A facelift may turn back the clock, but are results permanent?

Studies have shown that patients may look up to 10-12 years younger following facelift surgery. Patients often ask if results are permanent. Following a facelift, the natural aging process will continue. The good news though is that patients should continue to look younger over time than their actual age.

During a facelift, redundant skin is removed from the face and neck through carefully planned incisions around the ear and hairline. Facial muscles are commonly resuspended. They have generally lost tone and gradually descended over time through natural aging. This results in prominence of the jowl region and loss of volume in the midface. Facial wrinkles also deepen over time.  Addressing the underlying facial muscles, most commonly by tightening and lifting them, restores volume to the midface and creates a more youthful facial appearance.

While patients will look younger following facelift surgery, facial aging will continue to be influenced by several factors including:


    • Smoking has negative effects on all body systems! It also expedites facial aging.  People who smoke often have deeper facial wrinkles, particularly “smokers’ lines” around the lips. Their skin also becomes thinner and less elastic. These findings were confirmed through twin studies in which only one twin was a smoker. Risks of smoking on wound healing post-operatively have been discussed in an earlier blog.


    • Certain aspects of facial aging may be beyond our control. We may inherit certain genes that affect the progression of facial aging. Look to your relatives to compare signs of facial aging, although appearance may be influenced by many other factors including those mentioned in this blog posting.

Sun exposure

    • Protection from harmful UV rays may lower one’s risk of skin cancer development as well as delay facial aging. Some studies have linked up to 80% of facial aging with UV exposure! Sun exposure may lead to more prominent wrinkles, pigmentation changes, as well as decreased skin elasticity.


    • In addition to increasing one’s risk for developing heart disease, depression, and many other medical conditions, stress has been associated with premature facial aging.

Weight change

    • Fluctuations in weight – either being underweight or overweight – may also lead to more pronounced signs of facial aging.

So is a facelift permanent?  Well, yes and no.  While facelift surgery may rejuvenate one’s facial appearance, natural aging will continue from that point onward.  But patients will still look younger at a given age following facelift.  Healthy lifestyle choices may delay the progression of facial aging, beneficial both for one’s appearance as well as overall health.

Please contact us now to schedule your consultation to discuss facial rejuvenation.

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