There are many different subtle variations about facelifts, but most of them seem to obsess about the length of the incision.  Don’t get me wrong-  the length of the incision is very important.  However, I’ve always found that the quality and placement of the incision is much more important than just the length.

In a nutshell, the non-plastic surgery media seems to be focused on

–  mini-facelift

–  regular facelift

A mini-facelift is not really a true plastic surgery term, but a non-medical term.  Overall, it seems to relate to the length of the incision.  Typically, this incision is just in front of the ear, and goes to the earlobe.  It does not seem to go behind the ear or in the hairline.

If you do not need have that much loose skin, do not need a necklift, or do not need much pull or force of the SMAS (superficial musculo-aponeurotic system), then a mini-facelift would be a good option for you.  The exciting thing about this option is that there is a strong possibility this can be done in an office or operating room setting without the need for general anesthesia.  Combined with a limited incision necklift, the mini-facelift will be able to make you look more rejuvenated and natural with a quicker recovery time as well.

Unfortunately, most patients are not candidates for this procedure, because they have more loose skin than they realize, or need a necklift.  If you need a necklift, the skin has to be redraped behind the ear, resulting in longer incision.

A regular facelift has an incision in front of the ear, along with a hidden incision behind the ear.  If you have a fair amount of neck skin, then the neck skin has to be tightened and redraped behind the ear.  It can’t be draped in front of the ear, because the overall appearance would be unnatural.  Generally, a facelift patient needs deeper sedation or even general anesthesia, because of the amount of tightening and skin redraping required, along with the length of surgery.

If you need other procedures, such as an eyelid lift, forehead lift, or fat grafting, then either a mini-facelift or regular facelift would still be an option for you-  it just depends on your facial structures and your overall appearance.

If possible, most patients would look more natural and recover faster with multiple smaller procedures spaced out over many years.  So, if you think you are a good candidate for a mini-facelift, don’t wait too long-  continued skin sag, sun damage, and the sands of time may eventually force you to become a candidate for a regular facelift sooner than you realize.

Should you desire more information about my available services, or want to schedule an appointment, please contact my Patient Care Coordinator at, or call our office at 415-362-1846.

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