How Long Do Facelift Surgery Results Last?

Published: August 11, 2022
Category: Facelift, Face, Dr. Robert Wilke

Facelift surgery is designed to correct the common signs of facial aging a person may experience as they grow older. By removing excess skin and tightening underlying tissues, a Facelift can help turn back the clock ten years or more on the average patient – sometimes more! A successful Facelift will rejuvenate the face and neckline while maintaining a natural appearance that makes a patient look refreshed and more youthful. Although results don’t last forever, there are measures each patient can take to increase the longevity of their Facelift surgery and enjoy a more rejuvenated appearance.

“Just as your face is individual to you, your results from Facelift surgery will be unique to you as well,” explains Dr. Robert Wilke, a board-certified plastic surgeon and partner at Edina Plastic Surgery. “On average, you can expect to look at least ten years younger after a Facelift – longer if you are diligent about caring for your skin and overall health. Although your plastic surgeon can’t halt the progression of natural aging after your surgery, several factors are within your control to help prolong your surgical results.”

Facelift results aren’t permanent. Here’s why.

No matter how much you or your plastic surgeon wishes it to be so, the results from Facelift surgery, or any plastic surgery, are never permanent. That’s because the natural aging process cannot be prevented. The rate of collagen production in our skin will continue to decline. The elasticity and ‘snap back’ of elastin fibers will continue to lessen. Facial fat pads and bone will continue to lose tone and mass and compromise the support and structure of the face. The environment around us will continue to damage our skin with pollution and ultraviolet damage from the sun.

“There are many factors that influence how our faces age through the years,” says Dr. Wilke. “Some are completely out of our control, and some we can influence through lifestyle choices. Having a Facelift may turn back the clock on our appearance, but that doesn’t mean the clock stops ticking.”

Primary factors that determine how long your Facelift results may last

Your Genetics

Our genes play a pivotal role in our appearance, so it’s only natural that they will also impact the longevity of our results from Facelift surgery. Patients with darker, thicker, and more genetically resilient skin may enjoy longer-lasting results.

Your Age

“Patients who pursue Facelift surgery before age 60 tend to reap the rewards of it longer than their older counterparts,” says Dr. Wilke. “This is most likely due to a more robust collagen and elastin production, more facial fat and bone density, and less skin damage before surgery. A Facelift is more effective when the visible signs of aging are just beginning to concern a patient in their 40s and 50s. Less so, when these signs have fully set in during their 60s and 70s.”

Your Skin Condition

The healthier your skin condition is going into Facelift surgery, the better your results will be, and the longer they will last!

“At Edina Plastic Surgery, we strongly recommend that our Facelift patients meet with one of our Advanced Practice Estheticians at our medical spa, Skin Artisans, before scheduling their surgery,” advises Dr. Wilke. “This ensures that their skin will have time to be properly pre-conditioned and as healthy and resilient as it can be before surgery. Our Full Focus Facelift bundles in key skincare and laser treatments and skincare products before and after your surgery to ensure your skin is prepped for surgery and heals as quickly as possible. These measures help lay the foundation for longer-lasting results.”

Your Lifestyle

There is no escaping the fact that your lifestyle has a colossal impact on your overall health and appearance. Patients who already practice a healthy lifestyle that includes clean nutrition, regular exercise, and effective stress management can expect longer-lasting results from Facelift Surgery. Patients who are smokers, have high levels of stress and have severe sun damage on their skin may not.

Your Plastic Surgeon

“A Facelift is not a cookie-cutter, one-size fits all, surgery,” stresses Dr. Wilke. “It is a highly customized and technical procedure that requires the skill of an experienced plastic surgeon who not only specializes in Facelifts but is also passionate about this type of surgery. A qualified plastic surgeon can correctly assess what each patient needs and will implement the specific techniques that will provide them with the greatest benefit and longest-lasting result.”

The Technique Used for Your Facelift

Patients may be surprised to learn that there are several different Facelift techniques. Typically, the more invasive techniques yield the most dramatic and longest-lasting results.

Mini Facelift

For patients that have more mild facial and neck laxity, the Mini Facelift may be a great option.  It involves a shorter scar than the Classic, or Full Facelift, and is slightly less invasive.  It can produce excellent results for the right candidate, but is not recommended if there is significant sagging throughout the neckline.

Classic, or Full Facelift

Full Facelift surgery repositions the underlying soft tissue layers to a more youthful anatomic position in addition to tightening the skin,” says Dr. Wilke. “A more natural outcome is achieved by including these deeper layers in the lift. Incisions are placed along the hairline and around the contours of the ears to minimize the visibility of postsurgical scarring. This technique tends to be ideal for patients who wish to address advanced signs of aging, such as jowling and sagging of the neck.”

Whether or not complimentary surgeries were performed with your Facelift

Facelift surgery is frequently combined with other complimentary procedures like Eyelid Surgery, Brow Lift, or Fat Transfer to enhance a patient’s overall result.

“When it comes to facial aging, we tend to get so preoccupied with wrinkles and sagging skin that we disregard the role volume plays in a youthful-looking face,” explains Dr. Wilke. “The aging process causes a decrease in collagen production which keeps our skin plump and full, as well as the gradual disappearance of cherubic facial fat and the supportive structure of bone. These changes can cause the face to appear hollow and deflated. Your plastic surgeon may recommend Fat Transfer in conjunction with your Facelift, during which fat is harvested from the body, purified, and re-injected back into the face where volume is needed. They may also recommend a facial implant, such as a chin implant, to heighten the overall balance of your features and profile.

Complimentary procedures such as these may provide a more complete transformation and extend the longevity of your Facelift surgery results even further. Combining eyelid or brow lift procedures with a Facelift is very common, and adding complimentary procedures such as these may provide a more complete transformation and extend the longevity of your Facelift surgery results even further.”

Are you considering Facelift surgery? Schedule a complimentary consultation to discuss this surgery with Dr. Robert Wilke or another board-certified plastic surgeon at Edina Plastic Surgery by calling (612) 688-3177, texting (952) 925-1765, or CLICKING HERE.


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