oc said that he makes lift a little tight to account for the muscle relaxing in the first few months. Is that normal?

Scheduled for face and neck lift and I do not want to look too tight and unnatural.

Doctor Answers 8

Facelift Tightness

The face will relax during healing, but not enough to start out with a pulled tight look. If you are uneasy with his comment, consider a second opinion. It's better to be safe than sorry!

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

Does a facelift relax in the first few months?

The tissues do relax as swelling resolves and the tissues settle over the first 3-12 months. However, you need to be careful not to overly tighten a facelift as this can create an unnatural "pulled" appearance. If you have reviewed your chosen surgeon's photos and like their results, you're most likely in good hands. I hope this information is helpful.

Stephen Weber MD, FACS

Stephen Weber, MD, FACS
Denver Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 129 reviews

Facelift tightness

Actually the muscles don't relax, but the skin does. You don't want the skin to be pulled too tight or it can lead to increased scarring, however a "little" tight is certainly acceptable in the early postoperative period.

Theda C. Kontis, MD
Baltimore Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Facelift tightness

Yes it is reasonable to make things a little too tight at first with the fact that everything stretches, unfortunately!


Dear lady, your surgeon probably refers to the relaxation living tissues always undergo after having been put under tension. The first few weeks the situation usually is excessively tight, which relaxes down to a normal situation, if performed correctly.

Good luck :)

Alexis Verpaele, MD
Belgium Plastic Surgeon


It is normal to slightly advance the tissues more BUT one must be cautious to not overdo it. Be sure to see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon in your area.


Asif Pirani, MD, FRCS(C)
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Face lift tighteng

Dear Poppy,

Face lift should not be tightened excessively because it will look unnatural and might also compromise the circulation of the skin and interfere with the healing. The swelling after surgery will make the tissue tight temporarily and with time all living tissues relax. The best technique to ensure the longevity of surgery is the MACS face lift technique that uses permanent deep suture as described by Drs Verpaele and Tonnard from Belgium. If you are uncomfortable with your surgeon, consult with board certified plastic surgeons who are experienced with the MACS face lift technique.

Best of luck,

Dr Widder

Shlomo Widder, MD
McLean Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 124 reviews

Tightness after a facelift

It's a good idea to get 2-3 opinions prior to embarking on a facelift. It's very important to look at the doctor's before and after photo gallery to make sure that they're not pulling patients too tight. The skin will relax after the facelift, but the muscles usually stay tightened. once the fat has been removed and the neck is gone forever. For many examples, please see the link below

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 143 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.