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Lip augmentation is becoming an increasingly popular cosmetic procedure and is, in fact, the treatment that my clients at Innovative MedSpa in Chicago, request the most. I recently had the privilege of injecting Chicago blogger and fashion influencer Ginger Lu. (mei-mei.me, @gingerlu)

Nearly 150,000 followers look forward to seeing Ginger’s style and her clothing choices on a daily basis, so she knew the importance of doing her research and only allowing the procedure to be done by a highly skilled, experienced injector, and she understandably had plenty of questions for me prior to getting injected.

She asked all the right questions and I wanted to share our Q&A to help prepare anyone considering lip augmentation and ease some of the fears that may come along with taking the next step.

GL: Am I a good candidate for lip fillers?
JJ: While you do have petite features, and I wouldn’t suggest much more than 1 ml of product, but a full syringe of a hyaluronic acid filler is about 1/5 of a teaspoon, so it’s the perfect amount to accentuate your features and create a full beautiful pout, without going overboard.

GL: I am looking for lip fullness, but want them to look natural, is that possible?
JJ: Absolutely! The key is to make sure to maintain the top to bottom lip ratio. If the top lip appears too large in relation to the bottom, then that’s when they begin to look unnatural. We also want to be sure to preserve and accentuate your natural lip shape, rather than to create a new one. We can certainly enhance your lips by adding fullness and volume to create that perfect pout, while still appearing soft and natural.

GL: Will it hurt?
JJ: We are going to apply a powerful numbing cream to your lips prior to starting, and the product itself also contains a numbing medicine, so it should be a relatively painless procedure.

GL: Are there any side effects?
JJ: hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance found in the body, which makes it safe to use for injections. The lips are a very vascular area so there is always a risk for bruising. There will also be some initial swelling that will decrease over the next few days.

GL: This May sound crazy, but I read somewhere that this can cause blindness, it that true?
JJ: That is an excellent question, and because this product is composed of thick gel-like substance it could cause what is called a “vascular occlusion” if it were inadvertently injected into an artery. If the vessels that feed into the ocular artery became occluded, the result could be loss of vision in that eye. While this is am extremely rare occurrence, it is also why it is so important for everyone performing these procedures to be specially trained medical professionals with an intimate understanding of the facial anatomy.

GL: What do I need to know as far as the aftercare?
JJ: Well, its important to know that swelling and some bruising are usually inevitable, but you can take some steps to help reduce both. Ice the area on and off throughout the day and apply a topical Arnica cream or gel. Avoid alcohol and over-the-counter anti-inflammatories, such as Advil or Aleve. If possible, try to sleep on your back for the next couple days, with a couple pillows, to prop you upright a bit to prevent a lot of swelling overnight.

GL: What is your favorite procedure to do?
JJ: I love doing lips, that is what I am most known for. Oh, and cheeks too, a little volume added to the right areas of the face can make such a significant difference. I also love doing tear troughs (under-eye bags) the result is instant and dramatic, it’s just so satisfying. I don’t know, I guess I don’t have a favorite, I just love it all