Hip dips surgery is a cosmetic procedure that injects or removes fat from the hip and thigh area.

This surgery aims to get rid of indentations on the side of your hips and leave a smooth, curved line from your hips to your thigh.

This article will explain the steps of a hip dips surgery, its risks and possible complications, and everything else you need to know if you’re curious about this procedure.

In popular representations of bodies, especially female bodies, we’re used to seeing a streamlined, half-circle silhouette that curves out at the hip and curves back at the thigh.

While this might be an image that we take for granted as a “normal” or desirable way to look, many people’s bodies just don’t look like that.

“Hip dips” or “violin hips” refer to indentations around the curvature from your hips to your thighs. These indentations can happen when the skin on the sides of your hips is more tightly attached to the trochanter, a deeper part of your thigh bone.

The distribution and amount of fat on your body can make these indentations appear more noticeable.

There’s nothing anatomically wrong with having hip dips. They don’t present any medical risk. But for some people, having hips dips makes them feel self-conscious.

Hip dips surgery is a fat redistribution surgery (also called liposculpting). That means fat is suctioned from one area of your body and then injected into the trochanter area.

The goal of this fat graft is to smooth out the curvature of the hips.

As an alternative, fat may be removed from the dip area to create a contoured silhouette. Artificial fillers or solid silicone implants may also be used as an alternative to fat grafts.

Getting a hip dips surgery is usually an outpatient procedure. Depending on your doctor’s recommendation, you’ll most likely be put under general anesthesia.

Surgical steps

  1. First, fat is removed from your body using a liposuction procedure. Fat may be removed from your buttocks, stomach, or inner thighs. Small incisions will be made to remove the fat, and they’ll be stitched closed and bandaged.
  2. The fat is then prepared for reinjection into your body. A machine will spin the fat so that blood and other fluids are removed from it.
  3. The fat will then be injected into your hip area. Usually, stitches aren’t needed at the injection site.

Aftercare and recovery

Even if you’re not required to stay overnight at the hospital, you’ll need someone to drive you home after a fat grafting procedure.

There may be some pain at the injection and incision sites for a couple of weeks after the fat transfer. Bruising and pain can last for 2 weeks or more.

You might not notice the result of your hip dips surgery right away. It can take up to 6 months for the fat graft to completely take effect.

Nonsmokers who are within 30 percent of their ideal body weight, with highly responsive skin elasticity and no prior history of bleeding conditions, may be good candidates for liposuction procedures like hip dip surgery.

If you’ve experienced a recent dramatic weight loss (25 pounds or more), have an auto-immune or bleeding condition, or take blood-thinning medication, your doctor may advise you against hip dips surgery.

People who have been diagnosed with an eating disorder or other conditions that cause body dysmorphia should be extremely cautious when considering a hip dips surgery.

It’s important to understand that the result of this surgery can be a bit unpredictable, and there’s no way to guarantee the results that you’re hoping for.

It’s also worth noting that 30 to 70 percent of the fat injected into your hip area during a hip dips procedure may be absorbed by your body in the year following surgery. For this reason, you may want to consider additional fat grafting procedures.

Fat grafting and liposuction are considered relatively low-risk and simple procedures. However, like any surgery, there’s always some risk of complications — some of them serious.

Common side effects after hip dips surgery include:

  • bruising and pain at the site of the incisions or injections
  • fat migration or dimpling at the site of the injection
  • swelling and bleeding in the area where fat was removed or injected
  • scarring

In rare cases, hip dips surgery can cause fever and discharge at the site of the surgery. This can indicate an infection.

Minimizing risk

To minimize your risk of complications from hip dips surgery, make sure to carefully follow any instructions from your healthcare provider. Here are some additional tips:

  • Keep the area where any incisions were made clean and dry.
  • Don’t soak in water, pools, or hot tubs until you’re cleared to do so by your doctor.
  • Don’t rush to return to rigorous physical activity until your doctor has given you the go-ahead.
  • Find a licensed, experienced healthcare provider to do this procedure (this will greatly decrease your chances of developing an infection or other complications from the surgery).

Hip dips surgery is considered a cosmetic procedure. That means it’s not covered by insurance.

You’ll need to cover the entire cost of the procedure, including any anesthesia or hospital charges, out of pocket. You might also have to account for the time you need to take off from work to recover as you tally the cost of this procedure.

Hip dips surgery prices vary depending on the cost of living in your area as well as the experience level of your provider. According to people who’ve had hip augmentation and reported their costs on website RealSelf, prices can range from $8,000 to $11,000.

If you’re considering hip dips surgery, it’s important to find a board-certified and licensed healthcare provider to perform the procedure.

Hips dips surgery is simple and low risk, but only if the person doing it has the knowledge and expertise to do it safely.

You can start your search by using the American Society of Plastic Surgeons search tool to find a cosmetic surgeon in your area. Next, you can schedule a consultation with a potential health provider.

Bring a list of questions about costs, recovery time, and what to expect from your results. Ask how much experience the provider has with hip dips surgery, and ask to see before and after photos.

Make sure to disclose any prior cosmetic procedures as well as health conditions and medications or supplements that you take.

A good cosmetic surgeon will honestly discuss what to expect from hip dips surgery and will point out that there’s no way to guarantee a perfect hourglass silhouette, even after this procedure.

A good surgeon may also recommend that you try exercises and diet changes before advising a surgical procedure.

You may be able to change the curvature of your hips using a workout that targets the area around your hip dips. Following an exercise plan to minimize the appearance of your hip dips is a safer and less costly alternative to surgery.

Hip and thigh exercises like side hip openers, lunges, squats, and side squats can tone and lengthen the muscles connected to your thighs.

Eating a diet rich in leafy greens, lean proteins, and healthy fats can also help your thighs and hips to take on a curvier shape.

There’s nothing anatomically wrong with having hip dips. As a matter of preference, some people prefer to have a more contoured silhouette.

Diet and exercise can help minimize the appearance of hip dips, and so can hip dips surgery.

If you’re going to get this procedure, the most important thing you can do is find a trained, licensed, and experienced provider who can give you a realistic expectation for your results as well as honest answers about the costs and risks involved.