Developing your lip filler technique can be tricky. It’s an intricate procedure that injectors may wish to build up to after mastering less complex treatments, such as botulinum toxin and cheek fillers.
To help those of you at this part of your aesthetics journey, we spoke to Alison Telfer, RN NIP. She is the Clinical Director and Founder of The Glasshouse Clinic, as well as an Allergan Faculty Board Member in the UK.
Here, Alison shares her expertise on lip treatments, including her approach and lip filler advice for injectors who are just getting started.
Do you remember your first lip filler treatment?
Yes. I was absolutely terrified because with lips there is a really great expectation about results. There is this view of the perfect lip which there aren’t with the cheeks or the temple.
The very first time I treated lips I was terrified, I chose a difficult pair of lips as my first treatment.
Tips for practitioners starting out with lip treatments:
Start with a pair that have a reasonable shape, to begin with.
Treat lips conservatively, understand the anatomy, understand what plane you are in and what you are trying to achieve.
How did you develop your approach to lip filler?
Through chatting to colleagues, attending conferences and watching webinars.
The biggest thing is understanding the patient’s expectation and desire – their definition of a lip might be different from your definition of a lip. When they come in with a picture of someone’s lips they are not going to turn into that person and it is our responsibility to manage our patient’s expectation about the end result.
What’s your approach or injection technique for the lip body?
It depends on the patient. If the patient is looking for definition, if their white-pink border has softened and they need more definition put in, I will use a needle for accuracy and for that sharpness they are after and avoid overfilling.
If their lips are beginning to invert because they are ageing, and they want a slight roundness putting back, I might use a needle again to go into that.
If, dentally, they are perhaps slightly inverted around their top teeth or they don’t have a lot of strength dentally, I might use a cannula. This is because I do want to be slightly deeper and able to give more projection.
It varies, needle or cannula and depends on the product – you need to assess it.
We hope you find Alison’s advice helpful; learning from more experienced medical aesthetics specialists is a great way to grow as a practitioner. You’ll never stop learning in this field!
To improve your confidence in this area, explore our tailored 1:1 Training in Perioral and Lip Filler. This allows you to book a dedicated, practical session with one of Harley Academy’s aesthetics experts and a patient. They will guide you through how to perform safe lip treatments with a needle or cannula – and when to use both! – in order to achieve outstanding results every time.
Article last fact-checked: 20 January 2023