New surgical techniques in Boston mean the “wind-tunnel” facelift of the past has had a facelift of its own. Now, patients can choose from various types of facelifts in Boston designed to achieve a youthful and more natural-looking appearance. In fact, 95% of patients who have had a facelift, say the operation was worth it for them.

How many types of facelift are there?

According to Dr. Phillip Langsdon, the fear of looking unnatural is the top concern among those considering a facelift. This is probably down to the “skin-only” facelift of the past where the surgeon pulled up and removed excess skin often resulting in the “wind-tunnel look.”  And while that method may still suit some patients today, there are many other procedures to choose from. 

Full Facelifts

There are two types of full facelift.


During the SMAS lift, (superficial musculoaponeurotic system), the Dermatology Times explains that the surgeon makes incisions in front of or behind the ears and repositions the sheet of firm tissue or fascia that covers the muscle layer of the face, as well as the fat pads, separately from the skin. The skin is then draped over. According to aesthetic plastic surgeon, Dr John Owsley, “follow-up observation indicates that the benefits of this surgery can last 10 to 15 years – significantly longer than the traditional facelift.”

Deep Plane Facelift

With the second type, the deep plane facelift, the surgeon creates a flap that includes skin fat and SMAS, and these are lifted and tightened together as one, lifting the mid face below the SMAS. Some doctors believe this gives a more a natural result, as the skin stays attached to the muscle layers.

Partial Facelifts

If the signs of aging are more moderate, there are a variety of other procedures to consider.

Mini Facelift

The mini facelift or short scar facelift – also known as the minimal access cranial suspension facelift (MACS) – looks to improve the lower face and jowls by using a shorter incision than that used in a full facelift. 

Lower Facelift

A lower facelift focuses on everything below the corners of the mouth. As the American Society of Plastic Surgeons explains, it addresses the nasolabial folds (laugh lines) and jawline, often improving the area under the chin and neck as well.

Thread Lift

Patients may also be drawn to the “thread lift”, where temporary sutures are inserted underneath the skin to produce a lift and attract collagen to the treated areas. This may go some way in helping laxity of the skin.

What do full and partial facelifts achieve?

There are many types of facelift in Boston. According to, a full facelift gives patients a more youthful appearance by reshaping the lower half of the face and smoothing out deep creases around the mouth and nose. It also removes hanging skin around the jawline and fat under the chin and in the neck.

Similarly, partial facelifts can produce impressive results in addressing light to moderate aging by correcting sagging around the neck and jawline to produce a natural and younger look.

However, as explains, a facelift is only focused on the bottom two thirds of the face and the neck, which leaves those looking to improve the appearance of their eyes, forehead or other areas with choices to make. It is, of course, possible to combine surgeries with a facelift and this can achieve an impressive result while saving a patient both recovery time and money.

What surgeries can you combine with a facelift?


According to the Mayo Clinic, blepharoplasty, or Bleph for short, is a surgery that repairs droopy eyelids and often involves removing excess skin, muscle and fat from around the eyes. It’s a procedure that facial surgeons routinely perform alongside a facelift.

Brow Lift or Forehead Rhytidectomy

Not only will a brow lift give the eyes a more open appearance and improve wrinkles across the forehead, according to Richard Baxter, MD, performing one at the same time as a facelift often gives a more balanced and natural result.

Ear Reshaping or Otoplasty

As explains, otoplasty can improve the shape, position or proportion of the ear – bringing balance to the ears and face. Dr John Hilinski says the incisions made around the ears for the facelift allow the surgeon to easily access the ears for cosmetic reshaping at the same time.

Neck lift, or lower rhytidectomy

A Neck lift, or lower rhytidectomy isn’t designed to make an impact on the face, but improves jowls, reduces fatty deposits under the chin and addresses loose neck skin and muscle banding in the neck.

How do I know which facelift my surgeon will choose for me?

The first step in choosing the right types of facelift in Boston for you is to choose the right surgeon in the first place. Make sure the cosmetic surgeons you consult with are board certified and have substantial experience in facelift procedures.

Doctors report that they consider a patient’s weight, their skin thickness and quality and, of course, their desired outcome from the surgery before confirming their recommendations.

Their choices will also be influenced by their subspecialties and skillset – so thorough research and comparison of the doctors’ credentials by the patient is key.

Can I improve my face and neck without going under the knife?

If an operation seems too big a step, and the signs of aging not so severe, a patient may decide to head to the clinic rather than going down the surgical route. 


Injectable toxins and fillers can be combined so that a patient receives the so-called “Liquid Facelift”. This plumps up the skin, improves the appearance of wrinkles and sagging and can be administered in a lunch hour. However, the impact of injectables may not create a dramatic enough result for some patients and the effects can wear off within months.

Minimally Invasive Facelift

Other procedures come in the form of radiofrequency, laser and ultrasound treatments.

According to the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery, radiofrequency treatments, like Thermi, Exilis. Profound RF, Facetite and Thermage have been around for a couple of decades or so, and work by heating the skin’s deeper layers to induce new collagen and can even lift deeper tissues.

Similarly, laser and ultrasound treatments like Ultherapy and HiFu, send heat into the skin. The American Academy of Dermatology Association says this can cause the body to produce more collagen and with one treatment, many people see modest lifting and tightening.

On the plus side, less invasive procedures are quicker to administer and to recover from than surgical options and the effects are often popular with patients.

However, it’s worth noting that many require repeat visits to the clinic for “top ups” and the costs will add up. If sagging is very severe, a patient needs to question whether they will bring them the best return on their investment in the long run.  


Understanding the different types of facelift in Boston is a great start to researching the procedure. You may also want to read our blog on “How Much Does A Boston Facelift Cost and 5 Other FAQs

The next step for any patient considering a plastic surgery procedure should be to meet a selection of board-certified plastic surgeons who have significant expertise in facelift procedures and an outstanding educational background.

A consultation with a plastic surgeon allows patients to learn more about the types of facelift in Boston, as well as the costs involved, recovery time and any risks they may face.

Most importantly, Dr. Markarian believes that patients, who want to undergo facelift surgery, should choose the surgeon that they have the best connection with.


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Though the content of this blog has been carefully prepared, the author of this content is not a medical doctor and the content has not been reviewed by a Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon. 
Unless specifically stated, patients referred to in this blog have not received a Facelift by Dr Mark Markarian. This blog does not endorse the work of any doctors or surgeons mentioned. Stories relating to patients’ personal experiences of the Facelift procedure should be treated as anecdotal only.
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