These days, getting lip filler is about as common as getting your eyebrows waxed. While Kyle Jenner may have played a big part in making lip fillers mainstream, the demand for bigger, pouty lips has evolved. Today, doctors are catering to their patients' specific lip needs by coming up with treatments that go beyond just using filler. Enter the Botox Lip Flip.
Although the Lip Flip has been making the rounds in doctors' offices for the past few years, I wasn't familiar with it until my friend told me she was considering the procedure to stop her thin upper lip from drooping and turning inward when she smiles.
Usually, lip augmentation is performed with hyaluronic acid-based fillers such as Restylane, Refyne, Defyne, Juvederm, Vollure, Volbella, and Belotero. Instead of dermal fillers, the Lip Flip uses Botox to lift the corners of the lips up so that they look more pouty and cheerful. This is acheived by administering the Botox at the corners of the lips and near the cupid's bow.
"Botox is a simple injection that can significantly improve the look and shape of lips whose appearance can decrease as we age. When we smile there is a muscle that can pull the lip inward causing the 'flip' appearance," explains Dr. Ariel Ostad, a New York City-based board-certified cosmetic dermatoligst and dermatologic surgeon. "Botox relaxes this muscle, helping the lip to not pull under giving a poutier, fuller appearance."
While dermal fillers work by literally making the lips bigger by, well, plumping them, Botox relaxes the muscles around the lips, which in turn gives the illusion of a fuller pout.
Apart from the usual side effects of Botox like temporary swelling and numbness, Dr. Ostad says that the only real risk of the Lip Flip is that the lips can droop if too much Botox is injected into the muscles around the lips. While it varies from patient to patient, he says that the dosage used is typically less than what he'd administer on a wrinkle.
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The cost of the Lip Flip is dependent on where you live, the doctor who's performing it, and how many units of Botox is used, but Dr. Ostad says you can expect to pay $300-$500.
As with any cosmetic procedure, researching doctors and medicial spas in your area by checking their certifications and reading online reviews is the safest and best way to ensure you get your desired results.
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