Many people think that a facelift involves pulling the facial skin tight to “iron out” the wrinkles. Once upon a time, that was the case.
But today, Thousand Oaks facelift provider Dr. Kouros Azar offers a truly restorative procedure that brings back youthful contours and re-drapes the skin for a natural looking result. He has earned a reputation for the innovative techniques he employs and the remarkable results he achieves for his patients. If you are wondering if a facelift is right for you, request a consultation with Dr. Azar to discuss the possibilities. Or you can call our office at (805) 373-7073 and one of our knowledgeable, friendly staff members will schedule your appointment.
The Gold Standard of Facial Rejuvenation
This cosmetic surgical procedure is used to rejuvenate the face, jawline, and neck by reducing or eliminating the visible signs of aging. This transformative treatment targets a range of age-related concerns, including sagging skin, volume loss in areas like the cheeks and temples, diminished muscle tone, deep wrinkles, fine lines, and loss of definition in the jawline and jowls.
A facelift involves the careful creation of incisions near the ears, temples, and sometimes beneath the chin. These incisions grant access to the underlying facial structures, allowing for meticulous manipulation and repositioning of muscles, tissues, and skin, ultimately resulting in a tighter and more youthful facial appearance.
Facelift surgery is performed to lift and firm sagging skin and tissues of the mid to lower face and neck. Women and men in their 40s and 50s are usually the best candidates for this surgery, which:
Determine if a Facelift is Right for You
While facelifts are effective in addressing various signs of facial aging, not everyone may be an ideal candidate. Typical facelift candidates are in their 50s to 60s or older and have significant and noticeable signs of aging in the face and neck, such as sagging skin, wrinkles, fine lines, jowls, and loss of facial volume.
They should also be in generally good health and should not be dealing with any uncontrolled, chronic issues that could affect the healing process. It's also crucial that potential facelift candidates have realistic expectations about the outcomes of the procedure.
A facelift can achieve significant improvements but will not stop the natural aging process, and candidates should understand the limitations of the procedure.
Innovative Methods For Outstanding Results
For long-lasting, natural-looking outcomes, Dr. Azar performs facelift procedures that involve deeper tissues of the face called the SMAS, or superficial musculoaponeurotic system.
The SMAS is a thin layer of connective tissue (fascia) below the skin but above the muscle layer of the face. Dr. Azar performs most facelift procedures using 2 techniques: SMAS advancement uses discreet incisions along the hairline, by the ear, and sometimes under the chin, so there are no telltale scars along the hairline on the back of the neck. Dr. Azar goes to the SMAS and tightens the face's muscle layer, then re-drapes facial skin and removes the excess. There is no pulling on the skin to lift the face, so the result is much more natural looking. SMAS plication involves drawing up and “folding” the natural muscle layer of the face that has drooped into the jowl.
This produces a nice, full cheekbone and eliminates the jowl, all without disturbing the facial nerves or lymphatic vessels beneath the SMAS. This technique produces a beautiful, long-lasting result and a quicker, more comfortable recovery.
Combining a Facelift with Other Aesthetic Procedures
A facelift focuses on the lower two-thirds of the face; however, the aging process usually affects the upper face and neck as well. To provide a comprehensive facial rejuvenation, Westlake Village facelift provider, Dr. Azar creates a personalized treatment plan that combines facelift surgery with one or more of the following procedures:
As a specialist in facial cosmetic surgery, Dr. Azar’s goal is to help you look years younger and naturally rejuvenated.
Every face is different, so naturally, every facelift is different. Our goal is to ensure that you receive a totally personalized treatment plan so we can address your unique needs and achieve the best possible results.
During your consultation for a facelift Thousand Oaks plastic surgeon, Dr. Azar, will examine your face, neck, and skin, discuss your health history, and address any questions or concerns you may have. If you decide together that a facelift is ideal for you, we will create a comprehensive treatment plan.
To prepare for the procedure, you will need to avoid blood thinning medications as well as some supplements for a period of time, eat healthy and stay hydrated, and quit smoking.
Proper Healing Leads to Great Results
A facelift typically takes about 3 hours, depending on the condition of your skin, your desired results, and whether or not your facelift procedure is being combined with other cosmetic surgery procedures.
Westlake Village Facelift provider, Dr. Azar, prefers to use general anesthesiawith a board-certified Anesthesiologist but the possibility of doing it with sedation alone can be discussed at the consultation. While patient experiences vary, you will likely feel ready to go out in public with some cover-up makeup in about a week, though you may not be ready to resume all social activities for another week after that. You should be back to work in about 10 days to two weeks.
A board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Azar develops innovative surgical techniques and is dedicated to providing exceptional outcomes.
Dr. Azar describes himself as an “engineer,” and he applies that innovative mentality to each surgical procedure. Rather than simply performing the traditional facelift, lifting and tightening facial tissue, he restructures the muscle and then gently re-drapes the skin for a very natural look. His goal is to make sure his facelift patients never look tight, pulled or "worked on."
The typical response is that they look rested and rejuvenated, like they’ve just had a relaxing vacation. Safety and quality are never compromised with Dr. Azar and his outstanding team. He operates only at major hospitals and surgery centers, and uses only board-certified M.D. anesthesiologists. He is a board-certified plastic surgeon, which means he has demonstrated the highest levels of skill, experience, and knowledge.
During a facelift Westlake Village plastic surgeon, Dr. Azar will carefully tightens the face’s underlying muscles and fascia, also known as connective tissue. He makes discreet incisions along the hairline, by the ear, or on the chin, and removes excess skin. Then he skillfully re-drapes the remaining skin for the most natural-looking results.
Because this procedure is customized to each patient's needs, the cost of a facelift can vary significantly from patient to patient and is influenced by various other factors. The technique used, along with the skill level of the surgeon, can both affect the cost of this surgery as well as facility and anesthesia fees. In addition, the simple geographic location of where the facelift will be performed factors into costs.
“Yes. Because a facelift affects only the lower 2/3 of the face, I often combine a facelift with an eyelid lift and/or a brow lift. I commonly use a minimally invasive Endotine™ technique that involves inserting a dissolvable implant through a tiny incision in the upper eyelid or the scalp. Performing an eyelid lift and brow lift complements the results of a facelift, opening up the eyes and making the upper third of the face look younger.”
The cheeks tend to flatten with age. Take a look at your high school yearbook picture and notice your cheeks. Chances are you will see you had very prominent, round cheeks – they were rounded like a golf ball and pinchable. By age 45, many women’s cheeks look more like a flattened egg. A teenager’s cheeks have a reflection of light that reveals youthful beauty.
Yes, Dr. Azar can rejuvenate flattened cheeks with an endoscopic mid-face lift. This procedure, which focuses on the middle of the face, involves using an instrument called an endoscope to separate the tissues around the eye and cheek through tiny forehead incisions made along the hairline. Dr. Azar then suspends the tissues of the cheek from the temple using a new absorbable plate called a mid-face Endotine™. This facelift technique gives the cheeks a very youthful, lifted appearance without artificial implants.
“The ideal time to have a facelift is between ages 47 and 57. Patients younger than 47 should have a very good, solid reason to have a facelift – as in the case of actors or individuals with facial features that make them look older than their age. Patients older than 57 are still candidates for a facelift, but they may need to undergo a more conservative procedure to maintain a natural look.”
“I perform what’s called a SMAS advancement. The SMAS, or superficial musculoaponeurotic system, is the covering below the skin, but above the muscle layer of the face. When I do a facelift, I go below the SMAS and tighten the face’s muscle layer. Then I simply re-drape the facial skin and remove the excess skin. I’m not pulling on the skin to lift the face. I’m restructuring the muscle and then gently re-draping the skin for a very natural look – not the ‘windswept’ look of old-fashioned facelifts. People tell my facelift patients that they look rested, like they’ve just been on a Caribbean cruise. Nobody can really tell they’ve had surgery.”
“Of course, there is a certain degree of risk with any surgery. However, I am a specialist in facial nerve and muscle surgery, so my advanced specialty training makes me very well-suited at avoiding any facial injuries.”
“Facelift incisions are a lot shorter than they used to be. I limit the incisions behind the ear, and I don’t go along the hairline in the back so that if you want to wear your hair up, no one will see the scar in the back.”
“Yes. A neck lift is part and parcel of a facelift. There is also a separate neck lift procedure called a platysmaplasty for patients with extreme excess skin and sagging in the neck. This procedure can be done by itself or in conjunction with a facelift. During your personal consultation, I will recommend the procedure best for you.”
“The Endotine device, developed by Coapt Systems reduces the need for stitches and improves the accuracy and simplicity of brow lift and eyelid lift procedures.”
“No – and for good reason. Mini-facelifts, which are marketed under several different names, including the S-lift (for the shape of the incision) and the thread lift, among others, are very market-driven. I think patients should be cautious about these minimally invasive techniques. A very small number of women – perhaps 5% – can get a lasting benefit from a mini-facelift. But most women who have a mini-facelift are likely to be back where they started in 2 or 3 years. A full facelift provides a much longer-lasting result.”
“Yes, I do use injectable dermal fillers with the facelift. When I do a facelift, I almost always inject the nasolabial folds – the creases that run from the nose to the corners of the mouth. Sometimes I inject what’s called the “tear trough” – the area underneath the eyelids. A lot of people end up with grooves underneath the lower eyelids, so that can easily be injected at the same time as the facelift. The cheekbones can be accentuated with filler as well.”
“If you have very deep nasolabial folds, during the facelift I can actually lift the skin a little bit farther than I normally would and smooth out the nasolabial folds completely. That’s considered the definitive treatment for deep nasolabial folds.”
“I borrow a little bit of fascia, which is like a big connective tissue layer on the temporal area, and graft it into the nasolabial folds under the skin. We always try to use your own tissues when we can.”
While most patients experience some mild discomfort, tenderness, or a tight sensation, most do not have considerable pain with a facelift.
Like any surgery, facelift comes with possible risks, including bleeding, infection, or swelling. More serious but rare risks include anesthesia complications or injury to the facial nerves.
A facelift typically lasts around 10 to 15 years, depending on the patient and the technique used. However, it is not considered permanent since it will not stop signs of aging from occurring in the future.
Dr. Kouros Azar, founder and medical director of Azar Plastic Surgery and Med Spa, is an attentive listener, a devoted surgeon and doctor, and a highly-skilled biomedical engineer. He matches his patients with the best possible treatments by drawing on his extensive expertise, compassion, and research skills. Make an appointment with Dr. Azar now to discuss your rejuvenation options.