A lower facelift (rhytidectomy) addresses the jawline and cheeks, as well as jowling and smile lines. Please use this link to jump further down this page to learn in more detail what a facelift does.

Those with moderate to severe looseness in the lower face will need a full lower facelift, whereas those with just mild sagging may be able to get away with a mini facelift.

“It looks so natural that no one knew I had work done they just thought I look the best I have ever looked and can’t believe my age. The recovery was quick I was back to work within a week! ”
– Facelift patient HJ1957 on RealSelf


Combining a Facelift with Other Procedures

Most patients do choose to combine their facelift with at least one other procedure.
The most common procedures to add onto a facelift are:

Patients with concerns about a drooping lower face are also usually experiencing some loss of volume in the cheeks and midface. This usually presents as deflating cheekbones and pronounced undereye troughs. Fat Transfer to the midface provides a natural, long-lasting result.

Also, by the time you’ve reached your 50’s, sun damage, crepey skin, and other skin texture and pigment concerns are usually present. CO2 ablative laser skin resurfacing has a bigger recovery than most patients would want to undergo, but when you’re already taking time to recover from a facelift, it just makes sense to consider a resurfacing treatment like this.

Lower Facelift Cost

Because every patient is different, the cost for a facelift varies, but on average, patients can expect to pay between $15,000 and $18,000 (plus around $2,000 to 3,000 for surgery center fees and anesthesia fees) for a facelift with Dr. Joe Fodero, our board-certified plastic surgeon.

Facelift Surgery in New Jersey

At Reflections, facelifts and other facial surgeries are performed by Dr. Joe Fodero, a facial plastic surgeon who joined our practice after 25 years of experience as one of the top plastic surgeons in New Jersey.

What does a lower facelift do?

There are 3 types of changes that contribute to an older-looking neck and face:

  • Skin Damage – wrinkles, uneven texture, and pigmentation changes, as well as skin laxity and thinning
  • Sagging Muscles – loosening of connective tissues and loss of muscle tone
  • Volume Changes – our necks tend to accumulate more fat as we age, while our faces tend to lose fat

A Lower Face Lift is the only procedure that addresses changes to all three of these types of tissues along the lower cheeks and jawline. Your board-certified plastic surgeon will restore muscles and fat to their more youthful positions, creating a more defined jawline. Excess skin will be lifted back into place, reducing pooling and sagging along the jaw. The combination of these three changes will rebuild a solid foundation for a younger appearance for many years to come.

How is the Procedure Performed?

First, small incisions are made along the natural intersections of ear, face, and scalp. Muscles and fat that have loosened and are drooping along the jawline are returned to their more youthful positions, higher up in the cheek. Next, skin is gently relaxed back into a more youthful position and excess is trimmed away. Because the surgeon has carefully rebuilt the underlying structures, skin is not tight or pulled, but rather restored to a more natural, smooth positioning across the lower cheeks and jawline.

The location of your incisions, as well as the details that are specific to your unique aging pattern, will be discussed by your board-certified plastic surgeon at your personalized consultation. However, you can rest assured that you will be well-cared-for and made to feel comfortable throughout the process, and you will find enjoyment in your results for years to come.

Lower Facelift Recovery

Scars After Facelift Surgery NJ

The typical recovery from a facelift performed by Dr. Fodero follows this timeline:
Day 1 Post-Op: see Dr. Fodero for your first post-op, expect to be more swollen and bruised today than immediately after surgery. It’s normal to feel anxious about how you look at this stage in the recovery, but please do share any concerns with Dr. Fodero. You’ll probably want to stick to soft food today.
Day 5 Post-Op: swelling has peaked and is starting to improve a little. It will continue to improve each day from here on out. You should be ready to start eating normal food by now.
Day 7 Post-Op:Most patients will feel comfortable going out for errands today, especially if wearing hair down and sunglasses. Today is usually the first day you get a real idea of the results you can expect. You will see Dr. Fodero for your one-week post-op appointment today.
Day 10 Post-Op:Today is the day most patients start feeling comfortable with social outings and seeing people whom they don’t to know about their procedure (without giving anything away).
Day 15 Post-Op: Today you should be back to work, normal social activities, and you can start working out again! You will be around 70-90% of the way to your final results, which will be realized around 3-6 months out from your procedure.

Lower Facelift Scars

Most patients are worried about the scars from facelift surgery, and we completely understand. That’s why Dr. Fodero takes such care in his stitching placement and technique. However, if you do want to be proactive about ensuring your scars heal as discreetly as possible, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better place to start proactive treatment than Reflections.

How can I minimize the scars from my facelift?

One of the most important things you can do to help your scars to heal as discreetly as possible is to follow the instructions of your surgeon. You’ll want to avoid the sun or protect your scars from the sun as well as is possible. Smoking will negatively impact your healing process and make scars much more likely to have complications or heal noticeably.

When patients want to be as proactive as possible about their facelift scars, we recommend VBeam Perfecta to remove the redness, followed by Fraxel Restore Dual Laser to resurface the skin and create an even texture.

How to Select the Best Facelift Surgeon

One of the main reasons why you should choose your facelift surgeon carefully is that your results will correlate directly to your surgeon’s skill and experience. A surgeon who understands how important it is for you to appear naturally rejuvenated will make sure the incisions are well disguised within the natural folds of your face. In addition to the discreet placement of incisions, your surgeon should be skilled in the facelift technique as well as with the suturing procedure. It is natural for any patient to be worried about scarring from a facelift. However, in the hands of an experienced and skilled surgeon, any visible signs of having undergone a facelift are greatly minimized.

When selecting your facelift surgeon, we suggest using these criteria:

  • Board Certified as a Plastic Surgeon or Facial Plastic Surgeon: Board certification shows your surgeon has kept up-to-date on his/her skills and experience.
  • Member of ASAPS: ASAPS (the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons) is a very prestigious association that is limited in membership to plastic surgeons and facial plastic surgeons who have a practice that is mostly cosmetic (vs. reconstructive or functional plastic surgery) and who are nominated by their peers for their skill.
  • Their Before & After Photos: Great surgeons have the photos to prove it.
  • Hospital Privileges: Great surgeons have no issue booking an operating room at any of the best hospitals. Hospitals don’t extend privileges to everyone, and you can usually fact-check this by checking the hospital websites.
  • Bonus points if you surgeon is a teacher at a university and/or chief of plastic surgery at a hospital.

In case you’re wondering, Dr. Paul Fodero meets all of the criteria above, and with 25 years of experience, he is one of New Jersey’s best facelift surgeons.

Frequently Asked Questions About Facelift Surgery

What if I don’t want to have surgery?

We do offer a variety of non-surgical options for face lifting, tightening, and volume replacement. None of the current technologies for nonsurgical options will create as dramatic of a change as surgery can, but these are great options for those who want or need to avoid surgery (and are okay with an improvement) or who only have mild laxity (sagging and looseness) and want to delay surgery.

What if I don’t want to go under general anesthesia for my facelift?

Dr. Fodero offers facelifts under general anesthesia for the comfort and care of his patients. We can, however, discuss non-surgical options with one of our other cosmetic physicians, if you would like or need to avoid general anesthesia.

How long will my results last?

You will always look better than if you had not had a facelift, but nothing can stop time. Most patients find they don’t ever need or want to have a facelift again, but those that do will find that is an option they will start to explore around 15-20 years later.

How can you make your results last longer?

There are several reasons besides genetics that lead to your facelift results not lasting long. Your results can last longer with some factors like taking the right diet, changing your lifestyle, stop smoking and avoiding sun exposure. These changes also make the quality of your life better.

When you begin to see any signs of change when your facelift results begin to diminish, you can resort to various natural facelift methods like injectables and CO2 laser treatments. Most changes involving sagging skin are usually in the neck area and an alternative to a lower facelift, like laser treatment, will offer skin tightening. Together, these are procedures that reduce wrinkles and boost collagen production may help you retain your facelift results longer.

How long will I have to wait to see my final results?

Skin will appear tighter immediately after surgery, but because of the swelling after surgery, you should expect to wait 2 weeks to start to see results, with full and final results being seen about 3-6 months later, depending on the individual.

How long will I be out of work after my facelift surgery?

Most patients will take 1 or 2 weeks off from work. Everyone heals at a different rate, and to some degree this is influenced by the level of invasiveness in your procedure, which does vary person-to-person. Those that wish to keep their procedure completely private should plan for 2 weeks away from work.

Am I a candidate for a facelift surgery?

Almost anyone who wants to turn back the clock on aging along their jawline, has moderate to severe wrinkles or looseness, and is in relatively good health is a good candidate for a lower facelift. The vast majority of our patients choose this procedure to start their rejuvenation journey.

In general, the ideal candidate is someone who:

  • Has both skin and muscle laxity along their jawline (“jowls” and pooling skin and fat at the bottom of their smile lines)
  • is willing to achieve maximal improvement in the jaw through surgery
  • is medically eligible

Dr. Fodero will review your medical history in addition to performing a physical exam during the consultation to determine whether this is an appropriate procedure for you.

When should you have a facelift?

One of the best ways to delay a full-fledged facelift is to strategically restore certain key areas, like the neck and jawline, at an earlier age. Most patients will start to see mild to moderate changes through the lower face and neck by the time they’re in their 40s, if not sooner. Addressing moderate sagging and deflation can turn back the clock, with a smaller procedure. Once you’ve reset to an earlier position in the aging process, you will continue to age, in the same way as before; however, this should delay major procedures by several years.

Our expert plastic surgery team works collaboratively within our multi-specialty physician team to select the right procedures, providers, and treatment plans for each patient. Our team approach allows our physicians to draw on the expertise of industry leaders in all facets of cosmetic surgery, and in combination with our wide assortment of devices, allows us to hand-select not only the most effective treatment(s), but the very best treatment(s) for your physiology, aging patterns, and lifestyle.

What is the Pain Level During Recovery from a Lower Face Lift?

With most of the surgeries we perform, there is usually very little discomfort afterward. Most patients will take pain medication for 1 to 3 days following surgery to control any discomfort. You can expect that you will feel F tightness along your jawline and in your lower face following the lower face lift procedure, but it will come to feel natural within a few days after surgery.

What Kind of Scarring Should I Expect from a Lower Face Lift?

Our physicians believe natural-looking results include discreet incisions well disguised in natural folds. Artful placement of incision lines, a gentle surgical technique, and skilled suturing are key in minimizing scar appearance.

What Risks or Complications Are Possible with a Facelift?

Facelift Recovery NJYWe pride ourselves on our safety record. Your plastic surgeon will make sure to go through all of the potential risks with you and answer any questions you have about your specific situation. Each patient is different, and we want to be able to speak to your specific health concerns individually. However, you should know Reflections is meticulous and has an excellent safety record.

Why do facelifts cost so much?

There are several factors that affect the cost of your facelift surgery including:

  • Type of facelift: There are different kinds of facelift procedures that are designed to address specific aging signs and improve the appearance of some targeted features. Usually, a traditional full facelift will cost you more than a mid-facelift or a mini facelift, which require smaller incisions.
  • Type of anesthesia: Certain types of facelift will require either a local or general anesthesia. General anesthesia will usually cost more because it requires additional physicians or highly certified nurse anesthetists to be present for the procedure; also, different anesthesiologists have varying fees.
  • Facelift technique: Your cost will be higher for an advanced method like the endoscopic facelift because of additional tools and technologies.
  • Skill and reputation of your surgeon:Highly-respected surgeons who have undergone advanced training have a higher fee than surgeons who are less experienced. When choosing your facial cosmetic surgeon, cost should not be the most important factor, but rather their reputation and skills.
  • Additional procedures: Many people combine other procedures with their facelift to get comprehensive results.
  • Location of your procedure: certain markets are simply more expensive. For example, facelifts in New Jersey tend to cost less than having a facelift in New York City simply because the cost of the space and staff is much higher in New York than in New Jersey.