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Can Facelift Affect Skin Tone?

Will a deep tissue lift or SMAS resection plication affect the skin color or tone and is there any skin bunching around incision site?

Doctor Answers (14)

Facelift and skin tone

+2

Dear Shayla,

Several questions which need to be answered individually.

1."Will a deep tissue lift or SMAS resection plication affect the skin color?" - Bruising under the skin may lead to skin darkening. In most people this resolves readily. Some Black patients who respond with Hyperpigmentation to all injuries, may have long lasting darkening of their scars. This is also related to sun exposure (which must be limited with a good sunblock).

2. "Will a deep tissue lift or SMAS resection plication affect the tone?" - No. The inherent skin tone remains the same. It cannot be changed. But, the slack, the droopiness and jowls are smoothed out by the procedures.

3. "...is there any skin bunching around incision site?" - Depending on the technique, the surgeon and the patient there may be some skin gathering. This usually resolves and smooths out in a few months.

Hope this answered your questions.


Memphis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

Facelift should not affect skin color or tone

+1

The SMAS component of the facelift is performed deep underneath the skin and really has no bearing on the skin itself other than to tighten the skin after the facial layers are tightened.  It will tighten the skin, but should not give any differential color tone to the skin itself.  Manipulating the skin can cause telangiectasias, bruising, and hemosiderin deposits that can give a slightly darkening color to the skin.  Necrotic areas of the skin can result in hypopigmented areas along the incision site if the skin is pulled too tight.  For results of SMAS facelifts, please see our facelift photo gallery located on our web site.

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 55 reviews

Effects of a SMAS Facelift on Skin Tone and Color

+1

Performing a facelift will remove some loose skin and that will improve the tone of the skin somewhat.  If the skin is made too tight it will result in distortion of the face, scar widening, and possibly skin necrosis.  The elevation of the skin flap should not cause any significant change in the skin color.  The incisions and operation is designed so that there should not be any bunching of the skin around the incision sites.

Michael Sundine, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

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Skin tone and facelift

+1
Skin bunching should not occur around the incision sites except if there is a dogear at the end of the incision which should settle down. A face lift should have no effect on skin tone or color.

Robert L. Kraft, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

SMAS Facelift

+1

The skin tone and color will not change after your face lift surgery has been performed and you have completed the healing process.  Bunching should absolutely not be an issue if the skin is properly re draped and trimmed. 

If you are looking to improve you skin tone and color, you may want to consider:  laser resurfacing, chemical peels and/or medical grade skin care products.  The Obagi skin care system combined with Tretinoin cream is wonderful way to improve texture and tone without downtime or major expense. 

Jenifer L. Henderson, MD
Silverdale Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Facelift and Skin Tone

+1

A facelift will not generally affect skin tone. Most facelift approaches will not result in bunching around the incision but I would certainly bring this concern up with your physician.

D.J. Verret, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

A facelift will modestly improve skin tone.

+1

A properly executed facelift will improve skin tone.  There should not be excessive tightening which makes the results unnatural.  Sun damage will not be improved and might benefit from auxiliary treatment (laser, peel, etc.)

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

SMAS facelift does not change skin tone and there should be no bunching

+1

Skin tone depends on your genetics and lifestyle.  Good genes, no smoking, good nutrition, sun avoidance will all maximize your skin tone.  A SMAS plication/resection facelift will elevate and tighten the deep tissues of your face so the skin can be smooth over the top of  the improved contour and rejuvente your appearance.  This smoothing of the skin will make your skin tone appear better but the true quality has not changed.  Improved skin tone can be helped with a good skin care program, chemical peels, laser treatments or Retin - A cream. Done correctly, with proper tailoring of the skin, there should be no bunching of the skin where the incisions are.  This may occur if one tries to do a short scar lift on a patient needing more skin resection.

Jeffrey M. Darrow, MD
Boston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

SMAS Facelift and skin tone

+1

A SMAS facelift should have no affect on the quality of the skin tone.  The SMAS lift works on the deepre tissues than just the skin.

Steven Wallach, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Facelift surgery and its effect on the skin

+1

A SMAS or any other type of facelift surgery will not effect the skin tone or skin color. The skin tone and color are functions of the dermis and epidermis, and face lift operations are performed deep to the dermis. Superficial skin treatments such as laser resurfacing, dermabrassion, and peels can have an effect on the skin color and tone.

Plastic surgeons often combine facelift surgery with more superficial skin treatments for a more complete rejuvenation of the face.

Maurice M. Khosh, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.