Review: Dermal Fillers for Lips (Laser Clinics Australia)

Once upon a time I wasn't that in to cosmetic enhancements... but as the years fade, my looks continue to change and now my stance has differed: if it makes you feel good then why not!

For as long as I can recall, I have seen celebrities emerge looking younger than ever... wrinkles be gone, smile lines non-existent, Ms Jolie is no longer the only one in Hollywood with lips to love.

We all strive for self-improvement and for me it's all about pouty lips. Friends spent years perfecting the duck face but it didn't look good on me. I have lips so thin that the top lip disappears when I smile. Any attempt to pout creates 'smoker's wrinkle lines' above the top lip so I stuck to smiling in photos. With an increasing interest in cosmetic enhancements, I decided to pursue my goal for fuller lips and went to my favourite clinic at Erina Fair. Laser Clinics Australia (LCA) are experts not only in effective and affordable laser hair removal but also cosmetic injections known as dermal fillers. Having wanted Lips to Love all year long, I took the plunge...

BEFORE: My natural lips are very thin and top lip disappears when I smile.

What is a dermal filler? Made up of hyaluronic acid, a compound naturally found in the human body which depletes as we age, dermal filler is an injectable gel. Safe to use, it is designed to volumise and enhance features.

The consultation: My consultation was booked in with Jasmine, a bubbly and intelligent registered nurse/dermal filler specialist at LCA Erina Fair clinic. Jasmine has had a keen interest in the beauty industry for some time so she leaped at the opportunity to work in both fields. Jasmine made me feel calm, safe and assured from the moment we met. When asked what outcome I was hoping for I pointed at her pout and said, "lips like yours!" to which she replied, "thank you - these aren't my lips!"

It was from this moment that I realised just how natural an enhanced lip could look. While I love Khloe Kardashian's obviously enhanced lips, this 'aha' moment left me wondering how many women actually had their lips done in a subtle manner. We discussed the procedure, numbing the area, pain associated, side-effects/implications involved and even viewed examples of past clients. Let's be really honest: dermal filler procedures involve needles. More pricks than you are probably expecting. But Jasmine sold it to me and so I booked in that same day! Bye bye thin chaps... hello fuller bodied friends!

The procedure: Jasmine applied the numbing gel to the lip area around 30 minutes before the procedure was carried out. Before proceeding with the procedure Jasmine was required to contact an LCA certified doctor via video call for their approval. I briefly spoke to the doctor who asked me if I had any further questions before approving the procedure. As she prepared her work station, Jasmine showed me the sealed Juvederm product (we chose the brand because it looks most natural) and needle so I knew all items were sealed and hygienic.
She assessed the numbed area to check for sensitivity and then asked me to relax my lips and unclench my jaw. I closed my eyes and waited for a painful sting - but each needle honestly felt no worse than a pinch using fingernails. The lovely Jasmine talked me through each needle, preparing me for the next and assuring me so I felt safe. 1ml of dermal filler is generally enough to make a difference to lips. My top lip received 0.6ml of Juvederm to enhance the shape of my upper lip and make my cupids bow fuller. The remainder was issued to my lower lip.

Afterwards: Within an hour of the procedure, the numbing wore off and I could feel slight discomfort. Lips started to swell that evening and the next day my lips felt like they had been stung by a bee (just very swollen and sort-of tingly). Bruising can appear on or around lips so try to avoid having it done right before a special event. Bruising appeared on my top lip on day two and lasted seven days before it faded completely.

AFTER: lips are fuller and a little swollen but still natural.
Prepare for bruising and swelling for a few days afterwards.

Fast-forward two weeks: and now I honestly can't imagine my lips without lip fillers. Until now only a handful of people knew that I had tried dermal fillers - only because they asked about the mystery bruising the week it happened! Lips are fuller - only subtly but enough to give me extra confidence. I can now pout without a wrinkly top lip, and I feel more complete. While I am extremely happy with my lips, I am really keen to see how they would look a little larger next time but for now I am happy to sit back and see how long my new lips last. Thanks to Jasmine and Laser Clinics Australia Erina Fair for introducing me to dermal fillers because now I really do have Lips to Love.

Tips for booking a dermal filler procedure:
- be clear about what it is you wish to achieve and keep an open mind.
- ask questions. No question is too dumb!
- apply the numbing gel and leave it on for at least 30 minutes.
- don't expect to leave looking flawless! Take a concealer or foundation along for touch ups to affected area/s.
- remember it is not permanent! LCA's cosmetic injectors are highly experienced and can help you make an informed decision by providing professional advice.
- refrain from flying two weeks post-procedure as it can cause extra bruising and swelling.

ONE WEEK AFTER: luscious lips!
ONE WEEK AFTER: my top lip is so much fuller and lips are in proportion.

*Thank you Jane, Jasmine and the talented team at Laser Clinics Erina Fair, my go-to clinic for hair removal and dermal fillers.

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