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What to Expect from Facelift Surgery

Facelift Surgery

Facelifts are some of the most popular cosmetic surgery options in the United States, but until recently, they were predominantly considered to be mostly a solution for older people. 

These days, however, younger people are opting to have facelifts. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 34% of all facelifts performed each year are on people younger than 54 years old. 

At Maryland Plastic Surgery and PURE MedSpa, we offer a variety of rhytidectomy options to choose from. Read on to learn more about what you can expect from this kind of surgery.

What Is a Facelift?

A facelift, also called rhytidectomy, is a cosmetic surgery procedure that can help reduce sagging and other signs of aging. 

As you age, the shape and appearance of your face change. Past your 20s, your body’s natural production of two important proteins, collagen and elastin, decreases, making it more difficult for your skin to retain its firmness and natural hydration. Fat deposits in some areas can also diminish or shift to other areas, changing your face’s contours. 

Facelift surgery can address signs of aging, including:

  • Sagging cheeks
  • Excess skin at the jawline
  • Deep nasolabial skin folds

At our office, we offer a number of different rhytidectomy options, including a one-hour SMART facelift, a mini-facelift, and a full facelift. 

One-Hour SMART Facelift

This type of facelift surgery is minimally invasive. It is a suture suspension technique that lifts skin, muscles, and adipose (fat tissue), while also reducing skin tension. This reduction in tension delivers more natural, not stiff, results. 

With this procedure, we do not remove any skin, so it works best for people who have some skin elasticity left and do not have exceedingly deep folds to correct. The best candidates are adults ranging in age from their 30s to their 60s who are in good health and have realistic expectations about what this type of procedure can accomplish. 

The one-hour SMART facelift takes about an hour and offers immediate results. 


If you have sagging jowls and loose skin on your upper neck, a mini-facelift may be the right choice for you. This procedure is a true facelift and requires incisions in front of your ears to be able to remove excess skin. 

The incisions are smaller than those used in a full facelift, and there’s less manipulation of the underlying tissue. A mini-facelift can help improve wrinkles.

During a mini-facelift, we gently pull the tissues up toward the ears, giving your neck and jaw area a smoother look. If you have excess skin, we can remove it to ensure that you get the skin tightness you want. This procedure is not an option that addresses the upper face. 

A mini-facelift offers minimal scarring and a faster recovery period than a full facelift. Mini-facelifts also do not require general anesthesia, making it easier for you to return home on the day of the procedure. 

Full Facelift

A full facelift is a surgical procedure in which we pull back a flap of skin on each side of the face to alter the tissues underneath. We remove any excess skin. 

Although it does not involve a brow lift or an eye lift, we can incorporate these procedures into a full facelift. 

Good candidates for this type of facelift are people who are in good health, do not have serious medical conditions, do not smoke, and do not have problems with bleeding. 

Preparing for a Facelift 

The most important step in the process is your consultation with us. During this time, we will evaluate the treatment area and get your full medical history and a list of any medications you take. All of this information will help us guide you so that you can decide on the best facelift option. 

For more invasive procedures like the mini-facelift and the full facelift, you will want to stop smoking as soon as you can. Stop drinking alcohol for at least two weeks and stop taking blood-thinning medications like aspirin and ibuprofen. 

If we recommend you apply specific products to your face before the procedure, make sure to follow our guidelines. 

You’ll need to arrange for someone to drive you home after the procedure. 

Facelift Procedure and Recovery

The type of facelift you choose will impact the kind of procedure you go through. A SMART facelift is a quick process and only requires local anesthetics, while a full facelift requires general anesthesia. 

Do not wear makeup, creams, or anything else on your face when you come for your facelift appointment. 

For a traditional full facelift, we will make incisions near the temples and in front of the ears. We will pull the skin back to gain access to the underlying tissues. We can remove or redistribute fat while also tightening connective tissue. 

We will then close the incisions. For a mini-facelift, the incisions will be smaller. 

The recovery process for a full facelift will last about three weeks, during which time you’ll need to get plenty of rest and avoid strenuous activities. We will provide instructions on how to take care of the bandages and sutures. 

For all types of facelifts, make sure to protect your skin from the sun as it heals. 

Schedule a Facelift in Glen Burnie, MD

Facelift surgery can be one of the most effective ways of getting the smoother, more youthful appearance you want. At Maryland Plastic Surgery and PURE MedSpa in Glen Burnie, MD, we offer SMART facelifts, mini-facelifts, and full facelifts to help you look and feel your best. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.

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