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One glance at social media proves that aesthetic surgery is on the rise in Ireland, and a set of perfectly pouty lips is the most covetable of all qualities.

Social media saturation, reality TV super stars and selfies are all being blamed for the trend, which has seen a massive spike on Irish shores according to Google trend data. 

High maintenance glamour is considered mandatory by some, with hair extensions, microbladed brows, eyelash extensions and lip fillers accessorising the perfect designer it-bag.

The trend skyrocketed in early 2015, just after cosmetics queen Kylie Jenner admitted to her penchant for the procedure.

However, the current obsession with lip fillers is not limited to a niche market. 

Indeed, women from all walks of life, from nurses and models to CEOs and students, are all opting to get in on the trend, but it's particularly widespread among younger Irish women.  


A photo posted by Jess Brennan (@jess_brennan_x) on

Amanda Holtz, an American student studying in Dublin, is curious about trying lip fillers for the first time.

"I think I've always been a little self conscious about my lips. Not that they're weird looking or anything but because to me they aren't perfect," she says in conversation with SHEmazing! 

Citing social media, she adds: "On Instagram everyone seems to be having a bit of work done, it's almost beginning to seem like the norm in order to be beautiful. There's this idea of beauty and it's difficult not to compare yourself to that."

"I do find myself being bothered by my thin lips and I know that I will end up trying lip injections especially because I feel that they are just a little change that could make a big difference to my confidence. And if I end up hating it, they only last a few months anyway!"


A photo posted by megan_mckenna_ (@megan_mckenna_) on

While Amanda is optimistic about perusing a procedure, extensive research is necessary in Ireland as the process is unregulated.

So-called 'cosmetic cowboys' have sprung up all over the country, administering fillers with little to no experience.

A quick Google search shows that purchasing the liquid filler and corresponding medical needles and cannulas is just the click of a mouse away.  

Some of these individuals rent out hotel rooms to administer the fillers, and as Irish suppliers will only sell to registered doctors, nurses and dentists (not beauticians) there is no way of knowing what the product is or whether the person wielding the needle has any experience whatsoever, as there are no regulations about who can perform the procedures.  

April Kavanagh, the trained nurse behind NurseCare Aesthetics, admits that "unfortunately the process is mostly unregulated."

"It angers me that people who aren't medically trained don't know what can go wrong with these procedures. I have had to correct lips that are the result of unethical prctice."

"Too much product injected into the lips can cause more swelling and can cut off the blood supply to the lips and compress nerve endings, causing permanent damage. It's someone's face at the end of the day."

A main artery runs through the lips, and if filler is injected in to or around the artery, it an cause a very serious complication called an occlusion, where the blood flow is reduced or completely stopped.

"The area of skin or other tissues that are supplied by the affected vessel will start to die without the necessary blood supply," says cosmetic specialist site Real Self

One woman who knows all too well the effects of a poorly done procedure is Claudia McGloin. 

Claudia had some fillers done four years ago which left her with lumps in her lips that would not go away. Since opening her own clinic, The Claudia McGloin Clinic, in Co Sligo, she has moved on from her "botched" job and now specialises in Dracula therapy.

She has witnessed the increase in interest in the area, and warns against viewing lip fillers as anything less than a medical procedure.

"Because fillers are available in beauty salons and hair dressing salons, it makes it look like these are beauty treatments when in fact they are medical procedures," she said.

"Cheap deals using cheap fillers also make it look affordable. Research tells us that women particularly after a break up go through a transition. Years ago it was a hair-cut or colour but today it's cosmetic surgery."

"In Ireland there are no regulations and unfortunately no rules which state who can and who cannot inject fillers. It is however illegal for anyone in Ireland other than a doctor to inject Botox so we should have broader regulations in place to stop ‘just anyone’ injecting."

"It's scary the number of non-medics in Ireland injecting at the moment and it's increasing by the week."

"I'm highly involved in Patient Safety in both the UK and Ireland and am constantly campaigning for regulation," said the nurse, who was recently awarded the Highly Commended Nurse of the Year 2016 award for her dedication to safety in beauty.


A photo posted by Chloe Ferry(@chloegshore1) on

Through her work, Claudia has heard horror stories of cheap filler procedures, with some unregulated places even offering to split a syringe of filler between two people. 

"This is unsafe, unethical and unprofessional. A syringe as clearly stated on the box from the manufacturers is for single use only. It doesn't matter if it's your mum you're sharing with – it's wrong!"

"Practitioners should also be insured and you should be able to see certificates of training and updates. Always ask questions. Ensure you see the filler coming out of a new packet," said Claudia, who has set up a campaign to educate people on making safe, informed decisions when it comes to cosmetic procedures.

Nurses should be registered with the Nursing And Midwifery Board Of Ireland (NMBI), dentists with The Irish Dental Council (IDC) and doctors with the Irish Medical Council


A photo posted by Kylie (@kyliejenner) on

April, of Nursecare Aesthetics, turns away young girls everyday who come to her practice brandishing photos of Kylie Jenner's Instagram.

"I have absolutely turned away clients who want work done for the wrong reasons. Some people come in for a procedure, then call me up two weeks later looking to get more," she tells SHEmazing! 

The registered nurse takes a strong stance against working on young people. "I would never work on a 17-year-old and have turned many away. They want a 'big pout.'

"They absolutely have unrealistic expectations because of Kylie Jenner, They come in looking for a half ml of filler expecting to look bee-stung. Half a ml is one tenth of a Calpol spoon."

With the youngest Kardashian-Jenner championing the trend, after getting her lips plumped at the tender age of 16, it's no wonder that young girls are seeking out the procedure. 

After the teenager altered her features back in 2014, the popularity of the procedure boomed, with one Irish aesthetician going from doing one procedure a month to 20 per day.


A photo posted by Kylie (@kyliejenner) on

"I've heard of people as young as 14 getting them done," revealed aesthetics veteran Kerry Hanaphy, who has completed an estimated 100,000 procedures on Irish women in the last 12 years. 

While some of us were lucky to get our nails manicured for our Debs, lip fillers are now regularly on the beauty list for young girls on the brink of leaving secondary school. 

"The legal age is 18, but I get emails from underage girls, 17, everyday saying the have their mum's consent. I turn them away," said the clinician, who also cites reality stars like Megan McKenna and the Geordie Shore girls as major inspirations for the trend.  

"Over the last 18 months because of the lip filler trend they have become 80 percent of my business. I do 20 clients a day and I could do more, but I cap it at that."

"You have to have someone say to young people enough is enough."

"One girl, she said she doesn't care what she looks like in real life as long as she looks good in a selfie."

Kerry, who fills the lips of some of Ireland's top bloggers such as Ashley Kehoe, urges people who are considering the aesthetic tweek to do their research. 

"Question the qualifications, ask who is doing the procedure, what they are putting in and where they are injecting – it's where the filler is that's key."


A photo posted by Kerry Hanaphy (@kerry.hanaphy) on

Irish super model Tiffany Stanley also spoke to SHEmazing! from her home in California, where she moved in 2013, about how casual the procedures have become.

"Lip fillers are very popular in LA. Even the majority of men here get them done. It's nothing unusual and it's not even a topic people talk about, it's just a normal part of most people's beauty regime, like getting a facial or manicure," says the Kildare native.

"The trend has hit Ireland now too, women want to look and feel their best. If it helps a woman feel more confident and empowered , I see no problem with it. I think Kylie Jenner's transformation really inspired a lot of people to try fillers. She looks amazing," said the model, who has been working in LA since landing a role in the Hollywood film Brothers James: Retribution, and has previously had some filler work done on her chin.


A photo posted by Tiffany Stanley (@tiffanystanley1) on

While fillers have gotten something of a bad wrap lately thanks to their popularity and lack of regulations, they are at the tamer end of the cosmetic stratosphere. 

There is no aesthetic involved and the results fade after three to six months. 

"Lip fillers are not a bad thing," adds Kerry Hannaphy, who has worked on numerous clients looking for a subtle improvement in lip volume or symmetry. 

"I've had numerous emails about how it's improved the confidence of people, they feel so much better about themselves and they don't feel so depressed."

"It's aesthetics, so you look better, it's not about changing your features."


One glance at social media proves that perfect lips are in, and lip fillers have never been so popular.

If you're considering augmenting your pout with a little bit of help from a cosmetic doctor, then paying attention to your lip shape could help you know what look to aim for. 

In a recent survey, Taylor Swift was found to have the most desirable lips, mostly down to her distinctly defined cupids bow.

Celebrities like Rosie Huntington Whitely, Rihanna and Megan Fox also came out on top for their plump pouts. 

Dr Julian De Silva from the Centre of Advanced Facial Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery has identified the nine most common shapes of lips, and how they could be altered if you're thinking of going for the jab. 

1. Defined Cupid's Bow 

Taylor Swift and Rihanna – the cupid's bow is a facial feature where the double curve of a human upper lip is said to resemble the bow of Cupid, the Roman god of erotic love. 

The peaks of the bow reach up to the philtral columns – the natural groove in everyone's face just beneath the nose.

Heavily defined Cupid's Bows are considered the most desirable lips in the world.

"Cupid's bow can be enhanced and further defined with the use of specific amount of filler in the upper lip to enhance the natural vertical columns that lie immediately about the upper lip. The use of a specific filler can also be used to enhance and redefine the overall contour of the lips," said Dr De Silva.

2. Heavy Upper lip – the natural trout pout 

If you have lips a la Liv Tyler, then your lips are naturally a little uneven with a heavier upper lip.

A larger upper lip relative to the lower lip can create a more duck like appearance which is generally less desirable, according to the Centre For Advanced Facial Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery.

"Often patients may look to have upper lip reduction to improve the relative balance of the lips." 

"Although there is considerable variation in lip proportions, attractive lips tend to favour proportions of a larger lower lip to upper lip ration," said Dr De Silva.

3. Flat upper lip

If you're like Julia Roberts, one of the most beautiful women in the world, then you have a completely flat upper lip with no cupids bow.

A more defined cupids bow can be achieved by a "modest and controlled amount of filler" to "augment the upper lip while still looking natural and refreshed."

"Upper lip volumisation with a hyaluronic acid filler is a common request for patients. A more permanent solution can be the use of a silicone implant that will last long-term."

4. Thin lips

Kate Middleton is an absolute beauty, and her thin lips complement her delicate features. 

Genetics play a key part here – some people are just born with naturally thin lips, having inherited them from their parents. 

If you're like the duchess but are feeling a change, Dr De Silva advises a small amount of hyaluronic acid filler. 

"For people with naturally smaller lips, augmentation with a gel filler can enhance the volume of your lips, while feeling and looking completely natural, and the amount of volume can be adjusted to your personal preference."

"Most patients who see me are looking for a natural rejuvenation, where friends and family cannot tell they have undergone treatment. 

5. Full lips

Angelina Jolie is often said to have the most perfect lips in the world because of their natural fullness, volume and definition. 

Achieving Angelina-esque lips is what most woman want when they opt for a lip procedure, and Dr De Silva warns against going over board.

"Some patients look better with slightly fuller lips. The use of filler can be adjusted to your personal preference – adding more filler to the lips can create a more voluptuous appearance."

"A fine line is required to avoid over-treating and an unnatural appearance. I use the cannula technique for fillers to avoid bruising and enhance recovery."

6. Downward turning lips 

Lips like Natalie Portman's can be considered less desirable because people with down turned lips are often unfairly thought to look unhappy. 

"Generally speaking downward turning lips are less desirable as they can create more of an unhappy appearance. The use of filler immediately below the corner of the lips can be used to elevate the lips," said Dr De Silva.

7.  Goldilocks lips

Lips like Kiera's have been dubbed "goldilocks lips", they aren't thick or thin but medium sized, and the cupid's bow does not have super-defined peaks, nor does it lack definition. 

Goldilocks lips never need much intervention, but if you're feeling the filler Dr De Silva advises: "The use of a conservative amount of filler, given by a cannula (painless) technique, results in a natural rejuvenation. This result is most desirable in patients that come to see me, and it is not possible to tell if patients have had this level of augmentation."

8. Heavy lower lip 

Twilight star Kristen Steward has been blessed with defined lips, but her bottom lip carries most of the fullness.

"The distance between your nose and upper lip can lengthen with facial ageing, creating facial imbalance.

A lip lift is a procedure that elevates the position of the lip to give a more youthful and relaxed smile. The lip lift procedure has become more popular as it creates a more attractive upper lip shape and gives improved facial balance" for those bottom heavy pouts.

9. Round lips

Round lips like those owned by Drew Barrymore are highly covetable, and this lip shape can be achieved with ease.

"They can be shaped with the use of filler in specific parts of the body of the lip. The filler can be used to enhance the central body of the lip giving a rounder more volumised look."

"There is a cultural fashion to have larger lips in many celebrities and younger patients in their 20s and 30s. This current trend defies the natural boundaries for lip enlargement by favouring larger lips that lie outside natural volumisation of lips," said the doctor. 



It seems like everyone is obsessed with lip fillers these days, and even the most seasoned of celebs aren't immune to the trend.

Nicole Sherzinger has come under online scrutiny over her allegedly inflated lips. 

The stunning 38-year-old singer has always had a full pout, but fans are speculating whether the star has gone too far with the filler needle.

The X Factor judge recently posed for a new Instagram selfie showcasing a very plump pout, and fans were quick to point out her new look. 

"Please say no to botox and upper lip stretching…you're perfect the way you are," said one.

"You're so pretty please slow down on the fillers," commented another. 


A photo posted by Amanda_djo (@fashion___p) on

Others were quick to defend Nicole, saying they liked her new look and lipstick colour and that the plumper pout was "pretty."

Another suggested that the ex-Pussycat Doll could just be experimenting with over-lining her lips like the Kardashian-Jenners.



Lauren Goodger has completely transformed herself in recent months, taking on a new diet and exercise regime to lose weight.

But now, the reality star has taken focus on her face.

After years of constant top-ups, the 29-year-old has decided to remove her lip fillers, to opt for a more natural look.

Lauren told MailOnline that she wants to embrace the natural look this year, and removing her lip fillers was the start of her transformation.

"This year I am really looking after my body and health so this was the natural and the right decision for me for where I am in my life and career," she said.



Katie Price has never been shy about telling the media about her plastic surgery, but the 38-year-old has now gone one step further by revealing all on social media.

The former model showed herself having A LOT of procedures done, including, botox, lip filler and liposuction.

She had all three done in just one visit and documented it by posting pictures and selfies of her in the doctor's chair.


Hey what am I up to

A photo posted by Katie Price (@officialkatieprice) on

She captioned the first shot, "Hey what am I up to," before telling her followers her face was covered in numbing cream.

She even went one further by taking a picture mid-liposuction, and said, "Wow this is amazing."


Wow this is amazing

A photo posted by Katie Price (@officialkatieprice) on

Oh, Katie. You never fail to amaze us.