How Long Does Tightness Last After Facelift?

How Long Does Tightness Last After Facelift?

Doctor Answers 27

Facelift initial tightness

 have had a facelift myself and the tightness was still present up to the 3 month mark..When the swelling subsided the tightness was gone.It never got too loose however and yours shouldnt either.

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Tightness after a Facelift is Actually a Good Sign

One of the goals of a facelift is to lift and tighten the skin of the face and neck.  In order for the results to be long lasting, tissues deeper than the skin have to be lifted and tightened.  This will causes a tight feeling in the face and neck which is a sign that the proper tissues were lifted.  This is an uncomfortable feeling after surgery, but I assure that over 6-12 weeks the feeling will greatly improve or resolve.  

Exercises that improve the range of motion of your neck can improve this feeling.  I typically do not recommend these movement unless the patient is cannot tolerate the tight feeling.  The neck exercises actually stretch out tightened tissues.  I like to keep the tissue as tight as possible for as long as possible. 


I hope this helps!  

Jonathan Kulbersh, MD
Charlotte Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

How long the tightness feeling will remain after Facelift

After a facelift you will experience a tight feeling on your face and neck. This is caused by 2 factors:

  1. Tightening of the SMAS in order to lift the structures and have the desired lift result.
  2. Swelling.

In the first 6-8 weeks the tight feeling will improve as 80-90% of your swelling will subside. Do not get discouraged. The tight feeling is good and it will dissipate with time. Hope this helps.

Gustavo A. Diaz, MD
Charlotte Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Be sure to check with your surgeon!

It’s not unusual for patients to complain of tightness and swelling following facelift procedures. This occurs for a variety of reasons including structural sutures, scar formation and the swelling that normally accompanies surgical procedures. This response varies from patient to patient and depends upon the surgical technique utilized and the patients wound healing characteristics.
Skin tightness and tissue thickening following this procedure are usually related to swelling. The vast majority of post-operative swelling resolves in the first two weeks following surgery. At this point, most patients can return to work and resume normal activities. In most cases, total resolution of skin tightness takes about three months.
It’s important to realize that more aggressive facelift procedures cause more swelling and skin tightness, which can last for longer periods of time. Elevation of the head and decreased salt intake may help decrease swelling after surgery. Range of motion exercise and massage may help skin tightness following surgery. Swelling and skin tightness are normal following surgery, but persistent tightness and swelling should be evaluated by your surgeon.

Richard J. Bruneteau, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 reviews

Tightness after facelift

Your lips, mouth, cheeks, and back of your neck may feel tight for the first few days following a facelift, especially as swelling occurs. The tightness can last for a couple of months, but it will gradually go away. 

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 179 reviews

Tightness Following Facelift

Then sensation of Tightness is highly variable following a facelift and can last weeks to many months. Often the psychological concept of Accomodation takes place and your brain accepts this new sensation as baseline and makes it less noticeable.Either way it diminishes with time and lets you know that your face and neck lift results are holding up well.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Tightness after Facelift

Tightness secondary to swelling and skin elevation will last several weeks. If you have decreased sensation especially around the your ears, this numbness, which will last 6-8 months, can also make the skin feel tight. All of this will improve as healing progresses.

Richard W. Fleming, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Early "tightness" is good; long term tightness is not.

For the first several weeks while there is swelling in the facial tissues the feeling of tightness is right and to be expected. 

However prolonged tightness after six weeks may need treatment.  This can be done by massage, sometimes the temporary use of anti-inflammation medications, and some excercises. 

It is very unusual for this to be a long term problem.

Dr. Mayl

Nathan Mayl, MD (retired)
Fort Lauderdale Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Facelift results

A well-performed facelift will rejuvenates the face and neck and reset the clock back for about 5-15 years depending on the degree of laxity. There after aging process will continue the skin and muscle will loosen over time. But at any given time that individual will look younger than his or her stated age. Depending on genetics and environmental factors some individuals age faster than others.
Of course surgical techniques are very important in achieving a long lasting results. Facelifts that only tighten the loose skin will last a couple of years. The SMAS Lift offers the most natural improvement to the face because the underlying tissue layers and muscles of the face are lifted and repositioned, improving the jaw line and neck area. Surgeon’s experience and technique are very important.

Kevin Sadati, DO
Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 208 reviews

How Long Does Tightness Last After Facelift

   The tightness may last for several months following a facelift and is dependent to some extent upon techniques employed.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 496 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.