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Facelifts with Caroline Mills: 5 common questions answered

If you’re considering facelift surgery, chances are you have lots of questions.

It’s always a good idea to do your research before pursuing any cosmetic surgical procedure, and think carefully before going ahead. As one of our key services at The Face Surgeons, we get a lot of enquiries about facelift surgery. If you’d like to discuss the options, you can book an appointment via our online enquiry form, or by calling us on: +44 (0)20 7487 2773, and we’d be happy to help.

In the meantime, here are five common questions about facelift surgery:

1 Who has facelift surgery?

We see a wide range of people interested in facelift surgery – most typically women from their early-40s to mid-60s. They will usually have done some research already and have an idea of what they want, but we of course always discuss things with them thoroughly before any decisions are made. Sometimes, which procedures are suitable can vary from one individual to another, depending on their age, skin laxity, and the results they hope to achieve, etc.


2 What can a facelift achieve?

The clue is in the name, really – facelift surgery is centred around generally ‘lifting’ the face. This might mean tightening loose or sagging skin around the jawline (jowls) and neck area, as well as smoothing out sagging or drooping skin around the cheeks, forehead and eyes (although there’s a number of procedures specifically to address the eyes, such as blepharoplasty surgery to help improve excess drooping fatty skin in the eyelids: Our information video on lower eyelid blepharoplasty explains more).

Patients typically feel their drooping skin is making them look more ‘old and tired’ than they feel, and they want to improve this. While great outcomes can be achieved, it’s important to be realistic and manage your expectations too. For us, facelift surgery is more about achieving a healthy-looking refresh and helping you feel more ‘like you’ again, rather than completely turning back the clock!

3 Are there risks involved?

Any surgical procedure carries risks. There are risks associated with going under general anaesthetic, plus there’s always a small risk of infection post-surgery. With facelifts, there may be other possible complications such as developing a haematoma, which is basically a big bruise under the skin. Our information video on the potential complications of facelift surgery explains more.

While we always do our best to minimise risks, it’s very important that anybody interested in facelift surgery is fully aware of any potential complications, so it’s vital to discuss them.

4 What do facelift scars look like?

If surgical incisions are being made, some degree of scarring is unavoidable. We always do our best to ensure scarring is as minimal and ‘hidden’ as possible. With facelift surgery, the scar is usually tucked in close to the ear and once healed, will hopefully be barely noticeable. However, a number of other factors can affect scaring, including a person’s age, skin type and lifestyle. For example, smoking may slow down the skin healing process.

5 How long does it take for a facelift to heal?

This largely depends on how much work somebody’s had done. Naturally, a bigger procedure will have a longer recovery time. The initial recovery phase – when there’s still a lot of swelling and bruising and incisions are healing – can last for up to a number of weeks. We’ll always ensure patients are fully informed about aftercare during this phase before they go home. Once home, our nurse is available on the telephone to advise, should there be any queries.

However, it may take up to a year before you see the true, longer-term outcome of facelift surgery. Often, the ‘tightened’ appearance can be more pronounced in the initial post-surgery phase but will ‘soften’ over time, balancing out into a more natural appearance. Our information video on managing expectations of facelift surgery discusses this further.

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