Alarplasty, also known as alar base reduction, is a cosmetic surgery procedure that reshapes the nostrils.

Alarplasty surgery is a popular procedure for those who want to reduce the appearance of flared nostrils. It’s a nice way to create more symmetry between the nostrils and reshape the nose.

Alarplasty is an outpatient procedure, meaning you can go home on the day of surgery. You may experience some swelling and bruising after surgery, which will subside in the first two weeks. Full recovery takes around 6 weeks.

alarplasty surgery quick facts

What is Alarplasty?

Alar nose surgery is a surgery to change the width and shape of your nostrils. It’s a nostril reduction procedure and can be done alone or as part of a rhinoplasty procedure.

This procedure can address nasal flaring, big nostrils or wide nostrils. It can create nasal symmetry and reduce the size of the nostrils to suit your face. It treats genetically large nostrils and creates a more proportionate appearance.


What (Dr Doyle Believes) Makes a Good Alarplasty Result

As a specialist rhinoplasty surgeon, Dr Doyle believes that the best results are harmonious and balanced. Each person’s nose is different, so Dr Doyle will always assess the best plan for you. During alar nostril reduction, he’ll refine the nostrils to better suit your nose.

The best alarplasty results are harmonious, appearing natural and fitting in with the rest of your features. Scars from the surgery should be well-hidden and inconspicuous.

If you’re considering nostril surgery, consult with a specialist rhinoplasty surgeon like Dr Doyle.

Different Types of Alarplasty

Alar Base Surgery

This type of alarplasty involves making an incision in the outer crease of the nose. Dr Doyle will then remove a small wedge of tissue to narrow the nostril. This method is used when there is excess skin or cartilage that needs to be removed. Ie. when the nostrils are ‘too wide’.

Alar Rim Surgery

Alar rim surgery, also known as an alar rim graft, is a type of alarplasty that involves adding cartilage to the outside of the nostrils. This method is used if your nostrils are retracted. Adding cartilage can bring the nostril height down so you can see less of the inside lining of the nose.

Tip Plasty and Alar Base Reduction

This is a combination procedure that addresses the nasal tip as well as the nostrils. During this procedure, Dr Doyle will make an incision in the outer nose crease and remove a small wedge of tissue. This will narrow the nostril opening. Also, Dr Doyle will do nose tip reduction to refine the shape of the nose.

This procedure is not suitable for people who want to change the bridge of their nose. Only Dr Doyle can decide if this is the right surgery for you during your consultation.

Alar Reduction Procedure

Nostril reduction surgery is done under general anaesthesia in an accredited hospital. This means you’ll be asleep for the duration of the surgery.

During the surgery, Dr Doyle will make an incision in the outer crease of the nose on the alar base. Then he’ll remove a small wedge of tissue to narrow the nostril opening. In some cases, he may also need to trim the cartilage on the outside of the nostril.

After the surgery, you’ll have dressings on your nose alar to support it during healing. Our nurses will remove these a few days following your surgery.


It’s normal to experience some swelling and bruising after an alar nostril flare reduction. This usually subsides after a week or two. You’ll also have some pain and discomfort, which can be controlled with medication.

You’ll need to take it easy for the first few days after your surgery. Avoid strenuous activity and exercise for at least eight weeks. You should also avoid blowing your nose and wearing glasses during your alarplasty recovery period. Full recovery takes approximately 6 weeks.

Right Candidate

Alarplasty will not drastically alter your appearance; rather, it will just improve a portion of your nose. You may be a good candidate for alarplasty if you:

  • Are happy with the appearance of your nose, except for your large nostrils, which you would like to be smaller
  • Have a wide or narrow nose in comparison to the other features of your face
  • Have a flared nose on resting and/or your nose flares when you smile
  • Have uneven nostrils and would like to have more symmetry
  • Or if you are generally unhappy with the appearance of your nostrils

The best candidate for surgery is someone who is in good physical and mental health and does not smoke. If you want to reduce the size of your nostrils, a consultation with Dr. Doyle is a good place to start.


A nostril nose job performed by a specialist surgeon is the best way to make your nostrils smaller. This type of surgery is called Alarplasty.

Nasal flaring is when the nostrils open up wider than normal, usually due to inflammation in the nose. This can be caused by allergies, a cold, or sinusitis.

Some people have flared nostrils that are always flared. This can be a genetic trait.

If you’re unhappy with the appearance of your flared nostrils, you may be a good candidate for nostril reduction surgery. This surgery can help to reduce the size of your nostrils and improve the symmetry of your nose.

Yes, alarplasty leaves scars. This nostril reduction scar is placed in the crease of the nose, where the nose meets the cheek. As it’s in the natural contour of the nose, these scars are difficult to see. With proper scar management, it should fade within the first 12 months following surgery.

The results of alarplasty are permanent.

Every surgery carries risks, which is why it’s important to choose an experienced surgeon. The risks of alarplasty include swelling, bruising, asymmetry and scarring. Further risks will be discussed during your initial consultation with Dr Doyle.

Alarplasty is done under general anaesthesia so you won’t feel any pain during the surgery. It’s a relatively minor surgery and most people report only mild discomfort after the procedure. This is well managed with pain medication.

Next Steps

If you’re considering alarplasty, the first step is to book a consultation with Dr Doyle. He will assess your suitability for surgery and answer any questions you may have.

To book a consultation, please call us on 5598 0988 or fill out our online enquiry form.

About Dr Mark Doyle FRACS (Plast) – Specialist Plastic Surgeon

Dr Mark Doyle is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon with over thirty years of experience. He specialises in face lift surgery in Gold Coast and Brisbane, and also offers a range of body and breast procedures.

Dr Doyle is a fully qualified Doctor and surgeon. He has completed all required training to be a Specialist Plastic Surgeon and is driven by an committed to providing excellent standards of care.


Do Your Research

What to Bring to Your Plastic Surgeon Consultation

  • Bring a friend or relative for support and discussion regarding your choices
  • Take notes and read all provided information thoroughly
  • Read about what to expect in your Initial Surgery Consultation

Book Your Plastic Surgery Consultation

  • Get a Referral from your GP or specialist – this is required to book a consultation with Dr. Doyle.
  • Email us or call on 07 5598 0988 to arrange your consultation appointment.
  • Pay your $285 Consultation Fee in advance to secure your consultation.

Please contact us to arrange to book a consultation with our Specialist Plastic Surgeon or to speak with our Patient Care Advisor.

Send an enquiry form today or phone 07 5598 0988 during Clinic Hours.

*DISCLAIMER: All information on Dr Mark Doyle website is general and is not intended to be medical advice nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Results can vary significantly and depend on individual patient circumstances. All images on this website, unless specified as real patient images, are stock images used for illustrative purposes only. Surgery risks and complications will be covered in detail during a consultation with your surgeon. Book a consult for details regarding your cosmetic surgery procedure.

Dr. Mark Doyle AHPRA Registration: Dr Mark Doyle MED0001375519 Specialist Plastic Surgery – MBBS FRACS FRCS

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