Nonsurgical procedures have a lot of benefits: faster, focused results that don’t involve the time commitment of more intensive surgical options. But if you’re evaluating your options for an “injectable facelift” vs. surgery, you may be wondering: is a nonsurgical alternative really less costly than surgery? Can a nonsurgical facelift even produce comparable results?
Non-invasive procedures are excellent for many goals, but there’s just no getting around the fact that the results are not the same. While many medical spas tout their nonsurgical options as “facelifts,” these procedures actually focus on different facial aging signs, in different ways, and it is important to be realistic about what these procedures can truly accomplish.
- Wrinkles that go beyond “skin deep”: Non-surgical techniques such as laser rejuvenation can create impressive changes by rejuvenating tissues at a cellular level. Eliminating dead skin cells and stimulating cellular regeneration is an important way to freshen and tighten the skin and give you a natural, youthful glow. But while these techniques are effective at the surface level, they do not have the same effect as a surgical procedure, which can tighten and smooth the deeper levels of facial tissues that cause more significant age lines and facial folds.
- Noticeable facial sagging: Injectable fillers create a “lifting” effect indirectly, by filling up wrinkles and facial hollows. This creates smoothness and restores the illusion of tissue fullness around the cheeks and eyes, and it’s true that this effect can take years off your face and give you a rejuvenated look. But many of these folds and wrinkles happen because facial tissues literally fall to a lower area of the face, and injectables do nothing to restore the position of these tissues.
Injectable options can be highly effective for crow’s feet, fine lines, and minor loss of facial volume, but a surgical facelift is still the most effective way to eliminate significant signs of aging comprehensively. If drooping, wrinkling, and loose skin are all concerns for you, along with crow’s feet and other minor wrinkling, surgery might be your best option.
It’s important to understand where your own signs of age are happening; for most of us, it’s easy to pay attention to the skin-level signs only, but a qualified doctor can help you evaluate how much of your aging signs really result from surface-level problems, and how much are just secondary effects of deeper changes below the surface.
Dr. Berkowitz is a board-certified, fellowship-trained oculofacial surgeon focusing on advanced cosmetic surgery procedures to enhance and restore the face. With over 16 years of experience in facial surgery specifically, Dr. Berkowitz has an extensive background in both cosmetic and reconstructive procedures to correct an extensive range of concerns ranging from the natural damage of aging to highly specialized procedures to correct for burns and injuries.