Can my Nose Be Made Smaller Without Looking Fake?

I'm a 22 year old female of middle eastern descent. My nose is very big and masculine. My nostrils are big, my nose is long and overprojected, and the tip is wide. The size is what bothers me, the shape is okay I guess. I want a cute, round, feminine and *small* nose (like a button nose). I want a drastic change in size. I don't want my nose to be defined/pointy but just smaller. Is this possible to achieve without looking fake or done? Also what should I look for in choosing a surgeon? Thank you :)

Doctor Answers 10

Natural-Looking, Refined Nose

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The features you’ve described are actually very typical of the Middle Eastern nose. In fact, there is an entire category of nose jobs dedicated solely to correcting and refining the Middle Eastern nose, called the “Middle Eastern rhinoplasty.” An experienced surgeon will know how to adjust his or her techniques to reflect those needed in such a procedure. This includes knowing how to make the new nose fit in well with surrounding facial features, and avoiding a nose that looks “fake” or overdone. In terms of what to look for when choosing a surgeon, I recommend that you ask to see real life examples of before-and-after pictures. In this way, you can get a better understanding of the doctor’s work and can better imagine what your new nose will likely look like.

New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 79 reviews

Rhinoplasty and natural results

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The goal of Rhinoplasty surgery is always to achieve a natural looking nose which is well balanced to each individuals features. I would suggest going to a surgeon who has digital imaging. This allows the surgeon to take a preoperative photograph of you the patient and make the proposed changes on the imaging machine that the surgeon feels is feasible and desirable for your features and the structure of your nose. You will be able to see these diagrams which should look similar to your projected result this will allow you to have an open conversation regarding shape, size, length, and overall esthetic appearance. I also suggest that you review many preoperative and postoperative photographs and make sure that your surgeon has plenty of experience with the mid-eastern nose.

Michael Elam, MD
Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 218 reviews

Nose can be made smaller and look natural

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In the hands of a very experienced rhinoplasty surgeon, it is possible to create a smaller nose from your preexisting large nose without looking fake.  Please have reasonable expectations.  The tip can be narrowed while the shape is left the same.  Feminization and refinement can certainly be performed on your nose.  Computer imaging would be helpful so that you have clear expectations between your rhinoplasty surgeon and yourself.  When researching your rhinoplasty surgeon, make sure that he or she has performed thousands of rhinoplasty surgeries so as to give you the maximum experience and benefit.  Rhinoplasty is a discipline all and of itself and it is important to seek out a surgeon who has mastered this operation.  Look for a board-certified facial plastic surgeon and in addition, make sure that the surgery center itself where the procedure is being performed is certified and the anesthesiologists are board-certified.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Cute nose possible but have to preserve breathing

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Middle eastern noses typically have thicker skin so one has to be careful to not remove too much of the structure of the nose.  Not making the nose too small will also help keep it look more natural.

Sam Naficy, MD, FACS
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 231 reviews

A Smaller Nose That Looks Natural

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Your goals are reasonable.  Rhinoplasty surgery should achieve natural results. Consult with a rhinoplasty surgeon who has experience  with middle eastern patients (many times there are ethnic anatomic characteristics in your noses). See post-op results in patients with similar noses.

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

It can

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I would need to examine you personally, but it depends on several factors. Making the nose smaller almost always will narrow your airway to some degree. An internal exam will reveal whether this is possible without impairing your breathing. Unfortunately I am constantly having to revise rhinoplasties on patients who wanted a 'small' nose and now cannot breathe effectively.

It is important to achieve a balanced result between the bridge of your nose and the tip. Augmenting the dorsum and raising dorsal height can give the illusion of a narrower dorsum without necessarily narrowing the bones. Thicker skin patients will require more definitive measure to get definition in the tip, usually requiring tip grafting. Excision and overnarrowing of cartilages is not recommended. Finally an alar base reduction can sometimes help but is usually not necessary.

Samson Lee, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon

Smaller nose without looking "fake."

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"Fake" looking noses usually occur for a few reasons:

  • The surgeon takes a cookbook approach to rhinoplasty, doing a step-by-step operation without regard to the patient's unique anatomy.
  • The surgeon creates a nose that although it looks okay by itself, it doesn't complement or coordinate with the rest of the face.
  • The surgery is overdone, over-resected, too exaggerated.

Fortunately, you can usually get a sense of the surgeon's style and ability by looking through his before/after photos. If the surgeon's work look good, non-fake, and the noses are tailored to each patient's face and goals, then you've probably found someone good.

That said, there are sometimes limits to how much change can be safely made to a nose (e.g., thick skinned patients can really get a bad result with an over-aggressive reduction because the skin won't re-drape properly).

Hope tis helps,


David C. Pearson, MD
Jacksonville Facial Plastic Surgeon

Reduction Rhinoplasty with Natural Results

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Hi Mina,

Yes, your nose can be made smaller and still appear natural. It is important that you convery your goals of rhinoplasty with your surgeon. Choose a surgeon who you feel understands what you want, and who can show you photos and/or patients similar to your nose.

Good luck and be well.

Dr. P

Michael A. Persky, MD
Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

It's important to find surgeon with expertise in Middle Eastern noses

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Your post caught my eye because we see so many patients like you. The important thing is to find a surgeon who specializes in rhinoplasty and has experience with Middle Eastern patients. WIth Middle Eastern noses, the skin is generally a little thicker and so knowing how to deal with this issue is important. This is particularly important because if your surgeon doesn't have experience in this, if they try to make your nose too small, it can look amorphic and blobby.

All that being said, I saw the pictures you posted and think that compared to many patients, it does not look like your nose is that big :)

Good luck in your search.

Peyman Solieman, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Read your question ---

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You are asking for a nose that will look done. Of course it can be done and look natural - but all the things you are asking for are a "done nose". Speak to an experienced rhinoplastic surgeon.

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.