The shape and appearance of the chin is an extremely important aspect of gender recognition and critical for achieving the goals of facial gender confirmation. In general, male chins tend to be more angular, wider, longer, and squarer with a flat base, while women’s chins tend to be smoother, more rounded, and softer in appearance.
Chin re-contouring (genioplasty/mentoplasty) reduces the shape of a large or prominent chin — when a more feminine look is desired. This procedure is intended to impart a natural balance by reducing and reshaping the chin to be smaller, less angular, with a smoother and more feminine aesthetic. The procedure reduces a large male chin, bringing it down to the smaller proportions typical of a female chin. Also, any existing asymmetries are eliminated to increase symmetry and an overall aesthetically pleasing appearance. Chin re-contouring is a procedure often undertaken as part of a facial feminization surgical process.
Many patients ask us about chin implants, but these are typically not used in this type of operation. In fact, it is impossible to feminize a chin with an implant! Any implant will invariably have the effect of enlarging the chin in one dimension or another — the opposite outcome of what we’re aiming to accomplish with a feminizing genioplasty. Also, chin implants have potential problems such as infection due to rejection, shifting of the implant later, and/or possible damage to the roots of the teeth or nerves that give your lips sensation.
Another method we commonly employ for chin contouring is a T-osteotomy, which involves cutting the chin bone and removing a T-shaped piece of bone, and then fusing the remaining bones of the chin together. It is almost impossible to correct both a square jaw and produce a slender “V-Line” shape to the chin — simultaneously — without using this technique for chin recontouring.