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What causes the "duck effect" in lips and how to avoid it?

The duck effect in lips refers to the phenomenon of lips appearing overly large and pouty, similar to the beak of a duck. This trend has gained immense popularity over the past few years, with many individuals seeking cosmetic treatments to achieve this look. However, recently the natural and subtle lip enhancement look has become much more popular. Celebrities have dissolved their lips and refilled with a more natural lip enhancement. One of the trends being "Russian lips" which avoids the duck/pout lips and creates height without lip protrusion.

What causes the duck effect in lips?

One of the leading causes of the duck effect is the overuse of lip fillers. Lip fillers are injections of hyaluronic acid that are used to add volume and plumpness to the lips.

However, when too much filler is injected into the lips, they tend to balloon up and become overly large, resembling a duck's beak. This often occurs when the lips are injected with 2-4mls filler repeatedly over a short period of time. The filler accumulates over time and keeps building up to cause protrusion of the lips. The filler injected into the body of the lip creates a shelf like effect. Incorrectly placing the filler into the lips body causes the "trout pout" for patients.

Another factor that contributes to the duck effect is the use of incorrect thick or high density filler. The thicker the filler the more it comes across like "sausage lips" where the filler sits in the lips tissue without being able to move around or mould to the lips tissue. Thicker filler is perfect for areas like cheeks, chin and nose where there is mostly bone. Another reason is larger lips to begin with. Lips that are naturally larger or disproportionate to the rest of the face can appear duck-like when enhanced with fillers or makeup. This is because the fullness of the lips draws attention to them, highlighting any asymmetry or irregularity in the face.

Additionally, the rise of social media and celebrity culture has played a significant role in popularizing the duck effect. Often, individuals seek to emulate the looks of their favorite celebrities or influencers, leading them to go to great lengths to achieve the perfect pout. However, this has fueled unrealistic standards and many celebrities have resulted to dissolving their lip fillers. This caused the rise of the natural lip enhancement and created the "Russian lip technique."

How to avoid the "duck lips or trout pout?"

First of all, it is very difficult to achieve the trout pout or duck lips effect. If you are considering lip fillers then visiting an experienced medical professional trained in advanced aesthetics, using soft lip filler and lip injection techniques like tenting, shaping and subtly plumping the lips, will help provide the results you desire. Using 0.7ml-0.8ml soft dermal filler is a perfect amount for lip fillers as it allows for shaping the borders of the lips, cupids bow and using tenting (Russian technique) the lip tissue height can be increased. Small amounts of filler in the body of the lips can help provide hydration and pink/redness to the lips.

Leaving the lip filler treatments 9-12 months in between top ups will help the filler to break down naturally and the addition of more filler won't protrude as there is room to fill.

In conclusion, the duck effect in lips is caused by a combination of factors such as overuse of lip fillers, facial structure, and cultural influences. While some individuals may aspire to achieve this look, it is crucial to exercise caution and only seek treatments from qualified professionals who can provide natural-looking results. Ultimately, it is essential to embrace and celebrate one's natural beauty rather than succumbing to societal pressures.


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