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Lip Filler Migration: Uncovering the Causes and How to Avoid Them

Updated: Jun 15, 2023

Lip Filler Migration

If you are mulling over getting lip fillers, it is essential to be mindful of the likelihood of migration - commonly known as 'filler moustache,' 'sausage lips,' or 'duck lips.' Understandably, this can be a source of apprehension for those seeking out fuller pouts. But many things could be improved about this process that encourages you to take action if needed.

With the increasing popularity of lip fillers made from hyaluronic acid, many untrained and unskilled clinics have opened up to meet this demand. Unfortunately, many cases of lip filler migration are linked to these subpar services.

What Is Lip Filler Migration?

Lip filler migration denotes the relocation of fillers away from the injection site. It might migrate in various directions and distances but typically reduces definition along your lip edge (vermillion border). As a result, you may experience smoother transitions between your lips and the skin above them - diminishing that distinct boundary.

Dermal filler can seep into the white roll (upper lip border) or philtrum (skin groove between nose and lips). If injected too close to the lower lip, it could migrate downwards towards your chin.

It's essential to know that lip filler migration can occur over weeks, months, and even years. Though rare, it does happen more frequently for some than others but with an experienced practitioner, the risk of such complication is significantly reduced. Ultimately, lip fillers are a secure procedure that has earned high praise among its recipients.

What Are Lip Filler Migration Signs?

The appearance of lips that look unnatural is a telltale sign of lip filler migration, which can cause them to appear like sausage rolls or a duck's bill. Other indications may include the following:

  • Discomfort

  • Discoloration

  • Difficulty closing the lips

  • Swelling

  • Hard lumps or bumps

  • Pain

  • Tightness

Please be aware that following the treatment, some swelling, bruising, and discomfort may short-term occur. Rest assured, though, these effects should improve within 1 to 3 days after your appointment. If any issues are still present afterward, then lip filler migration might have occurred - in which case you should contact your doctor immediately for advice.

It is not uncommon for some people to experience swollen bumps post-treatment, potentially due to an allergic reaction from the numbing cream or latex gloves used during the procedure. However, these reactions are rarely caused by hyaluronic acid because it's naturally present in our bodies.

What Causes Lip Filler Migration?

Lip filler migration can occur for a variety of reasons, including the following:

Poor Technique

It's imperative to be judicious when accurately placing the dermal filler in the correct "pars marginalis muscle" of the lip. However, age, ethnicity, and anatomical features should also determine how much filler must be used for natural-looking results. Doing so allows us to provide each patient with a personalized experience tailored to them.

Although you may have heard of the Russian lip technique or "tenting" being thrown around, the truth is that there isn't a universal approach to receiving lip fillers. Your doctor must analyze various elements before deciding which method would be best for your unique situation -- and these can vary greatly.

It is no easy feat for fillers to migrate; otherwise, it would be a widespread issue since our lips are constantly in motion. This difficulty arises when the injector needs to have its technique down pat.

Too Much Filler

In some cases, lip filler migration can be the result of over-injection. Your healthcare practitioner will assess your anatomy to determine how much filler suits you; after all, there's a cap to how much your lips can handle naturally.

If the lips have been overly filled beyond their capacity, they'll naturally move away from where it is concentrated. Additionally, suppose one decides to get injections from different providers who are unaware of any existing filler in the lips already present. In that case, this can cause displacement of what was initially injected first. To avoid these pitfalls and ensure your lip augmentation remains successful, seek professionals with experience and knowledge in this area.

Using The Wrong Filler

Hyaluronic acid fillers are an excellent choice for lip enhancement or augmentation. Still, it's essential to know that each brand manufactures its type of filler with varying benefits and uses. Additionally, the G prime rating is a term used to measure how "runny" the filler is (the lower rating indicates more fluidity). Your doctor will determine which specific kind of dermal filler works best for your lips based on their anatomy and desired results.

Depending on the desired outcome, a lightweight filler or one of higher viscosity and density may be chosen for thin lips. To obtain optimal results, different types of fillers can be injected in diverse regions; however, if a wrong choice is made for lip fillers, migration could take place.

How To Fix Lip Filler Migration?

Solving the issue of lip filler migration can be achieved in two ways. These are:

Dissolving The Filler

Hyaluronidase is an enzyme capable of disintegrating hyaluronic acid, which makes it the perfect candidate for precise lip filler correction. Instead of completely breaking down fillers in the lips, this substance can be injected directly to target problem areas without multiple sessions. Hyaluronidase may be helpful if you want a more symmetrical pout or need some fine-tuning on its shape and size.

Natural Metabolism

Though lip filler injections are temporary and will eventually be metabolized by the body for up to two years, they can sometimes cause aesthetic issues due to migration. If that issue is not particularly severe, consider allowing it to dissipate naturally rather than choosing another solution.

How To Prevent Lip Filler Migration?

To prevent this from happening, consider these steps:

  • Find the Right Practitioner – It is essential to search for a qualified, certified, and insured medical professional with an extensive history of administering lip filler treatments.

  • Ask About the Filler It is always essential to inquire about the type of filler and its brand being injected into your lips, as fake fillers are available on the market. A trustworthy practitioner will know this information at their fingertips.

  • Follow the Aftercare To ensure proper healing, it is essential to follow aftercare instructions, including avoiding rubbing, massage, and exercise.

  • Inform the Doctor About Past Treatments – To avoid any misplacement of lip filler, it is highly recommended that you inform your doctor about any prior experience with injectable fillers.

  • Don't Get Fillers Too Often – Remember that fillers can take ample time to dissolve. If you continue getting new filters every couple of months while the prior one never entirely disappears, migration will likely occur.

How Long After Getting Filler Dissolved Can You Get Filler Again?

Dissolving your lip fillers will take at least four weeks for your lips to heal fully - but that timeline can stretch up to six. Plus, depending on the severity of the issue, some cosmetic dermatologists may even advise waiting three-to-six months before receiving any further injections. Ultimately, only an expert can determine how long you need to get another treatment.

Is Lip Filler Migration Dangerous?

The human body contains a natural lubricant called hyaluronic acid, so it should be broken down if lip filler migrates. Additionally, an allergic reaction due to this substance is doubtful.

What Are the Alternatives to Lip Fillers?

Two options are available if you're looking for ways to volumize your lips.

Lip Lift

Lip lift surgery is an aesthetic procedure that reduces the gap between your upper lip and nose, making it appear fuller and more voluminous. This playful look exposes more of the fleshy pink of your lips and front teeth and offers a permanent solution compared to fillers that fade over time. If you're looking for an enduring enhancement to boost your confidence levels, a lip lift may be just what you need.

Fat Grafting

Fat grafting is a surgical procedure where fat tissue is removed from one body area and transferred to another. Liposuction will also need to be performed for this technique to work correctly. In addition, it can be used to help plump up lips and give them a fuller appearance.

Before the surgery, the surgeon will consider that some of the fat transferred can be absorbed by your body. Though swelling is likely post-procedure, you can enjoy results from this procedure lasting more than five years.

Lip Implants

A definitive way to augment your lips' size, shape, and fullness is through implants. This procedure requires anesthesia and incisions for the surgeon to create pockets where they will place the implant material. After placement, these incisions are stitched closed with minimal downtime - this process only takes around 60 minutes!

Reach out to Luviacure for Lip Filler Migration Today!

If you want to improve the shape and fullness of your lips but are concerned about lip filler migration, don't hesitate to reach out to the experts at Luviacure. With years of experience in the field, our team has perfected techniques for reducing the risks associated with lip filler migration so that you can enjoy beautiful results with minimal downtime. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you achieve your desired look. With our help, you can rest assured that your results will last a long time and that any risks associated with lip filler migration are minimized as much as possible.

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