“You were the most beautiful baby,” my mother once said to me. “But I was worried that your lips were going to be too thin.” Though it must be stated for the record that she now vehemently denies ever having made this declaration, she wasn’t entirely wrong. Even before Zoom enabled us to become freakishly attuned to the idiosyncrasies of our faces, I’ve long bemoaned a lack of volume, and despite having learned how to smile in such a way that my upper lip won’t disappear when I flash my teeth, sometimes I forget, and often wish that I didn’t have to pay it any attention at all.
“There’s a lot of beauty in finer lips,” the stylist Mellany Sanchez told me in between bites of a lemon tart at the Odeon after I voiced my complaints. Sanchez, who was bestowed with a naturally endowed pout, noted that a fuller mouth hasn’t always been the standard, that there was a time before bigger meant better. Another one-time Vogue colleague at the table, however, was quick to chime in: “Dude,” she deadpanned, putting down her fork. “Just get a little filler.”