Facelift / jaw contouring

Why do doctors say jaw / chin shave can be done together at same time as facelift but if jaw is done first there has to be a wait of 3-6 months before doing facelift? Is it just better to get them both done at the same time?

Doctor Answers 2

Jaw shaving at time of face lift

Thank you for asking about your jaw/chin shave.

  • When almost any surgery is done in an area, one waits 6 months before reoperating because of the swelling.
  • Jaw and chin shaving are not common procedures -
  • Please get a second opinion before having this done to be sure the results will be what you expect.

Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes  - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Why do doctors say jaw / chin shave can be done together at same time as facelift

 Hi, non smiling photos of your face from the front and side would help in the evaluation.  Manipulation of the jaw bone is an invasive procedure that has numerous "serious" potential complications and you may want a second opinion before undergoing that type of procedure.  The goal for women is to create a soft, feminine and naturally attractive face that has a heart shape as described below.  Manipulation of the jaw "will not" create that shape. It makes more sense to look at the shape of the cheeks, chin and lips and then remove excess fat and loose skin via a minimally invasive type facelift as described below.

 I have performed facelifts for over 30 years and have performed many minimally, invasive type facelifts on women in their late twenties and early thirties.  Following the beauty principles outlined in my book on face and body beauty, women look the most feminine, youthful and attractive with heart shaped faces.  Heart shaped faces have cheeks that are full and round in the front.  Cheek augmentation with a dermal filler or using cheek implants for a permanent enhancement will create full, round cheeks that will feminize the entire face.

If the chin is weak, this weak creates an imbalance making the nose appear larger, the mid face top heavy and the lower face look short that de-emphasizes the lips and allows early formation of a double chin.  Chin augmentation using a chin implant will add projection to the chin creating harmony and balance to the lower face.   I have found that placement of a silastic chin implant, through a small curved incision under the chin (also allows excess skin removal) to be very safe, quick and highly effective.

 If you have "jowls” these are sagging facial tissues and an indication for some form of a SMAS facelift.  The underlying SMAS layer, of the face, must be dissected, lifted, trimmed and re-sutured (not merely folded or suspended with threads or sutures that will not last).  The excess skin is then removed and the facelift incisions closed.

My most popular facelift is the minimally invasive, short incision facelift that has all the benefits of more invasive facelifts (traditional, mid-face, deep plane, cheek lift and subperiosteal facelifts) but with these added benefits:

  • very small incisions
  • minimal tissue dissection = less bruising and swelling = rapid recovery ( several days instead of weeks or months with the more invasive type facelifts mentioned)
  • can be performed in 90 minutes or less, with or without general anesthesia
  • no incisions within the hair = no hair loss
  • excess fat can be removed
  • excess skin removed
  • cheeks, chin and jaw line can be augmented with dermal fillers (I prefer Restylane Lyft) or facial implants
  • most patients fly back home to parts all over the world in as little as 3 days post-op

I combine facial shaping with every facelift procedure.  When jowls are present, these should be done in concert and not alone or separately in order to create a naturally, more attractive face.

Hope this helps.

Francis R. Palmer, III, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 24 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.