Having larger cheekbones can help make your face look fuller and enhance your profile, but many people are unsure how to increase their cheekbone size.
You can increase your cheekbone size by getting dermal fillers and implants. Some people can try cheek lifts and buccal fat pad removal to either enhance a previous cheek augmentation procedure or make their current cheekbones look better. Mewing is a natural way to increase cheekbone size.
Malar, Submalar, or Both?
Before we get into what procedures you can try to increase your cheekbone size, you need to figure out what parts of your cheekbone you want to enhance. The parts that you choose to enhance will help you gain volume, prominence, or both.
The malar bone is for your cheekbone prominence; it mostly adds “height” for more arched cheekbones. The submalar bone is near the “fleshier” part of your cheek. Correcting the submalar bone adds fullness to correct a “sunken” face.
Most procedures will increase the size of both the submalar and malar bone (combined). However, you may ask your surgeon if you want only want part of the cheekbone done. For instance, you could ask a surgeon to strategically inject dermal fillers to increase the appearance of your malar bone, but not your submalar bone.
How to Increase Cheekbone Size
Dermal fillers are injectable fillers that can add volume to the cheek area. Dermal fillers can be made from various materials, like hyaluronic acid, collagen, poly-L-lactic acid, etc.
The material that your dermal filler is made out of will determine how long it will last since the body will eventually metabolize these materials. For instance, hyaluronic acid dermal fillers usually last for 6-12 months while poly-L-lactic acid can last for 2-3 years.
The benefits of dermal fillers are that it can add volume immediately, but it will not be forever; you will need to get them again once the filler starts to disappear. For instance, you may need hyaluronic acid dermal fillers again after 5-6 months if you want to maintain your appearance.
Additionally, you may not be able to get “sharp” cheekbones; most fillers can add volume, but they will not give you razor-sharp cheekbones. Some dermal fillers may contain a slightly harder material, but it may not give you the same shape as implants would.
Facial Fat Transfer
A facial fat transfer is a type of dermal filler, but it is a bit more unique than the ones mentioned earlier; it uses your fat from another part of your body (thigh, lower abdomen, etc.), processes the fat cells, then injects it into the targeted area.
Transferred fat tends to provide more longer-lasting results compared to other dermal fillers. Since the fat was naturally in your body, your body will not reject it, and it will thrive in your face.
However, the results will show up in stages. 40-60% of the fat cells die in the first three months, which is why many surgeons will “overfill” the area because they are expecting you to lose some of the fat.
Any fat cells that survived after 4-9 months will plump up. Some patients may have minimal results because less fat may survive if you are a smoker, if you are older, etc.
However, the results for transferred fat is still unpredictable. Some patients may need a touch-up procedure to enhance their results. Still, about 81% are satisfied with their results after a fat transfer (Groen et al., 2017).
Implants are an effective way to augment your cheekbones. Implants are ideal for people who want “model-like” cheekbones because the implant can provide definition and sharpness.
Implants are usually custom-made, so they will perfectly fit your cheekbone and offer you the exact volume and shape you want. In some cases, people may only get one implant to restore asymmetry.
Given that the implant was correctly sized and placed, most implants look very natural on the face. Implants are meant to be permanent, but people can ask them to be removed if they wish.
However, some people may notice that their midface would sag a bit if they remove their cheek implants. Fat or dermal fillers can be a quick fix, and some patients may opt for a midface lift or a full facelift to bring the skin, muscles, and fat back up.
A cheek lift, or midface lift, lifts the cheeks’ fat pads, muscles, and skin. It can help treat sagging and make the cheek area look a bit plumper. It is similar to a facelift, but unlike traditional facelifts, a cheek lift focuses on the midface rather than the whole face.
The underlying fat and muscles and the fat sag with age, contributing to a “sunken” and saggy appearance in the cheek area. A cheek lift can help restore this, making the cheekbone area look a bit plumper.
However, it may not be that effective if you want much larger cheekbones or are still young. It could help make your cheekbones look a bit similar to when you were younger. It lifts the fat and muscles back up, but it may not significantly increase your cheekbone size.
Buccal Fat Pad Removal
In some cases, a buccal fat pad removal can enhance the appearance of your cheekbones. Some people may already have prominent cheekbones, but the buccal fat pad is large, softening and diminishing the cheekbones’ appearance.
Additionally, buccal fat pad removal may be accompanied by other cheekbone augmentation procedures. You can get cheek implants and buccal fat pad removal to get bigger cheekbones and cheek hollows.
How much fat a surgeon will remove from your face will depend on what you want, along with your surgeon’s opinion. Most surgeons do not want to remove too much from the fat pad; it can make you look gaunt and old. Therefore, most surgeons will only remove as much fat as needed. They usually leave a bit extra since the fat pad naturally decreases with age, but the surgeon will do as much as possible to avoid “overdoing” it.
Mewing uses proper oral structure, helping enhance the overall appearance of the face, including the cheekbones. It involves placing your tongue on the upper palate while applying light, consistent pressure. The upward force should move the palate upward and forward.
Your palate is connected to the midface, where your cheekbones are. Mewing can encourage the whole midface to move up and forward, increasing your natural cheekbones’ size and prominence.
Additionally, mewing expands the palate. The palatal expansion makes the cheekbones move outward, leading to more defined, prominent cheekbones. Pairing the outward expansion of the cheekbones with the up and forward movement, mewing can make your cheekbones look bigger.
Check out our ultimate mewing guide to learn about how to mew.
However, it will take time and effort to see results. Most adults will need to wait 2-3 years and consistently mew to see results because it will take time to move the midface. Children and teenagers tend to see faster results because their bones are more malleable than adults.
Click here to learn more about ways to increase your cheekbone size naturally.