Upper Lip Lift Surgery

Upper Lip Lift Surgery – Bull Horn Lip Lift – in Melbourne and Sydney

  • Losing your Beautiful Smile with age?
  • Want to show off more of your upper teeth and be less reliant on lip fillers?
  • Want to look younger or more refreshed?

What is an Upper Lip Lift Surgery? (Bullhorn Philtrum Shortening Surgery)

The Bullhorn lip lift can change and enhance the size and shape of your lips, without the need for repeated lip filler injections. It works by slightly reducing the length of the philtrum, the skin between your nostrils and your upper lip.  This philtrum reduction surgery can help improve your overall facial proportions or reduce the signs of ageing above your lip.

This rejuvenating facial enhancement procedure can also help reveal your upper teeth to improve your smile.  It is available from the highly respected facial Specialist Plastic Surgeon, Dr Richard Sackelariou FRACS (Plas). He operates in accredited hospitals in both Melbourne & Sydney.

There are several different surgical lip lift procedures available to change the shape or volume of the upper lip and a bullhorn lip lift is one of the most popular. A curved-incision line is made along the nostril areas to help reduce the philtrum. Shortening the philtrum through facial surgery, especially when combined with lip filler or other lip augmentation procedures, can have a rejuvenating effect on the face and smile. The incision line often heals very nicely for most patients.

A bullhorn lip lift is more common than a corner lip lift, but sometimes the two may be performed together.

best plastic surgery procedures
One Benefit of an Upper Lip Lift is less Lip Fillers

What are the Benefits of a Bullhorn Lip Lift?

  • The main benefits of having an upper lift lip are an improved smile and a more harmonious facial proportion between the upper lip and your nose.
  • If the skin just below your nostrils has started to sag or has a very wrinkled or ‘bag’ appearance, reduction of the philtrum by an upper lip lift may help reduce the ageing appearance of that area of the face.
  • It can help reduce a ‘bottom teeth’ prominent smile IF the reason your lower teeth appear to protrude is that your philtrum is elongated.
  • The lip lift procedure CANNOT compensate for orthodontic or dental problems that lead to a lower-teeth prominent smile, but is more a cosmetic skin reduction procedure above the upper lip that suits certain patients who are concerned about their upper teeth being hidden by their philtrum.
  • It can also reduce the sagging appearance of the skin between the nose and upper lip (but ask your Surgeon what to expect).
  • For facial rejuvenation, it may be good to combine a lip lift with other rejuvenation procedures such as deep skin peels, a facelift, eyelid lift or laser treatments to refine the skin and reduce lines, folds and wrinkles in other areas of the face.
  • Not all patients may be suitable for a lip lift. But for those who are, it can lead to a dramatic improvement in the appearance of the above-lip area and smile.

How does a Bullhorn Lip Lift help improve the facial appearance or reduce ageing?

  • reduces the look of facial ageing
  • can improve your smile
  • shows off your upper teeth better
  • can balance out the middle, lower and upper face (improving facial harmony or facial proportions)
  • may help smooth out the skin above the lip and help reduces lines or skin folds in that area
  • can minimise the appearance of a sagging face in that area of the face (ask your Surgeon to what extent this is possible)


Are you a candidate for Upper Lip Lift Surgery?

It is most appropriate for men and women whose teeth appear hidden by a lengthened or sagging upper lip area – known as an ‘elongated philtrum’ (the philtrum is the area of skin covering the distance between your nostrils and the edge of your upper lip). Though typically older patients are interested in lip lifts, younger patients also opt for lip lifts to give their lips and face a more balanced and beautiful look.

You may be a good candidate for a bullhorn lip lift if:

  • Your teeth do NOT show when you smile.
  • Only your bottom teeth show when you smile
  • You have a long space (greater than 1.5 cm) between the nose and upper lip
  • You have thin, flat lips
  • Your lips are too short or otherwise are not good candidates for lip fillers
  • You want to enhance your upper lip with a “pout” look

If you have a philtrum that seems to be elongated, and if your upper teeth barely show and you look ‘long in the face’ between your nose and chin, then a lip lift may be the right solution for you

You may NOT be a suitable candidate for Upper Lip Lift if you need orthodontic work instead of a lip lift or you may be better served with lip augmentation using injectables or alternative lip enhancement treatments.

Other Facial Rejuvenation Surgery options with an Upper lip lift

Your smile can be rejuvenated – or your face harmonised – with specific procedures designed to improve the aesthetic balance of your overall facial appearance.  This is one of the reasons so many people investigate their options for a lip lift. Next to the eyes, the smile is a central feature of the face, followed by the nose. If any of your facial features appear out of balance with the rest of the face, they can distract from the aesthetic appearance of the face or smile.

An elongated philtrum or lower-tooth-prominent smile can lead to a lack of aesthetic balance. A bullhorn lip lift can help improve the appearance of the lip area and smile.

Download Our Facial Rejuvenation Guide

Facial Rejuvenation Guide Download


The Upper Lift Lift Surgical Procedure

The lip lift surgical procedure gets that name because of the ‘bullhorn’ curves of the incision made by your Plastic Surgeon. These are made just under the nose and allows the surgeon to raise the upper lip line to enhance both your facial appearance AND your smile. The procedure reveals more of the upper teeth line and prevents a ‘bottom tooth only’ smile appearance.

lip-lift-upper-lip-surgery in Melbourne by Dr Sackelariou

The surgical procedure shortens the amount of space between the bottom of the nose and top of the lip.

  • A portion of skin is removed from below the nose to raise the upper lip.
  • The procedure takes approximately 45 minutes to 90 minutes.
  • The initial recovery time is typically 5-7 days.
  • Sometimes swelling occurs or bruising, and this tends to resolve within 2 to 3 weeks for most patients.

Virtually undetectable for most patients, the incision line is placed just beneath the nose. The incision lines follow the shape of the nose area, essentially the shape of a bullhorn, hence the name.

What will my scars look like after having lip lift surgery?

After healing from a lip lift, the incision line is barely noticeable. The best thing you can do to understand what scar you might have after surgery is to speak with your Plastic Surgeon and to ask to see Before and After photos when you attend a confidential consultation at our Melbourne or Sydney Clinic. As the incision is made under the nose and nostril areas, it follows the facial curves and facial contours in that area. The incision tends to become disguised by existing skin textures and existing lines or facial contours in that area. But every patient is unique.

  • Please Note – All surgical incisions leave some visible traces. Scarring varies depending on your skin type, skin tone, skin thickness and healing capacities.
  • Remember, every patient is different. Ask your Specialist Plastic Surgeon at your consultation.

Cost of a Bullhorn Lip Lift Surgery

  • The cost of a bullhorn lip lift surgery varies significantly depending on what you need to be done, who does the surgery and where the procedure is performed. Please don’t choose the cheapest option.
  • This surgery can be performed under local anaesthesia in a backroom clinic by any doctor but Dr Sackelariou prefers the safety and aesthetic results of a more comprehensive procedure under full general anaesthesia in an accredited hospital.
  • Book a consultation to get a customised surgery quote for the procedure performed by a Specialist Plastic Surgeon in an Australian Private Hospital.
  • Attending a confidential consultation can give you a more precise cost of having the procedure performed by a genuine Specialist Plastic Surgeon (rather than just a GP or just a cosmetic surgeon or skin disease doctor).
  • The cost for this procedure can be around $8k to $10k depending on your location & hospital. – If you phone us, we are happy to give you an estimate of the cost range for lip lift procedures.

Upper Lip LIft

About Dr Richard Sackelariou – Specialist Plastic Surgeon

Dr Richard Sackelariou is one of the most respected Specialist Plastic Surgeons for facial rejuvenation procedures. His areas of expertise include lip augmentation, chin augmentation, facelift surgery, eyelid surgery, brow lift procedures, rhinoplasty surgery, otoplasty and abdominoplasty.

In terms of facial enhancements for people of all ages, Dr Sackelariou is an expert in various form of lip augmentation including a lip lift surgery and lip filler injections as well as lower jawline refinements such as chin augmentation using a chin implant or lower-facelift and neck lift surgery.

His is highly sought after for his precision plastic surgery techniques for facial rejuvenation procedures and for Rhinoplasty, Eyelid Lift Surgery, Cheek Fat Pad Elevation and Facial Feature Augmentation.

If you seek facial rejuvenation through non-surgical methods, such as Cosmetic Injections (dermal fillers and anti-wrinkle injections), please phone our office for a consultation.

Want to make an appointment with Dr Sackelariou to assess your suitability for a lip lift procedure?

Next Step – Book a Consultation with Dr Sackelariou

If you are considering facial cosmetic plastic surgery then Dr Richard Sackelariou is the specialist plastic surgeon for you.

Dr Sackelariou can assist you in achieving your desired image, helping restore you to a more youthful and confident self.

Phone Melbourne 1300 264 811 or Sydney 1300 661 362 to enquire or request a consultation.

What to do next?

Our Patient Liaison Team can assist with any questions you may have when considering a procedure. You can send in an enquiry form below or call our Melbourne Clinic between 9 am – 5 pm Monday to Friday.

Phone 1300 264 811, Email us: enquiries@cocoruby.com.au or Book a FREE 15-minute Phone Chat with our Patient Liaison Manager or a Virtual Consultation with a Surgeon.