What is a Facelift?

A facelift focuses on correcting wrinkles and sagging skin on the face caused by aging. Many patients undergo a facelift to correct midface sagging, jowls, marionette lines, and a double chin. A facelift is the most comprehensive approach for combating signs of facial aging.

Who is a Good Candidate for a Facelift?

Individuals who are unhappy with the toll that time has taken on their face, whose sagging facial skin makes them feel self-conscious in social or work situations, or who feel that their face does not reflect their youthful attitude can often benefit from a facelift. It’s important that you are generally healthy overall and a nonsmoker before having a facelift. In many cases, it’s also important that you are at or near a healthy and stable weight. Finally, your skin should be relatively healthy and well-cared for before and after your facelift procedure.

During a consultation with Dr. Howland, patient’s will have the opportunity to discuss any concerns that they may have, as well as go over their aesthetic goals.

What to Expect

There are three main facelift incision patterns used today. These include:


Incisions will be made in the hairline near the temples and down around the front of the ears, ending in the creases behind the ears.


Short incisions will be made at the hairline near the temples, down and around the front of the ears. Incisions may also be made in the lower eyelids, or under the upper lip. A limited-incision facelift is also commonly called a mini facelift. This type of facelift is usually chosen for patients with less severe sagging or wrinkles.


Incisions will begin in front of the earlobes and continue behind the ears, ending in the lower scalp. A small incision will also be made up the chin.

No matter which facelift incision pattern is used, excess skin is excised and underlying tissues and muscles will be repositioned and tightened to create a smoother and more youthful facial appearance. Facelift scars can be virtually invisible, and are very narrow, flat, and placed inconspicuously.

Can I Combine Facelift with Other Procedures?

A facelift generally only addresses wrinkles, lines, and sagging skin in the lower part of the face. For this reason, many patients choose to combine the procedure with others to achieve more complete rejuvenation.

If you have signs of aging in the upper part of the face, such as forehead lines, you may choose to have injectables like Botox in these areas in addition to your facelift. Botox relaxes the muscles, causing reduced wrinkles in areas where lines are created by repeated facial expressions.

Many Salt Lake City facelift patients also choose to have a neck lift in combination with their procedure to rejuvenate the face and neck. Signs of aging in the neck are common, but a facelift alone won’t address loose skin or “turkey neck” in this area. The procedures can easily be performed in a single surgery to reduce loose skin and wrinkles through both areas.

Facelift Results

Following a facelift, compression garments or wraps will need to be worn as directed. Bruising and swelling are normal, and any discomfort can be managed with pain medication. Swelling and discomfort are likely to be most prominent during the first week after your facelift. It is recommended that patients recline rather than lie down to minimize swelling. Recovery time frame will be determined based on the extent of your facelift surgery. However, most patients are ready to return to work or other normal routines about two weeks after the surgery, and may resume light exercise like walking. Dr. Howland will advise when you can return to more rigorous exercise after monitoring your healing in postoperative appointments. While some residual swelling and tightness can persist for up to a year after the procedure, most patients feel generally recovered and back to normal about a month after their facelift.

How to Choose a Facial Plastic Surgeon

When choosing a plastic surgeon for your facelift, most patients review before-and-after photos and read reviews of the surgeon who interests them before scheduling a consultation. It’s also helpful to check your surgeon’s qualifications. Dr. Howland is board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, which means that he meets rigorous training and ongoing education standards.

If you are interested in a facelift in the Salt Lake City of Draper, UT areas, contact our office today to schedule your initial consultation with Dr. Howland.

Frequently Asked Questions

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