In 2022, the ever-popular surgical facelift saw an uptick of 8%, possibly because our increased reliance on face-heavy digital meetings makes you hyper-aware of how well you look. Other reasons for the uptick could be attributed to what’s sometimes called the “Ozempic® face” — a gauntness that occurs when you lose weight suddenly.
About 72,668 facelifts were performed in 2022, making it the second-most popular surgical rejuvenation of the face, after blepharoplasty (i.e., eyelid surgery). Those figures don’t account for the nonsurgical methods of lifting and toning facial skin, including radio-frequency modalities such as ThermiTight®.
Even though you know that eventually you may need a facelift, is it ever too late to undo the damage of aging skin? Is it ever too soon to give your face a boost?
Connie Hiers, MD, is an expert plastic surgeon who performs a variety of facial rejuvenation techniques at her clinic, Dr. Connie Hiers Plastic Surgery & Med Spa in San Antonio, Texas, including facelifts. Any procedure starts with an in-depth consultation to be sure it’s the best choice to help you reach your aesthetic goals.
What is the right age for a facelift? The following questions help you find your answers.
Do you have sagging skin?
The primary requirement for a facelift is skin that’s lost its elasticity and has begun to droop or sag. If your main problem is wrinkles, or if you’re troubled by age spots, you may do better with a facial resurfacing technique, such as microneedling.
Starting a noninvasive treatment that amps up your production of collagen, such as microneedling or ThermiTight, can help you put off a facelift for years or perhaps even decades. If your skin is still young, thick, and vibrant, we may suggest starting with chemical peels to keep it that way for as long as possible.
If you do have sagging, we may suggest a facelift, mini facelift, neck lift, and/or chin lift. A chin lift can cut years off your face by removing an aging double chin.
Is your skin thin?
When your skin is still thick and pliable, you may not need surgery to tighten it up. Microneedling, ThermiTight and other minimally invasive treatments can help you produce more collagen, which naturally pulls the skin tighter and higher.
If your skin is thin, however, and droops or sags, you may not respond to noninvasive techniques, or may find that they leave you short of your goals. Thin skin that’s lost its underlying fat layer and makes your face look gaunt or droopy is a prime candidate for a full rhytidectomy (i.e., facelift).
You may also benefit from other treatments that help restore your skin’s health, making your facelift last. Regular chemical peels, for instance, keep your skin healthy and glowing.
Fillers and Botox® aren’t getting you to your goals
If you’ve used a rejuvenation or prejuvenation treatment for years that suddenly doesn’t seem to be working any more, it’s probably time to turn up the volume. Either switch to a heat- or energy-based tightening system, such as ThermiTight, or consider a mini lift or facelift.
After your facelift, you may still consider using injectables to give you “finishing touches.” For instance, dermal fillers can plump up your lips to match your lifted face. Or can add more depth to your skin. Botox may be necessary to smooth out the forehead area (which isn’t affected by a facelift).
Your face tells you when
No matter your chronological age, the best age for a facelift is when your skin tells you it’s time. If you find yourself standing in front of the mirror, gently lifting your skin with your figures, and like that vision better than your unsupported face, come in for a consultation.
You don’t have to worry about starting a facelift too soon; we let you know if it’s not the right procedure for you. And the better news is, it’s never too late. As long as you’re healthy enough to get medical clearance, you can have a facelift or a mini lift even in your 70s or 80s.