I tried a lip flip instead of getting filler and I’m never going back

Goodbye gummy smile

BEAUTYcrew Beauty & Social Editor / May 04 2023

I’ve been on the quest for the perfect smile since I was 13 years old. From braces to teeth whitening, and now my third (and hopefully last) round of Invisalign, I’m so close to achieving the dream. But sadly, I’ve not been blessed with Sydney Sweeney’s voluminous lips — and even now my teeth are almost perfect, I’ve begun to realise how important a plump upper lip is when it comes to perfecting your smile.

I’ve always hated the way my upper gums show every time I smile. But I’m definitely not keen on filler or the expensive jaw surgery that my orthodontist suggested when I brought up my smile concerns.

And I’ve read far too many horror stories of migrated filler and never want to fall victim to exploded lips. So after consulting with my cosmetic nurse during my normal anti-wrinkle appointment, I decided to give the ‘lip flip’ a go.

What is a lip flip?

First things first – it’s not as scary as it sounds! There are no threads or surgeries involved, and your lip isn’t actually getting flipped. 

A lip flip is a non-surgical cosmetic procedure that simply involves a small amount of anti-wrinkle treatment injected into your upper lip line. A lip flip works to relax the upper lip muscles to prevent the lip from curling under or disappearing when you smile. Essentially, it gives the appearance of fuller, more symmetric lips – sans the filler.

I also get a gummy smile treatment, in which the anti-wrinkle treatment is injected closer towards the nose to relax the area above the upper lip. I’ve tried the lip flip without gummy smile treatment but I personally think a combination of the two creates a better result that lasts longer.

My lip flip review

As I mentioned earlier, I initially just added my lip flip onto my regular anti-wrinkle appointment. This wasn’t my first rodeo so I took a seat in the chair and listened to the regular run-through of risks, side effects and what the procedure would look like. Then it was showtime.

After cleaning and sterilising the treatment areas, Anna applied the numbing cream to my upper lip area (I highly recommend this) and started my regular Dysport treatment to allow the cream to take effect. 

I’m not a huge fan of needles and I wasn’t looking forward to one piercing my upper lip multiple times. But I closed my eyes and the lip flip and gummy smile process was over in around six pinpricks and less than 30 seconds. As far as pain goes, I’d rate it a 4/10. It’s like a sudden pinch, but once the needle is in the pain goes immediately.

The entire appointment took around 15 minutes, but the lip flip itself was over in a matter of seconds. I was instructed to avoid exercise for 24 hours and apply ice if any swelling or bruising occurs (it didn’t).


My lip flip results

The results of a lip flip aren’t immediately obvious, but you may see a tiny bump where the needle went in (which disappears within hours). I usually feel and see the lip flip starting to take action around day five, but it can take up to 10 days for full results to develop.

This time, I noticed a difference around day four, when applying my lip gloss took a little more effort than normal (a welcome sensation tbh). The difference in my smile from day to day was subtle, but a week after my treatment, my smile was much less gummy and my upper lip looked fuller.


10 days after

Is the lip flip worth it?

So will I be getting a lip flip again? Well, like any injectable treatment, there are some risks and things to know, which your cosmetics clinic will talk you through. 

The biggest downside for me is that the lip flip only lasts a month or two and applying lip products or drinking out of a straw takes a while to get used to. But for $50 and a few uncomfortable minutes, I’m definitely a lip flip fan.

Want a juicy pout without injectables? These are the best lip plumpers on the market.

Georgia Nelson is BEAUTYcrew's Beauty & Social Editor and resident Euphoria obsessee. You'll find her hard at work putting the latest TikTok beauty trends to the test or perfecting her skin care routine. Her latest obsession? Nailing the glazed donut aesthetic (move over, Hailey Bieber).