Why Lips Matter
There is a primitive part of the brain that is specifically attracted to certain secondary sexual characteristics that imply fertility. It’s believed that we are hard-wired to be attracted to other humans with well-developed secondary sexual characteristics as a means to guarantee the perpetuation of the species. Among those characteristics (in women) are ample breasts, shapely hips and, not surprisingly, full lips. The shape, color, texture, and fullness of a woman’s lips reflect her age and, correspondingly, her fertility. Therefore, as a culture, we’ve come to identify full lips as markers of an attractive, young woman.
Since time immemorial, women have found ways to enhance their lips. Mesopotamian women, likely the inventors of lipstick, used crushed semi-precious stones to decorate their lips over 5,000 years ago. Dyes made from various natural substances, such as a combination of beeswax and plant dyes, were used by Egyptian women and, it’s believed that Cleopatra concocted her lipstick from the red color extracted from crushed ants and carmine beetles!
While some women are genetically gifted with full lips and a well-defined Cupid’s bow, many women have spent a lifetime (and thousands of dollars) in a quest to create the illusion of fuller lips via lip liners, lip exercises, applications of spicy substances to “swell” the lips, and even permanent lip implants. You’ll be delighted to know that, here in my Valparaiso and Schererville plastic surgery offices, you can have fuller, more sensuous lips in less than an hour, whether your lips are genetically on the thin side, or have become thinner with time. I can also “balance” uneven lips, in which, for example, the top lip is dramatically thinner than the bottom lip.
How to Have Fuller Lips in Less Than an Hour
The best solution for a plumper pout is through the use of dermal fillers. In my plastic surgery office near Chicago, I employ two specific dermal fillers to create exquisitely beautiful lips: Restylane® and Restylane Silk®. Both of these fillers are composed of a natural substance called hyaluronic acid (HA). You’ve likely seen hyaluronic acid listed as an ingredient in various injectable fillers and skincare products, although you may not understand what it is or what it can do for you.
First of all, hyaluronic acid isn’t an acid in the sense that it burns or damages the skin. Far from it! In fact, hyaluronic acid is a humectant, a product that binds moisture. It’s a natural carbohydrate that exists inside your body that contributes to plump, supple, firm skin. HA also acts as a lubricant in your joints and eyes. Babies have lots of HA, which is the reason for their super-soft, dewy and plump skin texture. Unfortunately, we produce less and less HA as we grow older, beginning around the age of 40.
Secondly, there are two benefits to injections of Restylane® or Restylane Silk® into the lips: (A) immediate plumping and (B) stimulation of your body’s own collagen, one of the “building blocks” of youthful skin.
The Difference Between Restylane® and Restylane Silk®
As mentioned, both of these fillers contain hyaluronic acid. The primary difference between them is that Restylane Silk® is delivered in a gel form rather than a particulate, which allows for very minute corrections. Restylane®, however, is an excellent filler to outline the lips and to lift the upper lip by injecting the philtral columns, the two vertical lines at the top of the upper lip that connect to the bottom of the nose. This area tends to flatten with age, so injecting a little Restylane® or Juvéderm® into that area can lift the upper lip for a more youthful appearance. My Indiana Restylane® patients find that results last approximately six to nine months.
If you’re unhappy with the appearance of your lips, call my office at 800-721-3244 to schedule an appointment or complete this online contact form. In an hour or less, you can possess youthful, plump and sensuous lips!
To your health & beauty,
Gus Galante, MD, FACS
Board Certified Indiana Plastic Surgeon