Trends come and go like seasons on social media and one that has solidified its place on Instagram is the artificially plumped pout. Hollywood and beauty bloggers alike have been boasting continually fuller lips that have prompted many to follow suit.
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, lip enhancement requests have increased by a whopping 50 percent in the past 16 years alone. However, it turns out that not everyone in the world is chasing a full-bodied kisser: some cultures are doing exactly the opposite.
NewBeauty, a trend-driven beauty website, has noted that a new lip movement is sweeping Instagram. Instead of lip enhancements, young people in different parts of the world are opting for lip reduction.
Although the lip pumping craze continues to surge in the United States, a growingly popular procedure in Asia is now focusing on reducing lip size.
New York dermatologist, Doris Day MD, explains that the procedure involves “surgically cutting at the wet-dry line and pulling the lip underneath the inside of the mouth to reduce overall size.”
According to Dr. Nuttae Nuttapon, a Thailand dermatologist, the procedure became popular five to ten years ago in Asia and is still performed regularly.
“Asian men and women typically prefer Caucasian facial features, which are narrower cheekbones, deeper eye sockets and thinner lips,” Dr. Nuttapon told NewBeauty, which is ironic considering the current trend in the United States is chasing a thicker pout.
Some lip fillers are reversible and most injections are temporary, requiring maintenance after a year’s time. However, lip reduction is permanent and can be much pricier.
The procedure can take anywhere between 15 to 30 minutes per lip and usually requires the patient to be placed under local anesthesia.
The initial aftermath of lip reduction is also not as facile because of fillers and stitches have to remain in place for one week. They either dissolve naturally or have to be manually removed.
Post-procedure patients are advised to consume a soft diet until the swelling resolves, which can take anywhere from a few days to a week.
Lip reduction surgery can range on average from $1,000 to $3,000, but places like New York City can charge around $7,000. However, this hefty price tag hasn’t stopped many people from slimming down their lips.
There are over 5,000 posts tagged #lipreduction on Instagram and according to plastic surgeons and general practitioners, the patients tend to be in their 20s and 30s.
WeTV’s Dr. Miami told BET that he hasn’t performed a lip reduction in about 10 years, but when he did he made an incision on the inside of the lip.
“It’s not popular in America,” Dr. Miami said. “I mean, lip reductions have been around for a long time, it’s just not that popular as of late because big lips are in.” However, a brief scroll through foreign cosmetics surgeons’ Instagrams, like Dr. Apple, shows quite the contrary in other parts of the globe.