In pursuit of that ‘perfect nose’ thousands  go under the knife every year, and the trend is on the rise. If you also have been considering the pros and cons of getting a little help from a cosmetic surgeon to enhance your nose but have been put off by the fear of surgery or the cost, you need to know about nose thread lift aka Hiko thread lift.
It is a comparatively new cosmetic technique that can make your dream come true without the hassle or expenses of surgery.
Not sure what it is or if it can actually help? Here’s everything you need to know about nose thread lift for making a decision. The nose is a central feature of the face and nose thread lift can give you a more defined look through a non-surgical procedure.
What is nose thread lift?
Nose thread lift is a minimally invasive cosmetic treatment where dissolvable threads are placed in strategic areas of the nose to improve its contour, shape, and overall appearance. The procedure enhances the nose in a subtle way that looks natural.
Nose thread lift is also called Hiko thread lift which is basically a short form for ‘high nose’ in Korean (Hi = High, Ko = Nose).
Nose thread lift is typically performed to achieve the following,
- Lifting the nose bridge
- Slimming and sharpening the nose bridge
- Correcting retracted nose cartilage (columella)
- Sharpening and slimming the nose tip
- Improving nose tip rotation
During the consultation, your doctor will create an improvement plan depending on your goals, current nasal status, and other facial features. The process will be performed according to the plan to achieve the desired results. It is important to inform your doctor about your expectations and concerns during the consultation.
How is nose thread lift done?
The process of nose thread lift is broadly similar to facial thread lift, with some modifications to suit the exact requirements.
During the process, PDO (Polydioxanone), PLLA (Poly-L-Lactic-Acid), or PCL (Polycaprolactone) threads with or without barbs (or both) are placed subcutaneously with the help of a blunt micro-cannulas. The process is performed under local anesthesia and unlike traditional surgical lifting, there is no need for a large incision.
The image below shows how nose bridge lifting and nose tip corrections are done through the thread lifting process. The process is painless for most of the patients with minimal recovery time.
The threads once placed under the skin at strategical positions work in two ways to deliver the results.
First, the threads mechanically pull up the tissues, propping up the nose bridge and tip, creating a more defined, slimmer, and taller nose. Second, the placement of the ‘foreign element’ (here the thread) under the skin stimulates the natural collagen synthesis process which helps to improve the results and makes it long-lasting.
Depending on the exact requirements of a patient, mono (non-barbed) or cog (barbed) threads are used. Both the thread types can also be used for customized results according to the preferences of the cosmetic aestheticians.
The sutures are naturally dissolved in the skin over time, and they do not produce any harmful by-products. These threads are safe for cosmetic facial enhancements and have been found to produce minimal to no side effects.
Benefits of nose thread lift
Hiko thread lift has a bunch of benefits which makes it one of the most popular choices of cosmetic practitioners as well as the patients looking for nose correction and enhancements.
First of all, it is a minimally invasive and non-surgical process, which also makes it much less risky. The chances of any post-procedure complications are greatly minimized as it is non-surgical. The process is performed under local anesthesia, eliminating any risk associated with general anesthesia.
The sutures placed under the skin are dissolved naturally over time. So, in case you do not like the result, you will always have the option to get back to the pre-procedure state without any correctional measures. Over time, the threads will naturally wear themself out and if not maintained, the nose will get back to its basic shape.
Hiko nose thread lift takes minimum time, only around 20 – 30 minutes to complete, and is rightly called the ‘lunchtime nose job’. It also has no to minimal downtime. Patients getting the treatment do not need to take an off from work to get the process done. Your doctor might suggest staying off makeup, avoiding profuse sweating, or swimming for a few days and that’s all.
The result of nose thread lift is subtle and looks natural, which is ideal for people not willing to bring in any drastic change to their look or fear a ‘plastic look’. The process offers long-lasting results, and costs much less compared to the surgical process.
To sum up the benefits,
- Minimally invasive, non-surgical process
- Minimum risk of post-procedural complications
- The majority of the patients find it completely painless
- The procedure takes minimum time
- Recovery is quick with practically no downtime
- Long-lasting and subtle results
- Less expensive
Side effects and possible complications of nose thread lift
Nose thread lift has minimal risk but just like all medical procedures, there are some possible side effects and complications you should be aware of. The most common side effect of nose thread lift is soreness and swelling in the area right after the treatment. Generally, it subsides on its own within a day or two.
Pain and bruising might occur in some patients. Your doctor will suggest medication or ointment for quick relief. Infection is another probable complication for any type of invasive or even minimally invasive procedure. Antibiotics are prescribed to minimize any chance of infection in the area.
If the threads are not placed properly, there might be complications arising from thread movement under the skin but if you are getting the procedure done by a registered practitioner, chances of such complications are negligible.
Chance of other probable thread lift complications like hematoma, skin dimpling, temporary facial stiffness, or paresthesia is rare in nose thread lift. But if the procedure is not done correctly there can be several other complications like nasal deviation, unnatural looking results, sub-optimal nasal height, etc.
It is always advised to get it done only from a registered clinic to minimize any risk.
How long does nose thread lift last?
The lifting effect of the procedure is visible instantly, but it might take a few days to realize the complete enhancement if there is swelling after the procedure. The threads used in the process are biodegradable but their longevity within the skin varies depending on the type and quality. The longer the thread lasts within the skin, the longer the effects will stay.
PDO (Polydioxanone) threads are absorbed in the body within 6 – 8 months, PLLA (Poly-L-Lactic-Acid) threads last for around 12 months. The PCL (Polycaprolactone) threads are considered the best in the lot and they last for around 1 to 1.5 years after the procedure. After the thread is disintegrated, the induced collagen synthesis will last for another 2-3 months.
However, it is important to keep in mind that every person is different, and the longevity of the results will naturally vary. According to some cosmetic practitioners, if the treatment is repeated by the 9th month of the treatment, it can make the effects last longer.
What should you not do after a nose thread lift?
Nose thread lift has no downtime, which means you can get back to your normal life right after the treatment. Still, there are a few things that you are advised not to do. The restrictions generally include,
Sleeping on your stomach
Avoid putting pressure on your nose or the surrounding area right after the treatment. It might trigger pain or damage the results. Sleep on your back for at least a week after the treatment.
Avoid wearing makeup on the area at least for a day or two. Staying away from any kind of topical skincare products (not suggested by your aesthetician) is advised for a few days.
Getting a facial massage
Facial massage may displace the newly placed threads. Do not indulge in any kind of face massage for at least 10-15 days after the treatment.
Swimming may cause some extra stress on the nose which is not suggested after a thread lift. The pool water might cause an infection. Stay away from swimming for at least a week.
Vigorous exercising is not advised right after the treatment as it will increase blood flow to the area which might disturb the process. Rigorous exercising will also make you sweat profusely which can be problematic.
You should discuss the post-procedure restrictions thoroughly with your doctor before going for the treatment. Also, consult your doctor for aftercare advice.
Nose thread lift and nose fillers
The use of Hyaluronic acid-based fillers in aesthetic cosmetic procedures is not new. Nose fillers have been the only non-surgical cosmetic procedure for nose enhancement before thread lifting became popular. Fillers essentially add volume to the nose.
They can be used to improve the nose height and tip projection. Fillers last for over 12 months after treatment and in between follow-ups can extend the results for up to 2-3 years.
Fillers are often used for correcting the nose tip in combination with Hiko thread lift which focuses on correcting defects like slightly off-center nose placement, poor nose tip angle, ill-defined nose bridge, etc.
Depending on your current nose profile and the expectations, your doctor will plan the process and it might include the use of nose fillers along with nose thread lift to get the best results.
Nose thread lift is a non-surgical, correctional cosmetic procedure for enhancing the aesthetics of the nose. It has minimal downtime and limited risk. The process offers long-lasting, subtle effects and is often used along with nose fillers to achieve the best results for the patients.
It is a less expensive process and should be carried out only by a registered cosmetic practitioner to avoid any risk or unwanted outcomes.