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Classic Lip vs Russian Lip Filler Technique – Which is Right for You?

One of the procedures that our Houston-area patients inquire about most at Glamour Plastic Surgery and Med Spa is lip fillers. The lips are among the first facial features to show signs of aging, and thin, brittle lips can detract considerably from an otherwise youthful facial appearance.


To ensure the most personalized lip enhancement treatment for each patient, Dr. Bachilo offers lip fillers using two different techniques: Classic lip fillers, and Russian lip fillers.  While the filler gel may be the same in both cases, the application of treatment varies, depending on which technique is most suitable for each patient.


Classic Lip Fillers


The most popular technique used in applying lip filler is the Classic technique, which is performed using regular needles. These needles are used to inject fillers such as RHA, Revanesse Lips+ or Restylane Kysse into various points in the lips.  In the Classic lip filler technique, the injections are performed horizontally and the doctor then gently massages the lips to ensure that the product is spread evenly throughout the treatment area.


During the Classic lip filler treatment, the filler is injected into various parts of your lips, including the edges (vermillion border), the curved area in the center of your upper lip (Cupid’s bow), and the corners of your mouth (oral commissures).


The goal of the Classic lip filler technique is to create plump, juicy, and smooth out small wrinkles and lines. This includes a full cupid’s bow that tapers out at the edges, with fullness in the center of both the upper and lower lip.


Classic lips create good projection in your profile, and make your lips look plump, smooth, and hydrated. The Classic lip filler technique produces a full volumizing effect that makes the lips protrude slightly and appear plumper and juicier.


Who is the best candidate for Classic lip fillers?


The Classic lip shape is ideal for individuals with certain types of facial features. For example, if you have quite a bit of projection in your side profile due to intense projection of your nose, cheekbones and chin, the Classic lip filler technique will enhance the projection of your lips so that they are in harmony with all of your other facial features.


For individuals with smaller, flatter facial features and less projection of the nose and chin, Classic lips may appear too overbearing and Dr. Bachilo may instead recommend the Russian lip filler technique.


Russian Lip Fillers


Russian lip filler injections aim to reproduce heart-shaped lips, named after “Matryoshka” or the Russian Nesting Doll. In the Russian lip filler technique, the goal is adding height rather than volume, and the technique tends to lift the lip in lieu of adding volume and increased projection.


The Russian technique is designed to enhance the height of the lip, so the pink part of the upper lip is raised slightly, producing the illusion of shortening the philtrum, or the vertical grooved space between the nose and lips. The bottom lip is also extended a bit lower, producing a deeper curve, with the base of the heart extending a bit more toward the chin.


The key feature of the Russian lip filler technique is that it does not add projection or enhance the volume of the lips, so from the side, you will see less projection in the lips.


When executing the Russian filler technique, Dr. Bachilo will use a smaller syringe and inject small amounts of filler in a vertical direction rather than horizontally, beginning at the center of the lips, and working in an outward direction toward the borders and the corners of the mouth.



Who is the best candidate for Russian lip fillers?


Russian lips are ideal for individuals with certain types of facial features. For example, if your facial features tend to be petite and delicate, the last thing you’ll want is to make your lips very plump using the Classic technique, as that may produce the dreaded “duck lips” effect and create an imbalance between your lips and your other facial features.


Russian lips are also ideal for those individuals who have a longer philtrum or a very thin upper lip, since this technique adds just a bit of extra height that will achieve a more harmonious balance between all of the facial features.


Typically, Russian lip fillers look best on individuals who have never had Classic lip fillers, but if you are interested in switching from Classic to Russian lips, your provider would dissolve your existing lip filler and let it heal for a period of about two weeks prior to undergoing the Russian lip treatment. You won’t need to go through dissolving any existing filler if your previous lip fillers were Russian lips and you are just getting a touch-up or follow-up treatment.


Differences between the two procedures


The biggest difference in terms of how you will experience the two procedures is the time and precision that is required on Dr. Bachilo’s part to create Russian lips.  Russian lips require about twice the amount of time that it takes to perform a Classic lip filler treatment.


While most of our patients report that the Russian lip treatment is not any more painful than the Classic lip treatment, there is a slightly higher risk of bruising and swelling with the Russian lip technique, although this should subside fully on its own after about 2 weeks.


Both techniques produce results that may last for as long as six to twelve months, depending on the product used.


Are you ready to rejuvenate your lips?


If you’re ready to rejuvenate your facial appearance by enhancing the shape of your lips, contact our office at Glamour Plastic Surgery and Med Spa and schedule your first appointment with Dr. Olga Bachilo. A board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Bachilo is a specialist in surgical and nonsurgical cosmetic procedures, and can best help you select the most suitable lip enhancement treatment for your facial type.

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