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Facelift in Indianapolis, IN

Is a Facelift Right for Me?

It’s not possible to stop the aging process altogether, however, fortunately, it is possible to turn back the hands of time with a facelift. This surgery, known technically as rhytidectomy, is the third most popular cosmetic surgery procedure performed today. While it cannot put a stop to the aging process, the surgery can help you to look your best by restoring a more youthful appearance. Located in Carmel and Greenwood, Hamilton Facial Plastic Surgery, led by double board-certified facial plastic surgeon Mark M. Hamilton, M.D., F.A.C.S., offers facelifts for men and women who live in and around Indianapolis, Indiana.

What Is a Facelift?

A facelift is a surgical procedure that aims to address signs of aging in the face and neck such as wrinkles, sagging skin, and loss of definition along the jawline. It is a comprehensive facial rejuvenation procedure that is often said to “turn back time” by making patients look many years younger. At Davis Facial Plastic Surgery, we offer both the traditional facelift and the mini facelift, and can help you determine which of these procedures are best for you based on your facial anatomy and your treatment goals.

What is the Difference Between a Facelift and a Mini Facelift?

The traditional facelift targets the mid-face, lower face, and neck, which typically requires incisions above the hairline at the temples, which continue in front of and behind the ears. A mini facelift is a less extensive version of a full facelift. The incisions made during a mini facelift are shorter than those used in a traditional facelift. It focuses on tightening the lower face rather than the mid-face and neck. While the benefits are not as widespread or dramatic, a mini facelift allows patients to enjoy a shorter recovery period, reduced scarring, and a lower treatment cost.

Patient Before & Afters

What are the Benefits of a Facelift?

  • Smoothes loose, sagging skin on the face and neck
  • Redefines jawline and neck contours
  • Diminishes jowls and fatty deposits under the chin
  • Reduces wrinkles and folds
  • Creates a more youthful, rejuvenated facial appearance
  • Long-lasting results, often 5-10 years or longer
  • Can be combined with other procedures like eyelid surgery or brow lift

Are You a Candidate For a Facelift?


The best candidates for facelift surgery are individuals who exhibit early to moderate signs of facial aging, but still have relatively good skin tone and elasticity. Ideal candidates include: 

  • Adults in their 40s up to 60s who have developed sagging cheeks, jowls, and loose neck skin
  • Individuals concerned about moderate to deep wrinkles and folds around the nose, mouth, and chin
  • Patients with good skin elasticity that can be tightened effectively during surgery
  • Non-smokers or people willing to stop smoking for several weeks before and after surgery

If you think you might be a good candidate for a facelift, the next step is to schedule your consultation at Hamilton Facial Plastic Surgery. During your consultation, we’ll evaluate your cosmetic goals and develop a personalized treatment plan for your facelift. This is a great time to ask any questions you may have about the facelift procedure.

Why Choose Hamilton Facial Plastic Surgery for Your Facelift?

Hamilton Facial Plastic Surgery is a top choice for your facelift because of the patient experience and high quality of care that Dr. Mark K. Hamilton offers. Dr. Hamilton specializes solely in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery. As a recognized leader in his field, Dr. Hamilton has authored multiple publications and lectured widely to his colleagues on all aspects of facial plastic surgery. Dr. Hamilton has been selected by his peers as one of Indianapolis Monthly Magazine’s “Top Docs” annually for over a decade and has been recognized by the Castle Connolly as one of the “Top Physicians” in America for his work in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. Additionally, you can explore our reviews to see why previous patients recommend us.

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How is a Facelift Performed?

The facelift surgery involves incisions that are typically made above the hairline at the temples, which continue in front of and behind the ears. Through these incisions, Dr. Hamilton is able to manipulate the facial anatomy in several ways. He can trim the excess skin to get rid of sagging skin and folds. Then, he can tighten the remaining skin to eliminate wrinkles and lines. Excess fat can also be removed during the facelift process to further sculpt the face.

Questions for Your Facelift Consultation

What is the Best Age for a Facelift?

There is no single best age for a facelift, as the optimal timing depends on the patient's degree of aging and skin laxity. Generally, if you are beginning to notice signs of aging in the face, you can benefit from a facelift. Beyond that, there are both advantages and disadvantages to receiving the treatment early on or later in the aging process. The advantage of doing it when you're younger is that it will hold a little bit better. The disadvantage is the results aren't quite as dramatic. Conversely, patients who wait a little longer may achieve more dramatic results but they might not last as long. Therefore, we usually tell patients the right time to do a facelift is when you see signs of aging that you are ready to do something about!

How Much Does a Facelift Cost?

Facelift costs will vary significantly depending on multiple factors. During your consultation, we’ll develop a personalized treatment plan based on your cosmetic goals and unique anatomy. This enables us to give an accurate price for your facelift surgery. Hamilton Facial Plastic Surgery seeks to make facial surgery procedures available and affordable for everyone. To accomplish this, we accept cash, major credit cards and personal checks for facelift procedures.

What is Facelift Surgery Like?

What Happens During Facelift Surgery?

Facelift surgery is performed under IV sedation or general anesthesia and typically takes two to four hours to perform. During the surgery, excess skin is removed, underlying muscles are tightened, and the skin is redraped. This helps to improve sagging facial skin, jowls, and loose neck skin. Incisions usually begin above the hairline at the temples and continue in front of and behind the ears. Working through the incisions, the skin is lifted, and the underlying muscle and membrane are tightened. The skin is then pulled tight, and any excess skin is removed. A small incision may also be made under the chin to allow excess fat from the neck and chin to be trimmed or suctioned.

What Happens Immediately After Facelift Surgery?

Following your surgery, you will be sent home with a dressing to be worn overnight as well as drains that need to be tended to. Care for these drains will be reviewed prior to you leaving the hospital/surgery center. The night following surgery it is important for you to have someone with you—this is a must! You should plan on remaining within thirty miles from the location of your surgery for this first night. It is also important for you to keep your head elevated the evening after surgery as well as for the first two weeks following surgery. This can be done by either sleeping in a recliner tilted at 45 degrees or sleeping with two pillows underneath the head. Avoid rolling onto your face. Sleeping on your back for the first two weeks after surgery helps to ensure this.

What is Facelift Recovery Like?

How Long is Facelift Recovery?

The healing time for facelift surgery is often less than expected and the results are worth the wait. Generally, swelling and other side effects should be completely gone after four to six weeks. You should be able to resume most, if not all, normal activities after this period. However, it is important to remember that your healing will continue for the entire first year, and as such, your results may not be finalized for several months.

What are the Side Effects of a Facelift?

The main side effects you will notice are swelling, discoloration, and numbness.


Swelling will vary both patient-to-patient as well as side-to-side. Swelling may actually increase the first three to four days before subsiding. Most of your swelling should resolve over the first two to three weeks. Do expect, however, to have minor fluctuations in the remaining swelling over the course of the next two to three months. Things to do to minimize this swelling include keeping your head elevated as much as possible over the first two to three weeks; avoid bending over or heavy lifting for the first three weeks, and avoiding prolonged sun exposure for the first two to three months.


Bruising will vary like swelling from person to person as well as side-to-side. Most bruising and discoloration should resolve over the first two weeks. Make up, with Dr. Hamilton’s permission, can be applied ten days to two weeks after surgery.


Most of your face will be numb following surgery. This is normal and will subside over the coming weeks to months. Unusual sensations, pins and needles, and occasionally mild discomfort may occur as these nerves regenerate over time.

When Will I See the Results of My Facelift?

Patients will begin to see the initial results of their facelift right after surgery, but it will take some time for the full effects to become visible. This is because swelling will interfere with the visibility of your results for several weeks. Most patients will be able to appreciate their final results approximately 3-6 months after surgery.

Are There Any Restrictions After My Facelift?

Yes, there are a handful of restrictions that patients will need to observe as they recover from their facelift:

2 Weeks After Treatment

For the first two weeks following your facelift, you should avoid:

  • Exercise
  • Driving
  • Sleeping on your side or face
  • Yawning or widely opening the mouth
  • Hard or chewy foods
  • “Pull-over” clothing, which are any clothing items that require you to raise your arms and hands over your head to put on

3 Weeks After Treatment

For the first three weeks following your facelift, you should avoid:

  • Strenuous exercise
  • Heavy lifting

Although strenuous exercise is not permitted, it is encouraged to resume light exercise, such as walking, during this period. Light activities can facilitate the healing process and reduce swelling and other side effects.

4 Weeks After Treatment

For the first four weeks following your facelift, you should avoid:

  • Head turning activities/exercises
  • Hair coloring

After these four weeks have passed, you will be able to resume all activities without restrictions, assuming you have progressed through the recovery process as expected. If you have any doubts, do not hesitate to contact our office!

Facelift Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Do Facelift Results Last?

On average, a facelift can last between 5-10 years. Many patients enjoy lasting results for 8-12 years. Maintaining a stable weight, healthy lifestyle, and sun protection helps prolong your refreshed look. You may need a revision facelift or touch-up procedures after several years to sustain your youthful appearance. Importantly, a facelift does not stop the aging process, so you will continue to notice changes in the appearance over the years.

Will I Have Any Scars After My Facelift?

Dr. Hamilton makes every effort to conceal incisions in inconspicuous locations, like inside the hairline and behind the ears, to help minimize visible scarring. Nonetheless, some scarring is unavoidable with a facelift. Immediately after surgery, incision lines will be more noticeable. As healing progresses over 6 months to a year, most facelift scars fade and become difficult to detect. Applying sunscreen daily will help scars heal flat and blend with your natural skin tone. Furthermore, you can apply makeup in the middle stages of facelift recovery to conceal any scarring as you heal.

To learn more about the facelift procedure or determine if you’re a good candidate for treatment,  contact us today to schedule your initial consultation at Hamilton Facial Plastic Surgery. Led by Dr. Mark K. Hamilton, a double board certified plastic surgeon, we offer facelifts and other cosmetic surgery procedures to men and women who want to rejuvenate their appearance. We welcome patients from Indianapolis, Carmel, Greenwood, and the surrounding areas of Indiana.