Once upon a time, when someone visited a plastic surgeon for a facelift, the procedure was quite simple. Surgeons simply placed patients under anesthesia, tightened and repositioned the skin on the face, and then removed the remnants. Though it did remove lines, wrinkles, and sagging, it was notorious for creating a “stiff” appearance. Fortunately, times have changed, and surgeons now use a multi-faceted approach to perform facelift procedures.
The Popularity of Facelifts
People have been getting facelifts since 1901, when a German surgeon used a very basic procedure to address the signs of aging. Per the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, facelifts have been one of the top five cosmetic procedures in the US ever since, and this is despite the growing popularity of nonsurgical produces ranging from laser therapy to dermal fillers and even Botox. Aging has always been a concern among men and women alike, and that is why surgeons and medical researchers have put so much time and effort into developing better procedures that offer more natural-looking results.
The Development of a Multi-Faceted Facelift
During the 1960s, surgeons and medical researchers found that facelifts lasted longer and looked more natural if they focused not only on repositioning the skin, but also addressed the fat and other tissues just below the skin. Surgeons simply needed to make a small flap through the incisions in the skin to gain access to the stronger layers of tissue below, and with perfect manipulation and repositioning, surgeons can now make patients’ faces look tighter, younger, and more natural. In fact, surgeons can improve the definition of the jawline, the fullness of the cheeks, and even neck sagging with this multi-faceted approach.
Today’s surgeons can also use other procedures during a facelift to provide a more natural end result. For example, they might choose to use the pieces of skin obtained during the facelift or even fat extracted from another area of the body to further enhance the patient’s appearance. As people age, their skin naturally loses collagen, which results in hollow cheeks, under-eye areas, and even thinner lips. By utilizing the patient’s own fat or skin, surgeons can add natural-looking volume to these areas and create an even more youthful appearance.
More Modern Techniques
Many patients believe a full facelift is truly their only option, but that is not the case. There are other, less involved options that allow surgeons to focus on specific areas of the face. In fact, these procedures are often referred to as mini-facelifts, and thanks to new research and technologies, they can provide longer-lasting results than even today’s modern facelifts. Of course, patient individualization has also come a very long way, and because surgeons can tailor surgical procedures to individual patients’ needs, this allows for better results, too.
The facelift has certainly come a long way in the last half century. This is due in part to new technologies, new information, and better-quality care. What was once notorious for making patients’ faces look stiff and even fake can now provide a natural-looking and youthful appearance.