Dr. Nassif of ‘Botched’ on What You Need to Know Before You Get Your Lips Done

Thanks to a certain Galore cover model, interest in lip injections among young women is through the roof right now.

When a plastic surgery trend like this one starts to get popular, it can be tempting to just go for it. But it’s also important to remember this is your body we’re talking about. You need to get informed before you start altering your appearance, not only for your health but also for vanity’s sake. No one wants to end up looking like a “Botched” casualty.

So, speaking of “Botched,” we caught up with one of the stars of that show, Dr. Paul Nassif, to find out what every girl or guy should know before they get lip injections. Here’s what he had to say.

1. If you’re under 18, chill.

Dr. Nassif gets a lot of teens in his office asking about lip injections now that Kylie Jenner has made them famous, he said. And even though plastic surgery is his bread and butter, he says he’s “not inclined in general for younger teenagers to have injectables.”

“Kylie is a trendsetter,” he said, “and most people’s practices have started getting calls from minors about lip filler. I think that when you’re that young, you’re doing it for the trend and it’s probably not the best decision.”

Instead, you should be doing it with realistic expectations and because you want to enhance your looks for yourself, not because of other people.

“At this point, it’s not the most appropriate thing” for a minor to get plastic surgery, he said.

If you’re a minor, you can probably find some shadier doctors to do it for you with your parents’ permission. But why do you want to go to a shady doctor? You don’t even know what your face is going to end up looking like yet. Sit tight for now like Dr. Nassif says. And maybe make friends with some lipliner if you still need a puffy-lip fix.

2. Only go to someone who’s board-certified.

Lip injections can be performed by a variety of doctors: facial plastic surgeons, plastic surgeons, dermatologists, and even ear, nose and throat doctors. Do some research online. If you still can’t figure it out, try asking at the front desk if the doctor you’re seeing is board-certified.

Dr. Nassif recommends researching online with sites like RealSelf, which are full of physician reviews and before-and-after photos.

3. Check your medical history.

You need to make sure you don’t have any bleeding disorders like hematoma, Dr. Nassif said. Double check with your regular doctor to make sure.

4. Make sure the injectable you’re signing up for is FDA-approved.

Most of the time, your doctor will be injecting a hyaluronic acid like Juvederm, which is “a soft injectable” that looks “realistic,” Dr. Nassif said.

5. Make sure the filler isn’t permanent.

Silicon injections can “ruin” you, Dr. Nassif said. And again, part of his job is to fix bad plastic surgery on “Botched,” so he knows of what he speaks. The reason why silicon’s dicey is that it can cause granulomas, or little lumpy masses of tissue in your lips that can actually grow back even when they’re removed. Hot!

“It’s not great,” Dr. Nassif said. “Some horrible things can happen when you operate on the lip.”

6. Be conservative your first time.

You’re not a “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” plotline. A set of swollen and allergic duck lips will probably have much more drastic effects on your daily life than they did on Kris Jenner’s. One way to avoid Kris’s fate is to be realistic and not hope for a huge change the first time you get injections.

You have your whole life to keep experimenting with the size and shape you want — don’t rush into it by getting way too much the first time. One syringe for the entire lip in the beginning is fine, Dr. Nassif said. Some people will work their way up to four or five syringes, but one syringe is normally more than enough.

“I’m being conservative though,” Dr. Nassif said. “I’m not saying, ‘Let’s plump your lips and make them look huge.'”

Hint: find a doctor who also describes themselves as conservative and you’ll look like a better version of yourself, not a plastic surgery victim.

7. Have realistic expectations.

You and your doctor both need to make sure you are realistic about what lip injections will do for you. The doctor should be able to explain to you exactly what you’re going to get, and you shouldn’t be trying to completely change your look or look exactly like a celebrity. Your natural lips don’t look the same as Kylie’s natural lips, so your enhanced lips won’t look exactly like hers, either.

Most importantly, you shouldn’t be coming back for more every single month.

“An addiction problem is someone who comes in and you fill them up and the lips look good and they come back saying, ‘I want more, I want them bigger bigger bigger,'” Dr. Nassif said. “Then automatically you know you have a problem with either addiction or body dysmorphic disorder.”

If a patient is seeking an unnatural look, “their perception of beauty might be off or skewed,” Dr. Nassif said. “The doctor has to be very careful.”

8. Know that it’s going to hurt.

Dr. Nassif says it’s nothing “unbearable,” but that you need to understand that a needle in the skin will always be uncomfortable.

If you’re particularly squeamish, know that the lips are sensitive and you might have an extra hard time, Dr. Nassif said. Ice and numbing cream are your friends.

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