients have different thresholds of pain, it is normal to add a topical or local numbing agent to relieve discomfort. In other occasions, it’s been known that a nerve block injection can be utilized to completely numb the lips. In other instances, an ice pack over the lips also helps numb the area as well as help with swelling and bruising. 

Once your provider marks the areas for augmentation, a fine needle will be used to inject the filler into your lips. Post-injection, ice may be lightly used to control discomfort. With no pressure added to the treatment area. 

The difference before and after the procedure will be noticed immediately and your lips should feel natural after healing.


What Should You Avoid After A Lip Augmentation?

It’s good to avoid any activities that might increase blood flow to your face. Specifically activities like exercise, even yoga, massages or facials. All for at least 24 hours. 


How Long DoThey Last?

Like most procedures, results are dependent on the extent of the augmentation, the products being used, metabolism, and plumpness. The average results last up to six months and have to be topped off. Others could vary a lot longer. You can expect anywhere from six months to three years, usually. It mostly depends on the patient. 


How Many Syringes Would Be Needed?

For first time dermal fillers, it’s good to start with a half syringe and come back a week or two later for the other half. Considering most people are looking for a natural look, this ensures the patient can augment the lips in stages and keep the appearance under control. 

With most patients to start with an enhancement all over, one syringe that is distributed appropriately is usually the right amount for a natural appearance. 


Do They Hurt?

Lip augmentations generally cause little discomfort. However, depending on the patient’s pain threshold, topical anesthesia can be used to ease any additional pain. It is also common that an ice pack will be used to numb the injected area and help with post-procedure bruising and swelling. 

Considering hyaluronic acid comes with a numbing medication, the numbing agent is considered with the procedure. You can also opt to have a dental nerve block which is what the dentist uses before filling a cavity. With an injection to your gums to numb the area. However, a dental nerve block changes the way you move your lips and the look of the filler for a couple of hours. 


Do Lip Fillers Stretch Out You Lips?

The short answer is no. Because indirectly injecting your lips creates your own collagen production, it might actually cause your lips to remain slightly larger after the filler dissolves. 


Does Hyaluronic Acid Dissolve Naturally?

It takes months, but the hyaluronic acid filler does dissolve naturally. It also leaves room for error. If for some reason, you’re not satisfied with the way your lips look, your provider can inject an eraser called hyaluronidase. This will help the rate at which the filler dissolves by breaking down the particles of hyaluronic acid. Once the swelling goes down, the results are almost instant. 


Can You Make The Results Last Longer?

Unfortunately, you can’t. Your body will utilize the filler however it wants to. The aspects that play into the length of the results depend on many different factors. You can, however, use at-home remedies that contain hyaluronic acid such as mint and/or peppermint that can help temporarily increase the plumpness of the lips. Or, use make-up tricks like lip liner to achieve the look you’re going for. 


Are You A Good Candidate for Lip Augmentation?

Discussing the pros and cons of lip augmentation with your doctor is very important. It’s also very important to be in good health. You might want to really consider talking to your doctor if you have any of the following:


  • Active herpes infection
  • Lupus
  • A Smoker
  • Blood-clotting problems


Lip augmentations can trigger cold sore flare-ups, can affect known allergies to lidocaine, and can cause complications with additional medications, over-the-counter, and herbal supplements.  


Enhancing lips is only one of the many treatments that impact the overall youthful rejuvenation of the entire face. Lip augmentation is a common cosmetic procedure, used to treat patients of all ethnic and social backgrounds. Restoring the volume in the lips that is naturally lost over time leaves you refreshed with a youthful appearance.”

Contact Balshi Dermatology in Delray Beach About Lip Augmentation

To discuss lip augmentation options with a board-certified dermatologist in Delray Beach, contact Balshi Dermatology at (561) 272-6000 or send us a message on our Contact Page to set up your appointment.