Beauty without Surgery


Q: What is a liquid facelift?


A: A liquid facelift is a term that generally describes facial rejuvenation through the use of filler injection and botulinum toxin. This procedure can be customized to fit your individual concerns but may involve the use of filler to soften the nasolabial folds and Marionette lines, lifting the cheeks, softening the hollow underneath the eyes, enhancing lip fullness, and the use of botulinum toxin to soften expression lines such as frown lines, forehead lines, and crow’s feet.


Q: Who can benefit from a liquid facelift?


A: Almost anyone can benefit from softening of facial expression lines and restoration of loss volume. Patients who are new to facial rejuvenation often prefer to start with a more subtle, less aggressive approach before considering surgery.However, there is a large difference between what can be achieved with a liquid facelift and what can be achieved with surgical rejuvenation. Patients with neck muscle banding (Turkey Neck), loose sagging skin in the jowls and upper eyelids, and heavy lower eyelid bags are generally better suited for surgical treatment. Patients often choose a liquid facelift if they want a refreshed look with little or no recovery. While recovery from surgery can be rapid, it is definitely longer than a liquid facelift.


Q: What are the newest trends in fillers?


A: As we continue to increase our understanding of the aging process, our methods of rejuvenation continue to change. One technique that is dramatically improving filler treatments is the use of blunt injection cannulas. Through a small needle poke, a large area can be treated with virtually no discomfort, bruising, or downtime. This allows for a true “lunchtime lift”.

Another shift in the use of fillers is moving away from “chasing lines” to filling the deep tissue, which helps to avoid a flattened or overfilled appearance. Part of the aging process involves changes in the bone and soft tissue underneath the skin. Deeper injections of filler can help to restore this loss in a natural way.


Q: What are the different fillers?


A: There are a large variety of fillers available for use, which can be very confusing for patients. The most common fillers are hyaluronic acid based, such as Restylane, Perlane, Juvederm Ultra/UltraPlus, and Boletero. Hyaluronic acid is found in your body where it acts like a sponge to attract water to an area. When injected into the face, it acts in the same way to add volume. The above brands differ in the size and consistency which affects where they can be used and how long they last. Their advantages include their reliability, natural feel, and fact that they can be dissolved if there are any concerns.

Radiesse is a calcium hydroxyapatite filler that is similar in composition to the mineral in bone. It is a little more granular in consistency and achieves its effect through restoring volume and collagen stimulation.

Sculptra is a chemical called Poly-L-Lactic Acid which is unique among the fillers as it is a collagen-stimulator rather than filler. It works through a series of injections that gradually stimulate your body to produce collagen and restore facial volume.


Q: With all of these choices, how do I decide what to do?


A: As I tell all of my patients, when it comes to facial rejuvenation there is no right or wrong answer. There may be some options that are better than others, but you should never feel like you have to do something. That being said, I definitely recommend finding a physician with experience in both surgical and non-surgical treatments so that you can benefit from a broader range of expertise. Practitioners who only provide non-invasive treatments will rarely discuss the benefits of surgery. Additionally, although there are many qualified providers, it is very important that you trust you doctor and feel comfortable that they have your best interests in mind.

Article by
Inland Empire Facial Plastic Surgeon