While a facelift can take a few years off of your looks, it won’t magically keep those years from returning.
Making the most of your facelift and getting results that last five or 10 years, or even longer, means remembering to shield yourself from external factors that contribute to aging. In some cases, it also means embracing non-surgical options, which can help you maintain or even enhance your results.
Take Care of Yourself
Turning back the clock on your looks doesn’t mean you can turn back the clock on your habits. If your teens, twenties and thirties were full of junk food, alcohol and cigarettes, don’t revert to those habits. If you kept up a diet of junk food, such as salty snacks and sugary treats, into your forties and beyond, the time after your surgery is ideal for turning over a new leaf is now.
Try to stick to a balanced diet full of good-for-you foods such as vegetables, grains, fruit and lean protein. For one thing, losing and gaining weight after your facelift can affect the results, as losing fat from your face makes you look older. Eating a steady diet full of foods that contain a lot of vitamins and nutrients gives your body that fuel it needs to fight the signs of aging. You don’t have to necessarily look for “superfoods,” which are bursting with nutrients. Simply choosing to eat more of a wide variety of vegetables and fruits can help.
It’s also important to try to say no to sugar. Although it might taste sweet, sugar wreaks havoc on your skin, causing something called glycation. Glycation affects the collagen that’s just below the surface of the skin, leading to more wrinkles and to skin that’s less smooth and elastic.
Even though your surgeon might have told you to stop smoking for just a few weeks after your surgery, it’s in the best interests of your overall health and the prolonged results of your facelift, for you to kick the habit for good. Smoking is one of the leading causes of wrinkles. If your goal is to look more youthful and keep wrinkles away, smoking just isn’t the way to do it.
Pamper Your Skin
One of the best ways to pamper and care for your skin after a facelift is to protect it from the sun. You might be told to avoid any sun exposure immediately after your surgery. Once your surgeon gives you the go-ahead to go outdoors again, make every effort to cover up your face. Wear a moisturizer with sunscreen, don a wide-brimmed hat and put on a pair of sunglasses with UV protection.
Keeping up a good skincare routine post-surgery is also a good way to make your results last as long as possible. Your surgeon can recommend certain products for you or you can ask about prescription strength products, such as Retin-A to help fight wrinkles or products that contain alpha hydroxy or beta hydroxy acids. Try not to go overboard with the products after your surgery. If you’re not sure if two products will interact with each or irritate your skin, ask before using them.
Don’t Rule Out Injections and Laser Treatments
Although you probably don’t want to receive laser skin resurfacing or an injection immediately after your surgery, as time goes on, either or both can be an option to help you maintain the results. A facelift only focuses on the lower portion of your face, so injections that target the forehead and upper area, such as Botox, can help create a balanced, more youthful look. As time goes on, injectable fillers in the lower part of your face can help keep wrinkles and lines from returning.
A facelift procedure doesn’t adjust the quality of your skin, such as its texture or areas of discoloration. Laser treatments, such as fractional CO2 laser, can help reduce the appearance of fine lines, scars and uneven texture. Lasers also help give your skin a more even tone, by removing or reducing the appearance of sun or age spots.
In Ohio, Dr. Stephen Smith offers facelift surgery at two locations. He can also help patients maintain their results with non-surgical options, including laser treatments and injections. To learn more about facelifts, injections and laser skin resurfacing, call (614) 702-7342 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Smith today.