What’s the Difference between a Facelift & a Deep Plane Facelift?

Facelift - May 2022

Does it really matter what kind of facelift you get, as long as your face is, well, lifted when it’s all said and done? As a matter of fact, the surgical technique used during your facelift can make all the difference when it comes to how long your results could last and how natural those results look. And the cream of the crop facelift technique is something called the deep plane facelift.

This begs the question, “What is a deep plane facelift?” See what sets a deep plane facelift apart from traditional facelift techniques below, plus how to find a cosmetic surgeon who offers this option.

Skin and Connective Tissue Stay Together in a Deep Plane Facelift

While facelifts of the past primarily tightened the superficial layer of skin, modern facelift techniques place a greater focus on the underlying muscle tissue to achieve much more natural results. However, differences remain, even among facelift techniques that both deal with the underlying layer of muscle and connective tissue, called the SMAS (superficial musculoaponeurotic system).

The deep plane facelift technique offers the longest-lasting results of any modern facelift technique.

A traditional SMAS facelift separates the skin from the underlying SMAS and tightens each layer individually. However, this method relies partly on tension being placed directly on the skin, which can be prone to sagging again in the future. Thus, results with this technique are not typically as long-lasting as those with the deep plane method.

The deep plane facelift, on the other hand, keeps the skin and SMAS layer intact, tightening them both at the same time. This allows tension to be placed deeper than with a traditional facelift, providing significantly longer-lasting results and avoiding the “windblown” or “frozen” look characteristic of older facelift techniques.

The Deep Plane Lift Also Addresses Sagging Skin in the Neck

The deep plane technique is not only very effective at treating skin laxity and wrinkles in the midface area, but it also addresses sagging skin and jowls in the chin and neck areas. Traditional facelift techniques, by comparison, only address aging concerns in the midface area, and an additional neck lift procedure would be needed in order to achieve the same range of results as with the deep plane lift.

Bottom Line: Which Is Better?

As you can see, there are many benefits to the deep plane facelift technique. The one drawback is that this technique is the most complex and therefore, requires advanced surgical skill and ample experience. When choosing a cosmetic surgeon for your facelift, be sure to ask about which facelift techniques he or she prefers and whether or not he or she has experience with the deep plane method.

While there are advantages to many other facelift techniques as well, the deep plane facelift offers the longest-lasting results and the most natural look. These benefits may be well worth expanding your search to find a cosmetic surgeon with experience performing the deep plane facelift rather than settling for a more traditional surgical method.


What’s the Difference between a Facelift & a Deep Plane Facelift?
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What’s the Difference between a Facelift & a Deep Plane Facelift?
What’s a deep plane facelift and is it better than a regular facelift? Cosmetic surgeon Dr. James Koehler in Fairhope, Alabama shares the answers.
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May 16, 2022
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