01 Jul Should You Get a Facelift or Mini Lift?
At RefinedMD, double board-certified Dr. Sudeep Roy specializes in facial plastic surgery, including the “full” facelift and mini lift. How do you know which one is right for you? For those in their forties, it can be especially tough to tell, which is why you deserve an expert opinion during your facelift consultation. Ultimately, there’s no magical age where you’re suddenly better suited to a full lift compared to a mini lift. Everyone is different, and everyone’s skin has varying laxity at different areas. However, it is important to know the differences between the two surgeries as well as what parts of the body this procedure actually addresses.
A facelift (even a full lift) only fixes skin laxity on the lower half of the face and neck. Most facelifts naturally include a necklift as part of the procedure as well, although there are some rare cases where a patient might be a candidate for “just” a full facelift and no necklift. Comparatively, a mini lift is the same as a full facelift but with fewer and shorter incisions. This means it heals faster, but it is also not as dramatic (because it doesn’t need to be). Both of these lifts help with laxity on the lower half of the face and nek, including marionette lines and nasolabial folds.
What About the Upper Face?
Many patients are surprised to learn that if they want to treat the eyes and/or brow, that calls for entirely different surgeries. Upper and lower blepharoplasty (eyelid lifts) and a brow lift are commonly paired with a facelift or mini lift. In fact, around the eyes is where the first signs of aging typically occur, so if that’s your main complaint you might be better suited for blepharoplasty. Working with a skilled plastic surgeon is the only way to determine which surgery, or surgeries, is best for you.
All of these surgeries—the facelift, mini lift, blepharoplasty, and brow lift—call for very minor incisions and scars that are easily hidden. Today’s facelift and mini lift usually calls for incisions that are hidden in the natural crevices of the ear, along with one tiny pinpoint incision below the chin. In some cases, incisions may be hidden well inside the hairline. Gone are the days when facelifts left telltale, long scars behind the ears. Today, it’s all about the “ponytail facelift” that lets you sweep back your hair with confidence. Additionally, it’s no longer all about the skin. Laxity is certainly an issue with aging, but a surgeon who addresses underlying tissue and re-drapes the skin in a youthful manner is a plus. Beauty, and facelifts, should be more than skin deep.
What to Expect After a Facelift
After a facelift or mini lift, there will be some minor discomfort at the incision sites. You may not be able to see the incisions at all, depending on where they are hidden. At most, you might be able to spot some crusting in the ear crevices, but that will fall away in the days following the surgery. Some patients are prone to bruising and swelling, which is of course temporary but may also make you want to take a few days off of work. However, the recovery period and process for a facelift are surprisingly quick and simple for most.
Your surgeon will provide you with a customized recovery plan, but most clients can get back to daily tasks 1 – 2 weeks after their surgery. Some exercises can even commence after just two weeks, with full intensive cardio and weight training in 4 – 6 weeks. It’s important to use this time to let your body rest and heal properly. When you follow the instructions closely, you can expect results that are stunning. Exactly how much younger you will look varies, but it is not uncommon for full facelift patients to look 10+ years younger and mini lift patients 3 – 5 years younger.
There are many reasons a person might opt for a mini lift over a full facelift, one of which being a desire to delay a full facelift for a few years. Others have a packed schedule and are looking for the quickest recovery with the most dramatic results. If you’re on the fence, get in touch today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Roy. Simply call RefinedMD to schedule, start an online chat, or fill out the online form now.