Are Kylie Jenner's Lip Fillers Really All Gone? A Plastic Surgeon Weighs In
By Amy Lee
Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for Hulu
Kylie Jenner made her first public appearance on Monday for Hulu's The Handmaid's Tale finale event in Los Angeles, showing off her natural lips following the big reveal that she removed her fillers.
Her plumped pout has been a topic of conversation for years and quickly became her signature asset, so much so that she launched her successful Lip Kit in 2015 -- the same year she confirmed she gets lip fillers -- which began the cult following of her eponymous makeup line, Kylie Cosmetics. So you can imagine when she replied to a fan who commented, "she looks like the old Kylie here idk why" on a photo she posted with longtime friend Anastasia “Stassie” Karanikolaou, with "I got rid of all my filler" accompanied by two blushing emojis and a smiling one, everyone's jaws dropped. The 20-year-old mom recently talked about her infamous lips as she got candid in a beauty video for Vogue, where she gushed about how makeup helped her through her insecurities with her lips.
Studying the pic, Jenner's lips are more natural-looking and less pumped up sans over-lining, which made our heads spin with questions. How were the lip fillers removed? Are they completely gone? What does one need to know before getting lip fillers? To answer our burning inquiries, we tapped New York City plastic surgeon and RealSelf contributor Dr. David Shafer to give us the scoop on all things lip fillers, including the removal process like Jenner received.
ET: What are some things to consider before getting lip filler?
Dr. David Shafer: The most important decision when getting lip filler is who is going to inject you. Make sure that you are being evaluated and treated by a board certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist. If you don't see the doctor, don't get the injections. The next most important decision is the type of filler. Hyaluronic acid fillers such as Juvederm and Restylane are reversible. Silicone, Radiesse and Sculptra are not reversible and should not be injected in the lips.
First of all, don't overdo it. A little lip filler is great in most people who are good candidates for the treatment. The goal is to achieve an enhanced but natural-appearing result. However, some doctors and some patients lose touch with reality. Do make sure you are receiving a hyaluronic acid filler such as Juvederm, and don't allow anyone to inject silicone. Don't get injections in someone's kitchen or basement. Do have your injections in a board certified plastic surgeon's office. Do ask the office how many injections they do each day or each week. Don't bargain shop -- you get what you pay for. There is a high level of skill and technique involved with lip injections.
How do you avoid going too big? How do you know what is the right amount for you?
I always tell patients I would rather have them come back and do more than to overdo it. In most cases one syringe (1cc) is enough, but some patients will need more. Sometimes, I do combination treatments with Juvederm Ultra for the plumping and Volbella, a very thin hyaluronic acid, for the added definition and the fine lines of the upper lips. Most patients are not aware that it can take several days for the filler to settle and should not be surprised if they get some temporary swelling. However, most patients can return right to work after the injections.
Can you explain the consultation process?
In our consultation, we talk with patients about their wishes and expectations. We then examine their lips and overall facial anatomy. We then discuss what are realistic expectations and any risks and benefits of the procedure. With any injection there is a chance of swelling and a small chance of bruising. For patients that do happen to get a bruise, we have a laser treatment called V Beam, which we offer complimentary that helps the bruising resolve much faster. If patients are having treatment that day, we apply a strong numbing cream during their consultation to help make the procedure more comfortable. Most of the products such as Juvederm Ultra have numbing medication mixed into the product. If patients are returning another day for their injections, we send them home with a numbing cream to apply 30 minutes before their appointment.
It's important to look at the patient's face as a whole and their overall facial anatomy. In some patients, they may not notice that they have a recessed chin or flat cheeks and addressing these areas as well with filler can help with the overall aesthetic.
The lips can be sensitive. However, we use a very strong compounded numbing ointment. We also use a vibrating device when placed on the skin around the lips helps distract any tenderness. Most patients are pleasantly surprised by how comfortable the process is. The process uses small needles, which are similar to Botox needles. After the injections, we have the patients hold ice for a few minutes to help prevent swelling. The numbing wears off in 30-40 minutes.
How long does lip filler last?
Most filler lasts six to 12 months. However, every patient is different. Most people get their Botox every four months and their filler every eight months.
How often can you get it?
Most lip fillers last six to 12 months, so the average time between injections is eight months. Most people get Botox every four months and filler every other Botox appointment.
What happens when you remove lip filler like Kylie Jenner? Does it completely get removed and lips return to its natural, normal size and condition? Do you think Jenner still has some filler left in her lips?
If someone stops getting filler, the body will slowing metabolize it into individual hyaluronic acid molecules which are absorbed by the body. We all naturally have hyaluronic acid in our skin. Hyaluronic acid filler is made in the laboratory by making bonds between the individual molecules. This forms the hyaluronic acid gel which is injected to add volume and definition. When we "melt" filler, we inject an enzyme which breaks these bonds and allows the body to absorb the filler. As the filler is naturally metabolized or "melted" with the enzyme, the skin goes back to how it was prior to the injections. In most cases, only one treatment of the enzyme is required, but some patients may need more than one treatment. Most likely, Kylie still has some filler in her lips, but whether it is clinically apparent is unclear.
I see many consults of people who have been over-injected in their lips and other areas seeking "melting." Many of these patients have not been to qualified injectors or were bargain hunting and were not even injected in a medical office. The goal when injecting patients is to get it right the first time and not rely on having to "melt" or "dissolve" the filler. However, patients can rest assured that there is a fix with the enzyme injection if they need it. However, the filler has to be hyaluronic acid-based.
How much and what type of filler would you guess Jenner had when her lips were at their fullest before versus now removed?
Kylie likely had Juvederm Ultra or Restylane injected. From the size difference that she achieved with the filler I would suspect that she had between one to two syringes. Now she likely has some residual filler, which will slowly metabolize naturally.
What is the general cost for lip fillers?
In our office, a syringe of Juvederm Ultra is $1,000, which is usually enough for a very nice lip enhancement. Prices vary from city to city and doctor to doctor. However, I would caution patients from choosing their injector based on price alone. Experience and patient volume makes a huge difference in achieving nice, consistent results and minimizing complications. If a patient requires "melting" or "dissolving" the filler and our office injected the filler, then the enzyme is injected once at no cost. If a patient is referred to us for the enzyme injections, then the cost is $400 per area.
See the 20-year-old mom share sweet pics of daughter Stormi here.