This Article Has Been Medically Reviewed By

Dr. Jennifer Emmett, M.D.

Home Facelift What is a Face Lift and Do I Need One?

December 11, 2022

If you are self-conscious about your face or neck and want a more youthful appearance, you may consider having a facelift, also known as a rhytidectomy.  

Many people appreciate this cosmetic surgery, as it increases their confidence and boosts their self-esteem. 

While a facelift cannot turn back the hands of time and make you feel younger, it can help you look younger and reinvigorate your appearance.

The facelift procedure addresses sagging skin, deep creases under the eyes, fold lines between the nose and mouth, a double chin, and jowls. 

Learn more about the facelift procedure, types of facelifts, how to prepare, what to expect during surgery, and where to find a highly skilled board-certified plastic surgeon who makes your safety and comfort a top priority during a facelift.

The facelift procedure

As you age, it’s likely that your skin will lose elasticity and your facial tissue will lose volume. 

To counteract the effects of aging, a facelift is a sought-after procedure that over 130,000 people get a year. 

A facelift procedure can take 10-15 years off your face in as little as 3-4 hours. 

Facelifts are considered outpatient surgery, meaning you can leave after your surgery and heal comfortably at home.

If you’re an older adult who feels insecure because of the telltale signs of aging, such as wrinkles, sagging skin, and fat, Dr. Emmett can help you achieve a younger-looking appearance. 

Dr. Emmett is a double-board certified plastic surgeon with experience in various types of facelifts, derma fillers and injections, and other facial procedures that result in a glowing and youthful look.

Types of facelifts

There are various types, and the one that is best for you will depend on your unique features and specific needs. 

During your free initial consultation, Dr. Emmett will tell you if you’re the right candidate for a facelift and which type is best for you.

Standard facelift

The traditional or “full” facelift is best for those with moderate to advanced signs of aging. 

You will see dramatic results as this is the most extensive facelift that can restore youth to the face and neck. 

Dr. Emmett will remove excess fat, trim excess skin, and reposition the muscles and deeper facial tissues. 

She does this by making an incision at the temples that run down the front of the ear and wraps around the earlobe. 

If there is sagging at the neck, Dr. Emmett will make a second incision under the chin to lift, tighten, and trim excess skin on the upper neck.

Limited-incision facelift 

This alternative is suitable for those who don’t have advanced signs of aging. 

Small incisions are made at the temples, around the ears, and sometimes under the eyelids and under the upper lip to tighten skin. 

This facelift will rejuvenate the area around your eyes and mouth, as well as nasolabial folds and other deep creases. 


This is one of the most common facelifts today. 

The mid-facelift lifts cheeks, removes facial lines and wrinkles, and reduces puffiness  under the eyes. 

Incisions are small for this type of facelift and are typically made in the lower eyelids or mouth.

Mini facelift

A mini facelift is an excellent option for those who have already had a traditional facelift and are seeing signs of aging again. Though, this generally doesn’t happen for around 20-plus years. 

It can also be a great option for those with minimal signs of aging. There are fewer and smaller incisions made during this procedure, but it works similarly to the standard facelift, as it lifts and tightens sagging aging skin.

Liquid facelift

If you want to look younger but are not ready for invasive surgery, a liquid facelift can help you achieve a youthful-looking appearance.

The results will not be as dramatic or extensive as a surgical procedure, but derma fillers can smooth lines, plump up wrinkles, and restore the volume in your face.

What to expect during a facelift?

You will meet with Dr. Emmett to discuss your needs and the look you’re trying to achieve. 

She will be interested in hearing your goals, obtaining your medical history, and giving you a physical examination to ensure that facelift surgery is right for you.


Before your surgery, you may need to lose weight, quit smoking, or stop taking certain medications or vitamins. Dr. Emmett will discuss these safety measures with you during your consultation. 

You will want to prepare for your surgery by ensuring that you have a ride home on the day of surgery, have someone to stay overnight with you, and have any supplies you need during your recovery.


Since Dr. Emmett uses IV sedation during her procedures, you can go home shortly after your surgery. 

The first few days after surgery will be the most uncomfortable, but Dr. Emmett can prescribe you medication to minimize discomfort. 

You will notice swelling and bruising for a couple of weeks, but you should be able to return to work after three weeks. 

Choosing a cosmetic surgeon 

Deciding on having a facelift and which one may be one of the most important decisions, but choosing a qualified surgeon is also at the top of the list. Not all plastic surgeons are certified and have the same training or experience. 

To ensure that you’re satisfied with your surgery, you’ll want to find a certified surgeon who is highly trained and experienced and has a history of patient satisfaction.

Why it’s done and who it’s right for

Facelifts are generally done to reduce self-consciousness and increase confidence. 

Many begin to consider having this type of surgery when they are between 40 and 70 years old 

However, there is no right or wrong time to have the surgery if you feel it will make a positive difference in your life.

If Dr. Emmett finds that you are in good health and it’s unlikely to cause you adverse side effects, facelift surgery may be right for you.

Schedule your consultation with Dr. Emmett

Dr. Jennifer Emmett, M.D.,  is a double-board-certified plastic surgeon with over 48 years of experience located in the Denver, Colorado area. She is able to prioritize your safety and comfort during every plastic surgery procedure, including facelifts.

In addition to being certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and the American Board of Surgery, she has received training in aesthetic surgery, which few surgeons have done. 

Her training and experience have led her to achieve a high patient satisfaction rate

Many of her patients have traveled worldwide to ensure they receive the best surgery by one of the most qualified surgeons. 

Dr. Emmett and her team are skilled in face lift procedures, Botox, MedSpa treatments, liposuction, tummy tucks, breast augmentation, breast lift, breast reduction, and mommy makeovers.

Check out our blog or contact us when you are ready to discuss your surgery needs and financing options to achieve a happier and more youthful looking you.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio