Can I Get a Natural Looking Nose by Just Shortening the Tip?

I have a long and pointy nose. I feel like its a big beak that dominates my face. I really want to make my nose shorter but I imagine that my nostrils would need to be made smaller as well. To make my nose shorter but still look natural do I need a major nose surgery?

Doctor Answers 14

A Beautiful Nose Gets Out of the Way of the Other Facial Features

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Hi Can't,

The simple answer to your question is yes, to make your nose shorter but still look natural will require a major nose surgery. To deproject your nose and maintain a natural well balanced appearance will require advanced rhinoplasty techniques, not "minor", beginner, or rhinoplasty 101 nasal surgery. As a patient, you need not worry about the degree of difficulty, but do your best to choose your surgeon most carefully. The recovery from "major" vs "minor" rhinoplasty surgery is about the same.

Good luck and be well.

Dr. P

Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Shortening the Nasal Tip

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The nose is shortened by rotating the tip towards the forehead. I assume you do not want that to happen - it would be a mistake.

Decreasing tip projection (the distance between the tip and the face) would be beneficial. This would necessitate changes in other nasal structures, but I cannot be more specific without other pictures and an examination.

Richard W. Fleming, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Shortening nose tip should can look natural

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Long pointed noses can be brought back closer to the face through a rhinoplasty procedure. This is not a minor procedure; it is a full rhinoplasty.

Occasionally if the nose is brought back significantly there is alar flare, which is addressed through alarplasty Weir excisions. This will make the nose shorter and natural. Sometimes, multiple different tip techniques are performed to decrease the projection of the nose to allow better fit and balance with the rest of the nose.

It is important to note that while deprojecting the tip, the new tip should be in balance with the remainder of the nose and in turn the nose must be in balance with other facial features.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 158 reviews

Natural-looking nose job - deprojecting the nasal tip

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Specific advice regarding your nose would require a personal examination, from all angles, including intranasally. Having said that, deprojecting the nasal tip may seem simple enough. However, for each alteration made to the nose, there are compensatory changes that often had to be made as well. For example, if we drop the nasal tip, its relation to the dorsum changes, and thus this must be addressed. As you mention, the nostil shape may change, often becoming more round (versus oval).

In most cases, no further intervention is necessary for this. However, in some situations, ala must be addressed as well. Again, this would require a personal evaluation.

Best of luck to you,

Dr. Most

Sam Most, MD
Bay Area Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Natural look from tip shortening Rhinoplasty

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It is not always necessary to make the nostrils smaller when decreasing the projection of your nose. It is difficult to determine exactly what your needs are without seeing additional photos and/or performing an examination. Thank you and best of luck.

Dr. Nassif

Paul S. Nassif, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Making a nose smaller.

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To some degree, making your nose smaller involves making ALL components (nasal bones, ULC, LLC, septum, ala, etc) smaller, and to this extent, it does involve major nose surgery. There is simply no easy way to shrink your nose.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Projecting nose reduction

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Your concern over your projecting nose is certainly realistic. Reducing the over projection can be performed but is like taking the supports down on a tent. While lowering the height, it may lead to some more tip fullness from the soft tissue envelope, and yes you may need a nostril reduction as well. Other views and of course an in-person exam are important.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Tip can be absolutely deprojected

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Hi Cantstandmynose,

Let's see what we can do to change your name. From this view, it looks as though your nose is fairly overprojected. A small amount of deprojection can be accomplished in one of many ways, but more significant deprojection usually takes some specialized maneuvers. So make sure you consult with a rhinoplasty specialist as it is important to deproject your tip in a way that maintains its stability and won't cause your tip to drop or retract with time.

As far as nostril narrowing goes, my partner Dr. Solieman undertook a large study examining how much deprojection caused nostril flare and it showed that, in fact, nostril narrowing was not required in the great majority of cases. The only patients who benefited from nostril narrowing in that case were those for whom it was already planned because of excessive width. Hope that helps.

Jason Litner, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Correcting the Long, Pointy (over-projecting) Nose

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yes you can. Your nose has an over-projecting nose. Reducing the height of the tip = the projection requires division of the attachment of the tip (the two lower lateral cartilages) to the forward edge of the septum.

As the tip is lowered to its desired position, there will be flaring / rounding of the side walls of the nostrils and the back / hump / dorsum of the nose may appear more prominent.

Excessive roundness of the nostrils (as is seen in African or Mexican noses) may require a small wedge (Weir) resection while bringing down the dorsum of the nose , depending on the extent of reduction required, may also require in-fracturing of the sides of the nose.

If shortening of the nose is desired, it can be readily done during this procedure by removing a few mm of the anterior septum.

You should consult with several qualified nose surgeons and pick the one you liked the most.

Dr. P. Aldea

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Consult a rhinoplasty surgeon for natural look

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You need the help of a rhinoplastic surgeon to discuss what you don't want and evaluate what can be done for you. Don't worry about major or minor surgery, agree on what you need done to get to the result you want.

William B. Rosenblatt, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 12 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.