You’d love to rejuvenate your skin and recover that youthful glow, but going under the knife to do so isn’t something you’d consider doing. You’re by no means alone in this, but a visit to a cosmetic surgeon doesn’t necessarily end in surgery. While there are surgical alternatives to full face-lift, there are also non-surgical ones that can produce results similar to the ones you may be hoping for.
Here we take a closer look at five non-surgical alternatives to face-lift surgery that should be on your radar.
The Laser Face-Lift
This skin treatment goes under several names. It’s also known as the LazerLift or laser resurfacing. Whatever name you choose, it’s a treatment that doesn’t involve anesthesia or cuts that need to be stitched. All it takes is about 30 minutes of treatment and a recovery period of a couple of days during which your face will look flushed.
The term “resurfacing” is a little misleading because the laser can do more than just improve the superficial texture of your skin. Studies have shown that treatment with certain types of laser promote collagen and elastin production as well as improving the outer texture of the skin. You can say goodbye to fine lines and wrinkles on the surface of the skin while also dealing with one of the primary causes of skin aging – the loss of skin elasticity and underlying connective tissue support.
At the same time, you’ll be dealing with superficial blemishes including blotchiness caused by too much sun and the so-called age spots you may have thought you’d be stuck with for the rest of your life. However, laser face lifts do have their limitations. For example, if you have a lot of loose, sagging skin, you can’t expect a laser to fix it.
Have you ever wished you could just fill in all the creases and folds that annoy you when you look in the mirror? A cosmetic surgeon can help you to do so without surgery. A short spell in the doctor’s consulting rooms and a few strategically-placed injections could be all it takes to achieve the rejuvenated look you hoped for.
There are various types of dermal fillers on the market, but the most common ones are based on hyaluronic acid, an ingredient that naturally occurs in the body. That means that the chances of having an adverse reaction to your treatment are very low. As with laser resurfacing, there is evidence that the treatment promotes collagen production – so even when it wears off, your skin should look a little younger than it did before you had it. (Read Considering Juvederm? Here's What You Need to Know.)
The Ultrasound Face-Lift
If you’re hoping to tighten up your skin without any downtime, the ultrasound facelift or Ultratherapy could be for you. Ultrasound waves penetrate even deeper into the skin layers than lasers do and have a similar, collagen-stimulating effect. But, unlike laser treatments, they can remove a certain amount of excess fat – and if that’s contributing to looseness beneath the chin area, you could see a marked improvement to your jawline area.
This therapy does come with a couple of words of warning, though. While the sensation people experience during laser facelift treatments has been compared to that of a rubber band snapping onto the skin, most people agree that ultrasound facelifts are painful. But despite this, people are going back for more. If you can live with a “no pain, no gain” situation, this treatment could be an option for you.
Once again, we're looking at a procedure with no downtime that can be done in the doctor’s office, and this one isn’t painful. However, you will need to go for several repeat treatments. The good news is that it doesn’t take long – 60 to 90 minutes should be ample, and the results of a course of radiofrequency treatments can last for up to two years.
The principle upon which this treatment is based is very similar to ultrasound facelifts, and doctors say that short of surgery, it’s one of the best ways to cope with jowls, lines around the eyes and deep wrinkles. Before and after pictures certainly show a marked difference, but if there’s a lot of loose skin, it would be wise to limit your expectations.
A technology that was developed to help people to overcome facial paralysis has now entered the world of cosmetic anti-aging therapies. Special wands stimulate facial muscles with a very weak electrical current, giving them a workout that is said to tone the face. Patients say that the procedure isn’t in the least bit uncomfortable. There’s just a faint tingling sensation.
Although some say that beyond toning facial muscles, the treatment can’t affect the signs of skin aging, others say that the treatment improves blood flow to the skin, promoting collagen production and ultimately giving the skin a rejuvenated look. Although this technique is still relatively new, its sheer popularity seems to indicate that it really does make a visible difference.
What Non-Surgical Face-Lifts Have in Common
Non-surgical face-lift alternatives are hugely popular for obvious reasons. There’s no hospital stay, no time off work, and a skin-rejuvenating result you can’t get with topical creams. However, none of these alternatives is absolutely permanent, and none of them can deal with a lot of sagging, loose skin in the way that a surgical face-lift can.
Finally, it’s wisest not to have any of these treatments, with the possible exception of microcurrent treatments, done by anyone other than a certified cosmetic surgeon or dermatologist. Inexpertly applied laser resurfacing, radiofrequency, or ultrasound treatments can all cause damage and even scarring. Even the use of dermal fillers requires a great deal of expertise and shouldn’t be seen as a regular salon treatment.
All the same, it’s great to know that there are alternatives to the full face-lift and that you can achieve visible, natural-looking improvements without resorting to surgery.