Medically reviewed by Mr. Omar Tillo — MD, MS, EBOPRAS, FRCS (Plast)
Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) is a popular cosmetic surgery and a signature treatment at the CREO clinic. Dr Tillo is a key opinion leader for the procedure, having developed a safer technique for performing a BBL known as the BEST-F (Buttock Enhancement and Superficial Transfer of Fat) technique. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the BBL procedure, particularly the difference between a traditional BBL and a CREO BBL.
What is BBL Surgery?
Brazilian Butt Lift is a cosmetic surgery that uses fat transfer to enhance and reshape the buttock. Fat transfer involves extracting excess fat from one area of the body, such as the hips, and transferring the fat cells to another part, in this case, the buttocks. The surgeon uses liposuction to extract the fat cells needed for the procedure.
Unlike buttock implants, this procedure provides a natural-looking, organic enhancement, and unlike fillers, there is a permanent enhancement. As such, it is the most popular cosmetic buttock augmentation procedure to date. Traditional BBL, however, in which a cosmetic surgeon injects large amounts of fat into and under the gluteal muscles, is controversial due to the high rate of fatal fat embolisms (1 in 2000).
In contrast, the CREO BBL is a safe procedure as the BEST-F technique injects excess fat superficially over the gluteal muscle. With 0 reports of mortality, the BEST-F technique significantly reduces the risk of fat leaking into the gluteal vein and resulting in fat embolisms. Furthermore, using a guided ultrasound device, this technique allows the surgeon to produce the results of a traditional BBL safely and with greater precision.
What does a Brazilian Butt Lift Do?
A Brazilian Butt Lift provides patients with an augmented bottom shaped according to their desired aesthetic. Having a curvaceous buttock proportionate to one’s body is considered highly desirable by today’s aesthetic standards. Furthermore, since a BBL involves liposuction, it also contours other body parts, such as the hips and abdomen, thus further contouring the patient’s body to attain their desired figure.
In general, prices for a Brazilian Butt Lift at the CREO clinic start from £7,900. However, given the bespoke nature of the treatment, you will receive the exact price of your surgery following a consultation with Dr Tillo, after you have discussed a tailored procedure for achieving your desired results.
Types of BBL Shapes
By injecting fat in specific areas of the buttocks, the surgeon can recreate the shape of the buttock, usually to make it more rounded or to increase the volume in the lower region (an inverted heart-shape), as these shapes are considered the most aesthetically desirable.
In general, there are four types of buttock shapes that people wish to reshape or accentuate:
V-shaped butts, also called inverted butts, are fuller at the top of the buttocks and flatter at the bottom. Therefore, those with V-shaped butts have narrow hips and sometimes carry excess fat in the abdomen. A BBL can transform a V-shaped buttock into a more rounded bottom with fuller hips.
An H-shaped butt, also called a square-shaped butt, has a flat appearance that lacks curves between the hips and thighs that give the buttock its shape. Instead, those with an H-shaped butt tend to carry fat in their waist in the form of love handles and have high hip bones. A BBL can transform an H-shaped buttock into the more desirable O or A-shaped bottom.
An A-shaped butt, also called an inverted heart-shaped butt, is narrow towards the top of the buttock and fuller at the lower region of the buttock. Many patients wish to achieve this shape, and those who already possess it usually have an hourglass or pear-shaped figure with a slim waist and wide hips. With a BBL procedure, those with an A-shaped butt can make the shape of their buttock more prominent and accentuate their figure.
An O-shaped butt, also known as a bubble butt, has an even distribution of volume throughout the buttock, thus giving it a round and curvy shape. It is also a desirable shape that many patients wish to recreate, and those who already possess it sometimes carry excess fat above their glutes. With a BBL procedure, those with an O-shaped butt can emphasise the shape of their buttock to make it a prominent feature of their figure.
Brazilian Butt Lift Procedure
A Brazilian Butt Lift usually takes around 2-4 hours to perform under sedation or general anaesthesia. First, the surgeon performs liposuction on predetermined areas of the body which contain excess fat. Afterwards, the cosmetic surgeon purifies the extracted fat cells and prepares them for transfer into the buttock. Finally, the surgeon injects the fat cells into specific areas of your buttock over the gluteal muscle (i.e. the BEST-F technique) to recreate your desired shape.
You will notice an immediate enhancement following the surgery. However, it usually takes around six months for your body to completely heal from the surgery, after which you will be able to appreciate the final results of your BBL. By this time, the post-surgical swelling will have entirely dissipated, and the final results will have settled.
Furthermore, the body absorbs 30-50% of the fat cells injected into the buttock over 3-6 months. Therefore, immediately after the surgery, your buttock will be augmented more than expected, as the surgeon will have injected up to 50% more fat cells than required for producing your results to account for the absorption. Following your BBL, you’ll experience what is known as the fluffing stage, a 6-8 week period in which the skin expands to accommodate the increased volume in the buttock. During the coming weeks and months, the initial volume will gradually decrease and settle at the level of expected enhancement.
Recovery & Aftercare
Typically, most patients resume office work and light daily activities around a week after the surgery and resume more strenuous activities after four weeks. During the recovery period, you may experience swelling, bruising, and tenderness in your buttocks and areas where you had liposuction, which will gradually dissipate over the coming days and weeks.
You will receive detailed aftercare instructions to make your recovery as quick and comfortable as possible. For example, this includes prescribed pain medication, compression garments for minimising the swelling, and advice for sleeping and sitting after your BBL (you should avoid sitting down for at least ten days after the procedure, except for when using the toilet). Furthermore, we will schedule you for three follow-up visits with Dr Tillo to assess your healing process.
Who is a Good Candidate for BBL?
After examining you, our surgeon will be able to determine if BBL is a good procedure for you. In general, patients need to have a BMI between 23-28 and weigh a few kilograms above their desired weight. Patients need to have enough excess fat in other areas of their body that the cosmetic surgeon can extract using liposuction and transfer to the buttocks. However, patients that are too overweight are at higher risk of complications from the anaesthetic.
If you do not meet these requirements at present, you can discuss the possibility of undergoing the procedure after reaching your appropriate weight. In addition, you need to be in generally good health and be willing to avoid smoking and drinking for two weeks before and after the procedure.
What’s the difference between BBL and butt implants?
While BBL and butt implants are both surgeries that augment the buttocks, they do so in different ways. BBL uses your fat cells to add volume to the buttock, whereas butt implants insert medical-grade silicone implants into the glutes. As a result, butt implants give a more prominent enhancement while leaving behind a long scar in the buttock crease.
BBL is the more popular buttock augmentation surgery, primarily as it is a more organic way of achieving an enhanced buttock. However, some patients will benefit most from butt implants, particularly those with less excess body fat.
Can a Brazilian butt lift fix hip dips?
Yes, Brazilian butt lifts can help fix hip dips, the indentations beneath the hip bones on the outer hips. A BBL can target the hip dips by adding volume to the indentations via fat grafts, making your silhouette appear round and even.
Can you combine BBL with other cosmetic procedures?
You can combine a BBL with any cosmetic procedure to attain your ideal figure. Due to the celebrated aesthetic of the hourglass figure (a flat stomach and augmented bottom), many patients who undergo a BBL also choose to flatten and strengthen their abdomen with a tummy tuck. However, to ensure that patients have a smooth recovery, our surgeon performs procedures on the front and back of the body in two separate stages.
Will a Brazilian butt lift help with cellulite?
Yes. Since cellulite appears as dimples on the skin, usually around the buttocks and thighs, the fat transfer can add volume and even out the skin in the area. However, your surgeon may recommend other more suitable cosmetic treatments for improving the appearance of your cellulite.
Is BBL worth it?
Most patients who undergo a BBL with a qualified and experienced plastic surgeon consider it a worthwhile procedure. The buttock is a prominent feature that defines one’s silhouette, and many people wish to enhance it to attain their ideal figure. Furthermore, as the most popular buttock augmentation procedure, many patients prefer a BBL for the organic, natural, and permanent results that it delivers.