Recovery after a facelift

12 June 2023

After a facelift or necklift, the post-operative follow-up may vary from one patient to another, but there are some principles that are common to everyone.

It is important to know about aftercare and recovery so you can get organized after the operation.

It is necessary to note that :

-the desocialization period after a facelift is generally of 15 days.

-the final result of the facelift should not be assessed before 6 months. It is necessary to wait 12 months to judge the final appearance of the scars.

Common recommendations

-Sleep on your back with your head slightly elevated and avoid rotating your neck.

-Always take the painkillers prescribed by your surgeon so that you don’t feel any pain.

-Edema (swelling) of the face and neck is systematic, moderate in intensity and variable from patient to another.

Early phase of facelift follow-up, within the first 7 days after the surgery

-A drainage system (suction drains or rubber blades) is usually installed to reduce the risk of facelift hematoma. It is usually removed the day after facelift.

-In some cases, a press-lift can be worn during the first post-operative week.

-Sutures are removed on day 7. Staples are removed two weeks after surgery.

-The first shampoo is allowed from day 2.

In the weeks and months following surgery, the following symptoms are usually present :

-Facial edema (swelling). It may be asymmetrical. It fades in the first few weeks and may persist for a month or more.

-Bruising of the face and neck, often asymmetrical. They persist for a few weeks, at least 15 days.

-An uncomfortable feeling of tension in the face especially behind the ears.

-Occasional pain, relieved by simple analgesics prescribed by your surgeon.

-Do not drive.

6 weeks after the face and neck lift

-Make-up may be applied 7 days after surgery.

-Shower only. Bathing is forbidden to avoid unsightly scars.

-The first hairdressing session is allowed after 3 weeks and the first hair dye after 4 to 6 weeks.

-No sporting activities should be practised.

-The face may appear indurated with a cottony feel to the skin. This is not a cause for concern, as it is very common.

-You should sleep with your head slightly elevated.

Beyond 6 weeks

The face gradually softens

Initial discomfort gradually disappears

-Full recovery of skin sensitivity usually takes between 3 and 6 months. In some cases, it can take up to 18 months.