Understanding the Risks of Lip Fillers: What You Need to Know

Our lips are the second most expressive body part after our eyes. Enhancing your lips can make them fuller and more whole and reduce wrinkles. Let’s find out more about the procedure and risks of lip fillers.

Lip Fillers And Their Types

Let’s discuss hyaluronic acid fillers (For example, Juvederm, Restylane, and Revansse brands), as these are the most common fillers used to enhance the lips.

While improving the lips, three aspects must be considered, and harmony between them is required for a natural look.

  1. Projection
  2. Exposure of mucosa (pink) and lifting of the vermilion border (the thin line between skin and mucosa)
  3. The width of the lip


For a natural-appearing lip enhancement, we want to see more exposure to the pink portion compared to a large lip that exposes the same skin tone. This is achieved by applying the filler on the tooth side of the lip instead of the skin side. In this position, the teeth can support the jaw, and the lip can move outward to avoid them. 


The filler should be placed into the tubercles of the lip, which are the soft tissue supporting structures that give the lip its shape. There are 3 tubercles in the upper lip, which comprise about 2/3 of the lip width. About half of the breadth of the lower lip is made up of two tubercles.

What Is The Duration Of Lip Filler?

The lip filler injection contains hyaluronic acid (HA), an abundant substance in our body. However, if we filled our lips with HA, our bodies would degrade and break down the HA within days. This occurs due to the degradation of reactive oxygen species (ROS).

So, the manufacturers create cross-links between the particles of HA to strengthen them and prevent them from being broken down by ROS. These technologies of cross-linking improve over time. Because the lips have so much movement and a rich blood supply, filler breaks down much faster in the lips than in the temples.

When the HA is injected into the lips, ROS breaks down significantly. The remaining HA is hydrophilic, meaning it attracts water. This leftover HA with water bound to it creates a natural-feeling-enhanced lip.

Over time, the HA slowly breaks down further, and when it is about 1⁄2 gone, you will perceive that it is all gone and may want to refill your lips.

What Are The Risks Of Lip Fillers?

Your lips will appear overly large right after injection, which may be present for a day or so. This happens because of the filler’s effect on edema. Mild bruising or minor tissue damage could also cause them to look uneven for two weeks.

Uneven lips or “duck lips” are generally avoided by planning and injection techniques, so go to an experienced provider to prevent this.

Because HA is naturally occurring in the human body, it is well-tolerated. Compression or lip fillers injection into a blood vessel is the immediate risks of lip fillers. Your doctor would generally notice this immediately; if it is not apparent, you will notice pain and pale lip discolouration. Massaging the affected area of the lip usually alleviates the problem. If not, you will have an injection of an enzyme that rapidly dissolves the filler.

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About Us

Tejal Sangani is Harley Street qualified, Brighton based non-surgical cosmetic practitioner. She is a qualified Prescribing Pharmacist with 15 years of experience with excellent clinical skills.

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