If you are experiencing age-related facial sagging, loss of volume, and deepening lines and folds, a facelift procedure might be a good solution. However, your age and the extent of your skin concerns often help determine if a facelift is right for you or if another facial rejuvenation procedure will help you achieve your goals.
Men and women contemplating a facelift often come to our practice, wondering whether this is the right time for a facelift or if they need to be at a certain age. We’ll answer some of those concerns in this post.
What Is the Best Age for a Facelift?
A facelift can be suitable for men and women of any age looking to lift and tighten loose skin and restore volume to their face and neck. Your specific age is not actually that important in determining whether you’re ready for a facelift. If you don’t feel that you look as young as you feel and you have significant skin laxity in your lower face, a facelift is often an excellent solution.
Let’s look at facial aging by age group and discuss the best facial rejuvenation solutions for those signs of aging.
Age 30 and Over
If you are in this age group and desire a facelift to improve your fine lines, wrinkles, or crow’s feet, that is certainly a viable option. However, several nonsurgical facial treatments such as dermal fillers and BOTOX Cosmetic injections might effectively address your facial concerns without surgery.
If possible, it’s better to wait a few more years before opting for a facelift procedure, as your aging usually accelerates as you get older. A facelift procedure in your 30s may not be effective as you move toward your 40s and 50s. You may even need to have a repeat facelift procedure after a few years.
Age 40 and Over
If you are in your 40s, this is often the best time for a facelift. Many of the concerns you typically experience at this age, including volume loss, sagging jowls, loose skin, and loss of facial shape, are already at moderate levels by the time you’re in your 40s. A facelift at this age can produce dramatic yet natural-looking results, setting the clock back by as much as 10 or 12 years.
Still, the best path forward is to discuss your facial concerns with an experienced board-certified plastic surgeon who can advise you about the treatment that will give you the look you want. For example, I sometimes advise my patients to consider adding facial rejuvenation treatments such as laser skin resurfacing to reveal more youthful-looking, radiant skin.
Age 50 and Over
For this age group, I find that a facelift is very effective and can be enhanced with other facial surgery procedures to achieve my patients’ rejuvenation goals. In your 50s, you may notice pronounced drooping of the upper eyelids, bags under your eyes, and saggy, lax skin on your neck. Combining your facelift with procedures such as eyelid surgery or a neck lift rejuvenates your entire look.
If you already opted for a facelift in your 40s, your 50s would be a good time to touch up your results with a minimally invasive skin tightening procedure or even a second facelift. A board-certified plastic surgeon can give you a naturally rested appearance rather than an unnaturally taut and rigid look. As with any cosmetic procedure, make sure to maintain a healthy diet and stable weight for a quick recovery and to speed up the healing process.
Who Is Not a Good Candidate for a Facelift?
You may not be a good candidate for a facelift regardless of your age if you have concerns such as severe aging around the eyes or uneven skin tone and texture. If you have extensive sagging around the upper and lower eyelids and brow, a facelift cannot give you the concentrated treatment you are looking for. In this case, it’s better to try eyelid surgery or a brow lift, focusing only on this area.
Additionally, you may not be a good candidate if you have unrealistic expectations about your procedure and are not in good emotional health. When going into a facelift procedure, you should carefully evaluate the risks and have realistic expectations for your results. If you expect to look just like a much-admired celebrity after your procedure, you’ll need to adjust your expectations.
What Is the Recovery Process for a Facelift?
Bruising and swelling are common after a facelift procedure, but they will significantly resolve after about 2 to 3 weeks. You’ll need a friend or family member to drive you home from the procedure and stay with you that first night. Getting plenty of rest during the initial few days is important, but getting up frequently and walking around the house helps boost your circulation and aid healing. Be sure to contact your plastic surgeon immediately if you notice abnormal discharge from your surgical wound (after your drains are removed), extreme pain and swelling, or skin reddening. You can learn more about facelift recovery from WebMD.
You should see the full results of your facelift after around 1 month. At this point, you should be back to your normal routine and enjoying your new radiant appearance. Residual swelling and bruising can take up to 1 year to subside, so it’s best to wait at least a couple of months after surgery to attend any important events.
Deciding if a facelift procedure is right for you will depend on your age, facial concerns, and your plastic surgeon’s recommendations. At Armen Vartany, M.D., FACS Plastic Surgery and Laser Center, we help men and women of all ages achieve a more youthful appearance, as seen in my patients’ before and after photos. If you are ready to look more like your younger self, request a consultation or call us at (818) 500-0823 to schedule an appointment.
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