Rhinoplasty has become an increasingly popular procedure for African American patients. It is the most common aesthetic surgery procedure for African Americans. All noses are unique, but African American’s typically seek a nose job due to flatness, wide nostrils or to increase bridge or tip definition. Historically, rhinoplasty surgeons performed the exact same surgical procedure on all types of noses, though we now understand that African American noses are unique and require a specialized surgical technique. During an African American rhinoplasty, it is important to preserve key ethnic features while correcting or improving the aesthetic features and function of the nose.
I have spent a great deal of time specifically focusing on the unique qualities and the cultural desires of my patients seeking an African American nose job. As a skilled facial plastic surgeon, I can make significant aesthetic alterations while preserving the ethnic heritage that is important to many patients. Through my training with experts in Beverly Hills, I have performed procedures on African American patients across the globe and recently authored a chapter in a prominent rhinoplasty medical journal, Rhinoplasty Archive, detailing the steps in an African American nose job.
The Unique Qualities of an African American Nose
While every individual has a remarkably different nose, there are certain characteristics that tend to be more common in African American noses and should be identified prior to performing surgery. Some of these qualities include:
- Thickness of the nasal skin. African American skin can be thick, inelastic, and sebaceous. Thick skin can limit definition of the nose.
- Length of the nasal bone. African Americans tend to have shorter nasal bones. Shorter nasal bones place the nose at risk for collapse many years after surgery. For this reason, additional supporting grafts must be placed into the nose to support the shorter nasal bones.
- Definition of the nasal tip. An African American nasal tip is commonly rounded, bulbous, and poorly defined. The tip will require special techniques to achieve increased definition, although this may be limited due to thick skin.
- Size of the nose. The African American nose may be small when looking at the profile because it may not stick out far from the face. In this case, the nose may actually need to be resized and enlarged in one dimension so that it appears smaller from the front. This is a concept I can explain in more detail during a consultation.
- Size of the nostrils. If the nostrils are wide and flared, they may need to be narrowed with an alar base reduction procedure.
- Support of the nose. The cartilage in the nose may be weak, therefore the nasal structure must be strengthened so that the nose does not change over time.
The Goals of African American Nose Job
Every patient is different, therefore the goals of each patient are unique. During an initial consultation, my patients can outline their goals and we can then devise a personalized plan to create a nose that best fits their face. To get a better idea of the results I can help you achieve, please view our rhinoplasty before and after photos.
In general, African American patients want to achieve the following goals with their plastic surgery:
- Make the nostrils narrower
- Increase the size of the nose when looking at the profile (view from the side)
- Improve definition of the tip
- Fix the drooping tip
- Create a natural nose to fit the face
Armed with a strong understanding of your goals and understanding of the African American nose, I can refine and enhance your nose without losing your cultural identity.
For a successful African American rhinoplasty, the procedure requires more precision and attention to detail as compared to a standard nose job. I consider an African American nose surgery as a reconstructive surgery because I typically have to add cartilage to the nose to make it stronger and more defined. The cartilage in African Americans, which serves as the framework and support for the nose, is generally weaker and may require additional support, including:
- Cartilage from the nose and other areas of the body added to support the nose and tip
- Nose built up from the profile view with the addition of more cartilage
The nostrils are typically narrowed with incisions made in the creases of the nose. They are placed in this location to hide the delicate incision lines. During surgery, special sutures and grafts are used to define the nasal tip.
Recovery from rhinoplasty generally lasts 1-2 weeks. You will be able to return to work or your daily activities within 7-10 days after the surgery. I will provide you with special instructions on how to care for your nose after surgery in order to stimulate the healing process and ensure the best results. Though immediate results can be seen from a procedure, it’s important to remember to be patient throughout the entire healing process and as bruising and swelling continues to subside. In many cases, it can take between 1-2 years before the most optimal and best results can be seen following your procedure.
African American Rhinoplasty FAQs
For additional questions surrounding African American nose jobs, please view our FAQ page.
Q: Will my nose look too Caucasian after surgery?
No. As a surgeon with extensive work with African American patients, I understand the importance of preserving your ethnic identity, therefore I reshape your nose to compliment your face. With my thorough understanding of the African American facial structure, nose types, and aesthetics, I can provide you with natural-looking results.
Q: I am of African American decent and have wide nostrils. Can rhinoplasty be done to address this?
A: During nose surgery, the nasal tip and bridge can be defined to bring balance to all sections of the nose, creating a harmony between the nostrils and the rest of the nose, as well the rest of the face.
Q: How long will it take for swelling to recede after rhinoplasty?
Everyone heals differently, but a good rule of thumb is that 50% of the swelling will be gone after three weeks and the remaining will continue to resolve over the first year. Typically, swelling may be worse in the open approach or in patients that have the nasal bones broken during the procedure.
Q: How long does it take to see the final results of a nose job?
The nose heals slowly, but after a month, one should be able to get a good appreciation of the final result. The final result is best appreciated about one year after surgery.
Q: How much does rhinoplasty cost?
The price is unique to each patient. The cost of a nose job varies based on the specific nose issues being corrected. During your consultation, we can thoroughly discuss the cost once we have a good understanding of the surgery details.
To Learn More About African American Rhinoplasty
Deciding to undergo an African American rhinoplasty in Charlotte is a very important decision, and one that should be made with the help of an experienced facial plastic surgeon. If you are interested in learning more about African American rhinoplasty in Charlotte, or more information on my experience with this procedure, be sure to contact my office directly at 704.323.5090. During your initial consultation, I’ll be here to address your every question and concerns to assure that you feel as comfortable as possible with undergoing your surgery.