Lip Lift

A lip lift is a surgical procedure that shortens the distance between the nose and the upper lip. As we age, this distance becomes longer and the upper lip curls under. This is a sign of aging and can make the upper lip seem to disappear or look thin. Often, the upper lip has not thinned, but has curled under and is now hidden. By creating a small incision under the nose and excising extra skin, the lip is pulled up and lifted. This restores a youthful appearance of the face and lips, creating a natural-looking perfect pout!

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What is a lip lift?

What is a lip lift?

A lip lift is a surgical procedure that shortens the distance between the nose and the upper lip. As we age, this distance becomes longer and the upper lip curls under. This is a sign of aging and can make the upper lip seem to disappear or look thin. Often, the upper lip has not thinned, but has curled under and is now hidden. By creating a small incision under the nose and excising extra skin, the lip is pulled up and lifted. This restores a youthful appearance of the face and lips, creating a natural-looking perfect pout!


What are the advantages of a Lip Lift?

What are the advantages of a Lip Lift?

The lip lift procedure has increased in popularity in recent years for several reasons. People choose to undergo the minimally-invasive treatment to enhance the appearance of their face. For many, shortening the line between the upper lip and the nose is the perfect way to accomplish this. Doing so can make the face, specifically the mouth, look younger. A lip lift can also create more definition and a more prominent Cupid’s bow. Lifting the upper lip not only rejuvenates one of the more noticeable facial features but it also enhances the smile by ensuring that the teeth are more visible.


What is the perfect lip ratio for a person’s face?

What is the perfect lip ratio for a person’s face?

Humans have been pursuing the ideal ratios of facial beauty for centuries. The definition of the perfect ratio, also known as the Divine Proportion or the Golden Ratio, originated in ancient Eygpt. Also called “phi,” the divine proportion of two parts of any object is 1:1.618. This has been simplified to 1:1.6. These proportions of beauty relate to all objects, from a flower petal to the human face.

According to the Divine Proportion of 1:1.6, the ideal face is one and a half times longer than it is wide. The distance from the top of the nose to the center of the lips would ideally be about one and a half times the distance from the center of the lips to the end of the chin.


Am I a good candidate for a lip lift?

Am I a good candidate for a lip lift?

Lip lift surgery is not reserved only for older people who have lost the lip shape and volume they once had. Studies indicate that adults of all ages seek this procedure to enhance their smiles and facial appearance.

Ideal candidates for a lip lift include:

  • Healthy adults who want to enhance their lips, specifically the upper lip.
  • Healthy adults who desire facial refinements as a part of feminization or masculinization techniques.
  • People whose top lip vermilion line is farther than 1.5 cm away from the bottom of the nose.
  • People whose lipstick bleeds into fine lines around the lips.
  • People who want more balance between the size of their upper and lower lips.
  • Adults who want a more permanent solution to lip enhancement than what is possible with dermal fillers.


What Should I Expect at My Lip Lift Consultation?

What Should I Expect at My Lip Lift Consultation?

Patients who are interested in a lip lift undergo a consultation in which their medical history is reviewed. Current and past medical conditions are discussed, as are medications and supplements being taken. The face and mouth area are examined and measured, both with the mouth closed and while smiling. Additionally, photographs may be taken so the patient can see the improvement in comparison to how they looked before surgery.

A lip lift may not be right for every person. This procedure may either be ruled out or postponed based on certain circumstances, such as:

  • Active skin infection or herpes outbreak near the mouth.
  • A desire for results without any scarring whatsoever (the lip lift scar is small).
  • Smokers who are not committed to quitting for a short time.
  • Patients with lupus, diabetes, or other conditions that affect blood clotting.


What is the Difference Between a Lip Lift and Lip Fillers?

What is the Difference Between a Lip Lift and Lip Fillers?

A lip lift can be performed with or without lip filler. Lip filler can volumize and plump the upper and lower lip. The lip lift procedure shortens the distance between the nose and upper lip, creating a youthful, yet natural upper lip appearance. We can discuss if the filler, the lip lift, or both are right for you at your consultation.


How is a lip lift procedure performed?

How is a lip lift procedure performed?

The lip lift is performed to reduce the space between the bottom of the nose and the line of the upper lip. This can be achieved in the office using a local anesthetic that numbs the treatment area. A small incision is necessary. This is made just under the nose. The tissue is lifted to refine the shape of the upper lip, and excess is trimmed before stitches are placed to hold the tissue in its new position.



Where is the incision Located for a lip lift?

The incision for a lip lift is located under the nose. It is hidden in the crease and ideally fades into a nice, thin line over time. Because of its location under the nose, it is often unnoticeable.

This procedure is a simple procedure that can be accomplished in the office under local anesthesia, per the patient’s request. The incision may be red at first but should fade into a thin line over time. There can be bruising and swelling with any procedure, but it is usually minimal for this procedure. There are no restrictions regarding activity afterward, although we prefer to limit over-stretching of the incision in the first few days (pursing your lips together after putting on chapstick, for example).

Although slight swelling may occur, patients may begin to see the improvements achieved from their lift lip within a few days. It is possible to resume most normal activities right away due to the subtleness of swelling. However, it can take up to a few weeks to see the outcome of surgery because the tissue settles gradually. Some studies suggest that lip ratio continues to improve for up to a year after a lip lift.

Lift lip procedures are performed every day with outstanding results. Because a tiny incision is made, though, there is a risk of infection and scarring. There is also a risk of asymmetry or unattractive results. To avoid unnecessary risks, patients must obtain their lip lift from a properly trained, board-certified plastic surgeon.

A lip lift usually does not remove much skin. However, this will vary depending on each case. On average, between 5mm and 7mm of tissue is removed to reshape the lip area and create a natural, rejuvenated appearance.

The lip lift procedure is performed in a way that releases tension so the skin is not stretched but repositioned. Stitches are attached to underlying structures that secure the new lip position without leading to a noticeable scar. At first, patients can expect to see a red or pink line where their incision was made. Over time, this fades to be nearly invisible.

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Northwestern Specialists
Plastic Surgery

676 N St Clair Street, Suite 1575
Chicago, IL 60611

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Saturday: 9a-2p
Sunday: closed

The Med Spa Streeterville

676 N St Clair Street, Suite 1575
Chicago, IL 60611

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Saturday: 9a-2p
Sunday: closed

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Chicago, IL 60611

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Sunday: 10a-2p

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