Summary: We’re taught from a young age that there’s really no such thing as perfection. But what a perfect nose? Is there such a thing as perfect nose? And if there were, how could you get one? Maybe it’s more useful to think about it like this: what does the perfect nose for you look like?
No Such Thing as Perfect Nose
The idea behind rhinoplasty is that you want a perfect nose, right? If you’re like many nose job patients, you’ve spent ages looking in the mirror, imagining what you might look like with a bit more of an upturned tip or a nasal bridge that isn’t quite so wide. You see celebrities in magazines with their perfect button noses and that’s what you want.
Of course, what’s “perfect” on your face might not be the same thing that’s “perfect” on Megan Fox’s face. The beauty of the human face often lies in its infinite possibilities. We’re all different, and that’s a wonderful thing. But that means your perfect nose will be custom to your face.
Whatever you want that nose to look like (there are some common requests, which we’ll discuss later), rhinoplasty of some kind of going to be the best way for you to achieve that. But that’s where things can be a little complicated. Because sometimes—not always, but sometimes—your nose job might need a little revision to get it where you want it to be. So in some ways, revision rhinoplasty is the best way for you to get the perfect nose.
What Does the Perfect Nose Look Like?
Before we discuss how you can achieve the perfect nose, it might be a good idea to discuss what the perfect nose actually looks like. To be sure, we’re speaking here in general terms. It’s important to remember that your nose is first and foremost a functional part of your body—it’s got a job to do.
Aesthetically, your nose is also in a very prominent place on your face. Its job, then, is to tie everything together, to provide the balance for your eyes, lips, ears, forehead, and so on. When these proportions are out of whack, it can exaggerate some of those features about your nose that you might not like.
It’s useful, however, to talk about those aesthetics in a vacuum, if only as an example. If we were to post a generic nose on a mannequin, for example, what size and shape might it be? Well, there are a couple of general ways we can talk about this:
- In women, the “ideal” nose tends to be longer and more narrow
- In men, the “ideal” nose tends to be more angular and broader
- In women, a nasal tip that extends 106 degrees (or so) from the lip
- Rotation from the nasal bridge to the nasal tip of roughly 90 degrees (broken down by gender: 90 to 100 degrees for men or 95 to 110 degrees for women)
- A width of nostrils that is balanced with the rest of your face
To be sure, much of this data is subjective, and few studies have actually been performed on what constitutes the “ideal” nose. In terms of celebrities, it seems that Scarlett Johansson wins the award for having the very “best,” most “ideal” nose. But Johansson’s nose might not work on your face.
So we return to the notion that There is no such thing as the perfect or ideal nose outside of the contexts of what work for your face. In other words, the nose requires some balance.
Why Do So Many People Get Revision Rhinoplasty?
If a rhinoplasty is supposed to deliver to you the perfect nose (for your face), why do so many people end up getting revision rhinoplasty? That’s a legitimate question, and it’s not one that is necessarily easy to answer. After all, plastic surgery is a complicated endeavor and there are a lot of variables.
Revision rhinoplasty is common as a revision procedure—but that doesn’t mean it’s common as a plastic surgery procedure. Here’s what I mean by that (because I’ll admit, it’s a somewhat confusing sentence). Revision rhinoplasty is pursued by something like 17% of nose job patients. Now, that’s a pretty small percentage, but that’s pretty high among all types of plastic surgery (most patients who get any type of plastic surgery generally do not need revision procedures).
But revision rhinoplasty is not exactly the most popular plastic surgery procedure overall. That is, if you’re getting plastic surgery, chances are you’re not getting a revision rhinoplasty. But if you’re getting rhinoplasty, there’s a one-fifth chance you’ll be thinking about revision rhinoplasty.
The Problem of Expectations
To be sure, there are many reasons why patients might seek out a revision rhinoplasty procedure. To some degree, revision procedures are part of the norm: when results aren’t what you wanted, it’s not uncommon to go back in and tweak those results.
Some of there reasons why patients might consider a rhinoplasty include the following:
- Heightened Expectations: In some cases, patients simply expect too much out of a rhinoplasty procedure. It’s possible that they either expect the procedure to completely transform the nose or expect their nose job to instead create an “ideal” nose. Whatever the case, the end results might not match up with those expectations, leaving the patient disappointed and seeking further changes to the nose.
- Lack of Communication: Sometimes, patients simply are not able to articulate what they like or dislike about their noses. This can sometimes happen during a rhinoplasty consultation. In other cases, patients might not even know what they don’t like about their noses until the initial transformation has already taken place. In any case, sometimes it takes another procedure to get things right.
- Complications After Surgery: Rhinoplasty often entails a relatively long recovery period, in large part because your nose is so sensitive. Any complications that develop after surgery can negatively impact your final results. Sometimes something as simple as bumping your nose at the wrong time can throw off your results. Surgeons try to protect against this as much as possible by providing patients with detailed recovery instructions, but no procedure (and no patient) is perfect.
- Changing Aesthetics Over Time: Sometimes, everything can go right with your rhinoplasty. But over the years you might notice something new about your nose that bugs you. Or your tastes and aesthetics may simply change and evolve over time. In those cases, revision rhinoplasty is really just keeping up with your own development in tastes.
The nose is an inherently complex component of facial anatomy. It shouldn’t be that surprising that many people require more than one rhinoplasty procedure to get the best results.
Can Revision Rhinoplasty Deliver on Those Promises?
The big question, of course, is whether or not revision rhinoplasty can really deliver on all those promises. If you’ve had a rhinoplasty and you still don’t like your nose, is a revision procedure the right way to go? Well, you might not like this, but the answer is: it depends.
For many patients, it comes down to two things: the required changes to match your vision and whether or not your vision is actually possible. Remember what we were saying about realistic expectations? Sometimes rhinoplasty can only do so much.
If those “promises” are within the bounds of what a rhinoplasty can actually accomplish, then the chances are good a revision procedure can actually net you the results you want. But there are definitely some things to think about.
Advantages of Revision Rhinoplasty
Many patients will often break down revision rhinoplasty into two basic categories: benefits and drawbacks. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages of getting revision rhinoplasty:
- You will get closer to the nose you always wanted
- You will be able to refine or change aspects of your first procedure
- Your revised nose will work better aesthetically with your current facial features
- You’ll know that you did everything possible to ensure getting the nose you’ve always wanted
- You will have the opportunity to address any issues with the nose that have come up since the original rhinoplasty procedure
- You will also be able to take advantage of changes and developments in technology since your initial procedure
Disadvantages of Revision Rhinoplasty
By the same token, there are some disadvantages of revision rhinoplasty. Some of those include the following:
- Patients will have to endure the same recovery again in the case of a surgical revision rhinoplasty
- The discomfort associated with rhinoplasty can be quite high
- Recovery period brings with it inherent risks in terms of complications compromising your final results
- There is always the chance, however small, that you will not like your final results
- Most revision rhinoplasty procedures are not covered by medical insurance unless they are addressing a functional concern
- Patients will be required to take time off of work for the procedure and for the recovery
A Non Surgical Option
It’s worth pointing out that these disadvantages associated with revision rhinoplasty can be mitigated substantially when patients look into non surgical revision rhinoplasty procedures. The “non-surgical revision rhinoplasty” takes the same basic form as a non surgical nose job—surgeons are able to change the shape and look of the nose with just a few injections.
Non surgical nose job procedures have exploded in popularity over the past ten years, in large part because they offer patients instant results without any kind of down time. That’s what makes the non surgical approach particularly adept at providing revision rhinoplasty procedures.
Think about it this way. Many revision rhinoplasty patients want to get the “perfect” nose, and surgical rhinoplasty gets them really, really close. Almost maddeningly close. There are many patients who undergo a rhinoplasty and get “close enough” because they don’t want to go through surgery to fix minor issues.
It’s Not Magic, It’s Hyaluronic Acid
The trick here is that non surgical nose job uses dermal fillers (usually a hyaluronic acid based filler, such as Restylane) to add volume to the nose. For those revision rhinoplasty patients who are looking to add just a little bit of volume to a few places, this is a perfect way to do that.
The results will usually be temporary, as all hyaluronic acid based fillers break down in the body over time (that’s by design). But patients who like their results can get regular maintenance injections.
A non surgical revision rhinoplasty procedure can help you get your perfect nose and, even though it’s not permanent, offers several significant advantages over surgical procedures:
- Results are essentially instant; patients won’t have to wait months to see final results
- There is only minimal discomfort involved with the injections (some people compare it to being pinched)
- There is no recovery period; patients are allowed to resume their normal daily activities immediately
- Patients can quickly adjust results in order to improve them
- The costs of non surgical rhinoplasty are significantly lower than the costs of rhinoplasty (at least on a procedure to procedure direct comparison)
The downside of a non surgical approach is that results do tend to be temporary, and most of those results are quite subtle. In other words, if you want big, bold, permanent changes to your nose (especially if those changes involve removing volume), a non surgical approach might not be right for you.
But many revision rhinoplasty patients are not in search of big and bold changes. They got those the first time around. That’s why revision rhinoplasty is one area in which many surgical patients find their next step in the non surgical domain.
The Quest for the Perfect Nose Continues
Whether you’re looking at non surgical revision rhinoplasty or a more traditional surgical procedure, there’s little doubt about what you want: a nose you can love. For some patients, it’s even more simple: a nose they can live with.
There’s no doubt that patients can feel quite disappointed when rhinoplasty doesn’t turn out perfectly. It doesn’t help that most patients have to wait six to twelve months to really see their final results. The prospect of starting all over with another rhinoplasty procedure seems quite daunting.
But many patients do continue to strive for a so-called perfect nose. It’s not about achieving some kind of nasal purity. It’s not about achieving the “perfect nose” as it would look on Megan Fox’s or Scarlett Johansson’s face. It’s about achieving the perfect nose for your face.
The Nose is Incredibly Complex
Finally, it’s worth pointing out that the nose is an incredibly complex little piece of anatomy. You wouldn’t think it is—it’s just a nose, right? You breath in, you breath out, and sometimes you smell stuff.
But that’s not all there is to it. The nose is incredibly important to your face, aesthetically, and if you don’t like the way it looks, you can have a hard time of it. Rhinoplasty is the best and only way to really significantly change your nose. Sometimes that requires a little bit of additional surgery (or a few injections) after you see your results.
But most people tend to think that rhinoplasty is definitely worth it. That’s true for people who have had surgical rhinoplasty and surgical revision rhinoplasty. With the novel possibility of getting a non surgical revision rhinoplasty, it makes it even more likely that patients will be able to find a way to be thrilled with their overall results. At the end of the day, it’s more likely than ever that revision rhinoplasty can get you the perfect nose. Or, at least, the perfect nose for you.