The Truth About a Facelift Without Surgery

Published on May 10, 2016

Avoid going under the knife at all costs! That’s the latest craze, however. With non-surgical alternatives to many body and facial plastic surgery procedures, people are now expecting dramatic facelift results without the risks associated with surgery or the downtime. But do these non-surgical plastic surgery procedures work? Can you really get a facelift without surgery with surgical facelift results?

Non-Surgical Facelift Alternatives: Separating Fact From Fiction on the Facelift Without Surgery

Stem Cell Facelifts

The Claim: An all-natural approach to facial anti-aging, your own fat is injected into your face after a mini-liposuction procedure. The fat will plump up your facial features for a more youthful look, and the fat also contains youthful stem cells which will heal the tissue from the inside out, providing long-term results.

The Reality: The jury’s still out on stem cells for anti-aging. However, research is promising. The downside? While this can help restore lost volume in the face, it does very little to tighten or lift sagging skin. A surgical facelift is still required in many cases, and patients find they still require repeated injections like with dermal fillers.

The Liquid Facelift

The Claim: A board-certified facial plastic surgeon can administer injectable fillers and Botox to provide facelift-like results without surgery. A good example of this is Juvederm Voluma, which offers instant cheek enhancement and a subtle lower facelift without surgery and in just 15-30 minutes, combined with Botox to smooth out forehead and brow lines in addition to crow’s feet.

The Reality: Fillers and Botox are both amazing facial rejuvenation treatments that men and women of all ages are now getting to slow down the signs of aging. While these treatments are rejuvenating and provide excellent results, they are temporary and don’t replace a surgical facelift. If you require more dramatic results due to advanced skin sagging, Botox and fillers can be used following a surgical facelift, brow lift or lower face lift.

The Vampire Facelift®, or PRP Facelift

The Claim: After receiving a lot of attention in the media, the vampire facelift has become a popular alternative to facial plastic surgery. With the vampire facelift, your blood is drawn and then put into a centrifuge where the platelet rich plasma (PRP) is separated from the blood. This PRP is then injected into your face with a filler to provide more youthful-looking skin.

The Reality: The blood aspect gave the procedure its name, but the real ingredients at work are the fillers. Many patients like this idea of this procedure because it uses your own natural blood and PRP, but fillers are still often needed to augment the PRP. Finally, results are temporary, making this a poor long-term solution. In our opinion, it’s a more expensive and hyped-up way to administer facial fillers.

Non-Surgical Skin Tightening Technology

The Claim: RadioFrequency (RF) and UltraSound waves can lift and tighten skin as a non-surgical facelift alternative. After just one treatment, skin is tighter and smoother.

The Reality: While treatments like Thermage® and Ultherapy® can offer anti-aging benefits for some patients, many patients find that results don’t last as long as they expected or that they aren’t good candidates due to their more advanced signs of aging. If you have significant sagging around the jawline or eyes, non-surgical skin tightening likely won’t produce the results you’re looking for. These are, however, good for men and women in their 40s or 50s who just need a little help looking refreshed.

Mini-Lift or Mini-Facelift

The Claim: You don’t need a full facelift, just a mini uplift! What does that mean? That depends on the provider making the claim. However, this usually involves the lower face to treat the signs of aging from the nasolabial folds to the chin and back toward the earlobe along the jawline. This procedure goes by many names, including the Lifestyle Lift®, QuickLift® and the Weekend Facelift®.

The Reality: The idea here is to lure you in with the idea that you only need a “mini” procedure, when you likely require more extensive work or a different procedure entirely. It relies heavily on branding and marketing ploys, which leave patients with a false understanding of the procedure. Truthfully, these are still surgical facelifts. Board-certified facial plastic surgeons call these lower facelifts and neck lifts.

How Do I Decide Which Facelift Procedure is Right For Me?

Always go to a board-certified facial plastic surgeon to have a consultation. Whether they determine that you require a surgical facelift or a facelift without surgery, you’ll know it’s after a thorough consultation to ensure the best results, not just a quick fix.

To arrange a consultation or find out more information about rhytidectomy procedures or a facelift without surgery, contact Scottsdale facial plastic surgeon Dr. David Hecht today.

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