Thick nose skin Rhinoplasty, is it possible? (photos)

Hello. I am planning on getting a rhinoplasty soon. I have talked to one of my friend's father who is a plastic surgeon and he said he wouldn't do it because my skin is too thick. I would like my nose shorter and thinner, more defined. Is it possible? If so, to what extent?

Doctor Answers 6


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Thickness of the skin is always a factor, sometimes a very significant one affecting the end results in rhinoplasty. It can be both of positive or negative influence with this regard. It can have a limiting role on the degree of refinement of the tip, but at the same time it can mask some irregularities of the countour. Thus it is never a single factor in the decision if someone can benefit from rhinoplasty or not, but one not to ignore. Good luck.

Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

thick skin in rhinoplasty

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Thanks for your question and photographs. Thick skin is not a reason never to do rhinoplasty but it does add a limitation to the degree of refinement that can be achieved. Your nose is a little long and broad. If the nose is shortened the thick skin will not take the shape of the underlying structure and will look boggy and without definition. Therefore, I would recommend shortening your nose slightly or not at all and focusing on refining the tip by repositioning the cartilages and giving more tip shape etc. See a rhinoplasty surgeon in person for a consultation. Good luck

Jeffrey Jumaily, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews


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It is certainly possible to get a significant improvement with a rhinoplasty.

From the pictures show, it appears that you have a malposition of the alar cartilages, giving you that wide tip. If the surgeon recognized this deformity and knows how to correct it, then fix it. If the surgeon does not know what that is, find another one who does.

Dennis Barek, MD (retired)
Great Neck Plastic Surgeon

Rhinoplasty with thick skin

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Your nasal skin looks thick in the photos. However, this does not mean that you cannot have a rhinoplasty to shape and refine the nose. This simply means that you should expect swelling postoperatively that will last longer than the patient with thinner skin.

Michael T. Somenek, MD
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon

Thick skin and rhinoplasty

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Thank you for your pictures.  Your friend's father is correct - thick skin requires a more defined structure in order to obtain as much definition as possible.  It is certainly a doable surgery, that being said, there are limitations as to how much definition and narrowing you can obtain while still "looking like yourself".  When you go on your consultations, make sure that your docs are comfortable working with thicker skin and understanding, etc.  The most important part of this process is being on the same page as your operating surgeon such that your results are optimized.  Good luck! 

Miguel Mascaro, MD
Delray Beach Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Skin Thickness

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Thank you for your question.  Your friends father is correct in that skin type and thickness is an important component of a successful rhinoplasty operation.  In patients with thicker skin, it is important that the structure of the nose is maintained as the nose is corrected.  While it can be more challenging to perform a rhinoplasty in these patients, it is certainly possible.  An advantage of having thicker skin is that small irregularities are better camouflaged after surgery.  I would consult with a board certified facial plastic or general plastic surgeon, who specializes in rhinoplasty.  He/she will be able to review your goals for surgery, along with performing and exam of your nose to be sure those goals can be met. 

I hope that this helps!

-David Gilpin

David Gilpin, MD
Nashville Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.