Philtrum Filler – Enhance Facial Proportions

Medically Reviewed
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Aurora Kalmanson on
Written by Fillers Editorial Team, plastic surgery specialists.

Philtrum filler is a cosmetic treatment aimed at rejuvenating the area between the nose and the upper lip, known as the philtrum. By injecting filler into the philtrum columns, the procedure restores structure and creates a more youthful appearance.

This non-surgical solution offers a subtle yet impactful enhancement, contrasting with other treatments like lip fillers, lip flips, or surgical lip lifts. Philtrum filler can improve facial proportions and is particularly effective in addressing age-related flattening of the philtrum, providing results that last approximately six months to a year.

The Philtrum Filler Procedure

The philtrum filler procedure is a meticulous process that begins with a thorough consultation and assessment to ensure the best possible outcome for facial rejuvenation.

Consultation and Assessment

Evaluating Facial Anatomy and Proportions: The initial step in the philtrum filler procedure is a detailed evaluation of the individual’s facial anatomy. This assessment includes analyzing the natural contours, symmetry, and proportions of the face to determine the most harmonious approach to enhancing the philtrum. The goal is to achieve a result that complements the patient’s unique features while addressing any concerns about the area between the nose and the upper lip. A skilled practitioner will consider the interplay between the philtrum, the cupid’s bow, and the overall lip shape to create an adapted treatment plan that enhances the natural beauty of the face.

Determining Suitability for Philtrum Filler: Not everyone is an ideal candidate for philtrum filler, and part of the consultation process involves determining suitability. Factors such as skin quality, the degree of philtrum flattening, and the patient’s overall aesthetic goals are taken into account. The practitioner will also discuss the patient’s medical history and any previous cosmetic treatments to ensure that philtrum filler is a safe and effective option. If a patient is considered suitable, the practitioner will explain the procedure, potential results, and any risks involved. This careful screening process ensures that the treatment aligns with the patient’s desires and leads to the most satisfactory outcome.

Injection Techniques

Precise Placement of Filler in Philtrum Columns: The success of philtrum filler largely depends on the precise placement of the product within the philtrum columns. Expert injectors use a detailed mapping technique to ensure the filler is distributed evenly and accurately, enhancing the natural contours of the philtrum. The goal is to restore or create the vertical ridges that define the area without overcorrection, which could lead to an unnatural appearance. The procedure requires a steady hand and a keen eye for detail, as the philtrum columns are a small and delicate area. The right technique can make a significant difference, providing a subtle lift to the upper lip and a more defined cupid’s bow, contributing to the overall youthful look of the face.

Achieving Natural-Looking Results: Achieving a natural-looking outcome is the cornerstone of any cosmetic procedure, especially with philtrum fillers. The injector must balance the amount of filler used with the existing facial features to avoid an overfilled appearance. The technique involves layering the product in small increments and massaging the area to blend the filler smoothly with the surrounding tissues. This approach ensures that the results enhance the patient’s natural beauty rather than overshadow it. The key is to respect the individual’s unique facial anatomy while making subtle enhancements that bring a refreshed and rejuvenated look to the face.

Types of Fillers Used

Hyaluronic Acid Fillers (Restylane, Juvederm): Hyaluronic acid fillers, such as Restylane and Juvederm, are the most commonly used products for philtrum enhancement. These fillers are favored for their safety profile, effectiveness, and natural results. Hyaluronic acid is a substance naturally found in the skin, which makes these fillers highly biocompatible and reduces the risk of adverse reactions. They are also reversible, providing an additional layer of safety for patients. Restylane and Juvederm come in various formulations, allowing practitioners to choose the most appropriate viscosity and lifting capacity for the philtrum area, ensuring an adapted treatment for each patient.

Characteristics and Benefits of Each Filler: Each brand of hyaluronic acid filler has unique characteristics that make it suitable for different aspects of facial rejuvenation. Restylane typically has a firmer consistency, which can be beneficial for creating structure in the philtrum columns. Juvederm, known for its smooth consistency, can provide a subtle lift and definition while maintaining a natural feel. Both fillers are infused with lidocaine, a local anesthetic, to ensure patient comfort during the procedure. The choice between Restylane, Juvederm, or other hyaluronic acid fillers will depend on the patient’s specific needs, the desired outcome, and the injector’s preference. The benefits of using these fillers include immediate results, minimal downtime, and the ability to adjust the treatment over time to maintain the desired appearance.

Recovery and Results

The recovery process following philtrum filler treatment is typically straightforward, with results that can redefine the central face and enhance lip aesthetics.

Immediate Post-Treatment Care

Managing Swelling and Bruising: It’s common to experience some swelling and bruising in the treated area after philtrum filler injections. To manage these side effects, patients are advised to apply a cold compress to the area intermittently for the first 24-48 hours. This helps to reduce swelling and provide relief from any discomfort. Additionally, sleeping with the head elevated can further minimize swelling. If bruising occurs, it is usually mild and can be concealed with makeup after the first day. Patients are encouraged to avoid blood-thinning medications and supplements before and after the procedure to reduce the risk of bruising.

Avoiding Certain Activities: Post-treatment care also involves avoiding certain activities that can worsen swelling or disrupt the filler’s settling process. Patients should refrain from strenuous exercise, alcohol consumption, and exposure to extreme heat, such as saunas or hot tubs, for at least 24 hours. It’s also important to avoid pressing or massaging the treated area, as this can cause the filler to shift. Following these guidelines helps ensure that the filler integrates smoothly with the surrounding tissue and maintains its intended shape.

Expected Results and Longevity

Improvement in Philtrum Definition and Lip Shape: Patients can expect to see an immediate improvement in the definition of the philtrum and the shape of the lips following the filler treatment. The precise placement of the filler creates more pronounced philtrum columns, which in turn enhances the cupid’s bow and contributes to a more aesthetically pleasing lip shape. The subtle lift provided by the filler can also reduce the appearance of an elongated upper lip, resulting in a more youthful and balanced facial profile. These enhancements are designed to complement the patient’s natural features and provide a refreshed, rejuvenated look.

Duration of Results (6 Months to a Year): The longevity of philtrum filler results can vary depending on the type of filler used, the patient’s metabolism, and lifestyle factors. On average, patients can enjoy their rejuvenated appearance for six months to a year before the body naturally absorbs the hyaluronic acid filler. To maintain the desired results, follow-up treatments may be scheduled. These sessions allow for adjustments and touch-ups as needed to preserve the youthful contours of the philtrum and lips. The non-permanent nature of the treatment offers flexibility, as patients can decide to alter their enhancement plan over time.

Potential Side Effects and Risks

Common Side Effects (Swelling, Bruising): The most frequently encountered side effects after philtrum filler injections are swelling and bruising. These reactions are typically mild and go away within a few days. Swelling is a natural response to the injection and can be managed with cold compresses and elevation of the head when resting. Bruising can vary from light discoloration to more noticeable marks, depending on the individual’s skin type and the technique used during the injection. Patients are advised to avoid medications and supplements that can increase bruising risk before the procedure. If bruising does occur, it can usually be covered with makeup after the initial 24 hours post-treatment.

Rare Complications and Their Management: While uncommon, there are potential complications that can arise from philtrum filler treatments, such as infection, allergic reactions, or filler migration. In the rare event of an infection, it is typically treatable with antibiotics. Allergic reactions are also rare due to the biocompatible nature of hyaluronic acid fillers, but if they occur, they require prompt medical attention. Filler migration, where the product moves from the original injection site, can be corrected by a qualified practitioner. It’s crucial for patients to choose experienced injectors and to follow all pre- and post-treatment instructions to minimize the risk of these rare complications.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does philtrum filler last?

Philtrum filler typically lasts between six months to a year, depending on the individual's metabolism and the type of filler used.

Is philtrum filler painful?

Philtrum filler injections may cause some discomfort, but the pain is generally minimal as the fillers contain lidocaine, a numbing agent, and additional anesthetics can be used.

Can philtrum filler be reversed if I don't like the results?

Yes, philtrum filler can be reversed. Hyaluronic acid-based fillers can be dissolved with an enzyme called hyaluronidase, allowing for adjustments or complete reversal if desired.

How much does philtrum filler cost?

The cost of philtrum filler varies depending on geographic location, the expertise of the injector, and the amount of filler used, but it generally ranges from several hundred to over a thousand dollars.

Is there any downtime after getting philtrum filler?

There is minimal downtime after philtrum filler treatment. Most patients can return to their normal activities immediately, with some precautions to minimize swelling and bruising.

Can philtrum filler be combined with other lip treatments?

Yes, philtrum filler can be combined with other lip treatments such as lip fillers or Botox for a comprehensive rejuvenation of the mouth area.

What should I avoid before and after getting philtrum filler?

Before and after philtrum filler, avoid blood-thinning medications, alcohol, and strenuous exercise to reduce the risk of bruising and swelling.

How often do I need to get philtrum filler to maintain results?

To maintain results, it's typically recommended to get philtrum filler touch-ups every six months to a year, depending on how your body metabolizes the filler.


Philtrum filler is a versatile and effective treatment for enhancing the area between the nose and upper lip, offering a non-surgical solution to achieve a more youthful appearance. With minimal downtime and the ability to combine with other treatments, it provides an adapted approach to facial rejuvenation. Regular maintenance and choosing the right injector are key to achieving and sustaining the desired results. As with any cosmetic procedure, understanding the potential side effects, recovery process, and long-term considerations will ensure a positive experience and outcome.

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Czumbel, L. M., Farkasdi, S., Gede, N., Mikó, A., Csupor, D., Lukács, A., Gaál, V., Kiss, S., Hegyi, P., & Varga, G. (2021). Hyaluronic Acid Is an Effective Dermal Filler for Lip Augmentation: A Meta-Analysis.

Dr. Aurora Kalmanson

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The information provided in this blog is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be interpreted as personalized medical advice. It's crucial to understand that while we are medical professionals, the insights and advice we provide are based on general research and studies. They are not tailored to individual health needs or conditions. Thus, it is essential to consult directly with a healthcare provider who can offer personalized medical advice relevant to your specific situation.