I am 48. What can be done to give me a smaller nose? (photos)

I have a large nose that protrudes from the bridge. I have large asymmetric nostrils. What can be done to give me something less obtrusive? I have realistic expectations and don't expect perfection, I just want to know what is possible interns of a reduced shape? Also, is it risky at my age with thinner skin?

Doctor Answers 9

Your nose needs to be "deprojected", moved closer to your face.

See the "Web reference" link, just below my response. I made a computer morph of your nose, and an animation of the morph, to show the changes that are possible for your nose in truly expert hands.

When the tip of the nose comes back closer to the face, the length of the nostrils typically decreases, too. And of course, as you'll see in the animation, the bridge needs to be lowered to accommodate the new closer-in position of the tip.

The asymmetry can be improved, but not corrected 100%. But anyway, the asymmetry is mostly noticeable only when you're looking up, so it's not as important a change.

You should understand that the changes I demonstrated in the morph require very advanced techniques, techniques that most plastic surgeons cannot handle.  Be sure to read the section in the "Web reference" link on how to stay out of trouble while searching for a rhinoplasty surgeon.

Your nose is also a good example of why computer imaging is mandatory in rhinoplasty. You need to know exactly what the surgeon is planning to accomplish -- what features he thinks he can change, and by how much he thinks he can change them. When you see his goals, you'll know whether he has an eye for a beautiful nose, and whether he shares your opinion of what constitutes a beautiful nose. You'll also know whether the changes he proposes are enough to be meaningful to you, and whether he understands your wishes enough to address all of your priorities. Then, he must show you before and after photos to prove that he can actually accomplish what he draws on the computer.

Omaha Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Smaller Nose


The solution is going to be a rhinoplasty.  The key to that procedure will be to assess the proportions of your face and nose and then decide to what degree your nose is " too big" and how to downsize the relevant portion to achieve a result that matches the rest of your face.

This way you should achieve a result that does not look "operated ob" but rather suits your face and highlights your other features

I hope that helps

Jeremy hunt

Jeremy Hunt, MBBS, FRACS
Sydney Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 119 reviews

Rhinoplasty in 48 year old female

The pictures are suboptimal, as there is no true lateral view, to assess the radix.You need a consultation with an expert who specialized in rhinoplasty. You age is not a barrier but some modification of technique may be needed depending on the quality of your skin and bones.

Dennis Barek, MD
Great Neck Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Large nose at 48

It is very reasonable to consider septorhinoplasty at your age and for your issues.  It appears that the caudal (anterior) edge of the septum is protruding into your right nostril.  This will also contribute to an asymmetry on front view.  This should be modified along with lowering the cartilaginous and bony dorsum and resecting a segment of the tip cartilages , in effect lowering the entire nose, moving the dorsum and tip closer to your face.

J. Andrew Bartlett, MD, FRCS
Vancouver Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 16 reviews


Hi. You would definitely benefit from a total septorhinoplasty and your age is no barrier. There are multiple things which can be done to improve and refine your nose. The whole nose needs to be made smaller and deprojected, straightened and undergo refinement of the tip cartilages. I hope this helps. RegardsDamien

Reduction rhinoplasty options

Hi there. Thanks for the post. Desired nose appearance is very individual and the best place to start is with specific goals and possibly goal photos as a guide. That is why an in-person consultation is so important to help determine an appropriate plan. My favoured approach in these situations is an open rhinoplasty, which involves a small incision under the tip. Through this approach, many aspects of the nose can be manipulated - in your situation, things to think about are a reduction in the height of the nose and how much the tip projects, improving tip definition and addressing nostril asymmetry - it looks as if it is in part due to deviation of the internal structures (septum). Having realistic expectations is also key and your surgeon will best direct you on this front through an explanation of risks, likely outcome and before and after photos. Good luck

William Townley, MD, FRCS(Plast)
London Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 53 reviews

Smaller Nose

Surgical rhinoplasty is the only method of making your nose smaller. Age is not a contraindication, although smoking and other health issues may be. Good luck, Dr Steve Merten, Sydney, Australia

Steve Merten, FRACS
Sydney Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

You may be an excellent candidate for rhinoplasty.

Thank you for your question. Judging from your pictures and description, it seems that you could very much benefit from a rhinoplasty procedure. Reducing the amount of protrusion and improving the symmetry of your nostrils can be very nicely achieved through this procedure. In terms of the specific surgical techniques that may be used, discussing these in detail with a board-certified plastic surgeon is going to be the best way to gain a thorough idea of what would be entailed in your individual surgery. As far as your age is concerned, as long as you are in general good health and have realistic expectations for your final results, this isn’t a barrier at all. Many women and men your age choose to get rhinoplasty procedures and enjoy high-quality results.

Brian Vassar Heil, MD
Pittsburgh Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Age will not be a problem

Your nose needs a lot, the most important problem with your nose is that it lacks structure, and you have an important deviation of the septum. I do think you can get an amazing result with a open structured rhinoplasty where we can structure your nose with cartilage grafts, correct the deviation (you will breath better) and at the same time make your columela straight, improve the angle of the tip, reduce the nostrils and make them symmetric  and a few other things that will give you a more natural, women nose. Go for it, you can definitely get a real improvement from this surgery if you choose an expert in rhinoplasty. 
Best regards, 

Luis Eduardo Redondo, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 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.