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Buttock Enhancement (Butt Lift)

Brazilian Butt Lift Procedure by Dr. AndersonThese days, there is a lot of focus on the aesthetics of the buttocks, and many people feel that the shape and size of their own bottom could be better. Demand for buttock enhancement has resulted in a number of effective options for improving the size, shape, contour, and firmness of the butt. While many people know buttock enhancement by the name “Brazilian Butt Lift”, the process is customizable to the needs of the patient, and focuses on achieving beautiful, natural-looking results to suit each patient's goals.

There are two separate components to buttock enhancement: lift and augmentation. Commonly patients use the term "lift" when what they are really thinking about is volume augmentation, and most patients seeking a "Brazilian Butt Lift" are thinking about fat grafting to the buttocks.  Depending on the situation, one or both of these procedures may be needed to achieve desired results.

Buttock augmentation is a surgical procedure used to add volume and contour to the buttocks. There are two methods for achieving this: fat transfer or buttock implants. Fat transfer is a procedure that is growing in popularity, and works by using the patient's own fat to add natural-looking volume to the buttocks. Butt implants are synthetic devices inserted into the buttock area for dramatic increase in volume. Butt implants are very rare in the United States as currently there are no FDA approved buttock implants, and fat transfer is by far the most common means of buttock augmentation in this country. This is the method we use at our Atlanta office for the vast majority of patients.

A buttock lift is a more extensive procedure and involves removing the “love handles” just above the buttocks. As the excess skin and fat is removed and tightened, the buttocks are pulled upward for improved contour. A true buttock lift does not typically involve augmentation of the buttock. In massive weight loss patients, a buttock lift can be combined with a buttock flap – moving the flank tissues into the deflated buttock – for greater volume increases.

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Butt Lift Consultation

Your buttock enhancement consultation with our talented plastic surgeons at Emory Aesthetic Center in Atlanta, Georgia, is the first step toward achieving the beautiful results you seek. First, you will present your goals for your procedure, and we will help you refine those goals and come up with a treatment plan that suits your needs, whether that includes butt augmentation, lift, or a combination of the two procedures. Our surgeons will also help you determine your candidacy of the procedure, give you answers to all of your questions, and provide helpful information about each procedure you’re considering.

Butt Lift Candidates

Candidates for both buttock augmentation and buttock lift should have realistic expectations for the procedure and be in general good health. Only a plastic surgeon, like our experts in Atlanta, can determine individual candidacy.

Buttock augmentation is a very popular procedure with younger patients. Candidates for buttock augmentation are people who would like to improve the size and contour of the buttocks, and who have enough fat to be harvested for use in the augmentation process. Fat transfer, the most common procedure for buttock augmentation is very safe and fairly gentle, but patients should be at a stable weight to undergo the surgery, as weight gain or loss down the line could affect the results of the treatment. Ideally, buttock augmentation candidates should have good skin elasticity, as liposuction is used to harvest the fat for transfer, and skin elasticity can affect those results.

Buttock lift candidates should have lax and sagging skin in the buttocks, which affects the overall contour of the area. Patients need to be aware that this procedure does not improve the volume of the buttocks, and must be performed along with fat transfer or a flap procedure to the buttocks to achieve both augmentation and contouring results.

Butt Lift Procedure

Buttock augmentation is a multi-step fat transfer process that begins with gentle liposuction of the fat donor areas. Fat is removed and the donor areas contoured, which is an additional benefit for buttock augmentation patients. Common areas for donor sites include the “love handles”, stomach, or thighs.

Once the fat has been removed, it is gently prepared for the injection process. The prepared fat is then injected using tiny cannulas (tubes), and the procedure is complete. The process may be repeated in the future for further improvement and volume.

Buttock lift surgery is mostly an excision process, with the surgeon making larger incisions in the area of the “love handles”. The next step is removing the excess skin that makes the buttocks look saggy and dimpled, and pulling the remaining skin up for a lifted and contoured appearance to the buttocks.

Buttock augmentation and buttock lift are two very different procedures, though they are often combined to suit patients’ needs.

Butt Lift Recovery

Buttock augmentation with fat transfer is a minimally invasive treatment with a fairly speedy recovery. The liposuction involved with harvesting the fat for transfer is the most invasive aspect of the procedure, and this will involve some swelling and bruising after the fact, most of which will resolve within one to two weeks. Patients can start resuming normal activities soon after the procedure, and residual swelling will subside gradually over time. Patients will see results immediately, but should expect final results to settle by six months after the procedure, when transferred fat has established blood supply.

Buttock lift surgery involves larger incisions than buttock augmentation, and recovery from the procedure may take a bit longer. Patients should expect some buttock pain, bruising, and swelling in the treated areas, which will subside gradually. It will take a few months for final results to become apparent, but patients will see preliminary results much sooner than this.

Videos FAQs:

Butt Lift FAQs

Is it better to choose butt implants or fat transfer?

Butt implants are almost never used in the United States for augmentation, as there are no FDA approved implant options available. We recommend fat transfer to almost every patient who comes to us seeking buttock augmentation, as long as they are healthy and have adequate donor fat that can be removed with liposuction.

Is butt augmentation permanent?

Fat transfer is considered to be a permanent solution for buttock augmentation, as the injected fat will establish a blood supply and continue to live once transferred to the buttocks. However, not all the fat transferred will be able to survive. During the first six months, some of the fat will die, and be disposed of by the body. This is why patients should not consider their results permanent until after this point.

Will a buttock lift reduce the volume of my buttocks?

While a buttock lift does not deal with the volume of the buttocks directly, the procedure can make the area smaller and firmer, since excess fat and skin above the buttocks are removed during the surgery. Prospective patients who are worried about the appearance of reduced volume in the buttocks following a lift procedure may want to consider a combination procedure with fat transfer to add volume to the buttocks directly.

Does buttock enhancement improve the “love handles” as well?

A buttock augmentation requires that fat be removed from a donor site for use in the fat transfer procedure. The love handles are sometimes an acceptable area for harvesting fat, which can smooth out the area and improve overall contour.

A buttock lift addresses the love handles directly, and skin and fat can be removed from the area for improvement to both the buttocks and the love handle area.

In either instance – a buttock augmentation or a buttock lift – both will create a beautiful, inwardly curved flank that will help enhance the curves of the buttocks.

Are there exercises that can give me similar results to surgery?

“Brazilian butt lift” exercises claim to be able to rival the results of surgery with diligence and repetition. While buttock lift exercises can improve the appearance of the butt by toning and bulking up the muscles, there is no such thing as a “non-surgical” buttock lift. While some people can get satisfactory results through exercise, others will need to consider surgery for dramatic results.

How much scarring will be involved with buttock augmentation?

Because buttock augmentation uses modern fat transfer techniques, which involve only very small scars from the liposuction involved with the process, scarring from the procedure is almost nonexistent.

Can a buttock lift/augmentation be combined with other procedures?

Many people choose to combine buttock enhancement with other procedures, such as a tummy tuck or thigh lift. Plastic surgery is extremely customizable and a skilled plastic surgeon will work to come up with a treatment that suits each patient’s needs.

Will buttock augmentation look natural?

Because most buttock augmentation procedures involve the use of the patient’s own fat, the results from this surgery look and feel extremely natural. In fact, the grafted fat will continue to live long after the procedure is complete, and is essentially considered permanent after about 6 months or so. Unlike implants, there is no risk for shifting or an unnatural look and feel following surgery.

What is a “Brazilian Butt Lift?”

Contrary to what the name promises, this procedure is neither Brazilian, nor a butt lift. A “Brazilian butt lift” refers to augmentation of the buttocks using fat transfer techniques to add volume and improve contour in the area.

What are the risks of buttock augmentation?

Buttock augmentation risks are minimal, as the fat transfer procedure is extremely safe. However, all surgery carries some risk, and fat transfer is no exception. Possible complications include:

  • Excessive bruising/swelling
  • Anesthesia complications
  • Infection
  • Poor aesthetic result
  • Insufficient volume
  • Fat embolization



Emory Aesthetic Center of Buckhead-Atlanta