Does the Non-Surgical Facelift Exist? Facial Cosmetic Surgeons Demystify Myths Regarding Non-Surgical Facelifts

The Lunchtime Lift … Facelift in a Bottle…Liquid Facelift …Minimally Invasive Facelift… There is a myriad of names for devices, creams, and procedures that profess to be feasible alternatives to Traditional Facelifts. But how do these quick fixes really stack up against the effects of a Facelift?

“A Facelift is a surgical procedure, and by definition, there is no such thing as a Non-Surgical Facelift,” says President of American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. “There is a role for many of the techniques and procedures out there, but they should not be considered substitutes for a Facelift.”

Based on recent statistics from the AAFPRS, Facelifts were the second most common surgical procedure last year, right behind Rhinoplasty.

Facial aging or the aging face involves skin changes such as wrinkles, brown spots and sun damage; dynamic lines from overactive muscles; loss of volume such as hollow cheeks and temples; the loss of elasticity and the pull of gravity that cause skin to sag. “Most of these so-called Non-Surgical Facelift alternatives may target one or two of the signs of facial aging, whereas a Facelift hits all or most of them,” remarks President of American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.


Whether soft tissue fillers, fat or BOTOX®, injectables can help eliminate fine lines and wrinkles and increase volume to sunken areas of the face. The result? A younger, more revitalized appearance. “This is not a Facelift, but can be very effective at reducing some of the signs of aging on the face,” says President-elect, AAFPRS. “There is also minimal downtime with injectables so you can get back to your life right away, but these treatments will need to repeated about every four to nine months to maintain the results.”

Skin Tightening

Devices that employ radiofrequency (RF) energy can help enhance the body’s natural collagen production. Collagen is the protein that gives your skin the structure and support associated with youth, but it diminishes as individuals age. “RF devices stimulate collagen production to firm skin,” says President-elect, AAFPRS. “Ultrasound waves can also give your collagen supply a turbo boost.” They won’t replicate the results of a Facelift, but they can help improve skin quality, tone and texture for people who are not ready to undergo Facelift Surgery. “It’s a tradeoff because the results are not as dramatic as a Facelift, but the downtime and cost associated are much less,” he notes.

Fat Reduction

As we age, fat tends to redistribute throughout the face and neck. For instance, you lose fat where you need it most, such as the cheeks, and gain fat in places where you might not want it, such as the jowls and neck. Facial Plastic Surgeons can provide various choices to remove unwanted fat, such as Liposuction, fat destruction via radiofrequency, Cryolipolysis and Ultrasound. “Liposuction can get rid of double chin or a dreaded Turkey Neck and for some people, that may be enough to make a meaningful difference in their appearance,” says President of American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

Lasers and Lights

Today’s lasers and light-based energy systems can help treat the skin changes related to aging and many can also help stimulate collagen production. “Laser skin resurfacing offers a host of benefits for the aging face and may buy you some time, but even lasers will not replace the visible results of a Surgical Facelift,” says President-elect, AAFPRS. The deeper ablative resurfacing lasers do require a break between treatments, whereas non-ablative treatments may be repeated at intervals to maintain the skin rejuvenating effects.