The world of beauty is always subject to trends. In the 1990s, it was brows that we plucked to extinction and boob jobs that expanded bosoms to an E-Cup or more. Today, it’s an obsession with perfecting our pout. The decade-defining ‘lip job’ trend is almost as mainstream as teeth whitening, but will it endure?
It’s in the Stats
Researchers say that today, there are 10 times as many UK Google searches for lip fillers as there were in 2012, indicating that lip augmentation has become a common non-surgical cosmetic treatment. When Keeping Up with the Kardashians went live in 2015, Kylie Jenner’s sister Khloé Kardashian asked her 17-year old sister about her augmented lips. Google searches for lip enhancers skyrocketed within the 24 hours that followed; Kylie sparked a trend that became a global phenomenon.
In its 2016 report, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons revealed a 50% rise in lip augmentations from 2000-2016 for 18 to 55 year olds.
With a lack of regulations, botch jobs are fairly common. Treatments for achieving the ‘trout pout’ are simpler, with many more options and products appearing on the market (the Lip Smoothie process; the Cupid’s Bow Lift; Volbella; and less invasive solutions like serums and make-up), and a lower risk of side-effects. However, one could still suffer from the occlusion of blood vessels, anaphylaxis, extreme swelling, or an allergic reaction. If this occurs, a doctor should deal with the issue and not beauty technician in a salon. In fact, one should only have the actual procedure done by an experienced dermatologist specializing in the field.
While most are still going for volume and fullness, a new trend on the block is lip reduction. The procedure reduces the lips’ size and can be used to reverse botch filler jobs. The aforementioned report from the America Society of Plastic Surgeons revealed that lip reduction surgery is on the rise dramatically, increasing by 283% between 2015 and 2016 with 3,547 surgeries carried out in the US alone. Note that these surgeries are invasive, irreversible and require local anesthetic, so the decision to have it done should not be taken lightly.
Patients opting for Botox or lip fillers (or both) need to be aged 18 or above. Another important note is that clinical studies have not proven whether it is ok to have the treatment whilst pregnant, due to hormone fluctuations. Another FAQ is how long lip treatments last. It depends on the product, patient and other factors (metabolism, age, etc.), but on average it should last for 4-6 months after the first procedure and anything from 9 months and up thereafter. If you aren’t happy with the outcome, go back a.s.a.p. for corrective treatment, which involves using an eraser enzyme that immediately dissolves the filler.
It seems that altering our faces, no matter what area or process, is an ongoing obsession as beauty ideals are always shifting. There’s no end in sight for the various options available. But whatever you do, take the decision seriously.