Facelift, Neck Lift, MACS Lift
Facelift, Neck Lift, MACS Lift
A facelift is also known as a rhytidectomy. Today’s facelift goals are to look natural and not overdone or operated on. To do that well, the deeper tissue is repositioned before re-draping the skin.
There are different types of facelifts and neck lifts that are best for different patients. We try to recommend the best options for you to achieve a natural, refreshed look.
Younger patients will have better skin and may get by with neck liposuction or a neck lift. If the skin is loose, more skin removal is required. A lower facelift will actually tighten the neck skin the most.
A mini facelift or cheek lift is good when the neck is not lax or loose. The incision is hidden by hair and follows the contours of the front of the ear. In some cases, the cheeks can be lifted through the lower eyelid incision.
Other names for mini facelifts include S-lifts, weekend lifts, or names that are advertised by large companies. These companies claim exclusive operations in their advertising; however, the American College of Surgeons has always stated that all operations should be open to peer review and not secret. These exclusive operations are typically felt to be S-type lifts.
In addition, many of the doctors that do these lifts that are for a specific lifestyle and may not have trained as board-certified plastic surgeons.
The MACS Lift
Our most common facelift is a lower facelift with a MACS component. This tightens the neck and jowls the best. It repositions the cheek fat higher where it looks youthful and natural. Sutures are used (MACS component) to reposition the fat and then re-drape the skin. We don’t want to pull the skin tight and cause an unnatural look.
The MACS can also be done without the neck if the laxity is just in the cheek and then is known as a MACS facelift. The MACS lift can have some neck tightening by the sutures, or by adding an incision under the chin.
The incisions for the lower facelift are hidden by the ear and under the chin. If there is a lot of fat, the neck may have liposuction.
The Neck Lift
Many patients ask for a neck lift. Whether they think a neck lift has a less negative stigma or is a lesser procedure, they don’t want to have a facelift. But if there are jowls in the face, loose skin in the neck, and the age is 45 or older, usually, a lower facelift will give much more improvement.
If they feel better calling it a neck lift, that is appropriate, but the lower facelift will actually tighten the neck better, as the skin can be repositioned and tightened better. Younger women with more fat than loose skin and men (who don’t seem to mind jowls as much) more commonly will have a neck lift.
In the youngest patients, neck liposuction alone may be successful, as the skin has enough elasticity to retract and smooth. For those in their 30s and early 40s with good skin tone, a mini neck lift where liposuction is combined with tightening done through an incision under the chin may work very well.
After a rhytidectomy procedure, further improvement can be obtained by later performing fat grafting to add volume where it is needed. Our most common operation on someone who had a facelift before is not another facelift but fat grafting to restore volume.
Facelifts and neck lifts, for many patients, are not physically hard or painful. Half of our patients report no need for pain medication after just 24 hours. Mentally, though, it does take a while. We have had patients look good in just a couple of days, but swelling and bruising among patients vary so some may take weeks. We have also had several patients return to work in 3 days, but we cannot promise that to everyone.
A few patients will not bruise or swell much, and with their hair down, they will look good in a few days.*
Most patients will look good to strangers within two weeks.*
Most patients will look good to the family by four weeks.*
Most patients will feel they look great by six weeks. Because of the recovery process and altered exercise and routines, we warn our patients that many will feel depressed during the second week. Our staff is very helpful in providing reassuring support during that period. The facelift unfortunately cannot make you look like you did at age 30, but it can make you look like a more refreshed, less tired version of yourself!*
*Individual results may vary.
Bruising and swelling can last two weeks or longer. There may be areas of numbness in the front of the ear. A few percent will have late bleeding called a hematoma, which requires removal. The nerves and muscles of the smile can be injured from the surgery. The vast majority recover, but rarely someone’s smile is uneven (facial nerve injury). Perfect symmetry is rarely possible. Other rare complications may also occur.
How Much Does a Facelift, Neck Lift, or MACS Lift Cost?
The price of your face or neck plastic surgery will vary based on a number of factors. The exact type of procedure chosen will affect the overall cost, as will the total time required to perform the procedure, anesthesia fees, and the amount of tissue removed.