Will a mini face lift last as long as a regular facelift?

I am considering a mini facelift, but am concerned that it means going back for another facelift in the near future thereafter. Would it be better to do a full facelift?

Doctor Answers 15

Mini Facelifts Are Good Options for Early Signs of Aging

First, the term “mini lift” is nonspecific and can mean something different to each board-certified facial plastic surgeon. In my practice, a mini lift refers to minimally invasive surgery that lifts the lower face and neck. A mini facelift can be a terrific, less invasive option for someone who is just beginning to lose skin tone and wants to give herself or himself a “boost.” During the evaluation, I look at the patient's anatomy and devise the least aggressive and least invasive methods of tightening their neck and lower face to minimize both downtime and scarring. How long a mini lift will last depends on a number of factors, but results will usually last for several years. A traditional facelift will last significantly longer than that. I hope this helps

Mini facelift and full facelift

Hi Sara,
Very good question. Excellent candidates for a mini facelift are younger patients with minor skin laxity concerns, requiring just a simple tuck. If the patient has large amounts of drooping skin, significant jowling, and deep creases, it can be difficult for a surgeon to re-drape the skin in a mini-lift and provide a commendable result. In these cases, a full facelift should be considered for a much better, long lasting result. Your plastic surgeon can go into the details and philosophy of the various facelift techniques to help you understand the process, it is more important to choose a facial plastic surgeon who is qualified for the task at hand, has great experience, and is able to establish a good rapport with you, where you feel comfortable and well taken care of.
Good Luck!

Cory Torgerson, MD, PhD, FRCSC
Toronto Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 105 reviews

Mini versus regular facelift.

Yes a  full lower facelift will have greater and longer lasting results than a mini lift. Discuss with your surgeon the pros and cons for each and what would suit you best based on results, recover, risk, and costs. 

Raymond E. Lee, MD
Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 71 reviews

How Long Do Results Last?

Thank you for your great question. Both operations tend to deliver a nice improvement, and the results tend to last a number of years. However, gravity, time, and our environment still take their tolls on our skin. It may be that either operation would need a "touch up" in 10 years or so (perhaps a few years earlier with the mini-facelift). But, I've met many people who had a facelifting procedure done over 20 years prior who still have a nice result. I would decide which procedure fits you the best right now, and consider the pros/cons of each. Our mini-facelift patients are among our most satisfied. Best wishes.

Paul J. Leahy, MD
Leawood Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Longevity of Mini vs. Regular Facelifts

Generally a mini lift refers to a more limited dissection and lifting of the facial skin and soft tissue.  If some of the deeper tissue can be effectively lifted within this smaller area, then the results can be nice and can last several years.  However, I believe that by operating over a wider area in a regular lift, the various lifting techniques applied to the deeper tissue and skin can create a stronger and more secure, and longer lasting lift, as well as a more comprehensive, harmonious improvement of the face.  That said, if you only have minimal, early aging changes limited just to the cheeks, than a mini cheek lift might suffice.  It really depends on the extent of your aging changes and just what you are looking for.

Richard G. Schwartz, MD
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Mini vs Full Facelift

Thank you for your question. I think the most important consideration here is which procedure is appropriate for you now. If your neck is doing well than a Mini Facelift with SMAS work should be appropriate and as long lasting of a correction as a full facelift. The difference being a traditional facelift will address your neck as well. I think patients are often too concerned with the name of the procedure and during your consultation you need to discuss your concerns and goals and how best to achieve them. The name of the procedure is merely semantics and the recovery not that different. Therefore I would recommend consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon to discuss your options and what technique would be best for you. This will guarantee that you don't limit yourself and can make an informed decision
Best of Luck

Lee A. Gibstein, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon

Will a mini face lift last as long as a regular facelift?

Hi, 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 that have early jowl formation. Non smiling photos, of your face, from the front and side would help in the evaluation.  Minimally invasive facelifts have similar longevity to more invasive facelifts if facial shaping is performed as part of the minimally, invasive SMAS facelift.

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.

A weak chin 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 and subperiosteal facelifts) but with these added benefits:

  • very small incisions
  • minimal tissue dissection = less bruising and swelling = rapid recovery
  • 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

Will a mini face lift last as long as a regular facelift?

That is why it is called a mini FL!!!! - lasts only unto 3-5 years, maybe; shorter recovery; less costs; shorter incisions... If you are a candidate for full FL than always best to have the more lasting results BUT you must understand the increased issues of time, recovery, costs.

Facial rejuvenation

saracamps, As long as your surgeon is familiar with deep plane surgery and modern midface lifting techniques you will have a long lasting natural result. Should they be doing a "short flap" technique which relies on the "SMAS" then you will not have a long lasting result. Search the Internet for an experienced surgeon that does "only faces" and know deep plane techniques. Good luck!

M. Sean Freeman, MD
Charlotte Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Mini facelift

As long as the mini facelift is done with a SMAS flap or smasectomy technique, it should prove just as effective as a normal facelift.  In this case there is little difference between a mini and a full facelift, only the fact that the neck is addressed with a separate incision under the chin with a full facelift. 

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.