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How the Modern Facelift Has Gotten Even Better with Age

Asian woman hand-wiping houseplants leaves.

Nobody wants to look like they’ve “had a little work done” after plastic surgery — a very real concern with the facelifts of the past. Fortunately, plastic surgery techniques have come a long way, and so have the results available after getting a modern facelift. So if you were worried about a facelift making you look windblown, stretched or unnatural, you can rest assured it won’t.

Choose an experienced plastic surgeon, and your modern facelift will benefit you in many ways. These are just a few of the most notable differences between facelifts of yesteryear and what you can expect from yours.

1. No More Wind-Tunnel Look

In the past, facelifts were performed by essentially pulling excess skin tighter to create a smoother, younger look. But the trouble with that technique was that it often created a “windblown” appearance, and the results only lasted around four or five years.

Today, a skilled plastic surgeon can reposition the underlying facial muscles in the targeted areas using techniques like the SMAS facelift (subcutaneous musculoaponeurotic system lift) or the deep-plane lift. With these methods, your skin does not need to be pulled tightly towards the back of your face, so you get a much more natural-looking, effective and longer-lasting final result.

2. Limited Bruising and Swelling

Most people take around 10 to 14 days off work to recover from a facelift.

Experienced plastic surgeons also now have a much more nuanced understanding of facial anatomy and the precise steps that need to be taken to achieve the desired outcome. As a result, fewer incisions can be made, thus reducing the amount of bruising and swelling involved during and after your procedure.

3. Reduced Downtime

Partial or mini facelifts are now available, which can reduce your downtime even further. This technique is usually best for people in their 40s or 50s who have used nonsurgical treatments such as fillers, BOTOX® or lasers in the past. These procedures typically target one specific area of the face or neck, such as the jowls or mid-face, allowing for a less invasive procedure and a shorter facelift recovery than with a full lift.

That said, partial facelifts aren’t the best choice for everyone. Discuss your goals with your plastic surgeon during your facelift consultation to help you decide which surgical technique could be right for you.

4. Easy Anesthesia

Today’s advanced IV sedation techniques make anesthesia for your facelift easier than ever before. Similar to the anesthesia used for a colonoscopy, your facelift sedation should put you right to sleep, then allow you to easily wake back up without any residual drowsiness or side effects.

5. More Discrete Scars

All of these advancements in surgical methods add up to a much better outcome for resulting scars than was possible in the past. Incisions are typically smaller than before and usually heal very nicely. A skilled plastic surgeon can strategically place facelift incisions so that they are easily hidden and virtually unnoticeable once completely healed.


How the Modern Facelift Has Gotten Even Better with Age
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How the Modern Facelift Has Gotten Even Better with Age
Will a facelift make you look windblown? Boston board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Waleed Ezzat says you don’t need to worry about a stretched look anymore.
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April 29, 2020
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