Need A Lift? Plastic Surgery Procedures to Lift Sagging Skin and Your Spirit!

Need A Lift? Plastic Surgery Procedures to Lift Sagging Skin and Your Spirit!
Need A Lift? Plastic Surgery Procedures to Lift Sagging Skin and Your Spirit!

We’ve all known about facelifts for quite some time as they’ve been around for ages – but as plastic surgery becomes more popular and mainstream, options are expanding and you can lift far more than a drooping face. There is now a rather lengthy list of procedures, (upper arm lift, upper body lift, lower body lift, thigh lift, brow lift, buttock lift and even neck lift) to suit virtually anyone’s needs. Depending on the areas that most concern you at the moment, you may be considering a facelift, a neck lift, or a combination of lift procedures. So what do you need to know?

When exploring the option of facelifts, the goal is to rejuvenate the face by recreating a more youthful neck and jawline, says Dr. Mark Solomon As we age, our face becomes square while a more youthful face has fuller cheeks and a more tapered lower face. “Facelift surgery accomplishes this goal by applying a variety of techniques to reshape the tissue layers under the skin adding fat in certain areas,” explains Dr. Solomon.

Other treatments, such as eyelid surgery, forehead surgery and facial implants can be used based on your needs.

As would be expected, depending on the type of lift you go for, your recovery experience will be different. “Downtime varies for each procedure and the extent of the procedure performed. This for most patients is defined as time at home. For a facelift, this is often 1-2 weeks before swelling and bruising have subsided enough that patients feel comfortable returning to work. The same is true for neck lifts. A brow lift may have less downtime, 5-7 days, depending on the method used. Facial surgery has risks that include bleeding, nerve injury and rarely infection. These complications are uncommon but can add to downtime. Returning to exercise often takes 2-4 weeks, again, depending on the extent of the procedure. Facial swelling can take several months to resolve, but may not be seen by casual observers,” says plastic surgeon, Dr. Solomon.

Surgery on the body, whether arms, thighs, abdomen or hips, often takes 2 to 3 weeks to recover from, says Dr. Solomon. “These procedures have a bit more discomfort associated with them. Tummy tucks are part of the "lift" procedures performed by plastic surgeons. A body lift is a tummy tuck and back/buttock lift performed at the same time. This is a big operation. Again, risks include bleeding and infection. There are scars associated with each of these procedures. Liposuction leaves little scarring, but does not remove excess skin. While many patients want to avoid scars, if skin is excessive, liposuction alone will not provide a good result,” explains Dr. Solomon.

Thigh lifts are useful for patients who have excess skin and fat in the thighs. Patients who lose large amounts of weight are among the better candidates for this procedure, says Dr. Solomon. A common misconception is that removing thigh skin will make the remaining skin look smoother. This often leads to disappointment since skin quantity is not the same thing as skin quality. A thigh lift removes excess skin quantity but does not make the quality of the remaining skin any better, explains Dr. Solomon.

For buttock surgery, there are several methods of adding volume. Fat grafting in which fat is removed by liposuction and added to the buttocks is the most popular method today, says Dr. Solomon. It uses your own fat to increase the volume and contour of your buttocks. A portion of the fat may not be reabsorbed after surgery, so some patients will need to repeat the procedure if they want a fuller contour. Implants create a permanent addition to the buttocks. However, implants can shift or become infected and require additional surgery to correct. None of these methods is perfect, but they can be very helpful for the right patient,” Dr. Solomon says.

Buttock treatment today is mostly performed with fat grafts or implants, says Dr. Solomon. “The scarring from buttock lifts can be significant and patients tend to want to avoid these telltale scars,” says Dr. Solomon. There is certainly a desire to have an appearance similar to some celebrities like Kim Kardashian, though whether she has had surgery on her buttocks has never been confirmed.

What’s on trend?
“The most common lift in my practice remains a facelift. While I perform all manner of body and facial surgery, the facelift remains the most popular,” says Dr. Solomon.

If you are considering any of the lift procedures seek a plastic surgeon board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS), the only Board recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) to certify doctors in the specialty of plastic surgery. For a list of ABPS board-certified plastic surgeons in your area use the Find a Surgeon search tool.

About the Author

Aly Walansky is a lifestyles writer with over a decade of experience covering beauty, health, and travel for various esteemed publications. Her blog, A Little Alytude ( was launched in 2006 and continues to be a strong voice in the lifestyles arena. Based in the ever-trendy Park Slope area of Brooklyn, she divides her time between her shih tsu Lily, her soap opera addiction, and scouting out fun new martini bars.