What is the difference between a lower face lift and a neck lift please?

I have had an asymmetic double chin to the left of my face since I was young. I am now 71 and having lost 3 stone - I was very overweight - in 2012, the firm double chin of youth is now just hanging flesh, mainly on the left; the right side is what I would say 'normal' for someone of my age. I have been offered a wattle neck procedure or a lower facelift but not a neck lift and wondered why.

Doctor Answers 30

Lower Facelift vs Neck Lift

The terminology can be confusing but given the fact that you have lost so much weight, my guess would be that you need both. The facelift will address sagging skin and muscle in the lower part of the face including the jowl area while the neck lift will address the sagging skin/turkey waddle/ropey muscle look in the neck. My best advice would be for you to schedule an appointment with a board certified plastic surgeon to be assessed in person. 


Kouros Azar

Thousand Oaks Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Often Best to Combine Them

Facelifts generally address rejuvenation of the lower third of the face, including the neck. This includes elevation of the jowls, tightening of the jawline, and improvement of neck bands.  The excess skin is then removed and the scars are hidden around the ears. You can address the neck with a neck lift, but this will still leave some excess skin and will not improve the sagging jowls. A facelift at the same time as a neck lift/tightening will give you the best results. They do not necessarily have to be done together at the same time — but you will get the best results if you do combine them.

Lower facelift vs Necklift

These are two entirely different procedures. As the face ages, looseness in the lower face contributes to the looseness that is seen in the neck. As aging continues, the neck muscles start to separate in the middle of the neck leading to "bands" or " turkey neck" . A lower facelift will help the neck to some degree, but it will not treat the muscle separation in the middle of the neck. This will become visible again within the first 3-6 months unless a neck lift ( platysmaplasty) is performed at the same time. It is possible to do a neck lift without doing a lower facelift, however, this is something that is best determined during an in person consultation with a facial plastic surgeon who specializes in facial cosmetic surgery and performs these procedures at least weekly, if not daily. 

Mark Karolak, DO, FAOCO
Bridgewater Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

The difference between a facelift and necklift?

In someone who has had a substantial weight loss  you describe the amount of excess skin present involving the cheeks and jowls and neck region is usually significant.  Terminology can be very confusing and in my opinion is poorly defined but I am sure that you need a full facelift and necklift to get a satisfactory result.  Lifting your face without lifting your neck and vice versa would probably prove to be disappointing.  People also use the terms mini facelift (facelift without a necklift?) and mid facelift but I do not think that clear widely accepted definitions of these procedures exist.

Do your research by meeting with several ABPS board-certified or equivalent plastic surgeons in your area to become an expert in what is available to you.  Be certain to check the physician's reputations and before-and-after photographs showing their results.  Best wishes and good luck.

Jon A. Perlman, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Turtle neck correction after significant weight loss

Thanks for sharing your question. I can appreciate your concern.

Based on your description a neck lift is a needed portion of a procedure to correct your neck. As we age, the mid and lower face also descend. the jowls are a consequence of this descent. If this feature is present, then a lower facelift need to be done to address this issue. Finally, after weight loss the cheeks also go down making the nasolabial grooves evident. a mid facelift will address this feature. In summary, in order to have a comprehensive rejuvenation of your face, you are most likely in need for a full face and neck lift. Obviously, a physical exam is granted to provide the best diagnosis and advice.

Finally, make sure that you have a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon.

Wishing you the best in your journey

Face and neck

Usually the neck and face lifts are done together and simply referred to as a facelift.  The neck lift alone is not typically done since it can look odd to simply tighten the neck and not the rest of the face.  Best wishes, Dr. T. 

Lower face lift vs. neck lift

Hi. Typically a "facelift" refers to lifting and thus rejuvenating and tightening the lower 2/3rds of the face as well as the neck.  So, even though I say "facelift", it means facelift and neck lift. There can be differences in terminology depending on who you are talking to. The upper 1/3rd of the face can be addressed with a brow lift (commonly with an endoscopic brow lift, or "endo brow" in my practice).  The neck can be addressed by itself, alone, with just a neck lift.  However, I find an isolated neck lift to very uncommonly be the best choice for a patient, because most of the time if the neck needs surgical tightening, then the face needs some, too.  I would recommend consulting with a board-certified plastic surgeon to go over all of this in detail with you.  Good luck, and take care.

Dr. Howell

Lower Facelift vs. Neck Lift

A facelift includes raising and tightening the subcutaneous structures of the face from the level of the top of the ear to the lower neck and removing extra skin. 

The confusion comes in when a "mid-face" is added. The mid face raises the area just lateral to the nasolabial folds which a facelift typically does not. 

A neck lift can be done alone but usually does not give as good a result as doing the face with it because there is less ability to remove skin with a neck lift alone. Direct excisions of redundant neck skin can be done to tighten the neck but the scars are more noticeable and are located in the anterior neck. Can be OK for men but not usually for women.

Hope this helps,

Dr. J

A. Dean Jabs M.D. Ph.D. FACS
Board Certified Plastic Surgeon
6430 Rockledge Drive
Bethesda MD 20817

Face lift, neck lift, lower face lift, mini face lift...what is the difference?

Thank you for your question. This is something that confuses many people because both patients and surgeons inter-change many of these terms. Having a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon will help you in determining what procedure is right for you based on your goals. The real power of a face lift is the improvement of the neck, jaw line and jowls. So a face lift could be considered a neck lift or lower face lift as well. It really depends on your surgeon, but the name shouldn't matter as much as what technically needs to be done in your case to reach the desired outcome.

Face/necklift terminology

Thank you for your question. If you are confused by the difference between a necklift, lower facelift, full facelift, mini-lift, etc., you are not alone. I think these terms are used inconsistently by surgeons an patients alike. I never know what to make of a report that a patient has had a mini-facelift, as I can never be sure exactly what has been done. One surgeon's mini-lift can be very comprehensive, while another surgeons facelift can be very minimal. The bottom line is, a patient has to be very clear as to what they want out of the procedure, and a surgeon must be very clear as to what he or she intends to do, and this must be communicated to the patient in no uncertain terms.

Ben Lee, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 25 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.