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How To Tell If Lip Fillers Will Suit You

Google Trends shows a steady increase in searches for “lip fillers” over the past five years, the hashtag #lipfillers has over 1 million posts on Instagram, and Kylie Jenner made international news when she publicly admitted having lip fillers in 2015, then again when she announced she was having them partially dissolved in 2018.

Lips are trending as much as eyebrows, if not more. Lip fillers are becoming a go-to treatment for adding volume, smoothing out a pout for cleaner lipstick application, and for restoring volume and hydration that has begun to wane with age.

If you’re considering lip fillers, this guide from our expert Cosmetic Nurse, Sally Cussell, can help you decide what type of lips might suit you.

Book a comprehensive consultation to plump and shape your lips in as little as 30 minutes

The Right Ratio For Lips

dermal filler lips

One myth that Nurse Sally really wants to banish is that you have to go with big, ballooning lips. While some people can pull this look off, most of our patients use fillers for a subtle enhancement. Not to mention, to create larger lips, they have to be done 1ml at a time over a number of weeks.

When you’re considering size, you must consider proportions, Sally says. The first thing she looks at when consulting a new client is the chin. “If you have a small chin, big lips can overpower it, especially from your side profile, and give you a bit of that trout pout,” she says. If your chin is small but your heart is really set on large lips, Sally recommends adding some filler to contour your chin and balance out your appearance.

The proportion between your lips and other features are important, too. If you have small eyes and a petite head, for example, too much volume in the lips can take away from your other features, rather than bring them out.

There can be some initial swelling for about 24 hours after getting your lips done, and Sally advises that if you love the way they look during the swelling, you probably want bigger lips. She cautions that large lips have to be done incrementally, that is, 1ml at a time with at least 2 weeks in between. Lips have a different anatomy to other parts of the face, so this method will help mitigate risks.

“It’s rare, but we have refused patients in the past when they wanted to add too much more. They might go to a competitor to have it done anyway, but for us, it’s about ethical practice and safety, so we advise accordingly.”


The Rule of Thirds: Top To Bottom Lip Ratio


Whether you want dramatic volume or an enhanced but natural-looking appearance, Sally recommends following the rule of thirds. That is, the top lip should be 1/3 of your total lips and your bottom lip 2/3, but it will also depend on your natural shape. “I’ll explain this principle to my patients and ask if that’s what they want, but it does depend because some people naturally have more even lips, so for them I might recommend keeping it more 50/50.”

It’s common to use fillers to even out proportions. Sally fondly remembers one client in particular; “she was very pretty and had a big, beautiful bottom lip, but her top lip was very small on one side. When I filled the top lip a little bit and evened it out, she looked in the mirror and she just brightened up. It’s like she finally saw how pretty she really was!”

Most of our male patients come in to fix asymmetry and disproportionate lips, Sally says. Some of her male patients have also dedicated months to growing the perfect beard, but they feel like their lips have disappeared, so they want to fill them out just a little bit. A note for male patients with beards, though, you will have to trim it back a little before we can perform a filler treatment to minimise the risk of infection.

How to avoid duck look/trout pout?


The duck look or the “trout pout” have two potential causes; too much filler for the natural size of your lips and the method of injection used. Essentially, if there is too much filler in the border, or the filler is not placed correctly, you can get a less natural looking protrusion in the lips, Sally explains. When she’s revitalising older lips, she may put some filler in the border to prevent smokers’ lines from forming, but as an injector, she says that she has to be meticulous to avoid creating unwanted protrusion.


Shaping is more difficult than proportions. “We can fix asymmetry and enhance certain features like a cupid’s bow, but if you don’t have a cupid’s bow naturally, we can’t create one for you, unfortunately,” Sally says.

Lip Diagram

There is a method known as the lip-flip in which we inject a little bit of filler into the philtrum (just above the centre of your top lip) to create a bit of a natural curl. It’s become a very popular look, especially among younger patients.

For the most part, though, you have to work within your natural shape and bring out what you love about it.

If you’re considering lip fillers, we recommend having a consultation to discuss the look you’d like to achieve and receive some recommendations, information and advice from our doctors and nurses. Because fillers are classified as a prescription-only product in Australia, you must be assessed by a doctor before receiving a treatment, and it’s important to have a safe and qualified practitioner. Don’t be afraid to ask how much experience your provider has before deciding to have a treatment.

At [RCA], we offer a complimentary pre-treatment consultation with a doctor, with no obligations. If you go ahead with treatment, we’ll also book you in for a free follow up visit to make sure the filler is settling properly and ensure that you’re well and happy with your result.

gummy smile


Book Your Free Consultation For A Tailored Treatment Plan

We are located in Barangaroo, Chatswood and Sydney CBD

The content & media published on our website is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be relied on as health or personal advice. Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks, and results of cosmetic procedures will vary.

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