Facial fillers and facelifts are both cosmetic procedures that reverse the signs of aging, but the two are not interchangeable. A person’s age, surgical history and specific cosmetic goals are all things your plastic surgeon will take into account before advising which procedure is best for you. In this blog, Portland facial cosmetic surgeon Dr. David Magilke outlines the differences between facial fillers and facelifts, and explains how to decide between the two.

What Facial Fillers Can Accomplish

Over time, your face’s natural subcutaneous fat diminishes, placing the muscles closer to the skin. When this happens, crow’s feet, smile lines and wrinkles become apparent. As you age, the skin on your face also stretches, adding to the loss of facial volume. Facial fillers can combat this process in the following ways:

  • Injectable fillers can add volume to thinning cheeks and sunken temples.
  • Fillers can plump up lips that have lost their volume over time.
  • The appearance of recessed scars can be reversed with dermal fillers.
  • Fillers can enhance the natural contours of your face.

How Facelifts Differ From Fillers

While fillers are an excellent fix for minor cosmetic issues, there are some scenarios in which facelifts are a better option. Excessive amounts of loose skin on the cheeks or lower jaw cannot be addressed using fillers, and can only be corrected with a facelift. Sagging tissue must be tightened through surgery in order to see long-lasting, natural-looking results. Facelifts can also get rid of vertical bands and tighten loose skin around the neck and jowls. A facelift can produce more dramatic and long-term results than fillers, and should be used when large amounts of loose skin are present.

A Combination of Fillers and Facelifts

In a nutshell, fillers are an excellent way to combat the less dramatic signs of aging, but shouldn’t be used to address sagging skin. Overuse of fillers can actually stretch tissue irreparably, causing permanent damage that can only be corrected with surgery. However, fillers can still be used after facelifts, to restore youthfulness as facial volume is lost with age. Many patients find that, over time, a combination of facial fillers and facelifts work to make them feel and look years younger.

The decision between facial fillers or a facelift can be made during a consultation with your doctor. To schedule an appointment with Dr. David Magilke, call Portland Face Doctor today at (503) 297-6511.