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Zygomaticus minor

The zygomaticus minor (Latin: musculus zygomaticus minor) is a muscle of facial expression located superiorly and medially to the zygomaticus major. It is classified as the buccolabial facial muscle. The zygomaticus minor belongs to the elevators of the lips.

Zygomaticus minor
OriginLateral surface of zygomatic bone
InsertionSkin and muscles of lateral aspect of upper lip

Pulls upper lip backward, upward and laterally

Deepens and elevates nasolabial sulcus

Innervation Buccal branch of facial nerve (CN VII)
Blood supplySuperior labial artery of facial artery



The zygomaticus minor muscle originates from the lateral (facial) surface of the zygomatic bone. Its origin site is located superior and posterior to the zygomaticomaxillary suture.

Facial muscles, zygomaticus minor muscle (colored)
Zygomaticus minor by



The zygomaticus minor inserts into the skin and muscles of the lateral aspect of the upper lip and blends with the fibers of the lip muscles, orbicularis oris and levator labii superioris muscles.

Origin and insertion of zygomaticus minor muscle
Origin and insertion of zygomaticus minor by



Upon activation, the zygomaticus minor pulls the upper lip backward, upward and laterally. This muscle also deepens and elevates the nasolabial sulcus.

Action of zygomaticus minor muscle
Action of zygomaticus minor by



The zygomaticus minor is innervated by the buccal branch of the facial nerve (CN VII).


Blood supply

Like the zygomaticus major muscle, the zygomaticus minor is also supplied by the superior labial branch of the facial artery.