Performing a facelift requires the ultimate precision, technique and attention as there is no margin for error; for these reasons, of all plastic surgeons, the aesthetic FACELIFT plastic surgeon expert is considered the ultimate plastic surgeon.
Facelift cost can vary tremendously in Toronto, and here is why.
Many know I trained with 2 world facelift experts, Paris’s Dr. Daniel Marchac and California NewPort Beach’s Dr. Bruce Connell (my fellowship also included some times in NewYork city and Brazil). I also bring to VISAGE 20 years of experience in aesthetic plastic surgery and facelift procedures.
Not all facelifts are performed equally and not all facelifts are the same; this has led to so much confusion in the literature, not to mention all the different “nickname” facelift terms some doctors come up with for marketing, for social media and/or for sensationalism.
Equally important, not all surgeons are equalled either. You should seek a real plastic surgeon, i.e. a reconstructive and aesthetic surgeon, some of whom specialize uniquely in aesthetics and facelifts; plastic surgeons get 5 full years of reconstructive and aesthetic training after medical school (called a fellowship) and often will acquire additional years to sub-specialize (I went to Paris and California). But you also have non-plastic surgeons who called themselves “cosmetic surgeons”, you have facial plastic surgeons (a new profession created by the Ear Nose and Throat Surgeons who digressed into aesthetics), you have various family physicians doing aesthetic medicines, gynecologist doing cosmetic labiaplasty and monsplasty, dermatologist doing liposuction, general surgeons doing breast augmentation, etc. Yes, a cosmetic surgeon is not necessarily a plastic surgeon, BE WARNED. Actually, cosmetic surgery is NOT a profession itself; it is a misnomer developed in USA. Cosmetic refers really to beauty products. It is unfortunate that it has become too liberally used.
I do keep my facelift patients overnight for customer service but also for nursing care and pain management. We offer Netflix in each room and a Yorkville dinner and breakfast (a menu is presented prior to the surgery). I see my facelift patients the following morning and if small facial drains were used, there are usually removed then. You can visit our facility here.
ALL my surgical patients get my own personal cell phone number so they can reach their surgeons at all times for any urgent matters. My patients have been appreciating this for over 20 years now. It is part of our legendary white-glove customer service.
An expert facelift surgeon will be able to perform most types of well thought and described techniques, from the mini-facelift to the 3-day facelift, the thread lift, the short-scar facelift, the MACS facelift, the classic facelift, the SMAS or Deep facelift, Mid-facelift, just to name the most described procedures in our plastic surgery literature.
All facelifts require some incisions around the ears. However, each technique will vary slightly especially beyond the ears in the front and in the back of the ear and the depth and extent of the undermining.
Each technique requires a certain amount of time to perform and this will influence the cost. Each technique will have its own different goal and “power” in addressing a particular facial aging issue. Closure is also crucial for a plastic surgeon as it will often determine the quality of the scar; plastic surgeons close in multiple layers and use many but tiny sutures for a better suture line.
The mini-facelift is a simple skin-only minimal skin undermining and no anterior neck procedure. Simple enough to be performed under local anesthesia. So cost is lesser. The drawback is that the effects are shorter lasting. I use this technique judiciously, usually on very young patients, on patients who cannot afford much downtime and more commonly on my much older patients when this is a 3rd or 4th facelift and whom could not tolerate a longer anesthesia.
The most frequent technique I use is the well-recognized Dr. Bruce Connell’s classic facelift, which has a longevity in results close to 10-15 years. This classic facelift is a SMAS – superficial musculo-aponeurotic-system – deep 2 layers lifting; since the skin is attached to the SMAS, pulling hard and firm on the SMAS (and using permanent sutures to anchor this layer strongly) will automatically bring and lift the skin, allowing to resect excess skin and to close with minimal tension. This classic technique comes with strong “anchoring” of this muscle-fascia layer and I use permanent sutures.
Minimal tension on the skin is important for 3 main reasons:
- better fine scar
- no chance of the wind-swept facelift look where you’ll see unnatural horizontal lines or swirls in the cheeks of crow’s areas, no unsightly excessive widening of the mouth (fish-mouth) and
- much lesser chance of getting a pulled-down earlobe (Pixie ears).
MY VISAGE’s classic facelift involves doing some work on the front of the neck; the turkey neck is actually the result of 2 loose muscles hanging that MUST be repaired prior to being pulled otherwise pulling them only at the back will only allow those hanging bands to appear a few years later but a lot further into the neck, again, very unnatural and “a loss in your investment”.
Some patients may need ONLY the neck lift where liposuction to the neck is done, the muscle is repaired (platysmaplasty) and the skin and lower SMAS are pulled. Others will need the jowls to also be pulled and this is what I call the VISAGE lower facelift, the most common facelifts.
As with many things in life, there are many options that someone might need or be interested in adding to this classic facelift, and this will affect both cost and recovery. Such options include:
- Chin implant to correct a deficient chin or to increase the ovality (female) or squareness (male of the chin
- Adding cheek implants
- Adding jaw angle implants
- Adding temple implants (a definite sign of aging being the hollowing of the temples)
- Upper and lower lid surgery
- Midface suspension lift via the lower blepharoplasty incision
- The peninsula, the temporal, the forehead and the brow lift
- Forehead lowering procedure
- Fat grafting to cheeks, temples, lips, jawline, etc.
- Bone shaving/sculpting
- Rhinoplasty, otoplasty, earlobe reduction
- Facial skin laser resurfacing, including neck and décolleté
- Hair restoration and transplantation procedures
The recovery will also vary depending on the extent of the procedure. Fat grafting tends to lengthen the recovery with more swelling and bruising. Jaw angle implants (more often males but also females) also come with more swelling. All browlift and forehead lifts tend to also give bruises that will travel down to the thin lids where bruises will show for 2-3 weeks.
Most stitches are removed 7 days post facelift surgery.
The interesting fact about facial surgery is that the pain is not as much as expected; I’d quote a 4/10 or 5/10 in pain and this only for 1-2 days. Analgesics are prescribed for those few days. So the recovery is much more a “social recovery”.
For all the above reasons, facelift cost can vary tremendously in Toronto, an average from 7500$ to above 75000$; the most expansive one being obviously “all-inclusive”.
Facelift surgery is one of my favourite procedure to perform, hence I called my practice, VISAGE, which means “face” in French but which also refers to the general appearance of oneself.
Dr. Marc DuPéré, aesthetic plastic surgeon and facelift expert