What is Recovery Like After a Facelift?


When considering whether to have a procedure, you will most likely factor in the recovery time. While a facelift does require some time to recover afterward, many people are surprised by how quickly they can return to their usual activities. How quickly you recover after your facelift depends on many factors, including your overall health and the details of your procedure. 

What is a Facelift or Rhytidectomy?

While you can fight early signs of aging with skincare products, facial treatments, and injectables, your lines, wrinkles, and skin laxity eventually become more than non-surgical treatments can address. A facelift or rhytidectomy rejuvenates your features by tightening, firming, and restoring your youthful contours. Dr. Rankin at NorCal Rankin Plastic Surgery is a rhytidectomy expert who provides refreshed, natural-looking results. 

*Individual Results May Vary

How is Rhytidectomy Performed?

Dr. Rankin performs a facelift using a customized technique based on your needs. He will lift and tighten the skin and SMAS layers (the connective tissue and muscle layer beneath your skin), giving you a natural, energized look. The incisions may be made around the ears or hairline and will be nearly invisible after healing. You may have your facelift performed as an inpatient or outpatient procedure. A neck lift is typically performed with a facelift for maximum results. 

What is Recovery Like After a Facelift?

You can expect some swelling and bruising after your facelift. Dr. Rankin uses a long-acting local anesthetic that ensures you feel little to no discomfort. You will receive detailed instructions and have regular follow-up visits to monitor your healing. Swelling improves significantly after about two weeks, and many people return to work around this time. 

You will need to limit strenuous activities while you heal. Since each person recovers differently, Dr. Rankin will assess your progress during your follow-ups before clearing you to return to your exercise routine or any other activities you enjoy. You should expect some residual swelling to affect your appearance for the next few months, so schedule your procedure accordingly if you have an event to plan. 

Request a Consultation

We’d love to help you get all the information you need in order to make the best choice for your eyes. Request a consultation today! Our staff is available and happy to answer your every question.

What Results Will I See With a Facelift?

You will be able to start appreciating your facelift results after the first few weeks when most of the swelling resolves. However, you can expect some swelling to last for six months or more. Your results will continue to evolve and undergo subtle improvements for up to a year. Facelift results are long-lasting, although the effects of aging will continue over time. 

Am I a Good Candidate for a Facelift?

While there is no “right” age for a facelift, most people interested in the procedure have moderate to severe sagging, wrinkles, and other signs of aging. Good candidates should be healthy and have achievable goals. You might not be a candidate if you have certain medical conditions or are pregnant. 

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I had the best experience beginning to end with Dr. Rankin and his staff. They are great at communication – in office, email, text, and phone. They are helpful, supportive, kind, and positive. I loved the whole process & the results of the procedure Dr. Rankin did. I highly recommend that you visit Dr. Rankin for any and all plastic surgery needs!
Lynne H.

Next Step

If you are interested in a facelift, please reach out to our qualified staff to schedule a consultation at one of our convenient locations in Walnut Creek and Greenbrae. Give us a call at (925) 397-5486 or fill out our online form. Helping you achieve your cosmetic goals is an honor and a privilege at NorCal Plastic Surgery, proudly serving the East Bay, Marin County, and the greater San Francisco Bay Area. We look forward to hearing from you.


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