Liquid facelift vs. surgical facelift: Which one is better for Me?
If you’re struggling with these signs of aging, you have many options to regain a youthful appearance. This includes both surgical and non-surgical solutions. In particular, you should weigh the pros and cons of a liquid facelift versus a surgical facelift.
What is a liquid facelift?
Let me start with an overview of the liquid facelift. Most often, I recommend this option for patients who want to enjoy some of the rejuvenation of a facelift without the need for surgery, anesthesia, or extended recovery time.
In fact, no surgical procedure is required for a liquid facelift. Instead, this procedure involves injections of various dermalfillers injected in very targeted areas to restore volume and create a “lifted” look without the need for any incisions.
In a liquid facelift, the cheeks, nasolabial folds (wrinkles around the nose and mouth), sunken temples and the eye area can be filled with dermafillers in particular. In addition, with a liquid facelift, wrinkles and fine lines can be smoothed.
What are the pros and cons of a liquid facelift?
When deciding between a liquid facelift and a surgical facelift, it’s important to understand the pros and cons of each procedure. Certainly, the liquid facelift offers many advantages. It allows you to improve your aesthetic appearance without having to get incisions. You don’t need surgery, no anesthesia, and no long downtime. In addition, the results of a liquid facelift are more or less immediately visible. There may be slight swelling and temporary bruising, but this is nothing major. You can carry out your daily activities, social obligations, and work without interruption.
However, there are also some disadvantages. A disadvantage is that a liquid facelift does not provide permanent results. The dermafillers break down naturally, a process that can take 12 to 18 months. Of course, you can maintain your results with touch-up treatments to maintain your results and prevent aging over a long period of time.
Also, keep in mind that a liquid facelift does not offer the same level of correction that you can expect from a surgical facelift. Liquid facelifts are beneficial when the desired goal is to add volume to facial features, define contours, or correct asymmetries in order to achieve a more youthful face. Unfortunately, a liquid facelift cannot completely eliminate sagging skin.
A surgical facelift restores once youthful facial features, offers a more permanent solution, and has the added benefit of being able to either remove or reposition excess tissue. Patients who wish to achieve more permanent results should consider surgical intervention.
What is a surgical facelift?
This leads me to the surgical facelift which uses carefully placed incisions. These incisions are usually made behind the ears or behind the hairline, making it easy to hide the small scars.
Once the incisions are made, I can lift and tighten the underlying tissue while removing excess skin. The result is more clearly defined cheeks, less sagging and bulging, and smoothing of lines and wrinkles.
What are the pros and cons of a surgical facelift?
For patients who desire a more substantial or more incisive effect, a surgical facelift is usually the best option. A facelift gives you a refreshed, revitalized look and makes you look younger without feeling like you’ve had “surgery”.
Another thing to keep in mind is that a surgical facelift lasts much longer than a liquid facelift. While the results of a liquid facelift wear off in 18 months or less, depending on the product used, the results of a surgical facelift can last a decade or more.
Most patients are concerned that a surgical facelift will require anesthesia, which is not without risk. You will also have some scars from the procedure, although a good surgeon will know how to hide the scars so that they are almost invisible.
A surgical facelift also causes more swelling and bruising. The recovery period can take several weeks, and for some it may take longer for the swelling to go down before you can fully appreciate the results of your surgery.
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Which procedure is right for me?
When researching both of these processes, there are a number of factors to consider:
- How severe are your signs of aging really? If you just need a touch up to eliminate some minor wrinkles, restore some volume to achieve a more youthful appearance, then a liquid facelift can be a very suitable option. Surgery may be necessary for those who need a more extensive recovery and have deep wrinkles and sagging skin.
- Another important consideration is whether you can tolerate surgery. Some patients just don’t want to go under the knife, while others may not have the time needed for post-operative recovery. In this case, I encourage patients to evaluate their liquid facelift options.
- Some patients choose to have a liquid facelift first to “try out” a new look. If they like what they see and want to make it permanent, they are more inclined to have a surgical facelift a few months later. This can be a great way to determine if a facelift is really right for you.
When deciding between a liquid facelift and a surgical facelift, I can, as is so often the case, recommend that you speak to an experienced surgeon. This is the only way to ensure you fully understand the different options that are available to you and that your treatment plan aligns with your aesthetic goals. Finally, the most important thing is that your goals are heard by your doctor and that she compares them with the options she has available.