Dr. Christopher Chang has surgical skills beyond the ordinary and has garnered great respect in his field of practice. He offers his patients a full scope of anti-aging treatments, including performing what is often called a “mini-facelift.”
This procedure is often appropriate for those who are experiencing the first signs of aging, particularly in the lower third of the face, and want to resolve the following conditions:
- Lack of jawline definition
- Sagging cheeks
- Nasolabial folds (from nose to sides of mouth)
- Double chin
Benefits of a Mini-Facelift
It can be distressing to see the impact of time and gravity as they begin to appear on your facial skin and tissue. Nothing shows your age more than your face. The most visible signs of aging skin include skin laxity, droopiness, wrinkles, lines, and a less firm, defined jawline. A mini-facelift is an excellent surgical method by which these aesthetic issues can be resolved.
The benefits of this procedure include:
- Creates a younger, rejuvenated facial appearance
- Less invasive than a traditional facelift
- Faster recovery time
- Long-lasting results
A Mini Facelift: What to Expect
A mini facelift addresses the bottom third of the face. The procedure involves repositioning a deeper layer of the muscle tissues beneath the facial skin. To produce a dramatically improved appearance that looks natural will require great skill and a deep understanding of facial muscular structure, as well as the most meticulous surgical techniques.
This surgical technique is termed “SMAS” (submuscular aponeurotic system -a layer of tissue covering the deep structures of the cheeks). The results include lifting the jowls, tightening the neck, and elevating the cheek structure in a subtle, pleasing way – when performed by a highly-skilled plastic surgeon. After the procedure, your facial skin and tissue will appear youthful and fresh, with issues such as lax, hanging skin resolved. Only a close evaluation of your facial skin will reveal if this is the most appropriate surgical technique for your case – and for many of our patients, it is.
The Procedure: A Step-by-Step Description
The procedure itself is highly technical and must be performed with great attention to detail, including an evaluation of your natural facial muscular structure so it can be lifted and tightened correctly to produce a result that appears naturally fresh and appealing, once healed.
- Step one is to ensure patient comfort with the administration of anesthesia, whether general or intravenous sedation.
- Once sedated, very fine incisions are placed in front and behind the ear structure, so they are hidden from view once healed.
- The skin and tissue on the lower face and neck is then elevated by correcting the deeper muscles and connective tissue for a very natural, long-lasting facial rejuvenation. Within the “mini-facelift” category, there are several types of surgical procedures that could be employed, based upon the condition of the patient. A full evaluation of your facial skin and tissue will reveal which surgical technique will be most appropriate in your case.
- After the facial structure has been restored to a more youthful position, excess skin will be removed and the incisions carefully sutured.
- Upon completion of the surgery, you will rest and recover from the anesthetic, after which you can return home, driven by a friend or family member. The procedure is performed on an out-patient basis in almost all cases.
Recovery from a Mini Facelift
After the surgical procedure, you will feel groggy and tired. The surgery requires about one to one and a half hours to complete for most patients, after which you will slowly awaken and be released to the care of a friend or family member, who should stay with you for the first few days.
Your face will be bandaged for a day. You will need to simply rest, with your head elevated in the initial healing stages. You will have a follow-up appointment the following day, after which the bandages will be gone. It is normal to see some swelling and bruising at this point. As the days pass, this will diminish, and you will soon be able to return to your usual activities. Most patients require about one week prior to returning to work.
Candidates for a Mini-Facelift
Men and women in their 40s or 50s are the most common candidates for a mini facelift. The requirements for a safe procedure include:
- You are in good general health
- Non-smoker, or willing to quit for several weeks prior to surgery
- No medical conditions that could impact the healing process
- Have sagging facial skin
- Crease, lines, wrinkles
- Sagging cheeks
- Lack of jaw definition
Beauty and Artistry in Plastic Surgery
Dr. Christopher Chang has experience and credentials that go beyond plastic surgery. During his education, he completed a fellowship in advanced craniofacial surgery, which has provided him with greater knowledge, skills, and insight into facial structure, and how to create a very natural result that makes you look younger, without looking pulled, tight, or “worked on.” Dr. Chang has a powerful reputation for excellence and is an acclaimed board-certified plastic surgeon serving the Washington D.C. area. Are you ready to restore a more youthful look to your face and neck? Connect with us.
- Faster recovery time
- Long-lasting results
Mini Facelift FAQ
Our patients come to us with many questions and concerns, and we are always happy to respond. We have briefly answered some of the commonly asked questions below. If you have individual questions, we invite you to schedule a consultation with us at a time that is convenient for you.
What is a mini facelift?
A mini facelift is a procedure that addresses the lower portion of the face. While some may call repositioning the skin and removing the excess a “mini facelift,” there are actually several different surgical methods that could be used.
Dr. Chang employs the SMAS technique, as it creates very natural-looking results and long-lasting improvements. This procedure requires great surgical skill to perform. There are several SMAS techniques that could be used, based upon the condition of the patient’s skin and tissue and the degree of sagging, jowls, and wrinkling, along with the neck condition.
What type of facelift is appropriate for the early signs of aging?
In many cases, when the skin and tissue has not lost its natural elasticity and the sagging and drooping is not extensive, a mini facelift is the appropriate procedure. For more extreme cases, a traditional facelift may be more appropriate. The early signs of aging usually include sagging skin, lines, wrinkles, jowls, and the cheek structure slowly shifting downward. These problems, along with an undefined jawline and saggy neck skin and tissue, can all be addressed with a mini facelift.
Is a mini facelift a thread lift?
No. A thread lift does not produce the long-term results of a mini facelift. A thread lift is not the advised method for those who want to achieve longer results and are seeking a truly natural-looking outcome. Dr. Chang is often called upon to perform revision facelifts on patients who have undergone facial surgery and were left feeling unhappy with the outcome. Never take risks with facial surgery, but ensure you have a respected, highly-qualified, experienced plastic surgeon working with you.
Will a mini facelift leave my face looking strange and unnatural?
As with any surgery, it is the hands performing the procedure that create the result. You would be well-served to view before and after photos of other patients and to read online reviews before committing to any facial surgery. When performed with meticulous care and with an eye for balance and harmony, a mini facelift can produce a dramatic improvement in your appearance – that looks natural. When a person is left with a “windswept” look and everyone can tell that surgery has been performed, this would not be considered a positive outcome. Talk to us about a mini facelift. We will give you an honest assessment of what you can expect, how your face will appear after the surgery, and can answer all other concerns.
Will a mini facelift make my neck appear firmer and younger?
Yes. One surgical technique can be used to lift and tighten the neck skin and tissue, so your neck appears firmer, tighter, and more youthful.
How long will it take to recover from a mini facelift?
Most patients are recovered sufficiently after ten days to two weeks to return to their normal activities, including work. Some heal more quickly and have been known to go back to work after missing one week. Every person heals at a different rate, but generally, plan on ten days to two weeks off work.
Can I have other procedures at the same time as a mini facelift?
Some patients want a full facial rejuvenation, including nose reshaping, eyelid lift, or other enhancement. When possible, all cosmetic procedures will be performed in one surgery. The first step is always a private consultation. Only then can we advise you about what procedures will be needed to achieve what you envision. We work closely with our patients and are proud to have achieved recognition for our excellent work in facial plastic surgery. We invite you to meet with us in a private consultation to get all your questions answered.