A Mini Facelift is not a substitute for a Facelift

Everybody wants results as easy as possible. Fad facial procedures come and go just like trendy diets. It’s easy to understand the appeal of alternatives to a facelift like a mini facelift. After all, a facelift is a surgery that requires a big investment in time and money. There are many products, treatments, and surgeries that misleadingly claim to be alternatives to a facelift. Products that claim to offer facelift-like results don’t measure up to the real thing.

Facial Surgery Fads and Important Things to Consider

There are many terms used to describe surgical facial rejuvenation. It’s important to realize that many of these terms were concocted by marketers and not plastic surgeons. An example of failed mini lift procedure was the Lifestyle Lift. Although their infomercials were once omnipresent on weekend cable channels a few years ago, they are now out of business. While in existence, it was pitched as a simple procedure like a haircut that could give instant gratification. The ads left out that the doctors performing the procedure were not board certified plastic surgeons and that many of their patients had more than just the advertised procedure. Today the company no longer exists and neither does the procedure.

Several nonsurgical facial procedures can give moderate results for the right patients. Some of the treatments are erroneously marketed as an alternative to a face lift or called a “lunch time face lift.” Dr. Rod, a board certified plastic surgeon in Arizona, says “Because every person is different, every cosmetic procedure will be slightly different. Similarly, some patients have skin laxity that is too severe to have anything less than a facelift. If they have a mini-lift or anything else, they will unlikely be happy with their results. It’s my job to exam each patient carefully and give my professional recommendation. Most patients are over 50 with facial sagging and will not be happy with anything less than a traditional facelift. When it comes to facial rejuvenation, there is no laser or cream that can compete with a facelift surgery.”

Mini facelift vs. facelift

Both a mini lift and a facelift should always involve tightening the SMAS (Superficial Musculo Aponeurotic System) layer. Resuspension and securing this layer leads to rejuvenation of the face, by counteracting aging and gravity caused laxity. Mini facelifts tighten the wrinkles and sagging skin on the lower third of the face. The procedure uses incisions around the ears and pulls the skin tighter. Mini lifts are popular popular because they’re less expensive, take less time, and have less downtime than a regular face lift. However, mini lifts have several disadvantages. Mini lifts don’t last as long and don’t treat as many parts of the face as a regular face lift. Dr. Rod says, “The goal of doing any type of facial surgery is to give people an improvement in their appearance. A person is happiest with her results when she has a more youthful and tighter appearance in her face. For these reasons, I only recommend a facelift to most patients.”

Mini Facelift VS Facelift Comparison Chart

The rarely used but scientific term for a facelift is rhytidectomy (from Ancient Greek ῥυτίς (rhytis) “wrinkle” + ἐκτομή (ektome) “excision”, surgical removal of wrinkles). Like its name suggests, it treats facial wrinkles and sagging of the face and neck caused by aging. A facelift removes excess skin, tightens underlying tissues and muscle and redrapes skin on the face and neck. It can correct midface sagging, marionette lines, jowls and a double chin, maintaining its reputation as the ‘gold standard’ for facial rejuvenation.

Whereas a mini lift only treats the lower face, a facelift includes the greater portion of the face and neck. By lifting and repositioning the underlying tissue layers and muscles, the jaw line and neck are brought back to a more youthful position. A face lift gives patients a more youthful and rested look that is more dramatic and enduring than a mini lift.

Facelift Diagram

A. Increased redundancy of the nasolabial fold (caused by a descent of cheek fat)

B. Increased distance from the ciliary margin to the inferior-most point of the orbicularis oculi muscle (caused by decreasing tone of the orbicularis oculi muscle)

C. Jowl (a broken jaw line by ptosis of the platysma muscle)

D. The intended effect of a facelift

Photo courtesy of via Wikimedia Commons By GBdeZeeuw [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]

The goal of a facelift is to reduce the following:

  • Sagging in the middle of your face.
  • Deep creases below the lower eyelids and along the nose to the corner of the mouth.
  • Fat that has fallen or has disappeared.
  • Loss of skin tone in the lower face that creates jowls.
  • Loose skin and excess fatty deposits under the chin that can give a person of normal weight the appearance of a double chin.

Rejuvenation procedures at Dermacare that can be performed in conjunction with a facelift are brow lift, to correct a sagging or deeply furrowed brow, eyelid surgery to rejuvenate aging eyes, and a Hetter Peel to smooth your complexion.

Why should I have my facelift with Dr. Rod at Dermacare?

We understand that your decision to have a facelift was done with a great deal of research and trust in us. Our goal is that you are safe, healthy, and have the best results possible. Every patient that gets a facelift at Dermacare gets personalized treatment. Dr. Rod, a board certified plastic surgeon, preforms a facelift without the complexities and problems of general anesthesia. Many of his sutures are done underneath the skin which improve results while minimizing downtime.

What happens after a facelift?

Even after your procedure, Dr. Rod and his staff continue to provide exceptional care. Exclusively at Dermacare, your facelift includes eight hours of home health care. The home nurse insures that you are pampered in your crucial first day home. On the second and third days after your facelift, the doctor will see you in the office for examination. Stiches are removed after 10 days and a complete release from restrictions typically occurs after six weeks.

Can I see before and after facelift pictures?

Our office has several photos available for your review. We have a gallery of them online below.

Facelift Before and After Photos from Dermacare Plastic Surgery - Servicing the Phoenix, AZ Area

How do I find out more about more about facial plastic surgery?

The best way to find out if a facial plastic surgery is for you is to have a consultation at our Dermacare offices serving the Phoenix, AZ area (and fly-ins across the country). You can call us at 623-289-1772 or you may also learn more about the facelift procedure here.