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What is a facelift?

A facelift is an operation to lift up the facial skin and tighten the underlying facial muscles to leave the face tighter, smoother and younger looking.

Who requests a facelift?

Patients with significant effects of the ageing process (loss of skin elasticity and sagging of the tissues) made worse by sun exposure, gravity and smoking.

It is also used in treating people with facial weakness.


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What type of anaesthetic is used?

This is usually done under a general anaesthetic but can also be done under a local anaesthetic with intravenous sedation.

How long is the hospital stay?

This is usually one to two days.

How is it performed?

The incision usually starts from behind the hairline at the temple, extends down to the front of the ear and into the hairline around the back of the ear.

The skin and underlying tissues are elevated, tightened with stitches and where necessary excess skin is removed.

This may be combined with incisions behind the hairline whereby the brow is lifted using fine telescopic instruments (endoscopic facelift).

At the end of the operation the face is fitted with a pressure garment designed for facelifts. This usually runs underneath the chin, around the ears and over the head.

Fine drains may be used which will be taken out usually the following day.


Before the operation it is best to get to a more ideal weight because continual weight loss following the operation will still cause looseness of skin.

During the consultation the surgeon will usually address issues such as fine wrinkles around the corners of the eyes (crow’s feet) or wrinkles on the lips which are not necessarily addressed by face lift operation and may require non-surgical techniques such as anti-wrinkle injections, filler injections etc

Stop smoking at least two weeks, but preferably six weeks, before surgery.

Inform your surgeon if you take Aspirin as this can worsen the bleeding.