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The first time I got lip fillers, which seems like a lifetime ago now, the bruises and swelling post treatment had me freaked out. I was embarrassed to leave my house and spent the next three days camped out with the shades drawn, lights turned low and running to the bathroom every five minutes to check if magically they had deflated. Nope, still cartoonish. By the fourth day I looked borderline acceptable. Some of the swelling had gone down, but the bruises darkened. One bruise in particular lasted almost two weeks!

I’m sure no one really paid much attention to me or my bruises and swelling when I finally left my bunker, but you know that feeling when you’re walking around Whole Foods, like, O-M-G everybody from the grocery clerk to the baby sitting in the cart ahead of me is staring at my lips. Yah, that’s the worst. I swore off lip fillers for eternity! Until two weeks passed, my lips looked amazing and I couldn’t wait to get them done again…

Now, years have gone by and I consider myself a bonafide lip filler aficionado with a few more rodeos under my belt. And one of the best lessons I’ve learned along the way is that there are supplements you can take to reduce bruising and swelling after surgery or noninvasive procedures, like lip filler.

I reached out to board certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Sarmela Sunder, MD, to share with BOND EN AVANT readers which supplements she recommends patients take before and after going under the knife or needle. Here’s what she had to say: 

“Zinc is really good for skin health in general, but it’s really good for wound trauma and healing. People who are deficient in zinc can’t heal as well as those who have it optimized in their system. We recommend patients getting elective procedures take it before surgery and then after surgery as well.”

Vitamin C
“Oral Vitamin C, which is great for skin health in general and is a critical component in collagen formulation, helps with wound healing as well. There are studies that show if your body is undergoing any trauma you need to amp up your intake of Vitamin C. Around the time of your procedure you would want to double or triple your daily dose. I usually recommend up to 3,000mg a day. A standard dose is about 1,000mg per day.”

“Bromelain is found in high concentrations in the core of pineapple, and it is supposed to help significantly with swelling and inflammation. It also helps the body absorb bruises faster. I recommend you take it a few days before surgery and take it for a week after surgery. There are bromelain capsules you can take. It’s primarily found in the core and so if you want to do the natural strategy, you have to eat the core, but even then you have to eat a lot to get enough, so it might be better to take the supplement.”

“Arnica montana is a little questionable as to whether it works beyond placebo effect, but there have been some studies that show there is a benefit above placebo. It helps with tissue trauma and inflammation. We recommend patients take it in pill form before and after to help with wound healing from a cosmetic stand point.”

Personally, I’ve found that the Arnica gel works wonders for me! When I don’t use it on my lips post injections I can have bruises that last for weeks, but when I use it consistently (that’s the key) applying it every hour or so on my lips and around, the bruises will be gone in four or five days. I hope this helps you ladies (or men) out there looking to find supplemental ways to reduce bruising and swelling after surgery or fillers!

If you have any other tips for what you’ve found works for you, please share them in the comments below. I’d love to hear what other people are using out there.

Thinking about getting lip filler? Read about the newest filler that causes less swelling and bruising than Juvederm, and our filler guide 101 that breaks down the various fillers available on the market today. 

Written by Amy Chang, founder & editor. Photographed by Wing Ta


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