That KJ pout: My experience with lip fillers

* Warning, this post contains photos with needles.

Yes, I have gotten lip fillers. More than once actually.

I’ll admit it, I totally got sucked into the whole Kylie Jenner lips hype that for Hanukkah two years ago I asked my boyfriend for lip fillers. And then I asked for them again for my birthday.  Here’s the thing, though I don’t need them since the size of my lips are about average (I’ve never had issues with them being too small), once I started to get them done, they had the right amount of oomph that I fell in love with the effect.

I think when people think of lip fillers (and I can think of a couple friends who would say this), they imagine those huge duck lips that are so unbelievable large that it’s totally noticeable that that person has had work done.  I have had people ask me about it and if I did anything with my lips, and when I tell them that yes, I have had them enhanced with fillers, I’m usually met with the same response: they look great!

So this leads me to today’s post. I teamed up with First Glance Aesthetic Clinic and Surgery Centre, located at 1851 Grant Avenue here in Winnipeg, Manitoba to get my lips done and write about the process since the first time I got it done I had a lot of questions myself. The clinic features a modern, state-of-the-art facility, as well as a fully accredited operating room which is equipped with the latest advances in technology. Although there are a few clinics here in Winnipeg, First Glance has consistently been chosen as the best plastic surgery clinic in the city, as well as one of the busiest in the country. Aside from plastic surgery procedures, they also offer treatments like body contouring, microblading, lasers and fillers, as well as a retail section, where you can pick up advanced skincare products and other items like Latisse.

This was my first time at First Glance getting this procedure done. Previously I went to a different clinic in the city for lip fillers and have always been happy with the results.  I think the most commonly asked question I get, and it was one I was curious about as well, was how much are they? Well, when you get fillers, they do it by syringe. You can either do half a syringe or a full. The first time I did the half since I’ve never had this done before and I didn’t know what to expect, however, after the initial swelling went down I found that my lips weren’t all that different from how they looked before. The second time I went with the full syringe and definitely recommend doing the full since if you are going to spend the money on this procedure, it would be more worth it in my opinion since you’ll see better results. It’s hard saying what the price would be since it depends on the product used and how much of it you get. For this visit I ended up getting a full syringe of Juvederm Ultra and the cost I was told is around C$400.

All three times I have gotten Juvederm as the filler. Juvederm is a smooth-consistency gel made of hyaluronic acid, a naturally occurring substance in your skin that helps to add volume and hydration. The results are immediate and there is no downtime (although they do recommend no exercising after as it could lead to bruising). There are a few different formulas of Juvederm, there’s Juvederm Ultra for versatility in contouring and volumizing facial wrinkles and folds, and then there is Ultra Plus, which is a more robust formula for voluming and correcting deeper folds and wrinkles. There is also Juvederm Volbella, which is a newer filler treatment for the lips and is designed for natural-looking lip volume, as well as defining the lip contours, diminishing vertical lip lines, accentuating the border of the lips, plumping them up to make them full, and enhancing the cupid’s bow. Usually you would have a consultation first with the nurse who injects the product and she would chat with you about what you want your lips to look like and then recommend what would be best. While other lip fillers exist, I have only ever had Juvederm injected, so I’m unfamiliar with what the results would look like for the others. Juvederm also has an app where it would show you what your lips could potentially look like as well if you are curious about the results you could get.

Anyways, after filling out all the medical forms for the procedure, Amanda, the nurse injecting the product (although they do this at plastic surgery clinics, it’s usually nurses injecting the product, not the surgeon themselves) came in and started to chat with me about what I’ve had done before and what I wanted my lips to look like. Since I had them done at another clinic previously I wasn’t quite sure which form of Juvederm they used. She explained that if you mix and match them, I could potentially have a reaction to the product which would result in me taking medicine and most-likely a plastic-surgery-gone-wrong look on my face.  After asking me a number of questions, she came to the conclusion that I had Juvederm Ultra and that’s what she used for my lips this time around.

As for what I wanted my lips to look like, I wasn’t sure. My bottom lip is quite full already, but my top lip is uneven. The ends taper off at the sides and therefore it’s quite difficult to apply lipstick evenly for me.  Looking at photos of how my lips looked last time I got it done, Amanda said they were filled out more horizontally rather than round. After looking up who had nice lips on Google, my friend suggested Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and I agreed that she had a nice pout, so we went with that as the guideline. Lip fillers before and after photos

Once we narrowed down how we wanted to do the shape, she put on the topical numbing cream, which to me is the worst part of the whole thing. It’s a gel that they apply to your lips and surrounding skin to numb the whole area so the injection doesn’t hurt. You have to sit there with that stuff on for 20 minutes while your lips go numb (they also feel huge too BTW).

As for the actual injecting part, does it hurt? Yes and no. It all depends on your pain tolerance.  You have the numbing cream on so that definitely helps with the pain factor. I have a pretty high pain tolerance so for the most part it didn’t hurt, although depending on where she was injecting it some spots pinched more than others.  They also give you one of those stress ball things that you can squeeze if it hurts too much.  Amanda did a little at a time and then would step back and take a look to see how it looks and where I needed a little more. I’m told Amanda is one of the best injectors in the country (she also mentioned she books four months in advance), and I can certainly see why. She was very thorough and took her time making sure that she got my lips done right. The formula was mostly injected into my top lip with lots of definition on the cupid’s bow (she said a defined cupid’s bow is a look of youth since your lips tend to fall and sag as you get older).  There was a little bit of the formula left in the syringe, so she put it in the philtrum, the ridged skin part underneath your nose and above your cupid’s bow to define the ridges.

After about 20 minutes she was done or injecting and massaging (to make sure it was even and no bumps) she gave me a Juvederm ice pack to put on my lips. She said only to hold it on for two minutes as if you have ice on there for too long the injection could freeze. My lips did look very large, but that was due to swelling. After about a week they did go down in size and they are now a perfect pout.

With lip injections you do run the risk of having bruising, which I did have on both my lip and a little on the side of my mouth. Everyone is different though and just because you bruise one time doesn’t mean that that will happen the next time you get it done (my first time I didn’t bruise at all). There are a number of factors that go into whether you’ll bruise, such as if you take aspirin (which is kind of like a blood thinner) before your treatment, or if you drink alcohol or eat garlic one to two days before the treatment. Also, like I said, exercising is not recommended after the injection since that makes your blood pressure rise, which could lead to bruising.

It’s been almost two weeks since I’ve had the procedure done and I think I can safely say that the size of my lips now are probably what they will look like for the next few months. How long the filler lasts really depends on the person as there are a number of factors that determine how long it takes for your body will break the formula down. For me, I noticed they last anywhere from six months to a year. Although my lips did shrink from when I had it done last May, Amanda did say that there was some filler left in my lips as she was injecting it this time around.  I’ve also read that if you are skinnier then your body will break down the filler faster.

Since the procedure is instant, you will see results right away and there is no downtime after it’s done (although, like I said, no exercising for 24 hours!). Your lips will feel stiff and I would avoid eating or drinking anything hot. Even now they still a little stiff if I go to pout them, but that will eventually go away.

So are lip fillers for you? It depends. I’ve had so many people ask me about them and they have pretty much the same questions that I had myself before I got it done. I would definitely do your research and take a look at the clinic’s website, testimonials, and social media to see before and afters. Like I said, First Glance is one of the largest and busiest plastic surgery clinics in the province and although this was my first visit there, I knew I was going to have a great experience just based on what I’ve heard from people. Fillers are a pricey habit to maintain, but if it makes you happy, then it’s definitely worth it in the long run. As for the pain part, once they numb you it really isn’t that bad. My issue is more about needles. The first two times I had fillers I almost fainted after the procedure since I don’t do well with needles in general. Honestly though, I just closed my eyes the entire time and the squeeze ball definitely  helps.

Prior to the first time I got my lips done, I watched loads of YouTube videos, read blog posts about what to expect, and looked up the hashtag #lipfillers on Instagram. I teamed up with First Glance on this post because there are so many questions out there about lip fillers since they are so popular right now and we both wanted to share how amazing the experience can be and what it’s like to get them done. If you have any questions at all, please leave me a comment below and I’ll be happy to respond.

Also, make sure you check out First Glance Aesthetic Clinic and Surgery Centre if you are in the Winnipeg area, I was actually quite surprised with the range of services they offer (like microblading and tattoo removal, who knew?!). Also, give them a follow on Instagram and a Like on Facebook.

Have you gotten lip fillers before? What was your experience like?

Please note, I am working with First Glance Aesthetic Clinic on this post. They did provide the lip filler gratis, however, this did not affect my thoughts on the procedure or their clinic.

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