Vermillion Advancement of the Lip

The vermillion is the colored portion of the lip on the outside of the mouth. The vermillion border defines the lips on the face. Vermilion advancement is a surgical procedure that involves removing some of the skin above or below the vermillion border, and then, repositioning the vermillion to reform its border. Dissolvable sutures are used to hold the new position.

Vermillion Advancement of the Lip Overview - Everything You Need to Know

The Skinny

Vermillion Advancement of the Lip
avg. recovery
10 days
Is permanent
Minor Surgical Procedure
$3000 - $4500

About the Procedure

Last Updated: 06.22.2021

During a vermilion advancement surgery, the surgeon will begin by administering a local anesthesia agent to numb the patient. IV sedative drugs may also be used to keep the patient relaxed. Next, the doctor will make an incision along the vermillion border, and then, remove a predetermined amount of facial skin above or below the lip(s) being reshaped. Next, the vermillion is grasped and pulled outward and into its desired new position. The surgeon then sutures the stretched vermillion to meet up with the facial skin. This safe outpatient procedure, also known as a Gullwing lip lift, does not require the use of general anesthesia. Most people who have this surgery go back to work the next day. Strenuous activities should be avoided for 7-10 days after the surgery. Tightness, swelling and discomfort should be expected and typically diminishes within a few days. Lipstick and makeup can be used to conceal the surgical incisions as they heal. Infection, scarring, asymmetry, and other adverse outcomes are possible but rare. This procedure cost $2000-$4000 for each lip is performed on.

The goal of a vermillion advancement of the lip is to create fuller lip volume.


Vermillion Advancement of the Lip addresses concerns such as:

Recovery Notes

Follow all postoperative instructions given by your doctor. Limit expressive movements of the mouth and do not eat anything that requires the mouth to stretch. Diet should consist of liquids and soft foods that can be cut into bite size pieces until the incisions have sufficiently healed.

Ideal Candidate

The ideal candidate for a vermillion lip advancement presents with an elongated white lip or has height mismatch between the white lip and red lip.

Not Recommended For

Vermillion lip advancement is not recommended for candidates with active infections in or around the mouth such as herpes, lupus, blood-clotting diseases, diabetes, or heavy smokers unwilling to quit for a short period.

Side Effects

Side effects from a vermillion lip advancement may include swelling, scarring, infection, and bleeding.


  • permanent
  • upper and lower lip augmentation
  • no subnasal scar


  • scar
  • asymmetry
  • loss of vermillion definition
  • lip border irregularities

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