Preserving Your Facelift Results

Posted by Anthony Bared, M.D., F.A.C.S.

Preserving Your Facelift Results

Both a full facelift and a mini facelift can give you a much more youthful look by removing or reducing sagging skin and by tightening the underlying layers of facial tissue and muscle. If you decide to have a facelift, then you’re probably expecting long-lasting results. After all, it’s a big investment and a major procedure!

How long the results from a facelift will last depends on a variety of factors, including the type of surgery you have and how you care for your skin in the months and years after your procedure. Here’s how to make the most of your facelift results. 

How Long Do Facelift Results Last?

When you flip through before-and-after facelift photos, you might find yourself wondering how long those patients still looked like their “after” photos. A traditional, full facelift can provide results that last for a decade, if not longer. Your face will continue to age after surgery, but you’ll still look younger than you would have if you didn’t have a facelift. 

A mini facelift is a less invasive surgery and typically produces more subtle results. It’s often recommended to people who are younger and who have only a moderate amount of sagging in the mid-face area. After a mini facelift, your results might last for five years or so.

Whether you have a full or mini facelift, here’s what you can do to preserve and extend your results and keep yourself looking like your “after” facelift photos for as long as possible.

Follow Your Surgeon’s Instructions

Dr. Bared gives patients a comprehensive list of instructions to follow after a facelift to encourage proper healing. These instructions are meant to reduce the risk of infection and complications after surgery. Following any instructions that your surgeon gives you can also help to improve your results.

For example, you’ll want to keep your head elevated after a facelift as much as possible. Elevating the head helps to reduce swelling in the treatment area. To reduce the risk of bleeding or other complications, only take the medications recommended by your surgeon. 

It’s also important to follow your surgeon’s advice for when you can return to work or exercise. Trying to do too much too soon in the healing process can negatively affect your results.

Eat a Healthy Diet

You are what you eat, and eating a healthy diet in the years after your facelift is one way to extend your results. But what is a healthy diet, anyway? It’s one that includes lots of vegetables and fruit, healthy fats and lean protein like chicken or fish.

Vegetables and fruits tend to be great sources of antioxidant vitamins, such as vitamins C and E, both of which are necessary for skin health. Healthy fats, such as those found in olive oil and avocadoes are good for the skin too, as they help to keep it plump and soft. Finally, protein is a must-have for everyone. 

Don’t forget about the importance of hydration for your skin’s health. Drink water throughout the day to keep your skin and your entire body well-hydrated. Keep in mind that beverages like juice or milk can count towards your hydration goal for the day, but drinks like wine or beer won’t. If you want your facelift results to last as long as possible, your best bet is to go easy on the alcohol or eliminate it entirely, as it dehydrates you and can wreak havoc on your skin.  

Along with eating as healthfully as possible, it’s a good idea to watch your weight after a facelift, to help extend your results. Losing or gaining weight can cause the skin on your face to sag or stretch, then sag, which can make you look older.

Protect Your Skin

Eating with your skin’s health in mind is just one way to make your facelift results last. It’s also important to protect your skin from the sun and from pollution. Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays can accelerate the aging process, leading to dark spots, wrinkles and loose skin. 

You can protect your skin by wearing sunscreen with at least 30 SPF every day. Even if it’s cloudy or you’ll only be outside for a few minutes, it’s still a good idea to slather on the sunscreen to protect your skin and prolong your results. Don’t forget that UV rays can filter through windows, too!

Don’t Smoke

Like sun exposure, smoking cigarettes is up there as one of the leading causes of wrinkles and other signs of aging. If you’ve recently had a facelift or mini facelift, odds are good that you had to quit smoking before the surgery to reduce the risk of complications.

Don’t pick up the habit again during your recovery, as it can affect your results. In the first few weeks after your surgery, smoking can increase your risk of complications and even cause your incisions to heal poorly. 

After you’ve healed from a facelift, starting to smoke again can speed up the aging process, shortening the duration of your results. You’ve invested too much in your facelift to have a few cigarettes mess things up for you. Use your surgery as motivation to quit for good.

Make Skincare a Priority

A great skincare routine is a must-have after a facelift. Keeping your skin moisturized and exfoliated will help to keep it looking youthful for longer. 

Some people also find that non-surgical treatments, such as Botox or Juvederm Voluma, help them to extend the life of their facelift results. Voluma injections help to restore lost volume in the mid-face area while Botox smooths wrinkles between the brows, at the corners of the eyes, and elsewhere on the face. Other non-surgical treatments that might extend your facelift results include laser skin treatments and dermal fillers.

During one of your follow-up visits after a facelift or mini facelift, feel free to discuss your non-surgical cosmetic options with Dr. Bared. He can help you choose the treatment that will work best for you and help to preserve your results.

Learn More About Your Facelift Options

If you’re interested in learning more about a full or mini facelift or if you’d like to see more before and after facelift photos to get an idea of what to expect, schedule a consultation with Dr. Bared at his practice in Miami today.