Are these scars normal after face and neck lift? (Photos)

I had face and neck lift in Mexico about nine weeks ago. Are these scars normal? Is this current/modern practice? What type of procedure is this? Is this what everyone gets done for a lower face lift and neck lift? Thanks so much for any imfo you can provide!

Doctor Answers 15

Incisions used are the 'easy' incisions

for closing and getting the procedure done more quickly.  An incision at the hairline (yours appears to be even away from the hairline) is used when there is a lot of excessive neck skin.  Otherwise, the incision behind the ear is covered by the ear and goes into the scalp so you can pull your hair back without it being apparent to those standing next to you.  Most surgeons will discuss the planned incision with their patient before the procedure to make sure she/he knows what will happen.


Redding Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Facelift incisions

Generally, the incisions for a facelift are placed in such a way to hide any visible scars.  Your scars seem be more visible partly because they are somewhat away from the traditional incisions and because the scar is red.  The good news is that the scar will likely look better in the next few months.  At this point, wait to see how the scar heals.  Make sure to apply sun block in all the scar areas since pigment can change further with UV exposure. 

Sunny Park, MD, MPH
Newport Beach Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

FACELIFT INCISIONS NOT THE TYPICAL INCISION USED

Dear Howdoyouknow, No these are not the typical facelift incisions used. The incisions I use are hidden in the front of the ear and hairline and the incision behind the ear is typically beveled into the hairline not as low as your incision is. The other problem is it looks like there was to much tension on the incisions which means that  the surgeon did not do sufficient undermining and most likely just removed extra skin. To see an example of a facelift patient shortly after surgery see the video above. Seek a consultation with a surgeon in your area to start treatment on your incisions. Best regards, Michael V. Elam, M.D.

Michael Elam, MD
Orange County Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 208 reviews

Face and neck lift scars - are mine normal

Thank you for asking about your face lift.
  • These are not the incisions I would use.
  • The incision above the ear will have narrowed your hair line and will thin your hair.
  • The incision behind the ear is low, well away from the hair line and probably visible.
  • However if you give yourself time - 6 - 18 months - your scars may fade and even become unnoticeable.
  • Laser can fade red scars - but  if done before 6 months, the redness is likely to return because the scar is still in its healing phase. 
  • Topical silicone strips worn at night may help and are inexpensive and harmless.
Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes  - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Elizabeth Morgan, MD, PhD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Scar Expectation after Facelift

Sorry your trip to Mexico did not work out well. There are 2 things about these scars that are suboptimal. First is the placement. The anterior-superior scar would have been more optimally placed under the sideburn to prevent elevation of the anterior hair. That in front of the ear would have been more properly placed hugging the ear better. Behind the ear, it would have been significantly better hidden if the angle from behind the ear to the hair  were significantly higher and, instead of going in front of the hairline had extended into the hair, or, at least, within the hairline with hair follicles left in front. Secondly, it appears that too much tension was placed on the skin rather than placing the tension a deep (relatively common problem with some techniques). When there is no tension on the skin, the scar should be almost invisible by 9 weeks. At this point, I would use an IPL to try and reduce the redness and make the scar less visible. (See TodaysFacelift.com. The younger woman shown on the home page and later had her post op pictures taken at 8 weeks.)

Robert T. Buchanan, MD
Highlands Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Face lift Scars

Hello,Although it is early in your recovery, you are fair skinned and should eventually have white and inconspicuous scars. However, the placement of your scars are suboptimal, especially along its farthest extents, both behind the ear and up into the temple; this causes prolonged scar visibility, and loss of temporal and sideburn hairline, respectively. You get what you pay for. Best of luck!

Gerald Minniti, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 88 reviews

Scarring after facelift done in Mexico?

The placement of your scars is not the ideal placement. Furthermore you have an unusual amount of redness and whiteness for this time after surgery.  Though the redness may fade somewhat you will probably want to have these revised by a skilled facelift surgeon who does many revisions. 

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Are these scars normal after face and neck lift?

The bad news, they are not what we would expect. The good news is they will fade. They are misplaced by several millimeters. A skilled surgeon will place the scars in areas that basically become invisible in a few months. These are poorly positioned. They can be improved but it will be at least another year before that is possible. I'm afraid this is another in a very long list of patients that show the fallacy of going overseas for cheap surgery in countries that have poor regulation over their doctors' quality of care. Mexico has some world class surgeons, you just got a bad one. 

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Facelift necklift scars done in Mexico

Your scars are unusually red and visible and IMO poorly  positioned in front of your hairline behind the ear.  Though they seems to be slow in losing their redness this should eventually happen making them hopefully less noticeable but a far better approach is to make them irregularly irregular right along the hairline to camouflage them.During your next follow up in Mexico discuss your questions with your surgeon for more information.  Applying silicone gel ointment to the red incisions might help to reduce their prominence for you.  Good luck and all the best. Jon A Perlman MD FACS  Certified, American Board of Plastic Surgery  Extreme Makeover Surgeon ABC TV Best of Los Angeles Award 2015, 2016  Beverly Hills, Ca

Jon A. Perlman, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Not ideal placement of facelift scars

It is preferable IMO to place the scars behind the ear so that the horizontal portion is higher than in your picture and going behind the hairline. Yours are unfortunately placed where they are more obvious and because your surgeon is in Mexico it will be difficult to follow up.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 50 reviews

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