Deep Plane Facelift

The deep-plane facelift is a longer lasting alternative to standard facelift techniques. During a deep-plane facelift, the surgeon repositions soft facial tissues by lifting the whole face rather than just the superficial layers of skin, accentuating the jaw, neck and cheekbones.

This results in a more natural looking outcome, without the stretched ‘done look’ that is fast going out of fashion. Although the deep-plane facelift is not considered major surgery, only a few surgeons have the expertise to perform the procedure with success. A deep-plane facelift also requires less healing time compared to a skin only or a standard facelift.

The deep-plane facelift is currently the gold standard in facelifts. As a result, a deep-plane facelift can be more expensive than a traditional skin-only facelift or the standard facelift.

While skin-only facelifts focus on the outmost skin layers, giving rise to that ‘done look’ most people associate with facelifts, the standard facelift today goes a bit deeper to the submusculoaponeurotic system or the SMAS layer. The SMAS layer lies beneath the facial fat and is made up of fibrous connective tissue. It separates the deeper facial structures like the muscles that control facial movements, nerves and other structures of the face from the superficial layers of the face.

Although the SMAS facelift is an improvement over skin-only facelifts, it has only a minor effect on the deeper tissues. For this reason, some degree of skin pulling is necessary to achieve a satisfactory final result. Sometimes the SMAS facelift is referred to as a ‘muscle pulling lift’.

In contrast, a deep-plane facelift repositions deep facial soft tissue that lies beneath the SMAS layer, allowing the whole face to be lifted. The result accentuates the jaw, neck and cheekbones and produces longer lasting, natural enhancement without giving you the plastic, ‘done look’, which is fast going out of fashion. The ability to produce longer lasting results and avoid the pulled effect is due to the fact that the deeper layers are more fibrous and inelastic compared to the elastic nature of our skin.

Both men and women have deep-plane facelifts, but in general it is more popular among women. This technique is very suitable for older people with a lot of sagging and loose skin, but surgeons report many clients in their early 40s requesting this procedure.

As with other facelifts, the deep-plane facelift can be combined with eyelid surgery, a forehead lift (brow lift), neck lift and non-surgical cosmetic procedures such as lip enhancement.

Join the Conversation

  • Lilly says:

    I had a deep plane facelift 4 weeks ago and have become increasingly depressed over the slow progress I feel I am making. I have these creases on each side of my mouth which make me feel like a clown. My surgeon showed me in my before surgery photo that I did have creases but now they are accentuated because of puffiness. Shouldn’t that be gone after 4 weeks??????

    • Costhetics says:

      Hi Lilly,

      It’s probably best to discuss this with your surgeon as we can’t give medical advice. That said, 4 weeks isn’t an unusual period of time to still be experiencing some swelling after surgery. Swelling is often controlled after surgery via compression garments and rest of the area – both of these methods don’t work too well on your face for obvious reasons!

      Be sure to follow your Doctor’s post op guidelines and hang in there, you trusted your surgeon with the surgery itself – be patient and trust them during the recovery period too.

      Wishing you a speedy recovery and let us know if you have any other queries,
      Costhetics

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