It was the lip treatment heard round the world: Kylie Jenner, the youngest of the Kardashian clan, fessed up to cosmetically plumping her pout last year. This spurred a media frenzy (cue videos of the Kylie Jenner Lip Challenge) and prompted her to launch her own lip kit line, which sold out in seconds.
Even the statistics prove the “Kardashian Effect” isn’t a myth. According to the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 64 percent of member facial plastic surgeons saw an increase in cosmetic surgery or injectable treatments in patients under 30 just last year.
We caught up with local plastic surgeon Dr. Steven Dayan, who revealed which procedures are most requested by millennials, and which celebrities they want to look like.
SPLASH: In your practice, have you seen an upward trend in lip injections?
STEVEN DAYAN: Yes. Definitely an increased trend, both because of the media — Kylie Jenner, what she did with her lips, both good and bad — and we also see it because two products got FDA-approved for lips, Juvederm and Restylane Silk. Because of that, more doctors are being trained on it and we have more awareness on it. However, it’s really, really important that it’s done well, because the truth is, when it’s done well, you can’t tell. [Lips] just look a little fuller. A lot of younger people want to make their lips a little bit larger.
SPLASH: Do young people come to you and ask for Kylie Jenner lips, specifically, or are they just saying they want fuller lips?
SD: They don’t want the lips of her putting the shot glass on her mouth [Editors note: In an unsafe trend, teens artificially plumped their lips by placing them into a shot glass and sucking the air out of the glass to create friction, and a Jenner-style lip look.] But everyone is trying to figure out what she did to her lips and why they look so good. So yes, we see a lot of people asking about [it]. The Kardashians are poster children for increasing awareness for facial plastic surgery.
SPLASH: How young is too young to get lip injections?
SD: [It’s likely] to do them on someone who’s in their late 20s. I’ve never seen a teenager get it, and I wouldn’t recommend that. It’s not so much that it’s physically damaging, as far as we know, it’s the psychological inflections. You want to make sure someone is ready to get their lips done, and that they need it. Generally speaking, cosmetically, we don’t do it unless [the patient] is at a mature age. The difference with lips is that it’s not just about making someone look more youthful — which we can do — but it’s about making someone look more attractive or more beautiful. Larger lips are associated with more fertility.
SPLASH: What other cosmetic procedures are millennials getting done?
SD: All the procedures are being done at an earlier age. There’s no doubt about that. They are doing things like Botox, but we also have procedures that remove fat that are nonsurgical, such as CoolSculpting. [We’re] also seeing some fillers in the face with millennials.
SPLASH: If someone comes to you asking for lip injections that are extreme, will you do it or try to convince them otherwise?
SD: My strict, strict practice is to not treat them and make them look abnormal. Morally, it’s not right to do to the patient and [also], it’s a bad reflection on me. If someone says, “Where did you get your lips?” and they say [they went to me], I don’t want that. As doctors, we have a responsibility to do the right thing and not treat someone who [wants to] look unnatural.
SPLASH: What makes a beautifully shaped lip that also looks natural?
SD: Every patient has a different kind of lips. Most commonly, the results show balance in the face and it balances the eye, then the nose, then the mouth. You want [it] all to be in proportion; for every person that’s a bit different. The upper lip should have a bit of a pout, and you want the lower lip to have a little bit of a pillow effect. The upper lip should project out a little bit from the lower lip — about a millimeter or two. And you want the border to be defined.
SPLASH: What’s the most requested medical procedure these days?
SD: Non-surgical is Botox, by far. If you’re looking at surgical procedures, across the board it’s probably liposuction; but if you’re looking at facial plastic surgeries in particular, I believe it’s rhinoplasty.