Hyaluronic Acid for Lip Injections: Benefits, Site Effects, Costs


Hyaluronic Acid (HA) is a naturally occurring substance in the body that has the ability to attract water, helping your skin to stay hydrated and firm. The synthetic form of this ingredient is used in some brands of injectable cosmetic treatments called dermal fillers.

Although HA injections have been used cosmetically for wrinkles and other anti-aging treatments for years, they are also FDA approved to give volume to the lips.

Find out about the potential benefits of using HA fillers for your lips, as well as possible side effects, procedure steps, and more.

Like other types of dermal fillers, HA injections are strategically used by cosmetic surgeons to address concerns related to volume loss. Specifically, HA injections into the lips can provide the following benefits.

Fuller lips

When performed by a licensed and experienced professional, HA Lip Injections are meant to make your lips look fuller and younger. These fillers can also help redefine the border around your lips, improving their overall shape.

Wrinkle reduction

HA injections into the lips can also be used to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles around the mouth. Specifically, HA is useful for perioral rhytids (“Smoker’s lines”) that extend vertically around the mouth, as well as the smile lines.

Immediate results

HA injection effects may be observed immediately after treatment. It may appeal to those looking for quick results.

It is important to inform your provider of any underlying medical conditions before purchasing HA fillers. This procedure may not be appropriate if you:

  • have a history of blood clotting problems
  • smoke
  • have diabetes
  • are currently taking immunosuppressive drugs
  • you have an active oral herpes infection
  • are pregnant or breastfeeding

Even good candidates for HA injections in the lips may experience side effects from this cosmetic procedure. Discuss all possible risks with your provider before receiving treatment.

Common side effects

Common side effects HA lip fillers include:

  • temporary redness or purplish tone and swelling of the lips
  • bruising and light bleeding around the injection sites
  • temporary lumps or bumps that may occur around injection sites

Any temporary pain or swelling usually goes away with 1 to 2 days after your procedure.

Uncommon side effects that should be seen by a doctor

You must report the following rare, but the potentially serious side effects of HA injections to your doctor immediately:

  • blisters around the lips
  • numbness or bluish coloring of the lips
  • severe swelling that will not go away
  • vision changes
  • symptoms of an infection, such as increased swelling, pigmentation changes, and drainage

Medical emergency

Call 911 and go to the nearest emergency room if you have signs of a severe allergic reaction, including:

  • swelling
  • urticaria
  • difficulty in breathing

Before your procedure, your healthcare provider may recommend that you stop taking certain medications and supplements, such as blood thinners. They will also create a “map” of your lip area to help you plan specific injection sites.

You can expect the following steps during your HA lip filling procedure:

  1. First, your provider will clean your lips with an antibacterial solution.
  2. To reduce pain during and after the procedure, your provider will apply a topical anesthetic.
  3. Once the anesthetic is absorbed into the skin, your provider will begin the injection process. After each injection, they will quickly massage the site and inject more solution, if necessary.
  4. You and your provider will evaluate the results before the preoperative marks on your lips are cleaned.
  5. Before you leave, your provider can give you an ice pack to apply to your lips.

The whole process only takes a few minutes and you can resume most of your normal activities after your date. Depending on your comfort level, you can also return to work immediately after the treatment. But you should avoid strenuous physical activity during 48 hours.

Although your future HA lip injection supplier will have samples of their own work, consider the following images as a starting point to get an idea of ​​the types of results you can see with this treatment.

Most HA Lip Fillers contain lidocaine to help decrease pain during the injection process. Depending on the brand, each syringe may contain a combination of 20 mg / mL HA and 0.3% lidocaine. As a precaution, your provider may also apply a numbing agent to your lips beforehand.

To help reduce post-injection pain and swelling, your provider will recommend that you apply ice or cold compresses to your lips.

The effects of HA injections are temporary and you will need regular maintenance treatments at least every 6 months to help you maintain your results.

Yet the exact timing varies, with some people needing maintenance treatments before 6 months. In other cases, treatment may last as long as 12 months.

According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of HA injectables in 2020 was $ 684 by syringe. The American Board of Cosmetic Surgery also states that injectable filling costs may vary between $ 540 and $ 1,680.

Your own cost will vary depending on the provider, as will the number of syringes needed for your lip treatment.

Since lip fillers are cosmetic procedures, medical insurance will not cover the cost. You can help lower the cost of your treatment by asking your provider about financing, monthly payment plans, or discounts for multiple treatment sessions.

During your consultation with a future cosmetic surgeon, it is important to also discuss possible alternatives to HA lip fillers. This way, you can make the most informed decision based on desired results, budget, and recovery schedule.

Other popular cosmetic lip treatment options include:

Hyaluronic acid is a type of dermal filler ingredient that can be used for the lips. If you want to use HA injections to add volume to the lips and reduce the appearance of wrinkles, consider speaking with a board certified cosmetic surgeon.

It is important to remember that even though HA injections are considered non-invasive treatments, there is always a risk of side effects. Lip fillers are not permanent, so you will need to prepare for occasional maintenance treatments to maintain the desired results.

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