V to Y Lip Lift vs. Bullhorn Lip Lift

Lip lift is one of the most popular cosmetic surgeries in the UK. It aims to improve the patient’s aesthetic appearance by elevating and volumising the lips, thus restoring proportionality and a youthful appearance to the face. 

There are two types of lip lift procedures, namely V to Y lip lift and Bullhorn lip lift, both of which use different surgical techniques to achieve the desired outcome. In this article, we’ll explore the differences between the two cosmetic procedures in more detail. 

What is V to Y Lip Augmentation?

V to Y lip augmentation, also known as a V-Y mucosal advancement, is a surgical procedure that reshapes either the upper or lower lip in order to add volume and balance to the lips. It is a scarless approach to the traditional bullhorn lip lift surgery that is known to leave behind a prominent scar. Our recommended specialists are among the few in the UK performing the V to Y lip augmentation surgery.  

The cosmetic surgery can permanently reshape the lips by elevating the upper lip which in turn shortens the philtrum (the vertical distance between the base of the nose and the upper lip) or adding projection to the lower lip. It does so by rearranging the soft tissue that lines the inner lips (mucosal tissue) to create the appearance of balanced and fuller lips. 

Who Should Get a V to Y Lip Lift?

A V to Y lip lift is recommended for anyone who wants a more prominent lip, particularly those with thin unbalanced lips, where either the upper or lower lip has significantly more volume. 

This cosmetic surgery is a popular option among patients as it does not leave behind a visible scar. It is also a preferable option for patients that wish to achieve permanently plumper and balanced lips without dermal fillers that you need to repeat every 12-18 months. 

In contrast, a bullhorn lip lift usually leaves behind a prominent visible scar underneath the patient’s nose. In addition to this aesthetic concern, patients also find the scar to be irritating as it pulls on the nose, which in some cases, gradually causes the scar to grow. 

V to Y Lip Lift  Procedure

The term ‘V to Y’ derives from the shape produced by the opening and closing of the surgical incision during the procedure. After the administration of a local anaesthetic, the surgeon will make an incision on the inner upper or lower lip, depending on the nature of your lips. 

Afterwards, they will rearrange the inner lining (mucosa) of the lips by lifting the tissue upwards and outwards. Finally, the incision is stitched close into a Y shape. 

V to Y Lip Lift Cost

The cost of a V to Y lip lift procedure varies depending on the patient’s individual needs. Therefore, an exact price will be determined following a consultation with your surgeon. In general, prices in the UK start from £3,100 for the top lip.

V to Y Lip Lift Recovery

The cosmetic surgery entails a downtime of upto 6 weeks, during which you’ll notice some swelling which you can manage by applying ice to the area. Most patients are able to return to work and resume most of their normal activities within 72 hours after the surgery. 

In addition, patients are advised to refrain from exercise 1-2 weeks after the surgery. As the incisions are made inside the mouth, patients are also instructed to maintain a liquid diet or a diet of soft foods at least a week after the cosmetic procedure. 

What is Bullhorn Lip Lift?

A bullhorn lip lift, also known as a subnasal lip lift, is a surgical procedure that aims to elevate the upper lip. In doing so, the cosmetic surgery reduces the height of the philtrum and restores a balanced facial profile. 

Bullhorn Lip Lift Procedure

As with a V to Y lip augmentation, the name of the cosmetic procedure originates from the shape of the incision. Once the surgeon administers a local anaesthetic, they will make an incision at the base of the nose in the shape of a bullhorn. 

Afterwards, the surgeon will shorten the height of the philtrum by removing the required amount of skin needed to achieve the desired outcome. Finally, the remaining skin will be stitched back together. 

Theoretically, the surgery should not leave behind any visible scars as the scarline will be hidden beneath the curvatures of the nose. However, in reality, many patients are left with a visible scar under the nose. 

Our recommended lip lift specialists eliminate this aesthetic concern by using the scarless V to Y surgical technique, whereby the incision is made from the inside of the upper lip. This allows the surgeon to elevate the lip and project it outward, thus achieving the same outcome as a bullhorn lip lift procedure. However, they still employ the bullhorn procedure if patients also wish to reduce the length of their upper lip. 

Bullhorn Lip Lift Cost

Patients who require the bullhorn approach will receive the exact price of their surgery following a consultation with their surgeon. In general, the price of a bullhorn lip lift is the same as that of a V to Y lip lift. 

Bullhorn Lip Lift Recovery

The recovery period and aftercare instructions for a bullhorn lip lift procedure is similar to that of a V to Y lip augmentation. 

Who Should Get a Bullhorn Lip Lift?

The increased distance between the nose and the upper lip is a common development that occurs as we age, and a bullhorn lip lift is a viable option for patients who wish to restore a youthful look to their face by elevating the upper lip. 

However, a bullhorn lip lift is only recommended for patients whose only cosmetic concern is the length of their upper lip or patients who are concerned by the length of their philtrum and are unconcerned by the risk of a visible scar. 

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