Anti-aging aesthetic medicine was once only practical for people with advanced signs of aging. Invasive facelift surgery was the most common procedure for treating lax skin, muscles, wrinkles and volume loss to restore a more youthful appearance. Thanks to modern techniques, however, facial plastic surgery can now be less invasive and more customized for today’s patients. Minimally invasive facelift techniques address minimal to moderate facial maturity and offer tailored corrections, allowing patients to postpone more extensive surgeries, like a traditional facelift. A minimally invasive or short scar facelift involves less: less scarring, less surgery, less anesthesia, and less downtime. Some of the mini facelift techniques the surgeons at Plastic Surgery Institute (PSI) of Miami use are the endoscopic midface lift, the subciliary midface lift, and other short scar techniques. These procedures create nearly invisible scars and use technologically advanced surgical instruments to reverse the effects of aging on the midface for a rejuvenated, youthful look.
Why Opt for a Mini Facelift?
Maintaining a youthful appearance isn’t just a concern for people in their 60s or 70s. Slackened cheek position and decreased jawline definition are just two of the initial signs of the aging process that may start to emerge as early as the mid-thirties. Many prospective patients want to address these concerns with a corrective procedure without undergoing a complete facelift. The mini facelift can be a perfect solution for these patients, as it can refresh the face and help to slow down the aging process without the extensive recovery associated with a traditional facelift.
The Aging Process
The face is one of the first areas of the body to show signs of aging. Some of the facial skin is thinner than that of the rest of the body, making it less resistant to age-related changes as skin in other areas. Over time, the collagen and elastin that form the framework of the skin are affected by factors like age, gravity, and sun exposure.
Another reason that the face ages more quickly than the rest of the body is due to its constant movement. Through facial expressions and even regular functions like blinking and chewing, we use numerous muscle groups that will show signs of wear and crease the skin over time.
Aging follows a natural process that cannot be stopped—but it can be slowed. Mini facelift surgery can individually address the visible imperfections, like a loss of volume due to fat migration or fine lines and wrinkles. Areas of the face that remain youthful are left untouched or emphasized through other procedures, like dermal injections.
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* Each patient is unique and individual results may vary.
Endoscopic Facelift Options at PSI Miami
The Plastic Surgery Institute in Miami, FL offers several different types of mini facelift options. Each procedure addresses the cheeks (midface), and may also treat adjacent areas that display signs of aging. A consultation with one of PSI’s expert plastic surgeons will provide each patient with the best options for his or her individual aesthetic concerns and ensure candidacy for their chosen procedure.
Endoscopic Midface Lift
Patients as young as their early to mid-thirties may notice some changes in the midface. Gravity impacts the fat pads of the cheeks due to a constant downward pull, and can cause the cheeks to lose their natural fullness. The result may be a hollow or bulging under eye area, as well as smile lines below the cheek and minor jowling. Mid-face descent can be addressed through endoscopic midface lift.
The procedure is performed through the use of an endoscope, or a small camera that is inserted below the skin to view underlying tissues. This guided surgical technique prevents lengthy scars and damage that traditional surgery techniques may produce. Smaller surgical cuts may be made in areas such as the hairline or behind the ears, effectively concealing any scars. The doctor can reposition and reshape the muscles, fat pads, and area skin for custom rejuvenation.
Subciliary Midface Lift
During a subciliary midface lift, the doctor accesses the midface through an incision below the lower lash line to treat the cosmetic issues below the eye and within the midface. Sometimes referred to as the superficial subciliary cheek lift, the doctor can smooth any bulges or hollows caused by under eye fat pad migration, and lift the position of the cheeks. This procedure is typically best for patients seeking a lower eyelid lift and cheek lift who have fewer issues in other areas of the face. Because the procedure targets very specific facial features, the surgery is not intended for improving aging of the upper or lower face. Subciliary midface lift can be combined with other procedures for further correction of other areas of the face.
Short Scar Techniques
During this version of minimally invasive facelift, the midface and the jowls (the lower cheeks that can extend beyond the jawline) are surgically corrected. The procedure can be performed with an incision hidden in the natural creases where the ears connect to the face. This is known as an S-lift or ponytail facelift. The doctor then separates the skin from other tissues to access the muscles and fat. Tissue that has accumulated in the midface areas may be reshaped, repositioned, or removed altogether with simple excision or liposuction techniques. These steps will result in a smoother midface area, which will tighten the skin of the cheeks and jawline, turning the aging clock back by years.
Candidates for Mini Facelift
Patients with moderate skin elasticity who show signs of cheek migration and other area age-related changes may be good candidates for a midface lift. During the first appointment with a board-certified plastic surgeon at PSI Miami, the patient’s health history will be discussed, and each of the patient’s aesthetic concerns will be addressed. The doctor will provide various treatment options, explaining each one so the patient can make an informed decision. Both surgical and nonsurgical treatments may be suggested. This is a great opportunity for prospective patients to ask specific questions and learn more about the surgery, recovery, and results. Mini facelift candidates should have realistic expectations for the results, and understand the limitations of the procedure. Some patients may be better candidates for a traditional facelift surgery instead. Before-and-after photos can be an excellent resource for understanding the typical results of a mini facelift.
Mini Facelift FAQs
Because signs of aging can be noticeable to patients as early as those in their 30s, some people opt to restore their looks before needing an extensive surgery like a full facelift. There are a number of different techniques that address different areas of the midface, and other surgical and nonsurgical procedures that can restore youth to the upper and lower face as well.
Mini, midface, or minimally invasive facelifts are also sometimes referred to as cheek lifts, because this is the primary area of the face the procedures restore. A full or traditional facelift is much more extensive, and addresses other areas of the face beyond the midface. It is extremely customizable, and doctor and patient work together to create the most comprehensive results possible. The procedure not only elevates the cheeks, but it can also trim excess tissues of the jawline and neck, tighten underlying muscles, and create extremely dramatic anti-aging results.
The surgeons at the Plastic Surgery Institute of Miami are board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. They are up-to-date with the newest and safest techniques in the field of facial plastic surgery. Each of the surgeons has trained with world leaders in the field and participates in national meetings dedicated to this specialty area in medicine. The PSI Miami surgeons are constantly innovating new methods and techniques to achieve optimal results. Additionally, the state-of-the-art facilities at the Plastic Surgery Institute of Miami allow our surgeons to provide cutting-edge, minimally invasive techniques for any facial procedure.
Endoscopic facelift techniques are performed through the use of a guided camera below the skin. Rather that disrupting tissues with multiple lengthy incisions for the surgeon to view the tissues, the endoscope is able to navigate areas below the skin. This helps to preserve crucial facial structures, leaving various nerves and blood vessels intact. Healing times are improved through endoscopic techniques.
Mini facelift surgery is designed as a less invasive approach to anti-aging medicine that treats the midface/cheeks, which is often the first area of the face to show signs of aging. Full facelift is a more extensive procedure, commonly reserved for those with advanced signs of aging later in life. A traditional facelift also addresses the lower face and neck, though some techniques in midface lift can provide moderate lower face improvements. During a surgical consultation, patients can learn about each surgery and which they may benefit from.
Surgical scars from nearly any plastic surgery procedure can be camouflaged in natural skin folds, or in other features of the face and body. In mini facelift surgery, the surgical cuts are generally created behind the hair line, in front of or behind the ears, or even below the lower lash line of the eyes. Endoscopic procedures result in fewer incisions, and those that are created generally heal well, leaving no telltale signs that a patient has had plastic surgery.
Can I combine other procedures with a mini facelift?
In many cases, patients wish to target-treat the areas of the face that have changed the most over time. When the midface is addressed, there may be other features that still show signs of aging, compromising the results of the surgery. Plastic surgeons can perform other procedures during the same surgery that correct additional aesthetic concerns. Popular add-on treatments that complement midface lift are blepharoplasty, laser skin resurfacing, and fat grafting to the face.
About the Plastic Surgery Institute of Miami, FL
The Plastic Surgery Institute of Miami serves patients in a single location for facial and body plastic surgery. Additionally, the practice also features minimally invasive procedures and nonsurgical procedures to accommodate all cosmetic needs. Dr. Jason I. Altman and Dr. Marcelo Ghersi are joined by a professional medical team for both in-office and surgery center procedures. Prospective patients seeking to learn more about mini facelift options can reach the office by calling 305.446.7700 to schedule a doctor-patient consultation.