Refining Nose Sides Possible with a Nose Job?

Hi there, I have been considering a "nose job" for a while where I would just want the sides of my nose thinned and refined (and perhaps the tip refined a bit if it was really needed for balance).

My main focus are the sides though and I'm happy with the rest of my nose. I think it's cute and petite from the side it just looks kind of piggy and thick from the front. What do you recommend for me and could I achieve my desired look without having my bones chiseled? Thanks

Doctor Answers 19

Nose refinement

It does appear that your nose could be narrowed somewhat and made more refined. Of course only a consultation with a plastic surgeon can give you a complete understanding of what can be done for you.

Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
2.5 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Nose job to refine nose width and tip

The only way to narrow the sidewalls of the nose is to perform osteotomies and narrow the nasal mucosa, also known as “breaking” the nose. That is the only way possible to narrow the nose. Thick, oily skin will be a limitation to any surgical enhancement of the nose because it just does not allow for excellent definition of the cartilaginous and bony structures once they have been reshaped.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 145 reviews


Refining the nasal features without changing your look too much certainly can be achieved. If you have very thick skin, it may be difficult to refine the nasal tip as much as you would like.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Rhinoplasties are best planned with additional photographic views


Sounds like and looks like that you would benefit from a surgical rhinoplasty. You are very attractive, and a nose job would help to harmonize your nose with the rest of your face.

However, I can't give you specifics without side views ("laterals") and a "worm's eye" view (from your feet looking up into your nostrils).

I suspect that you will require a full rhinoplasty, involving the tip, sides, and top....

  • Usually, I make a small incision in the skin of the columella (the middle portion between the nostrils) for optimal visualization. This is called an "open" approach and is great for decreasing the bulk of a "piggy" tip.
  • I trim, augment, and reconfigure the tip cartilages.
  • I might reduce the height of the nose, or augment the base of the nose between the eyebrows (as seen from the sides).
  • You will probably require fracturing (breaking) the nasal bones to thin the nose.

I hope my suggestions help. Post some more photos, and we can all be more specific.

Michael C. Pickart, MD
Ventura Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Refining the thickness of your nose can be accomplished with Rhinoplasty Techniques

In order to thin the nose the nasal bones would require to be thinned and brought closer together. The tip is also a little wide requiring a finesse tip rhinoplasty. Your nose is also a little short causing ti to look a little piggy (upturned), this would only be corrected by slightly derotating the tip using cartilage grafting.

Andrew Jacono, MD
Great Neck Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 199 reviews

Refining of the sides of the nose is possible with a rhinoplasty.

The side walls would need to be fractured to narrow them the right way. You are right is thinking that you will need the tip narrowed as well. See an experienced rhinoplasty surgeon who does natural noses that you like.

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Refining the nose with a finesse rhinoplasty

More photos would be required to give more accurate suggestions. However, it appears to me that you would benefit from a finesse rhinoplasty to thin and enhance your nose. Typically the procedure is done under local anesthesia with twighlight sleep.

Darrick E. Antell, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Nose sides can be refined with rhinoplasty.


Your expectations are realistic, and I think a good rhinoplasty will accomplish what you want. A step by step surgical plan is made after detailed examination, so I would not tell you exactly what you need based on one photograph. I do think the bones probably should be narrowed as well.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Plastic surgery for "piggy" nose

A side view would show the upturned tip. In this case, you may benefit from a septal extension graft which would push the tip forward and give the illusion of a longer and thinner nose. In this instance,  you could also benefit from enhanced projection along with nostril reduction. Without cutting the bones, your only option to give the illusion of a thinner nose is to add a graft to the top of the bridge to make it appear taller and thinner.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 82 reviews

Thinning of Lateral Nostril Thickness

Hi Saphira,

The thickness of your nostril rims laterally is very difficult to correct in most cases. At your consultation for rhinoplasty, make sure that your prospective surgeon addresses this, and ask to see photos of patients with a similar nose to yours.

Do choose your surgeon most carefully.

Good luck and be well.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 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.