Beauty ideals and aesthetic standards vary across social perceptions and cultural preferences. In modern culture, plump and well-defined lips tend to be preferred. However, the characteristics of ideal lip should have fullness and volume, a correct balance between the upper and lower lips and a well-defined vermilion border. Lips should also be harmonious with other facial features of the individual. Enlarged, full lips in a very small face will not be aesthetically pleasing as this would be out of proportion with the rest of face. Sexual dimorphism should also be kept in mind when treating lips, as men have a larger mouth width, philtrum width, total lip height, and lip volume compared to women. Despite general differences in men’s lips and women’s lips, it is possible to transform masculine lips to more feminine lips and vice-versa.
Preoperative assessment and communication with patient is imperative to yield desirable outcome. The selection of an appropriate surgical procedure is dictated by the patient’s expectations, dento-maxillofacial proportion in relation to the lips, choice of anaesthesia, recovery period and risks involved. There are various treatment modalities available to improve the appearance of the lips: