Chin Augmentation

What you should know

Chin Implants


Who implants are for:

“People who suffer from mid-face hypoplasia, when the cheeks appear sunken because the bones of the cheek did not fully develop, are ideal candidates for cheek implants, along with others who want to accentuate their cheekbone area,” Pittsburgh plastic surgeon James Fernau, MD, says. “Chin implants are [also] best for people with weak chins, and it gives them a more chiseled look.”

Also for:
-       For those who complain of a square or wide face
-       For those who complain that their nose is too large
-       For those who desire a more defined chin
-       For those who want to offset the signs of aging

Who are they not for?
-       For those who complain their chin is too pointy or projecting too far outward.
-       For those who want to downplay their chin rather than enhance it
-       For those who have a dimpled chin

Chin Injectables and Fillers

Who fillers are for:

-       For those who desire a more defined chin
-       For those who complain of a chin that is too pointy, bony, pronounced or angular
-       For those with a dimpled or cleft chin

Who fillers are not for:
-       For those with substantive volume loss
-       For those with substantive skin laxity

Chin Injectables and Fillers

To de-emphasize a chin that’s too pointy or pronounced, facial fillers and injections may be the solution. Without surgery, fillers such as Juvéderm, Restylane and Perlane can soften harsh angles and injectable toxins such as Botox—used off-label—can relax muscles to smooth contours. Hyaluronic acid fillers are also used to detract attention away from a dimpled or “cleft” chin. According to Robert Singer, MD, “When volumizing the face, you want to create natural curves so that the end result is appropriate.”

“With central volumization, the face tends to gets more square and rectangular over time. Lateral volumization brings the face back to its natural form—gentler, rounder, softer and very hard for the naked eye to detect that something has been done,” adds Sarasota, FL, dermatologist Elizabeth F. Callahan, MD.

For more permanent results, your doctor may recommend fat grafting: a procedure where fat is removed from an area such as the thighs, stomach or buttocks and injected into the deep tissues of the face to restore volume.

What is Chin Augmentation?

A proportionate chin and jawline is critical to your face’s overall aesthetic balance. Ideally, the chin should be oval shaped, and sit directly under where the lower lip projects out. Fortunately, there are several ways to achieve facial harmony by augmenting the oversized, pointed, weak or indented chin. Treatments for improving the chin and jawline include: 

-       Chin Implants
-       Injectables and Fillers
-       Setting the chin forward or sliding it back

Chin Implants

Whether your chin naturally recedes or your face has lost volume with age, a weak chin may give the appearance of sunken cheeks, small lips and an oversized nose. Implants will help to restore facial contours, define a jawline, and revolumize an otherwise unbalanced facial structure.

If you’ve suffered significant volume-loss over the years, surgically placing an implant in the chin can help return facial youth. “The chin and jawline are among the first areas to show signs of aging," says American Society of Plastic Surgeons president Malcolm Z. Roth, MD, who recently shared ASPS statistics that name chin implants as the fastest growing procedure in 2011.

Oftentimes when a patient feels their nose is out of proportion, the plastic surgeon may suggest augmenting the chin rather than performing a rhinoplasty or nose job (It’s also common for a chin augmentation to be performed in conjunction with rhinoplasty). For example, a proportional nose may appear oversized if your chin is recessed. Opting for chin implants rather than reducing the size of your nose can give you the facial balance you desire.

 According to Pittsburgh plastic surgeon James Fernau, MD, chin implant surgery can also complement other procedures. “Females can balance a rhinoplasty with chin implants and look a lot better. It gives them a more sophisticated look,” he explains.  In a female patient, the implant should be in proportion and not overly large to avoid a masculine appearance, according to La Jolla, CA, plastic surgeon Robert Singer, MD.

Post-treatment Care


The stitches may be dissolvable or removed within five-ten days, or when swelling and numbness has subsided. It is recommended to cover the area with tape or bandages for the first few days. Sometimes a chinstrap may be required for several days to help hold the implant in place. Once healed, the incision site is hardly noticeable and scarring is minimal.

Injectables and Fillers

Injectables and fillers typically require no downtime. Despite the low risk of bruising, however, you shouldn’t take a chance. “Don't do the injections the day before or the day of a special event,” advises Beverly Hills, CA, facial plastic surgeon, Babak Azizzadeh, MD.

Inside Tips

Keep in mind that some areas are simply best addressed together when it comes to augmenting facial features. The chin is often addressed along with the nose.

In addition to improving the face aesthetically, implants also slow down the effects of how bone ages. If you have strong cheekbones and a prominent jawline, you may age at a much slower rate than someone who has weaker bones. Chin implants can start making this positive impact as early as one's 20s or 30s.

What to Expect

Chin Implant:

The chin implant—typically made of porous material or solid silicone—is placed through a two-centimeter incision made either inside the mouth or beneath the chin. (An incision inside the mouth may be suggested to eliminate external scarring, which is usually minimal, but this method carries a slightly higher risk of infection.)

Injectables and Fillers

- In preparation for treatment, Scottsdale, AZ, facial plastic surgeon Kelly Bomer, MD, suggests avoiding aspirin, ibuprofen and all other NSAIDS for two weeks prior.

- Filler and injectable treatments are almost always anesthesia-free (with only a topical numbing cream needed) and most often take less than 30 minutes to perform.

- Bruising, swelling and even redness may occur at the injection site but the desired outcome can be seen immediately. Depending on the filler used and area injected, results will last anywhere from six months to a year.

- Alternatively, Fat grafting is most often performed under local anesthesia or mild sedation. Unlike hyaluronic acid fillers which have zero downtime, fat grafting may require a few days of sedentariness.

Insider Tip

The Solution For a Stronger Chin

There’s something about a strong, defined chin that’s deemed attractive. “A strong bone structure helps the face hold up against aging longer than a weak bone structure,” says New York plastic surgeon Charles H. Thorne, MD. If your chin is overly prominent ...