The Facelift Gets a Makeover
Written by: Dr. Manolis Manolakakis
Advanced Facial Surgery
It used to be that once you reached a certain age, sagging skin and deep wrinkles clearly indicated the need for a facelift—a one-size-fits-all procedure that would nip and tuck everything back into place. At the same time, the high price tag, significant downtime and unnatural-looking, “windswept” results associated with this approach gave the facelift a not-so-desirable reputation.
That, however, was the facelift of your mother’s generation.
Today, the facelift is more than one type of treatment, and it can (and should) be performed before drastic signs of aging set in. Facelifts come in all kinds of shapes and sizes—from the mini facelift to the midface lift; from the brow lift to the neck lift; and can be achieved using both surgical and non-surgical options—all of which create the opportunity to give a lift to your face right where it needs it.
A Lift to the Face
Any one of the variety of facelifting procedures available today may offer a solution for treating signs of premature aging caused by years of unprotected sun exposure and environmental pollutants or genetic predispositions to early jowling, drooping eyelids, or other anatomical concerns:
- A lift to the face can be achieved by adding volume (Voluma, Sculptra or fat) to the cheeks. This helps to minimize nasolabial folds and can even make improvements to the lower eyelid as well.
- In some patients, ultrasound energy (Ultherapy) can be used to give a little lift to the brow, neck and jawline.
- When you need a little more lift than fillers and energy alone can provide, you don’t necessarily need to jump into a classic, full-blown facelift. We know today that there’s more than a single dimension to the aging face. We look at volume, skin and structure. As a result, you may need a surgical procedure to get the results you’re looking for, but a mini facelift combined with volume injected into the midface may be the right prescription for limiting surgery and providing a more natural-looking result.
Science & Solutions
No matter how extensive the surgery, there’s more good news today. We’ve also got the necessary science to improve speed of recovery while at the same time decreasing the risk of scarring.
At the end of the day, the idea that a “facelift” is always a drastic surgical procedure and is a solution to think about when you’re old and saggy, is a fallacy. Importantly, the act of aging “prevention” has become widespread, which not only frequently postpones the need for surgical treatments, but also minimizes the extent of surgery. By prevention, I mean the use of neurotoxins (Botox, Dysport, Xeomin) and daily use of a broad-spectrum sunscreen.
A full scope of less drastic to more traditional procedures can effectively give a lift to the face. The key is to have a qualified aesthetic facial surgeon evaluate you individually, listen to your specific concerns, and recommend an approach that delivers the most effective and safest results. In my experience, the most satisfied patient are facelift patients.