What is the difference compared to a traditional facelift?
- A mini facelift is less complex and invasive
- It involves a shorter scar that does not extend into the scalp
- There is usually a shorter recovery period with less bruising and swelling
- Change is usually limited to the jawline and results are less dramatic
- Results may not be as long lasting
Good candidates have good skin tone but have mild to moderate:
- Aging in the mid-face area
- Facial wrinkles and folds
- Jowls (loose skin along jawline)
Before the Surgery
During your initial consultation, Calgary plastic surgeon Jonathan Lee, MD, FRCSC will perform a thorough evaluation of your face and neck. He will determine if you are a good candidate for a mini facelift and make a recommendation tailored to your specific goals. This may include recommendations of other possible surgical or non-surgical combined treatments which can further enhance your result. Pre-treatment photos will be taken and any potential risks and complications will also be discussed.
Dr. lee always encourages his patients to bring in photos of how they looked when they were younger. This often helps in the discussion and visualization of the target goals.
The procedure is typically performed under general anesthesia, but occasionally local anesthesia with sedation is utilized.
The incision begins in the hairline and extends into the creases immediately in front and slightly behind the ear. Dr. Lee uses his expertise to ensure that all incision are planned such that the scars are as inconspicuous as possible.
The skin layer is next separated from the underlying tissue layer known as the SMAS (superficial musculoaponeurotic system). Both layers are lifted up, repositioned, and gently tightened to create an improved natural and youthful contour. Any excess skin and fat is trimmed and the incisions are all closed with tiny stitches.
Combing Procedures and Treatments
Dr. Lee will often combine mini facelift surgery with other surgical or non-surgical procedures in order to provide you with a more harmonious and comprehensive result. These may include:
- Neck lift to improve the contour of the neck and minimize redundant sagging skin and bands
- Eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) to remove excess skin and bags from the upper and/or lower eyelids
- Fat grafting to restore volume in the face, providing a more youthful contour by filling in areas of age-related volume loss
- Dermal fillers are occasionally used to further enhance the results of surgery in areas that may not be suitable for fat grafting. They can also extend the benefits of your facelift even longer.
- BOTOX®/Dysport® (neuromodulators) injections to improve and relax fine lines to the forehead and around the eyes
- A proper skin care regimen is always recommended both before and after the surgery to revitalize skin texture, provide glow, and even out pigmentation, further adding to the result of the surgery.
After The Surgery
A mini facelift will take between 2 and 4 hours to complete, depending on if there are any additional combined procedures.
Patients may experience mild pain along the face following the surgery. Dr. Lee will prescribe you a pain reliever. After the first week, Tylenol is usually sufficient for any discomfort.
Immediately after surgery you will have mild swelling and bruising. Your face may also feel tight and numb. This is normal and it will improve. The majority of the bruising and swelling resolves over several weeks but residual swelling may continue for several months following the surgery. A nighttime face compression garment can be used to speed the process.
For the first two weeks following the operation, the patient should have their head elevated when sleeping and avoid tilting their head down or moving it from side-to-side.
Most patients will take 2 weeks off from work and Dr. Lee recommends allowing at least 4 to 6 weeks prior to any major social or media event.
Dr. Lee will typically see you within one week after the surgery to remove any stitches. At this time he will also provide you with detailed scar care instructions. The next visits will be after 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months and 1 year.
Long Term Results
It is important to note that mini facelift surgery creates lasting natural and elegant results but it does not stop the aging process. Gravity, genetics and the natural aging process all influence the longevity of your result.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and skin care regimen in addition to touch-up procedures with facial fillers and BOTOX®/Dysport® injections are strongly recommended to help patients get the most longevity out of their surgery results.
Explore the cosmetic possibilities