Many people use a pen to inject hyaluronic acid into their lips for a DIY lip pump. The hashtag #hyaluronpen has over 4.5 million views on TikTok. But medical experts warn against using the viral product, which can pose dangerous health risks.

Many young people are trying to get fuller lips from home, from plumping glosses to enhancement tools. But experts warn of a new product trending on social media.

The Hyaluronic Acid Pen, also known as the Hyaluron Pen, has been marketed as an affordable, needle-free, and painless alternative to lip fillers. It involves using the power of compressed air to create microscopic holes and push hyaluronic acid filler into the skin.

Lip Plumper

Some TikTok users have praised the pen for its quick and inexpensive results for a full-bodied, DIY lip filler. But despite its popularity (with #hyaluronpen garnering more than 69 million views on TikTok), medical and cosmetic experts warn that the device will not only give a botched look, but it’s also dangerous — so much so that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA ) issued a statement last year condemning the product.

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“The hyaluronic acid pen is a way for someone who is not trained in fillers to use this device at home to get that filler look like,” says Rachel Yussim, cosmetic nurse and health care provider at Persimmon. “But that said… you shouldn’t be using it at all. Nobody should do that.’

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How does the hyaluron pen work?

The hyaluronan pen does not use needles and does not inject itself. It is a small, portable device originally intended for diabetic patients to painlessly treat themselves with insulin throughout the day.

According to Uy Dam, a board-certified nurse practitioner in Boston, the device is easy to use. “You turn it up, then it builds up a pressure in the pen, so that when you put the hyaluronic acid in the cartridge and press a button, the full pressure goes through a small hole and goes through anything that’s soft, like your lips,” he says.

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Yussim adds that hyaluronic acid is the same ingredient used by professionals in injectable dermal fillers. Being hydrophilic or attracted to water, it helps retain moisture and water in the area for a temporary but immediate puffy look.

However, because the device is not FDA-approved or regulated, the quality and legitimacy of the hyaluronic acid is uncertain, according to Emily Sespaniak, an aesthetic nurse practitioner at San Francisco Plastic Surgery.

“We don’t know exactly what’s in it or what’s injected into the skin,” she says. “You may be getting hyaluronic acid, you may not be. So you can imagine the kind of risks that could pose… especially for people with weakened immune systems or other health conditions.”

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Should you use it?

While the hyaluron pen may seem like a tempting alternative to expensive lip fillers, the viral product is unsafe to use, experts say, and has even been banned in Canada and Europe.

Aesthetically speaking, this pen probably doesn’t offer the desired look of a natural full lip or a precise cupid’s bow. Because the filler only goes into the top layers of the skin, rather than deep into the needled dermis, it will create a “puffy and uneven appearance that will cause lumpiness and bumps all over,” Yussim says.

But more importantly, from a medical point of view, it can pose numerous health risks, such as inflammation, bacterial or fungal infections and even necrosis, or death of tissues and cells. One of Dam’s biggest concerns as a practitioner is that while you can control the volume of filler in the pen, you can’t control the pressure or depth at which it penetrates the skin.

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“It’s dangerous because if you can’t control how deep it goes into the lips, you can’t control how much or exactly where the filler goes. And if it gets into a blood vessel, it can actually block it and lead to vascular occlusion. .. where the blood in that area is cut off and the patch of skin can die,” says Dam.

For those looking to improve their lips, Sespaniak says the best option is to seek out a medical professional for anything related to adjusting your face.

“If you go to a medical office, they have all the right protocols in place to manage any side effects. But if you’re doing it from home, you may not know the warning signs before it’s too late,” Sespaniak says.

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I have been blogging since August 2011. I have had over 10,000 visitors to my blog! My goal is to help people, and I have the knowledge and the passion to do this. I love to travel, dance, and play volleyball. I also enjoy hanging out with my friends and family. I started writing my blogs when I lived in California. I would wake up in the middle of the night and write something while listening to music and looking at the ocean. When I moved to Texas, I found a new place to write. I would sit in my backyard while everyone else was at work, and I could write all day.