Aging doesn’t happen overnight. Every person’s face ages differently. Some people get jowls early. Others have more of the “turkey neck” or wrinkling of the cheeks. You don’t just wake up one morning and look 25 years older. However, you may wake up one day and suddenly realize, wow! I look a lot older than I feel.
A common misconception of cosmetic surgery is that once you have a facelift, you’ll have to keep having them. In fact, the opposite is true. If you ask how long a facelift will last, the answer is forever. You will always look better after having had a lift whenever you do it. Since the face continually changes with age, the benefits of having undergone surgery will ensure that you will look younger than your chronological age. Aging is not limited to the surface of the skin. Time and sun damage take a toll on each layer of the skin and supportive tissues. A facelift addresses all the layers in the face. The goal is to look younger and more refreshed, without dramatic changes that give away that you had cosmetic surgery.
As with the rest of the body, the appearance of the face and neck changes with age. Muscle tone is lost, causing a flabby or droopy appearance. The jowls may begin to sag, contributing to a double chin. The nose lengthens slightly and may look more prominent. There is an increase in the number, size, and color of pigmented spots on the face. The eyebrows and eyelashes lose pigment and turn gray. The skin around the eyelids becomes loose and wrinkled, often making a crow’s feet pattern. The eye socket loses some of its fat pads, making the eyes look sunken. Droopy upper eyelids can occassionally contribute to limitations in vision. The fat pad that lies below the eye starts to thin over time, creating a sunken look to the area, and the lower eyelid tends to droop, creating a “tear trough.” The light that hits this area gives the illusion of a dark circle.
So, if “40 is the new 30″, and “50 is the new 40″, then what do we do about all this depressing aging? There are some decent non-invasive techniques to restore a youthful look. But NOTHING, literally no other treatment, will give you the results of a traditional facelift. A well-done facelift will not change your looks or make you look like a different person. It will not make you look fake….a well done facelift will take years off your appearance and have people saying things like…”wow, you look great!”…but they won’t be sure why/how you suddenly look so good.
In a facelift, tissues are elevated to where they started out; the underlying musculature is tightened, leaving you with a refreshed appearance and a sharper jaw line. A facelift should do more than just tighten sagging skin. It should redrape the skin over the facial fat and muscles that have been restored to the position they held in your younger years. Plastic surgeons use smaller incisions now for facelifts to avoid the tell tale signs of an operated-on face. When you spot someone who has undergone a facelift and looks radically different, it is usually a sign that more than just a facelift has been done. For example, adding a chin implant will make you appear slightly different than if merely a facelift is done as a stand alone procedure.
Facelift surgery has become more accepted as a right of passage, rather than a frivolous self-indulgence. The ideal time for a facelift is when you think you need it, or feel ready.