So you’ve just had lip fillers! Even though the size of your lips may decrease slightly due to swelling, you’re (hopefully) satisfied with your results! But is there anything else you have to do when you get home?
Dermal fillers are injected into the lips in order to increase their volume and contour their shape. The procedure itself doesn’t take very long and the initial results can be seen immediately (1).
Your doctor or injector would have talked you through some side-effects and what to expect after the procedure, but below are a few tips you can take note off that can help the healing time and allow your lips to settle as soon as possible.
A follow-up or touch-up visit will have already been scheduled for you at around 2 weeks after the procedure (2), this allows your injector to make sure everything is fine and to add any extra touches.
Whether you’ve just had a lip filler procedure or are interested in getting lip injections, and want to know what to expect – here are 5 aftercare tips you should be aware of:
1. Apply ice on your lips after lip fillers
Swelling, redness and bruising are extremely common after getting lip fillers. Usually, the faster the injection the more chance of bruising (3), so make sure your injector has experience in lip augmentation and takes their time.
Place an ice-pack or a cold compress on your lips after getting lip fillers in order to minimize the swelling and bruising (4).
Remember not to allow the ice to come in direct contact with your lips or skin as this can cause irritation, only use an ice-pack or wrap an ice-cube around with cloth before applying it.
Apply the ice in 15 minute intervals and not longer in order to avoid any damage to your skin or lips. You can apply ice on your lips directly after a lip filler procedure, and can continue for the rest of the day.
2. Avoid extreme temperatures
Try to avoid extreme cold or heat for 48 hours after getting lip injection in order to reduce the risk of swelling or complications (5).
Try to avoid going to places or joining activities that will place you in really hot or cold surroundings for at least 2 days after the procedure.
Avoid skiing or being outside in a cold temperature for too long. Similarly, avoid really hot environments such as being out in the sun for too long, or the sauna (6). The high heat can make the swelling worse.
3. Do you need to massage your lips after getting lip fillers?
This one is a bit tricky, the short answer – it depends.
As dermal fillers are “malleable” by nature and can be molded into shape, massaging your lips after getting dermal fillers can move the fillers around and change the shape of your new lips.
Whether or not you need to massage your lips after getting lip fillers depends on how the procedure went, and how your lips react to the fillers afterwards.
During the procedure itself your injector will be massaging your lips and massaging the fillers into place. If after the procedure your injector notices that there is even distribution of fillers in your lips, and the shape and contouring is satisfactory, they may advise you not to massage your lips (6).
This is because if you do massage your lips immediately after the procedure when the fillers are already evenly balanced, you risk pushing the fillers away from their position and this can cause migration of fillers or an unsatisfactory aesthetic result (7).
However, if after the procedure you notice that some filler has begun to form bumps or nodules in your lips, you’ll have to continuously massage your lips in order to mold the fillers and prevent any uneven areas in your lips (8).
4. Don’t get into any long flights
Due to the increased pressure, flying can increase the risk of swelling in your lips after getting lip fillers. Long flights can also cause your lips to become more dry and dehydrated, and with lip fillers – hydration is important!
Shorter flights are relatively safer, but it’s recommended that you don’t get into any flight longer than 3 hours (9) for at least 2 weeks after getting lip fillers.
Though flying with lip fillers may seem normal, it can lead to more serious side-effects, so it’s better to wait until your fillers have settled in or at least until you’ve been to your secondary recall visit before getting into any long flights.
5. Avoid strenuous exercise after getting lip fillers
Vigorous or strenuous physical activity and exercise should be avoided for at least 24 hours after getting lip injections.
This is because intense exercise increases the heart rate which in turn increases blood pressure, and this increases the chance of bruising to occur, or to worsen any bruising or swelling that may already be present (10).
This includes most physical activities that get your heart pumping, such as working out, playing vigorous sports, exercising or jogging. Light exercise such as walking is fine.
In order to avoid pressure building in your lips, it’s also recommended that you try to sleep with your head elevated for the first day after the procedure (11).