Learn everything about your treatment

Content Provided by:understand logo

Procedure time

2 to 5 hours

Overnight stay

Day case or one night


General anaesthetic or local anaesthetic with sedation

Final results

6 to 9 months

Facelift overview

What is a facelift?

A facelift is a procedure that tightens and lifts the skin and muscles of the face. The medical name for a facelift is a rhytidectomy. This gives the face a more youthful appearance. It is one of the most commonly requested procedures by both men and women. Often, it can be combined with other procedures such as a neck lift or brow lift, to rejuvenate the overall facial appearance. This facelift overview page will be able to give you an idea of what the procedure involves.

What can a facelift achieve?

A facelift (rhytidectomy) can give you a more youthful, rejuvenated appearance. As we age, our skin gradually loses its elasticity and our facial muscles slacken. This creates the appearance of wrinkled, sagging skin, especially on the face. Lifestyle factors such as sun exposure and stress can also contribute to these changes. This can affect your confidence and make you look older than you feel. Thus, a facelift aims to restore the vitality in your appearance.
By lifting and pulling back the skin and soft tissues of your face, a facelift can:

  • Smooth the skin on your face.
  • Reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
  • Reduce flabby or sagging skin around the face.
  • Restore definition in your face.
  • Give you a more youthful appearance.

Facelift technique

The facelift procedure involves raising and repositioning the soft tissues of the face. Your surgeon will do this by firstly making an incision on both sides of the face, in front of the ears. They will then remove excess skin and fat and then tighten the muscles and soft tissues. Finally, they will lift and pull back the skin before closing the incision.
Your surgeon will perform your facelift using one of several techniques. The most common techniques are the following:
SMAS facelift
In this method, the surgeon makes a deep incision that goes below a layer of tissue called the Superficial Musculoaponeurotic System (SMAS). By making a deep incision, the surgeon can improve more severe facial sagging and problem areas, and achieve long-lasting results.
Minimal Access Cranial Suspension (MACS) facelift
With this method, the surgeon will make smaller incisions that do not go as deep as a SMAS facelift. This technique may be best for you if you only have mild problem areas, as you will have smaller scars and a shorter recovery period.


BAAPS stands for The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, whilst BAPRAS  stands for The British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons. These are the two leading plastic surgery colleges in the UK.
Surgeons who are members of either society regularly attend training to keep their skills and knowledge up to date. This means they are amongst the most highly qualified and experienced plastic surgeons in the UK. At Medbelle, we only recruit surgeons who are members of either BAAPS or BAPRAS. This ensures that all our patients receive only the highest quality of care.

Surgery results and benefits vary per individual.
Specific results cannot be guaranteed.