The Best Facelifts Aren’t The Same For Each Person.
It’s surprising but true: Every facelift isn’t created equal – even when the quality is superb.
That’s because the best facelifts are tailored to each person’s goals as well as the unique architecture of their face. To tap into what differentiates a great facelift from the overdone, fake-looking results we often notice among celebrities, we’ve asked Dr. Paul Vanek – an Ohio-based Board-Certified Plastic and General Surgeon and recognized Top Doctor in the field of plastic surgery – to lend insight from his more than 20 years of experience.
Today’s facelifts aren’t actually a single procedure, he says, but several distinct treatments performed at one time or over several sessions to help patients look as good as they feel.
“The most common misperception about facelifts is that people can tell that you’ve had this done,” Dr. Vanek explains. “With the right training and expertise in a top plastic surgeon, and incisions that are nearly imperceptible, someone who hasn’t seen you in some time will simply think you had a great vacation, or lost weight, or are aging more gracefully than they expected. Even your dance partner will have a hard time seeing a facelift scar after it has faded.”
“The most common misperception about facelifts is that people can tell that you’ve had this done,” Dr. Vanek explains.
An ideal facelift candidate, he explains, is someone with anatomic features such as flattening of the face, deepening of lines around the mouth and jowls along the jawline. They may also have a tired appearance or some laxity and inelasticity of their neck tissues.
During an initial consultation with a plastic surgeon, he says, a discerning surgeon will be able to suggest a customized grouping of procedures that address each person’s specific desires and issues. Non-surgical options include fillers and fat transfer injections, peels that remove superficial layers of skin, and a variety of laser techniques that resurface the skin and stimulate the production of collagen, a naturally-occurring protein that helps plump up lines and sunken facial areas.
When Dr. Vanek performs face- and neck-lift surgeries, either alone or combined with other procedures, he often uses the SMAS (Superficial Muscular Aponeurotic System) technique designed to maximize natural-looking results on sagging skin and muscles without stretching them taut. Fat transfer injections are often incorporated as well, along with broadband light laser treatments at monthly intervals afterward to fade scars.
To ensure optimal results, Dr. Vanek recommends seeking out a practitioner who is Board Certified in plastic surgery by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, which grants credentials to only the best-trained doctors in the specialty after rigorous testing. He then recommends looking over their before-and-after photos – not only those on a website but also in the doctor’s office – and reading patient reviews.
“Being able to meet the surgeon, examine their work and determine your medical eligibility for the surgery – including speaking in detail about your recovery and whether the doctor has had cases similar to yours – are key elements of the process,” Dr. Vanek explains. “By making it an educational experience, patients are put in the driver’s seat of what they’re shopping for and the results that we both want, once you’ve healed.”