Plastic Surgeon’s Ultimate Guide To The 7 Types of Facelifts
Types of Facelifts

Plastic Surgeon’s Ultimate Guide To The 7 Types of Facelifts

Dr. Diana Ponsky is a renowned Cleveland facial plastic surgeon who is skilled in performing facelifts and other treatments to correct and prevent visible signs of aging in the face and neck. By correcting sagging skin, smoothing wrinkles, and flattening deep creases, she can restore a more youthful appearance and turn back the clock on aging.

No two facelifts are the same. Everyone has unique facial features, such as different skin thicknesses, different soft tissue (fatty support) and bone structure. Facelifts also differ based on timing. Some people want to have the procedure as soon as they notice any laxity of skin.  Others wait until there are no options other than surgery (they’ve tried all non surgical options).

Recently, I posted a blog about what exactly a facelift is and what the benefits are. You can read that here. If you’re considering undergoing a facelift, there are a few types of facelifts that you should know about. Keep in mind that each facelift type targets a different portion of your facial structure.  It can be confusing to sort through all the different types of facelifts, so I hope that this blog can help shed some light on what is needed.

1. Deep Plane/SMAS Facelift

Facelift Deep Plane Diana Ponsky

A deep plane facelift is intended to eliminate sagging skin at the base of the chin and neck. This is done by lifting up and strengthening the lax muscles in that portion of the face. It is also called a “vertical vector facelift”, or an “Auralyft”.

Deep plane facelift procedures involve the surgeon delving beneath the musculoaponeurotic system (SMAS). Located under the skin close to the muscles used for smiling and frowning, your surgeon will reposition, reshape, and smooth out the SMAS layer to iron out wrinkles and make you look younger and more radiant.

Lateral SMAS Facelift Cleveland Ponsky

2. Mini Facelift (aka Short-scar Facelift)

This is a surgical facelift technique that uses small, inconspicuous incisions under the hairline so that your surgeon can tighten and smooth out your skin while also removing excess tissue. A mini facelift is usually effective in reducing the appearance of minor jowls or eliminating it altogether. Jowls usually form around the lower half of your cheeks and mouth as you get older. It does not address the folds in the neck.

3. Mid-Facelift

As the name implies, the mid-facelift targets the midsection of the face, particularly the cheeks. Excess tissue is removed around the cheek area or existing tissue is stitched up to help lift up the cheeks, and eliminate sagging.  Unlike cheek fillers or cheek implants, though, volume isn’t added to the cheeks to plump them up.

The mid-facelift is highly recommended for patients who don’t have jowls or marionette lines. By itself, the mid-facelift helps most with decreasing the depth of the nasolabial folds so they look less pronounced. However, it can also be performed in conjunction with procedures that remove jowls and marionette lines.

4. Jawline Rejuvenation

A jawline rejuvenation involves extracting excess fat cells from the neck area through liposuction. Most people—especially women—exhibit signs of aging around their jaw and neckline. In this procedure, your facial plastic surgeon contours and reshapes your jawline to make it smoother.

5. Skin-only Facelift

The skin-only facelift uses hidden incisions in front of the ear, along with an s-shaped incision behind the jawline and around the neck. This allows the surgeon to separate the top layer of skin from the facial muscles and tissues underneath.

The purpose of this skin-only procedure is to lift up the skin, remove excess fat cells, and contour the muscles and underlying tissue, resulting in smooth, wrinkle-free skin. This procedure is rarely used these days as it only pulls the skin and does not have the longevity of the SMAS or deep-plane facelift.  

6. Temporal or Brow Lift (Upper Facelift)

Browlift Upper Facelift Diana Ponsky

Since your temples and brows are within such close proximity to one another, smoothing out wrinkles in one area also inadvertently benefits the other area of the face as well. If your eyebrows are droopy or hang too low, then this could be the right procedure for you.

An excellent alternative to the much more invasive eyebrow lift, which requires a longer recovery time, the temporal brow lift uses a small incision along your hairline and then the skin and underlying muscles are lifted up to stretch out the drooping skin on your eyelids.

7. Liquid Facelift

Liquid Facelift Dr Diana Ponsky

Liquid facelifts are by far the most popular type of facial rejuvenation procedures currently being practiced today. Known for its non-invasive nature (no surgery), a liquid facelift involves the use of injectable neuromodulators (Botox, Dysport, Jeaveau, Xeomin) and fillers (Juvederm, Restylane, Radiesse). These are injected into your face to volumize the problem areas of the face, and temporarily smooth out wrinkles. These fillers have the ability to stimulate collagen production and promote skin elasticity.

Are you thinking about getting a facelift, but aren’t sure which option is right for you? Learn more about facelifts with Dr. Diana Ponsky, including what to expect before, during, and after your procedure here. Book your consultation to see exactly how Dr. Ponsky can help you!

Dr. Diana Ponsky is a Facial Plastic Surgeon in Cleveland, Ohio. She is Double Board Certified in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery. Dr. Ponsky focuses exclusively on the face, head, and neck. Schedule a consultation here.

What Our Patients Say

  • The office was nice. Receptionist was very polite. Dr. Ponsky was great. The experience was comfortable and she explained everything to me before doing anything. She made sure I understood. Thank you Dr. Ponsky!

    - YM( Cleveland Facial Plastic Surgery )
  • I have always been apprehensive of ANY cosmetic procedures. Not any more! Dr Ponsky and her entire staff are friendly, professional and reassuring. Dr Ponsky is gentle, thorough, professional, talented, knows medicine and her craft. I can’t recommend this entire practice more. It is a gift that we have her in Cleveland.

    - SA( Cosmetic Surgery, Cleveland )
  • I can’t be happier with the results of my Rhinoplasty on both aspects functionally and aesthetically, Dr. Ponsky did such a great job, before, during, and after surgery, she is on top of everything and follow her patients very carefully after surgery to ensure complete healing and great results. Thank you Dr. Ponsky and her staff from the bottom of my heart🙏🙏

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    - A( Rhinoplasty, Cleveland )
  • I have nothing but positive to say about Dr. Ponsky and her entire staff! The first time I came in for a appointment I felt a welcoming and warm energy from the entire group . Dr. Ponsky’s assistant Jaime is fabulous and I love how she can answer all my questions if I don’t understand all!!
    Thank you everyone !!!

    - DB( )
  • Dr Ponsky’s staff are full of energy and very friendly. They are extremely personable, and worked to ensure that I felt comfortable and had everything I needed (down to a blanket during the procedure). Dr Ponsky is thorough, sweet, and gentle in her explanations. She made sure to explain the answers to each of my questions and I never felt rushed/forced to make a decision. I love the fact that we could do the entire procedure under local anesthesia.

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    - EE( Blepharoplasty, Cleveland )