While passing trends are common in the beauty industry, some cosmetic procedures have remained popular for several decades. First performed over a century ago, the facelift is one of the oldest cosmetic procedures and remains a popular choice to this day.
If you’re seeking improved facial definition, smoother skin, and a more youthful appearance, a facelift may be a viable option. Facelifts can help eliminate the appearance of sagging skin, drooping cheeks, and deep lines that develop as you age. However, as with any medical decision, it’s important to thoroughly research the procedure before making a decision. Below are the most common questions about facelifts and their answers:
1. Who Is a Good Candidate for a Facelift?
A facelift allows you to minimize certain signs of aging on the face and neck, tightening sagging facial features caused by loose, hanging skin. If skin-care products and non-surgical cosmetic treatments aren’t providing the results you’re looking for, it might be time to consider a facelift.
Both men and women can get facelifts, and patients of any age can be viable candidates as long as they are in good health. To be an ideal candidate for a facelift, you should:
- Be a non-smoker
- Not have underlying medical conditions that will impact healing
- Have realistic expectations for your facelift results.
Of course, it’s important to consult with your primary care provider and plastic surgeon before undergoing any cosmetic procedure.
2. What Happens During the Procedure?
Your plastic surgeon will customize the facelift procedure to address the specific facial features you want to change. Depending on your desired results, your surgeon may conduct a traditional facelift, a necklift, or a limited incision facelift. A limited incision facelift is less invasive and may be ideal if you have only minor issues with skin relaxation.
During the procedure, your surgeon will begin by administering anesthesia. They will then make an incision to remove fat, lift muscles, and realign the underlying tissues. Once the procedure is complete, your surgeon will close the incisions using either sutures or skin glue. Generally, any lines from a facelift incision will be carefully positioned to blend in with your hairline and the natural contours of your face.
3. What Should I Expect After a Facelift?
It’s important to closely follow your doctor’s instructions for recovery after a facelift. You will likely need to wear bandages for several days following the procedure, and your doctor may recommend drains to aid healing. Your surgeon will let you know when you can return to have your bandages removed and will provide instructions if you need to change them at home.
It’s normal to experience some discomfort, bruising, and swelling after a facelift. Your doctor will prescribe pain medication and offer tips for managing these side effects. In general, full recovery from facelift surgery takes between three and six weeks. Your doctor will help you schedule follow up appointments to monitor your healing progress.
4. When Will I See Results?
While most people can return to their normal routine a few weeks after facelift surgery, it can take two to three months for the full results to be visible. You’ll likely notice some changes to your facial features soon after surgery, but after the bruising and swelling have subsided, the full extent of your results will become apparent. Most facelift patients not only enjoy more youthful features, but also improved self-esteem. Facelift results can last for up to 10 years.
A facelift can help you address problem areas that make it difficult to feel confident in your appearance. If you’re considering a facelift, the first step is to consult with an experienced plastic surgeon. They can help you understand what to expect with the procedure, answer any outstanding questions, and assist you in developing realistic expectations for your results.