Here’s What to Expect After Lip Fillers

Written by WD Staff, Skin Care Specialists on April 9, 2021 2 Comments

lip injections

Lip fillers, or lip injections, is a non-surgical cosmetic treatment with the ability to make the lips look fuller and more youthful. Lip fillers are specially designed dermal fillers tailored for use in the lips. The most popular dermal fillers for lips include hyaluronic acid, a soft and gel-like substance that plumps and hydrates. Botox Cosmetic is sometimes used in conjunction with dermal fillers to achieve symmetry or a fuller pout in the lips (sometimes referred to as a Botox lip flip).

Types of Dermal Fillers for the Lips

Dermal fillers range in thickness. Thin fillers provide more subtle results and will take the shape of your lip. Thicker fillers will provide more structure and can change the contour of your lips. Some fillers address lip lines and wrinkles around the mouth, while others add structure and volume. The type of filler you choose and the injection methods your doctor uses will depend on your goal.

Today’s most popular lip fillers include Juvederm Volbella, Juvederm Ultra XC, Restylane Silk, and Restylane Defyne.

A Typical Lip Filler Treatment

Achieving a fuller pout requires only a quick, in-office visit. Before your injections, your doctor will apply lidocaine or a similar numbing cream to the area to reduce pain. You may also be asked to ice your lips while you wait the 15 minutes for the numbing agent to kick in. During the injections you’ll feel the pinch of the needle, and hopefully little else. After your injections, you’ll be sent home with lip ointment, ice and after-care instructions.

Lip Filler Results

Lip filler treatment addresses several areas of cosmetic concern, including the following:

  • Eradicates lip lines and fine wrinkles
  • Makes lips more symmetrical (top and bottom, or left and right side)
  • Adjusts the contour and shape of the lips
  • Enhances the size and volume of the lips

View our before and after gallery to see real results from real Westlake Dermatology patients.

How Long Results Last

Lip filler results are near instant, with benefits apparent right after injection. Although swelling and minor bruising are common after treatment, both will subside within a few weeks. At this point, a follow-up appointment is recommended for any necessary touch-ups or adjustments to shape and size. After four weeks, you’ll see the final result.

The results of lip fillers are not permanent as the body naturally metabolizes the filler over time. Most fillers will last approximately 6 to 8 weeks. Patients can choose to extend their results by undergoing periodic “maintenance” treatment sessions.

Common Lip Filler Side Effects

Swelling is the most common side effect and is most apparent in the first 24 hours after getting your injections. Swelling should subside within 2 weeks, and be completely unnoticeable after four weeks.

Bruising at the injection site is another common side effect and will also decrease within the first 2 weeks. If you have significant bruising that lasts longer, or bruising outside of your lips, see your doctor immediately.

Pain, redness or itchiness at the injection site is also normal, and should be mild. If you experience severe pain, redness or itching, or pain outside of the lip area, see your doctor.

Overfilling is a concern for some patients, especially in the first week after treatment when lips are still swollen. Four weeks later, however, lip swelling will be gone and your final results will be revealed.

Lumpiness can be avoided by a skilled injector, but it is common to experience mild unevenness the first week after injections when swelling is still high. Everyone’s lips react differently to filler and swelling may diminish in some spots before others.

Uncommon Lip Filler Side Effects

While safe, lip injections are not completely without risk. It’s important to choose a skilled and experienced injector not only for best results, but to avoid complications after your treatment. If you experience any of the following, call your doctor immediately.

Swelling or bruising outside the lip area, or extreme swelling and bruising that lasts for longer than one week could be signs of an allergic reaction to your filler.

Cold sores, or herpes simplex virus 1 outbreaks can be provoked by dermal filler injections. See your doctor for anti-viral medication if you are susceptible to cold sores.

Vascular occlusion is a rare, but serious side effect that occurs when dermal fillers are injected into an artery. This can block blood supply to nearby tissue, causing it to die. Changes in skin color, white patches on your lips, or severe pain that lasts for several days are all reasons to contact your doctor.

After Care Tips

The following tips can help minimize bruising and swelling following a lip injection treatment. As always, we recommend patients follow the specific post-treatment instructions provided by their injector.

  • Avoid makeup and lip products (other than those provided by your doctor) for the first 12-24 hours after your injections
  • To reduce swelling, itching, and pain, ice regularly throughout the first 24 hours with a clean ice pack
  • To reduce swelling, sleep with your head elevated on a firm pillow and avoid strenuous exercise for the first 48 hours
  • To reduce swelling and minimize infection, avoid high temperature steam rooms or heated exercise studios in the first 48 hours
  • To reduce swelling, avoid foods high in sodium, and choose hydrating fruits and vegetables instead
  • To reduce bruising, avoid alcohol and blood thinners such as aspirin for the first 24 hours
  • For best results, avoid pressing firmly on the lips or massaging the lips for at least one week
  • For faster healing, stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water

Lip fillers are versatile cosmetic injectables that can offer subtle or dramatic results. Discuss your goals with your doctor to decide if this treatment is suitable for you.

WD Staff

A united group of skin care specialists from Westlake Dermatology & Cosmetic Surgery, Austin's leader in Dermatology and Plastic Surgery. Articles posted under WD staff are authored through combined contributions from our entire team, including Plastic Surgeons, Dermatologists, Aestheticians, Physician Assistants, Aesthetic Nurses, and Patient Coordinators.

2 Responses to “Here’s What to Expect After Lip Fillers”

  1. Avatar AK Aesthetics says:

    Great blog! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Avatar Reina says:

    Great info! I did not know it might take up to two weeks for bruising to go down. Thanks for that 🙂

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