The rhinoplasty procedure is performed with the purpose of improving the nasal bridge and the nasal tip, but it has no effect on the nasal base. The base of your nose may be wider than normal, and if you want to surgically alter it, you can undergo a specific procedure that is different than the rhinoplasty procedure. More commonly known as the nostril reduction procedure, an alarplasty focuses on the base of your nose and the size of your nostrils. 

What is Nostril Reduction Procedure?

The alarplasty procedure or alar base reduction surgery or nostril reduction procedure is performed with the purpose of reducing the size of your nasal alar, which is the part of your nose on both sides, covering the nostrils on the side opposite to the septum. A piece of these nasal wings will be removed during the nostril reduction procedure to reduce the overall size of the nostrils as wide nostrils are a cause of cosmetic concern for many people. 

Contrary to popular belief, an alarplasty procedure is not the same as a rhinoplasty procedure. In fact, alarplasty is a type of rhinoplasty procedure that is completely different from the traditional rhinoplasty procedure. 

What are the benefits of the Nostril Reduction Procedure?

There are many benefits of the alarplasty procedure ranging from physical to mental, psychological to social. When compared to the rhinoplasty procedure, it is less invasive than the latter and is highly recommended to anyone with wide nostrils but a straight nasal bridge. The rhinoplasty procedure is common but it cannot change the size of the nostrils, only an alarplasty procedure can. 

An alarplasty also helps improve airflow through your nose if your nostrils are asymmetric in size with one size wider than the other. The narrower side may not be able to circulate air and allow airflow as well as the wider size, creating discomfort while breathing. This can be easily managed with a nostril reduction procedure which will not only fix the size of your nostrils on the wider side but also make them more symmetric in appearance. 

Wide nostrils also affect the aesthetics of the face and can have a negative impact on the self-image of the affected individual. Undergoing the nostril reduction procedure helps improve the appearance of the nose, especially if the tip of your nose and nasal bridge is straight. This improved appearance of the nostrils will improve your facial aesthetics, which in turn will improve your self-image and increase your self-worth significantly. You will get a confidence boost that you very much deserve. 

What to Expect During the Nostril Reduction Procedure

The nostril reduction procedure begins with the consultation period during which your surgeon will assess how much of your nostrils should be removed so as to successfully reduce the size but also not affect the breathing abilities. You can use this time to discuss the procedure and the associated risks and complications of the procedure with your surgeon so that you can make an informed decision about undergoing the procedure. 

Once you have been approved to undergo the alarplasty procedure meaning that you have met the eligibility requirements for the procedure, you will be prepped for the procedure. The procedure can be performed using different techniques, and your surgeon will choose the best technique for you based on your health and your expectations from the procedure. This is why is it is extremely important for you to be candid about your goals and expectations with your surgeon. 

Your surgery will begin with you being put under general anesthesia or local anesthesia, based on your doctor’s recommendation. Then the initial incision will be made after which excess nasal alar will be excised using one of the following techniques:

  • Wedge 
  • Sill 
  • Weir

The names of these techniques refer to the shape of the excised nasal alar. Once your surgeon has excised the nasal alar and reduced the size of the nostril appropriately, the incisions will be sutured and this marks the end of your nostril reduction procedure. 

Recovery after Nostril Reduction Procedure

The recovery period after a nostril reduction procedure is shorter compared to other cosmetic surgery or plastic surgery procedures. It only lasts for around 3 weeks, although the results are not fully visible for up to a month to three months after the procedure. Hence, it can be said that the recovery period is one month to three months long. 

The first week after the procedure, there is going to be significant swelling and bruising of the nose with the pinkish color of the incision. This pinkish color can give the impression that the scar is visible and excessive, however, this color will subside by the second week, at the latest and the scar will be hidden in the natural contours of the nose. 

During the recovery period, you should abstain from sleeping in any position that is not your back, and you should also try to sleep alone as sleeping with someone can increase the risk of injury to your nose through the night. You should also avoid smoking, drinking, and any form of strenuous activity that can put pressure on the incision. Doing any of these three things can increase the risk of infection and eventually, wound separation.

Am I a Good Candidate for a Nostril Reduction Procedure?

A good candidate for a nostril reduction procedure is someone who meets the following criteria of eligibility:

  • Should be a non-smoker, or willing to give up smoking at least eight weeks prior to and after the procedure
  • Should be physically and mentally healthy
  • Should be undergoing the procedure for themselves alone
  • Should be aware of possible complications and side effects of the procedure
  • Should have wide nostrils or asymmetric nostrils that require a nostril reduction procedure.

Risks and Complications of Nostril Reduction Procedure

The nostril reduction procedure is an elective and a minor procedure but it is a surgical procedure, and as such has certain risk factors and complications associated with it. They include, but are not limited to:

  • Side effects of anesthesia such as an allergic reaction
  • Infection
  • Bleeding or accumulation of blood (hematoma)
  • Visible scarring
  • Excessive scarring
  • Pus at the site of incision

Why Choose Dr. Richard Sackelariou?

Dr Richard Saceklariou is a board-certified specialist plastic surgeon who has traveled the world and perfected his technique throughout his long and successful career. With over two decades of experience and training in different countries, Dr Sackelariou uses state-of-the-art techniques to operate on his patients and achieve the results that his patients desire. He values patient satisfaction and safety which means that he will never promise results that he cannot achieve during the procedure. As the years have passed, he has studied and improved his skillset to be able to better achieve all results that his patient have in mind, without compromising on the safety of the patient. 

Celebrities who underwent the Nostril Reduction Procedure 

Many A-list celebrities have admitted to undergoing the rhinoplasty procedure. While they do not disclose exactly what type of nose job they have gotten, it is obvious from before and after pictures that these procedures also include nostril reduction procedures. Their nostrils seem to have reduced in size significantly along with different changes in the structure of the nose. Some of these Hollywood celebrities are mentioned below:

  • Tyra Banks
  • Ariana Grande
  • Beyonce
  • Kate Moss
  • Cardi B
  • Scarlett Johanson

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a surgery to make your nostrils smaller?

Yes, the surgery to make your nostrils smaller is called an alarplasty and can be performed easily as an outpatient procedure, meaning that you will be discharged the same day as your procedure. 

Can a nose job fix big nostrils?

While a rhinoplasty or nose job itself cannot fix the size of your nostrils as it is more focused on the nasal bridge but a type of rhinoplasty known as alarplasty can help fix the size of your nostrils. 

How long does alarplasty take to heal?

Recovery from alarplasty, unlike other cosmetic procedures, only takes around three weeks. Although it is worth noting that the results of the procedure may not be fully visible for up to 1 month to 3 months after the procedure. 

Does alarplasty affect breathing?

Although the procedure includes a reduction in the size of the nostrils, your surgeon will assess your nostrils during the consultation phase to know how much reduction should be done to ensure there is no effect on your breathing abilities. 

Is alarplasty permanent?

Alarplasty procedure produces long-lasting, almost permanent results. The results of the procedure only change when the aging of the skin causes there to be a change in the nasal structure but that is not the fault of the procedure but rather an inevitable change. In short, alarplasty produces permanent results. 

Does alarplasty leave a scar?

An alarplasty procedure includes incisions that are bound to leave a scar behind but the good news is that these incisions are well hidden in the natural contours of the nose. Generally, given the thickness of the nasal alar, they are more likely to have thick scars if not taken care of properly during the recovery period. It is also important to point out that there might be visible scarring during the recovery period as the incisions will be pink in color and stand out. But that is unique to the first couple of weeks of the recovery period. 

What is nose tip surgery?

Nose tip surgery or rhinoplasty is a surgical procedure that is performed with the purpose of improving the nasal tip structure while giving it a slight lift to result in the appearance of a button nose. 

Can Alarplasty be done in local anesthesia?

Yes, an alarplasty procedure can be performed using local anesthesia, especially if it is being performed on its own. If you choose to combine it with other procedures such as a traditional rhinoplasty, general anesthesia may be recommended. You can discuss your choice of anesthesia with your surgeon during the consultation period so that your surgeon can recommend the best choice for you. 

How do I stop my nostrils from flaring?

Nasal flaring or widening of the nostrils during breathing is indicative of a breathing problem that you will need to see a doctor for. If the flaring of your nostrils is not related to your breathing but rather is present throughout the day, then it may be because your nostrils are wide in size. The widened nostrils can be easily managed by undergoing the nostril reduction procedure or an alarplasty. 

How much does a nostril reduction cost?

A nostril reduction procedure can be performed using different techniques and based on the technique used, the cost of the procedure may change. Generally, the nostril reduction procedure may cost anywhere between $2000 to $3000.

Is an alarplasty worth it?

An alarplasty procedure has several physical, mental, and social benefits that are responsible for the rising popularity of the procedure. The entire procedure, when performed by a board-certified surgeon is safe and less likely to result in mortality or morbidity. Moreover, the benefits of the procedure far outweigh any minor risks of complications that can arise during or after the procedure. Given all these benefits and the high patient satisfaction rate associated with the alarplasty procedure, it is safe to say that the procedure is totally worth it. Book a consultation now to discuss the procedure, associated risks, and your eligibility for the procedure with our skilled, board-certified, specialist plastic surgeons. 

Is Alarplasty safe?

Alarplasty is a surgical procedure that should be performed by a specialist plastic surgeon to reduce the risk of side effects and complications associated with the procedure. If you meet the eligibility criteria for the procedure and have chosen a skilled, board-certified specialist plastic surgeon to perform your procedure, then you are in good hands and very less likely to suffer from any complications. Moreover, doing so makes the alarplasty procedure nearly completely safe. 

Further Medical Reading

What’s Next

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If you are considering cosmetic plastic surgery then Dr Richard Sackelariou is the specialist plastic surgeon for you.

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