Achieving the Most Comprehensive Facelift Results Possible

Female with marks on her face for plastic surgery

Achieving the most comprehensive facelift results requires a board-certified plastic surgeon with a detailed understanding of various techniques and other facial procedures that complement facelift results, with experience performing them. These procedures work synergistically to create a harmonious and rejuvenated appearance that addresses signs of aging across all facial areas. A comprehensive approach often involves combining the deep plane or SMAS with a complementary procedure like eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty), a brow lift, and a neck lift. However, in some cases, adding one or more of these surgeries with a mini facelift can also provide more satisfying facial rejuvenation. Here’s an in-depth look at these techniques and how they work together to achieve optimal results

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Facelift Techniques

Once you’ve decided on cosmetic enhancement, there are still various options from which to choose, depending on how subtle or dramatic of an improvement you are seeking. 

The primary facelift techniques include deep plane and SMAS (Superficial Musculo-Aponeurotic System).

Deep Plane Facelift

Considered one of the most sophisticated and effective techniques for achieving natural and long-lasting results, a deep plane facelift targets muscles and fat in the deep layers of the face, releasing the SMAS (superficial musculo-aponeurotic system.)

  • Procedure: The surgeon typically makes incisions along the hairline and around the ears, then lifts the skin to access the deeper facial tissues. By releasing and repositioning these deeper layers, the surgeon can address sagging in the midface, jowls, and neck. This method provides a comprehensive lift and a more youthful appearance.
  • Advantages: The deep plane facelift effectively addresses deep nasolabial folds, sagging cheeks, and loose skin around the jawline and neck. The results tend to be more natural and longer-lasting because the technique lifts and repositions the facial structures without overly tightening the skin.
  • Recovery: Patients can expect significant downtime with bruising and swelling lasting two or more weeks. However, the final results usually last years longer than other facelift options, making the extended recovery period worthwhile.

SMAS Facelift

The SMAS facelift is another popular technique that targets the Superficial Musculo-Aponeurotic System, a layer of tissue that covers the deeper facial structures. This method effectively addresses moderate to severe facial sagging and provides substantial rejuvenation.

  • Procedure: Similar to the deep plane facelift, the SMAS facelift involves incisions around the hairline and ears. The facial skin is lifted, and the SMAS layer is tightened by either folding it or removing a portion and suturing the edges together. This approach lifts the midface, reduces jowls, and improves neck contours.
  • Advantages: The SMAS facelift significantly improves facial contours and provides a natural look. It’s less invasive than the deep plane facelift but provides significant lifting and tightening.
  • Recovery: The recovery period is typically shorter than that of a deep plane facelift, with most patients returning to their daily activities within 2-3 weeks.

Mini Facelift

For those with mild to moderate visible signs of aging, a less invasive mini facelift is ideal for a refreshed facial appearance without the more intense downtime associated with a full facelift. 

  • Procedure: This technique involves lifting and tightening the facial skin and underlying tissues to provide a subtle lift, primarily focusing on the lower face and jowls.
  • Advantages: This technique offers quicker recovery and less noticeable scarring. It’s suitable for younger patients or those looking for maintenance procedures.
  • Recovery: Recovery time is typically shorter, with most patients resuming normal activities within a week to ten days.

Enhancing Facelift Results with Additional Facial Procedures

While facelift techniques focus on the mid to lower face, complementary procedures can enhance overall results by addressing signs of aging signs in other facial areas.

Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty)

Also known as an eye lift, eyelid surgery, or blepharoplasty, this procedure can significantly enhance facelift results by rejuvenating the eyes to match the younger-looking face.

  • Upper Eyelid Surgery: This procedure removes excess, sagging skin and fatty deposits on the upper eyelids for a more alert and youthful appearance.
  • Lower Eyelid Surgery: This surgery targets bags and puffiness under the eyes by removing or repositioning fat and tightening the skin.
  • When Combined With a Facelift: By rejuvenating the eye area, eyelid surgery complements the effects of a facelift, ensuring a harmonious, youthful appearance of the eyes and mid-to-lower face.

Brow Lift

A forehead or brow lift addresses sagging eyebrows, forehead wrinkles, and frown lines to enhance the appearance of the upper, mid, and lower face for more complete facelift results.

  • Procedure: The surgeon makes incisions behind the hairline to lift and reposition the brow to smooth forehead wrinkles, lift a sagging brow, and help reduce the appearance of hooded upper eyelids.
  • Advantages: Combining a brow lift with a facelift can provide a balanced rejuvenation of both the upper and lower face, ensuring the entire face looks youthful and refreshed.
  • When Combined With a Facelift: Addressing the upper face during a facelift offers enhanced, full-face enhancements.  

Neck Lift: A Crucial Component of Comprehensive Facelift Surgery

A facelift usually includes a neck lift to address wrinkles, sagging skin, excess fat, and banding to ensure a seamless transition between the face and neck.

  • Procedure: Incisions are typically made around the ears and sometimes under the chin, from which excess fat and skin are removed, and underlying muscles are tightened. Liposuction may also be used to sculpt more pleasing contours, resulting in a smoother, more defined neck and jawline.
  • Advantages: A neck lift is essential for achieving comprehensive rejuvenation because it addresses one of the most noticeable areas of aging. Without a neck lift, the contrast between a youthful face and an aged neck can be stark, undermining the overall results of the facelift.
  • When Combined With a Facelift: Typically included in a full facelift procedure, a neck lift is almost always necessary to ensure a smooth transition from the jawline to the neck area, making the face and neck look youthful and harmonious.

Combining Procedures With a Mini Facelift

For anyone considering a mini facelift, adding eyelid surgery or a brow lift can address multiple aging signs even without extensive recovery time. This approach is ideal for patients seeking subtle but effective enhancements.

Personalized Approach to Facelift Surgery

The key to achieving the most comprehensive facelift results is a personalized approach. Each patient’s facial structure, skin type, and aging patterns are unique, and the treatment plan should reflect these individual characteristics.

Complementary procedures such as eyelid surgery, brow lifts, and neck lifts enhance the overall facelift results by addressing your specific areas of concern simultaneously, which can save you money in the long run.

Ultimately, a tailored facial rejuvenation approach is essential for achieving the best outcomes. By consulting with an experienced, board-certified surgeon, a comprehensive treatment plan can be created to deliver the natural, youthful, and harmonious facelift results you desire.

Looking for the Best Facelift Results in Marin County?

When it comes to facial rejuvenation, some patients seek subtle improvements, while others want more dramatic results. To meet your needs, Dr. Delgado offers a variety of facelift options in Novato, Marin County, California, including the deep plane, SMAS, and mini facelift techniques. 

He also provides brow lifts, neck lifts, and eyelid surgery in San Francisco and Novato, Marin County as standalone procedures or along with facelift surgery. Please call 415.989.2221 to reach our San Francisco or contact our Novato, Marin County location at 415.898.4161.

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Dr. Miguel Delgado


Dr. Delgado, MD is a world-recognized plastic surgeon and specialist in the treatment of male breast enlargement, also called gynecomastia. He has developed new techniques and owns and operates, which has become the largest gynecomastia forum in the world. Dr. Delgado holds the two most coveted credentials; the certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and membership in the American Society of Plastic Surgery.

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