Fixing Bulbous Nose with Rhinoplasty?

Fixing Bulbous Nose with Rhinoplasty, submitted image.

A big nose is every girl's nightmare, and I've had to live with mine my entire life. I thought I'd come to peace with it someday but it looks like that's never going to happen. So now I'm looking for options, the most obvious one being a rhinoplasty, of course. However, my bulbous nasal tip is very prominent and I'm concerned doctors will have a tough time repairing it without making it look strange and unnatural. Most before and after pictures focus on the bridge of the nose, which I assume is easier to fix. Will I ever be able to have a small beautiful nose as well?


F, 31, Massachusetts

That's a very common concern to have. Rhinoplasty to improve the appearance of a bulbous nasal tip can be a challenging procedure so it's important to do your research and find an experienced cosmetic surgeon with a solid history of excellent results.

A good plastic surgeon is not just technically experienced, but also has a good understanding of facial aesthetics and the overall balance of facial features.

During the procedure, a rhinoplasty surgeon will sculpt the nasal tip cartilage to create a more refined nasal tip. The exact surgical approach should take each individual's unique nasal features into account to create a balanced, natural look.

There are many types of bulbous tip noses, and many different approaches to the procedure. Some bulbous tip noses have a rounded dome shape. Others may have a wide tip or an aquiline droopy tip. Some may have thick nasal tip skin while others have hypertrophic lower lateral cartilage.

It's a little hard to tell from your attached photo, but in your case it appears that there are diverging lower lateral cartilages. This cartilage appears to diverge more widely than normal in the lower lateral zone. I can't offer you any specific medical advice without a personal consultation, but the general goal of a rhinoplasty in cases like yours would be to unite the lateral cartilages to create a more slender appearance.

This type of rhinoplasty can be performed as either an open or closed rhinoplasty. My personal preference would be an open rhinoplasty because it allows for clear visualization of the operating area and very precise sculpting and tip refinement. Generally speaking, the more control and visibility we have, the easier it is to do better work -- and the lower the risk of a negative result.

Having a rounded nasal tip is very common and a perfectly valid reason for rhinoplasty. While the risk of an unnatural looking result is always a legitimate concern with any cosmetic surgery, the risks of an awkward looking nose are minimal in the hands of a skilled rhinoplasty surgeon.

Always remember to consult with an experienced, board-certified facial plastic surgeon for best results.

Rhinoplasty surgery to reduce or refine a bulbous nasal tip is a common procedure but demands surgeons have a superior aesthetic understanding of facial features in order for the best results possible to be realized.

This procedure can be performed as either a closed or open rhinoplasty. A closed rhinoplasty means that all the scarring occurs inside the nose, and is not visible at all from the outside. An open rhinoplasty involves making a hairline incision on the columella between the two nostrils. When this incision heals, the scar is nearly invisible.

While it may seem like an obvious choice to choose the procedure with less-visible internal scars, most plastic surgeons agree there is a far greater level of control and accuracy with the open rhinoplasty procedure. In many cases, having a greater level of control and precision means more aesthetically perfect results.

Bulbous tip rhinoplasty has a long recovery period. The final slender contour is usually visible after 10 to 12 months of healing. While this recovery period may seem long, we have achieved beautiful results with this procedure and can count many satisfied patients.

Your concerns about having an "unnatural looking" nose are understandable. The best way for you to become more comfortable with the procedure would be to consult with more than one plastic surgeon. Review their before-and-after photos of past surgical successes, and choose a surgeon who has a good sense of facial aesthetics. Remember: When considering any cosmetic surgery, your personal choice of surgeon is a very important part of the process.

A bulbous tip rhinoplasty can bring dramatic improvements to the aesthetics of an entire face. If your nose bothers you, I highly encourage you to consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon to consider which specific surgical options and techniques make the most sense for you.

Wide or bulbous nasal tips are a common cause of personal dissatisfaction and a negative self-image. While the procedure is indeed a challenging one, excellent results are reliably achievable.


One thing to be aware of: a rhinoplasty involving the nasal tip can be slow to heal and slow to take its final structure. Many rhinoplasty patients report that the best results appear up to one year after surgery.

A rhinoplasty to fix a bulbous tip nose requires cautious, skilled sculpting of tip cartilage. For this reason I recommend an open rhinoplasty rather than a closed one. An open rhinoplasty allows for much more detailed work, enabling us to achieve a more polished, beautiful result.

Always be sure to consult a board-certified plastic surgeon with a history of success in the procedure you are seeking.

It's understandable to be concerned about an unnatural looking result to any plastic surgery. An experienced facial plastic surgeon will treat every face differently -- taking into account the unique aesthetic balance of every patient’s facial features.

During the procedure the surgeon will carefully sculpt the nasal tip to balance the composition of the face. The result should look natural and work aesthetically with the rest of the facial features.

Because bulbous noses have a variety of causes, from hypertrophic lower lateral cartilage, to excessive soft tissue coverage, to an overall rounded dome shape -- there is no single approach to the procedure.

Generally speaking, surgery to correct the bulbous tip of a nose involves defatting and suturing the tip to create a more defined, sharper look -- and using cartilage grafts to refine the overall shape of the nose.

The surgery can be performed as either an open or closed rhinoplasty, but the open technique affords greater accuracy and control.

Rhinoplasty to correct a bulbous nose is a technically demanding procedure. Be sure to consult with a board-certified facial plastic surgeon who has performed multiple bulbous tip rhinoplasties.

Those are very common concerns. A bulbous tip rhinoplasty is a common plastic surgery. This surgical procedure to improve the aesthetic appearance of a bulbous nasal tip has reliable results and can look very natural.

When performing the surgery, an experienced facial plastic surgeon will consider not only the shape of the bulbous nose, but the overall balance of the facial features. In some instances the nasal bridge must also be narrowed in order to create a natural looking transition to the newly narrowed tip.

In terms of treatment options, a bulbous tip rhinoplasty procedure can be performed using an open or closed rhinoplasty technique. Because the procedure can be technically complex and challenging, many plastic surgeons will suggest open rhinoplasty, which makes accessing the tip cartilage easier and will give your surgeon a greater degree of control and precision.

For best results, I advise you to contact an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon with extensive experience in bulbous nose rhinoplasty. Be sure to review before and after photographs of prior work.

Alexander Ovchinsky has 10 Revision Rhinoplasty before & afters:

Revision Rhinoplasty before image performed by Dr. Alexander OvchinskyRevision Rhinoplasty after image performed by Dr. Alexander OvchinskyRevision Rhinoplasty before image performed by Dr. Alexander OvchinskyRevision Rhinoplasty after image performed by Dr. Alexander OvchinskyRevision Rhinoplasty before image performed by Dr. Alexander OvchinskyRevision Rhinoplasty after image performed by Dr. Alexander OvchinskyRhinoplasty (nose job) before image performed by Dr. Alexander OvchinskyRhinoplasty (nose job) after image performed by Dr. Alexander Ovchinsky

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Rhinoplasties to reduce a bulbous nasal tip are very common and effective. Please keep in mind that making a wide nose with a bulbous-tip more slender can take some time to achieve. As with any rhinoplasty, the best results often appear up to one year after the nose surgery. The time involved is especially important to mention in this case. however, as tip swelling can be one of the slowest types of swelling to resolve.

During the procedure we will typically add cartilage grafts in order to improve your overall nasal structure. We also usually remove some fat from the nasal tip, and carefully shape the tip cartilage to create a beautiful sculpted look.

To address your specific concerns about looking “strange” or “unnatural”: We take great care to maintain a natural-looking structure that “fits” with your face. As with any plastic surgery, I like to help patients make decisions that will work best for their specific facial structure.

I encourage you to arrange for a consultation to discuss the many options that are available. No plastic surgeon should ever recommend a one-size-fits-all solution. Every face is different and every procedure is different.

We can show you some before and after photos of bulbous tip rhinoplasties I have performed. I think you will be impressed with our results.

Robert Brueck has 1 Nose job before & after:

Nose job before image performed by Dr. Robert BrueckNose job after image performed by Dr. Robert Brueck

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A bulbous tip is one of the greatest reasons to have a rhinoplasty. I can make a more dramatic change on that then on the dorsal hump. It is a bit more of a challenging surgery and requires an open rhinoplasty in my hands. However it is a wonderful procedure with dramatic results

Christopher Park has 1 Nose job before & after:

Nose job before image performed by Dr. Christopher ParkNose job after image performed by Dr. Christopher Park

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Dear 4belinda:

Thank you for sharing your photo. The smaller, more refined tip you look for is a reasonable request today! Prior to 25 years ago, the bridge as you correctly describe was filed or rasped down with tip elevation using internal (only) incisions. The “Rhino renaissance” of the past quarter century has provided new perspective and approaches for a finer appearance to the nose; particularly the tip you find wide and separated; ie “bulbous” or bifid. Your skin is thin and will drape over the tip beautifully which is not the case of other round nasal tips due to thick and sebaceous skin.


I would agree that base in this single photo your already beautiful face would look spectacular with a Tip Rhinoplasty where only the tip needs finesse and not the rest of the nose.


You may find more information at:,


You also have one of the International Leaders in Rhinoplasty named Mark Constantian, MD, 603-880-7700 in nearby Nashua, NH. If not him, please consult with a well experienced, skilled and talented Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.


I wish you the best!

Actually your complaint is quite common and an easy thing to correct.  A bulbous tip is the most straight forward and easiest type of Rhinoplasty to correct.   Make sure you meet with a board certified plastic surgeon to discuss your concerns.  He or she should spend time with you explaining the pros and cons of surgery and you should feel comfortable with that surgeon before booking anything.


A bulbous tip is one of the easiest and most straight forward of the nasal "deformities" to improve. You are an attractive person and would greatly benefit from rhinoplasty. Best of luck to you.

Paul Chasan has 5 Nose job before & afters:

Nose job before image performed by Dr. Paul ChasanNose job after image performed by Dr. Paul ChasanNose job before image performed by Dr. Paul ChasanNose job after image performed by Dr. Paul ChasanNose job before image performed by Dr. Paul ChasanNose job after image performed by Dr. Paul ChasanNose job before image performed by Dr. Paul ChasanNose job after image performed by Dr. Paul Chasan

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A bulbous tip is one of the most straightforward and rewarding conditions to improve in rhinoplasty! Don't wait any longer! 

It's a common complaint for patients requesting rhinoplasty.  Make sure your plastic surgeon is experienced, closed or open rhinoplasty depends on anatomical problems to be corrected. Good luck 

Seek many in person consultations with boarded surgeons. Ask to see before and after photos of their operations. Than decide whom you feel most confident with. Good Luck. 

Sure.   You can certainly have the surgery you wish to have.  The plastic surgeon you visit should be able to discuss your surgical options and what is a realistic expectation and what is a surgically realistic result.  Make sure that you choose a surgeon who has experience, board certified, and will show you photos of patients with a similar problem that you are presenting with

Jonathan Berman has 1 Nose job, Chin implant before & after:

Nose job, Chin implant before image performed by Dr. Jonathan BermanNose job, Chin implant after image performed by Dr. Jonathan Berman

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  Yes your concerns are common and absolutely fixable. I would recommend an open rhinoplasty to be able to improve visualization of the underlying framework of your nose to address your complaints. Good Luck! 

Yes you can have modification of the nasal tip. Recommend open rhinoplasty