When you’re considering lip filler, you’re hoping for perfect lips that are just volumized enough, with a defined, balanced, and symmetrical shape. It’s not surprising if you’re worried about lip filler migration, which has been frequently discussed over the last year, with horror stories cropping up on social media.
If you already have fillers, recognizing the signs of lip filler migration is important for maintaining your aesthetic and seeking correction if necessary. If you’re still thinking about filler, understanding why migration actually happens can help you avoid it.
That’s exactly what we’ll cover in this post. We’ll explain the causes of migration, how you can spot it, and why it’s essential to talk to the pros about it. Plus, we’ll spill the beans on how to undo the fillers to achieve your desired look.
Causes of Lip Filler Migration
Lip filler migration refers to the movement of lip filler from its initial injection site. It can happen for a few different reasons, and often as a result of a combination of factors, including:
- Your natural muscle movements over time
- Not following all of your provider’s aftercare instructions (or not receiving adequate instructions from your provider)
- Injecting more product than the lips can support
- Touching-up or refilling too frequently
- Wrong filler choice
- Poor injection technique such as injecting too close to the lip line
As you can see from this list, lip filler migration isn’t completely avoidable, but choosing a provider you can trust and following their aftercare instructions can greatly reduce the chances it’ll occur.
Signs of Lip Migration
The signs of migrating lip filler can vary from person to person, but here are the common indicators to look out for:
One of the most noticeable and concerning signs of lip migration is unevenness. It can lead to differences in size or shape between the upper and lower lips or between the left and right sides of the lips. If you notice an imbalance in lip volume or symmetry, it could be an indication that your fillers have shifted from their original placement.
Another common sign of lip filler migration is puffiness outside the lip line since migration can cause the filler to move beyond the borders of the lips. It can distort the lip line or lead to what’s been unflatteringly nicknamed the “duck face”. Displacement can also occur inside the mouth on the “wet-dry border”, usually leading to bumps in the inner part of the lips.
Lumpiness or Nodules
Migration can also result in the formation of lumps or nodules in the lips which make the lips feel uneven or bumpy to the touch. If you experience any unusual texture, it could indicate that the filler has migrated and formed clumps
How to Prevent Lip Filler Migration
Dealing with migrated lip filler can be difficult, so it’s much better to prevent it in the first place. Here are the ways to make sure it doesn’t happen.
Choose a Skilled and Experienced Injector
Take your time when researching local med spas or doctor’s offices and choose your injector with care. An experienced injector will have a deep understanding of facial anatomy, proportions, and the artistry required to create natural-looking results.
Based on your individual anatomy, they can help you achieve lip enhancements that are in harmony with your facial features and are much less likely to migrate.
At SEV, our team of nurse injectors are experts in providing aesthetic treatments like lip fillers. Their knowledge and experience means that they can offer an impeccable service, and give you the guidance to avoid migration and other side effects.
Discuss Your Material Options
There are many different types of lip filler materials, so it’s important to choose hyaluronic acid-based fillers that can be dissolved later if necesssary..
Even with hyaluronic acid fillerss, though, there are different filler options with slightly different textures. It’s important that your injector chooses a product that’s pliant enough, and that will suit your lip shape and aesthetic.
Opt for Gradual Enhancement
Often, the reason for migration is that more filler was injected than the patient’s lips could support. Having your injector start with conservative volumes helps to avoid an overfilled or unnatural appearance, and reduces the risk of migration. Discuss your goals with your injector, and they can recommend a treatment plan that aligns with your preferences.
Follow Aftercare Instructions
After your treatment, your injector will provide specific aftercare instructions. It is important to follow these guidelines diligently, since too much friction or any irritation in the lip area may increase your risk of migration.
In general, our key aftercare suggestions at SEV include the following:
- Avoid any friction against the lip area, such as from sleeping on your stomach or rubbing the lips.
- Keep your lips clean and moisturized.
- If okayed by your doctor, avoid medications or supplements with a blood-thinning effect.
- Avoid excessive heat, sun exposure, and intense exercise.
- Avoid drinking from straws for the first 48 hours.
Check out our customer care page for even more suggestions for both before and after your appointment.
Dissolving Migrated Lip Fillers
If you’ve experienced lip filler migration, your best bet is to have your lip filler dissolved. Since lip fillers are made of hyaluronic acid, dissolving them involves using an enzyme called hyaluronidase which breaks them down. Here is an overview of the process, and what you need to know prior to booking:
Start With a Consultation
A consultation with a qualified and experienced injector should always be the first step if you suspect lip filler migration. The nurse injector will assess your lips, determine if lip migration occurred, and discuss the option of dissolving the fillers based on your specific situation.
Evaluation and Treatment Planning
During the consultation, your provider will evaluate the extent of lip migration and its impact on your lips. Based on this analysis, they’ll let you know if dissolving the lip filler really is the best path forward. If so, they’ll also explain exactly how much filler is needed to correct your migration and give other suggestions for how you can achieve your lip goals.
Administration of Hyaluronidase
The actual dissolving process involves injecting hyaluronidase directly into the areas affected by lip migration. The hyaluronidase breaks down the hyaluronic acid in the fillers, which then allows your body to naturally metabolize them.
Natural Absorption and Recovery
The process of filler dissolution can vary from person to person, and it may take some time for your lips to completely regain their natural shape and volume.
Swelling is also common, which may make it harder to assess your results. If needed, we might recommend additional follow-up appointments for further treatment or adjustments.
Prevent or Correct Lip Filler Migration With SEV
Understanding the causes and signs of lip filler migration is crucial. It’ll help you avoid the common pitfalls that lead to migration in the first place. If your lip filler does migrate, you’ll be able to recognize the signs immediately and contact an experienced provider who can let you know whether getting your filler dissolved is the right move. Whether you’re planning to get lip filler or you’ve had filler migrate, our goal at SEV is to make sure you’re feeling totally confident about your appearance. We’ll be happy to chat with you about your options for treatment or correction, so get in touch with us or book your appointment!