Beyond BBL: 4 Safe & Effective Options To Brazilian Butt Lift

Written by Cameron Craven, MD, FACS, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon on April 24, 2024 No Comments

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A Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) is a cosmetic surgical procedure that enhances the size and shape of the buttocks through fat transfer. Unlike traditional butt augmentation procedures that use implants, a BBL removes the patient’s own fat from donor areas (such as the abdomen, waist, or hips) with liposuction to achieve a fuller and more rounded buttock appearance. Harvested fat goes through a purification process before being re-injected in targeted areas of the buttocks to enhance fullness and roundness.

While Brazilian butt lift is a popular procedure, the surgery does carry some inherent risks like fat embolism, making it one of the riskiest cosmetic procedures. Such risks can be minimized when the procedure is performed by a board certified provider. Another issue with BBL is that some amount of injected fat will be cannibalized by the body over time. As such, some patients may notice a partial fading of their results post-procedure. Finally, not everyone is a suitable candidate for BBL due to insufficient donor fat.

Fortunately, there are several other effective alternative procedures to BBL for buttock enhancement. Here are five great butt augmentation alternatives:

Liposuction Alone (Without BBL)

Liposuction is a widely performed cosmetic procedure that removes isolated pockets of excess fat from various areas of the body to enhance contour and shape. It is possible to use liposuction alone (without removed fat being re-injected into the buttocks) to make the butt appear rounder and more defined.

Liposuction can be used to enhance the appearance of the buttocks by strategically removing fat around the lower back and hips. A skilled lipo provider can use the procedure to recontour the area, creating a more dramatic transition to the buttocks. While lipo alone will not enhance the size of the buttocks, targeted reshaping can dramatically enhance the appearance without any of the risks of BBL.

Butt Implants

Like breast implants, butt implants utilize silicone implants to dramatically enhance the size, shape, and projection of their buttocks. Butt implants provide a more dramatic than BBL as implants typically add more volume than transferred fat. Butt Implants also provide a permanent result that will never diminish since the implant will not be cannibalized by the body. Finally, implants do not require donor fat, so there are no BMI requirements for candidacy. Overall, butt implants can offer a permanent solution for enhancing the size and shape of the buttocks.

Filler Injections

Filler injections, including Sculptra and Radiesse, represent a non-surgical approach to buttock augmentation, offering patients an alternative to invasive procedures like BBL or butt implants. These fillers, typically composed of biocompatible substances, are injected directly into the buttock area to increase volume and enhance contour.

One significant advantage of filler injections for buttock augmentation is their minimal risk and downtime compared to surgical options. Since the procedure is minimally invasive and performed under local anesthesia, patients can usually return to their normal activities shortly after treatment. This makes filler injections an attractive option for patients who want buttock enhancement without the need for extensive recovery periods or surgical risks.

However, it is important to note that the results of filler injections are temporary. While patients may notice immediate improvements in buttock volume and contour following treatment, the injected fillers gradually break down over time. As a result, periodic maintenance injections are necessary to sustain the desired appearance over a longer time span. The longevity of results can vary from 6 months to 1 year, with this duration depending on factors such as the type of filler used, individual metabolism, and lifestyle factors.


CoolTone is another non-invasive alternative to traditional surgical methods for patients looking to enhance their buttocks’ appearance. This FDA-approved treatment employs magnetic muscle stimulation (MMS) technology to trigger involuntary muscle contractions in the buttock area, simulating the effects of intensive exercise. Up to 25,000 supramaximal muscle contractions can occur in a single CoolTone session. The frequency and intensity of these contractions is far greater than what can be achieved through even the most intensive exercises. By engaging deep muscle fibers, CoolTone strengthens, tones, and firms the muscles of the buttocks, resulting in improved contour and a lifted appearance.

Unlike surgical procedures, CoolTone does not require incisions, anesthesia, or downtime, making it a safer and more convenient option for buttock enhancement. While CoolTone primarily targets muscle tone and strength rather than volume, it can contribute to overall buttock enhancement by enhancing shape and firmness. Filler injections can also be added to enhance volume and roundness of the buttocks if desired.

CoolTone may not provide the same level of augmentation as surgical procedures like BBL or butt implants, it can enhance results or maintain the buttock aesthetics achieved through surgery.


Exercise remains a natural and non-invasive method for enhancing the buttocks. Strength training exercises like squats, glute bridges, and hip thrusts can effectively target and strengthen the gluteal muscles, leading to improved shape and definition. While results may take time to manifest and vary depending on factors such as genetics and consistency, exercise offers a sustainable and healthy alternative to surgical procedures.

Cameron Craven, MD, FACS

Cameron Craven MD, FACS is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. Dr. Craven specializes in the full spectrum of cosmetic surgery including breast augmentation, liposuction and body contouring, facial rejuvenation, laser surgery, eyelid surgery, and rhinoplasty, as well as reconstructive surgery for skin cancers.

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