What Is A 'Baby BBL' - And Is It Safer Than A Regular BBL?

Got buns, hun? A Brazilian butt lift, or BBL for short, is a fat transfer surgery where a doctor takes fat from your body, like in your hips or lower back, and injects it into your derriere instead. But what if you don't have very much body fat to transfer in the first place? Well, allow us to introduce you to the "baby BBL." 

"A baby or petite BBL is simply a BBL for a patient with a petite frame and lower starting BMI," plastic surgeon Dr. William Rahal of Beverly Hills told InStyle in December 2022. "Many doctors will not do a BBL on patients with low BMIs or who are low in body fat," he explained. A petite BBL may be a solution for those people. 

Alas, BBLs are notorious for being quite dangerous — even deadly. "It's the most fatal operation there is," Dr. Terry Dubrow of E!'s "Botched" series warned during an interview with TMZ in 2022. According to Dr. Dubrow, the most significant danger occurs if the fat inadvertently moves into the bloodstream and travels to the heart, lungs, and other vital organs. "I recommend people back away from Brazilian butt lifts," he declared emphatically. But what about "baby BBLs?" Are they any safer?

The risks for BBLs and 'baby BBLs' are the same

Are you willing to risk it for the biscuit? Sadly, the same risks associated with a traditional Brazilian butt lift also apply to the "baby BBL." According to Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr. William Rahal, it is imperative that potential "baby BBL" patients seek out a properly trained surgeon just as they would for a traditional BBL. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. "Patients should take into consideration that there is a significant baseline cost, like anesthesia and operating room time, to do the procedure, and that baseline will vary between $3,000 to $5,000 depending on location and other factors," he advised InStyle. "If the cost of the surgery seems much lower than average, there is usually a reason for it — and it may not be favorable to a patient," he warned, but don't just take his word for it.

In December 2022, rapper Cardi B got candid about her own experience with plastic surgery. "When it comes to BBLs, if y'all want advice from me, before you get your BBL done you have to make sure your blood levels are all right," the "Be Careful" crooner cautioned her fans and followers during an Instagram Live. "If a doctor says your blood levels are too low or you have diabetes or whatever, don't do it." 

There are other ways to achieve the look of a 'baby BBL'

Fortunately, it's possible to achieve similar results of a "baby BBL" or even the traditional BBL without surgery. 

During an episode of "Red Table Talk," Willow Smith revealed that at one point she wanted a Brazilian butt lift but went a different route instead. "I considered getting the tiniest little bit, but then I just got into the gym and got it anyway." The story goes that it was her mother, Jada Pinkett-Smith, who advised her on how to grow her backside the natural way. "I told her. I said, 'You want a butt? One thing your mother know how to do is build a butt,'" she joked. 

Patients who are looking for similar results but despise the gym, however, might want to consider a less invasive procedure known as Sculptra. "Sculptra is a dermal filler different than the other fillers like Juvederm or Restylane," board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Sachin M. Shridharani told The Zoe Report in January 2021. "It's a filler that is a bio-stimulator so what that means is, as soon as we inject it, it functions to stimulate the body to produce its own natural collagen." And as it turns out, Sculptra is perfect for patients considering a "baby BBL" as opposed to a traditional BBL. "Everyone has a little fat, but it's not always enough to justify surgery to get that fat and transfer it," Shridharani said. Alexa, play "Baby Got Back" by Sir Mix-a-Lot.