Now more than ever, people are considering lip injections to look and feel like the best versions of themselves. To help you decide if lip fillers are right for you, we created this guide to frequently asked questions—for example, how much do lip injections cost? And do they hurt? Our staff photographer Kelsey braved the needle to find out the truth about the cosmetic treatment. Click below to learn more:
Let’s get this potential deal-breaker out of the way: lip injections can cost anywhere from $500 to $2,000, depending on the region you live in and the doctor performing the procedure. However, the average cost is about $600. Though with one of our lip injection deals, your service can cost significantly less.
They inject fillers containing hyaluronic acid into your lips, either Restylane or Juvéderm. (Read more about the different formulations in our Juvéderm guide and Restylane guide). Hyaluronic acid is a substance that exists in the human body naturally. It helps add moisture, softness, and volume to the skin.
Kelsey got Restylane Silk, which uses smooth, small hyaluronic acid particles for a more understated plumping effect.
Kelsey's lip injections before and after
According to Kelsey’s doctor, go with Restylane for a more natural result and Juvéderm for a more noticeable result.
"Juvéderm is more voluminous. . . . Restylane Silk, the way they described it to me, is sort of thinner. It looks more natural," Kelsey says.
Kelsey adds that with her Restylane injections, "nobody that I know of really said anything. It's kind of like, if you already have kind of blonde hair and then you go blonder, people don't notice that much even though you do."
She liked the result, but says that because she prefers a more attention-grabbing look, she would go with Juvéderm in the future.
Kelsey wasn't nervous about getting them done, calling herself "a try-anything-once kind of person." She always just assumed that if she wasn't happy with the results, they'd simply disappear on their own. If they were really bad, she could get her filler dissolved.
Kelsey may have put on a brave face for our video (shown above) but "it hurt a little more than I let on in the video,” she admits. She was quick to add that it certainly wasn't awful, "but if you go in there expecting it not to feel like anything, you're crazy."
"It's a really weird feeling ... . It was like if you could feel medicine release into you from a shot or something," she explains. "The part that hurts is when [the doctor] would stick [the syringe] in, and kind of wiggle it."
Customers who have had Botox or something similar might not find the sensation so strange, but total newbies should keep this in mind so they're not caught off guard once the needle is out.
This is another one that's hard to give an across-the-board answer to because it's going to vary quite a bit from patient to patient. In Kelsey's case, her recovery time was minimal.
"I planned to stay home and ice my lips for the night," but to her surprise, the pain after the procedure was almost nonexistent. She didn't even suffer any bruising, though she did note a bit of redness at the injection sites.
Kelsey’s doctor said they'd last around six to nine months—and Restylane more or less agrees, saying their Silk fillers last approximately six months. But for Kelsey, the results faded a little sooner. “I would say they probably lasted more like four to five," she says.
How long lip injections last depends on the individual. For instance, if you have a faster metabolism, your lip injections might disappear sooner. Or if you have very full lips like Kelsey and use a softer filler, your filler may appear to fade faster than a thicker filler used in thinner lips.
"I brought in pictures, I would recommend doing that," Kelsey says. This helps the doctor plan exactly where to do the injections without losing sight of your ideal lip shape (rounder and fuller or a pronounced cupid's bow).
This was the one question Kelsey was the most eager to answer, and her answer was simple: a resounding, emphatic yes. She liked her results, though she did add: "If I was gonna do it again, and I was gonna pay like $600 to do it, I would go big or go home."