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Thinning Lips: Why It Happens and How We Can Pump Them Back Up

As you age, your body produces less collagen, a fibrous structural protein that, along with elastin, gives your skin definition, strength, and elasticity. Collagen also helps the skin cells repair and renew themselves and keeps the skin moist. When you don’t have enough, the results are the common signs of aging — wrinkles, sagging skin, and loss of definition in the lips.

In addition, with age, the border of the lip (known as the white roll) loses its definition, and the thinning can make you look overly serious or expressionless, even when you laugh or smile.

At Med Physique Center for Aesthetics in Houston, Texas, our team of expert aestheticians can help you restore your collagen, remove the wrinkles, and plump your lips back up to pleasant proportions through a number of dermal filler injectables. Here’s what you need to know.

Hyaluronic acid (HA) basics

Also known as hyaluronan, HA is a clear, gooey material naturally produced by your body. Its primary function is to retain water, helping to keep your tissues well lubricated. The largest quantities are found in your skin, connective tissue, and eyes.

HA is a major component of many dermal fillers, which are materials injected into your body to replenish and rejuvenate your tissues. In addition to retaining moisture, they promote the production of new collagen and elastin, filling in fine lines and wrinkles and plumping up your lips. The body flushes the HA out of your system over time through the lymphatic system.

Injectable dermal fillers

Fortunately for your thinning lips, there are dermal fillers available that can pump them back up. The two primary products we offer, Juvéderm® and Restylane®, both use hyaluronic acid as the active ingredient.

Juvéderm products

The Juvéderm line of products helps people combat the facial signs of aging; each individual product addresses a specific problem in a different area of the face. Each may be injected in different amounts, into different tissue types, and at different depths into those tissues.

Juvéderm fillers have a gel-like consistency, which allows us to add volume without an unnatural hardness or stiffness, and without any pouchiness or sagging.

As mentioned, the main ingredient in Juvéderm is HA, a safe and holistic material that stimulates your lips’ collagen production to get rid of the white roll. Because the material is flushed out of your system over time, you’ll need to repeat your treatment at intervals to keep your lips full and fresh.

The three products we use here at Med Physique Center for Aesthetics in this line are Juvéderm Volbella® XC, Juvéderm Ultra XC, and Ultra Plus XC.  The “XC” indicates that the product also contains lidocaine, a numbing agent that helps make the treatment as painless as possible.

Juvéderm Volbella is a versatile product, adding volume to the lips, softening vertical lip lines, and potentially minimizing the appearance of dark circles. Juvéderm Ultra creates fuller-looking lips, no matter if they’ve thinned because of aging or are slim due to genetics. Ultra Plus is a thicker formulation that goes beyond the lips themselves, addressing moderate-to-severe facial lines, including marionette lines and nasolabial folds.

Injectable gel filler procedures are minimally invasive and don’t require much preparation, so it’s probable you could get your injections the same day you come in for your consultation. Juvéderm lip procedures take about 15-30 minutes, and in addition to the lidocaine, we use a very small needle to minimize any discomfort.

It’s possible your lips will be a little swollen after your treatment, and they may look dark and bruised for a couple of days. They might also feel somewhat itchy. Use ice wrapped in a cloth and hold it to your lips to alleviate these symptoms. You should also avoid strenuous activity, wearing makeup, consuming alcohol, and getting direct sun exposure for at least 24 hours.

You’ll be able to see the results of your treatment as soon as we’re done, and the Juvéderm injection results can last from six months to two years, depending on the formula used, the severity of your lip thinning, and your personal genetics. Again, once the effects have worn off, you can have another treatment to bolster your appearance.


Restylane fillers are also HA-based, and they can boost volume and give you a more youthful appearance for 6-18 months. Restylane Silk gives you slightly plumper and smoother lips than Juvéderm, and it also softens some of the wrinkles and fine lines surrounding your mouth. The aesthetician will determine which of the fillers is more appropriate for you at your consultation, after checking you over and getting your input about your aesthetic goals.

If you want to learn more about dermal fillers and how they can help pump up your thinning lips, give Med Physique Center for Aesthetics a call at 512-453-7000 to set up a consultation, or book online. You have problems, we have solutions.

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