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Necklift Vs Lower Facelift – What’s the Difference

A combination of age and gravity hits us all at one point or another. No amount of facial creams, diets, exercises and sculpting tools can prevent the natural ageing process. Cosmetic surgery, too, cannot prevent natural ageing, although it can help address certain cosmetic concerns. Facelift (rhytidectomy) surgery can help address facial laxity by removing excess skin.

If you are interested in rhytidectomy (facelift) surgery or platysmaplasty (neck lift) surgery, it is important to know that the results will vary. But what is the difference between these two procedures and which one may suit you? In this article, we break down the differences between a neck lift platysmaplasty and facelift rhytidectomy surgery and give you other information so you can determine which procedure may fit your needs.

What is a Lower Facelift (Rhytidectomy)?

A lower facelift (rhytidectomy) focuses on the lower part of the face as well as jowls by repositioning muscles and skin.

During the surgery, the upper part of the platysma muscle will be adjusted, which also adjusts the position of the fat pad. The surgery can also target the nasolabial folds, jawline, and chin area.

Contrary to the full rhytidectomy, a lower rhytidectomy (facelift) targets the lower part of the face to target laxity in the cheeks and jowls.

Lower Facelift (Rhytidectomy) Procedure

  • The procedure will begin with the administration of anaesthesia; either local or general.
  • Once the anaesthesia is administered, your surgeon at Coco Ruby will mark your skin for incisions.
  • Typically for a lower facelift (rhytidectomy), incisions are made in the front and back of the ears and underneath the chin.
  • The surgeon will remove excess skin and tighten the muscles underneath.
  • The surgery will be concluded by closing the incisions with either absorbable or normal sutures.
  • The surgeon may put a bandage on top of the sutures for added security.

What is a Neck Lift (Platysmaplasty)?

A neck lift (or platysmaplasty) aims to alter the appearance of the chin and neck. The surgery can target the jawline area but does not address the lower part of the face such as nasolabial folds or the cheeks.

During the surgery, the SMAS layer will be repositioned, along with the removal of excess skin. This can help to target concerns about neckbands, wrinkles, and jowls. In some cases, excess fat is also removed using liposuction in addition to the above-mentioned techniques.

Neck Lift (Platysmaplasty) Procedure

  • Your surgeon at Coco Ruby Plastic Surgery will begin the surgery with the administration of either local or general anaesthesia.
  • Then, the surgeon will mark your neck with incisions.
  • There will be incisions around your ears and underneath the chin area.
  • After making the incisions, the surgeon will tighten your neck muscles and remove any excess skin and fat.
  • Once everything is in place, the surgeon will use sutures to close the incisions and then bandage the area.

Differences between a Lower Facelift (Rhytidectomy) and a Neck Lift (Platysmaplasty)

Although these terms have been used interchangeably on the internet, they are completely different procedures. There is a definite difference between the two. So, let’s explore some of the major differences between these surgeries.

Visual Difference Between Both Procedures

  • Lower facelift (rhytidectomy) surgery aims to reduce excess skin and fat on the lower half of the face. In comparison, a neck lift (platysmaplasty) aims to reduce excess tissue on the neck area.
  • A lower facelift (rhytidectomy) targets cosmetic concerns around the jawline, mouth and cheek area. A neck lift (platysmaplasty) targets the appearance of the neck and the area beneath the chin.
  • Both procedures can target aesthetic concerns such as lines, wrinkles, and skin laxity. However, they target these concerns in different areas and therefore have different outcomes.

Affected Areas and Incisions

  • A traditional neck lift (platysmaplasty) only affects the neck area. Whereas, a lower facelift (rhytidectomy) affects the lower half of the face.
  • For a lower facelift (rhytidectomy), the surgeon will create an incision both at the front and behind the ears. In comparison neck lift (platysmaplasty) incisions are generally placed around the ears and underneath the chin.

Good Candidates for Both Procedures

In most cases, patients choose to combine a lower facelift (rhytidectomy) with a neck lift (platysmaplasty) to try to target both areas at once. This is likely how the confusion about two surgeries essentially began. However, it is not mandatory to get both surgeries together.

A neck lift (platysmaplasty) may be suitable for people who are dealing with skin laxity, jowls, bands, and excess fat on the neck area. People who undergo this procedure alone typically are not so much concerned about the upper half of their face.

On the other hand, if you are someone who is less concerned about the neck area and more concerned about laxity in the cheeks or jawline, then a lower facelift (rhytidectomy) could work for you.

If you have visible signs of ageing on both the lower half of the face as well as neck, you can combine the surgeries and have them done at the same time.

Do the Risks Differ?

With every surgery comes a certain degree of risk and the potential for complications. The risks associated with neck lift (platysmaplasty) surgery and lower facelift (rhytidectomy) surgery are very similar.

The first complication that can occur is a hematoma. This refers to the collection of blood underneath the skin. It is important to avoid blood-thinning medications such as aspirin, Motrin, Advil and supplements to minimise the risk. It is also a good idea to avoid exercising for three to four weeks post-surgery.

Surgeons also advise you to stop smoking and drinking alcohol for a period of six weeks before and after the surgery if you want to help your wounds heal and avoid blood clots. It is also important to adhere to all the pre and post-care instructions given by your surgeon.

Other risks include excessive bleeding, swelling, bruising, scarring, infections, and more. If you notice anything unusual after surgery, it is wise to contact a surgeon right away.

Recovery Period

It is important to understand that the recovery period for both of the surgeries depends on several factors such as the age of the patient, health status, and how well you follow the post-operative instructions. The initial recovery period for both of the surgeries will last one to two weeks. After this time, most patients are able to return to work and slowly resume their daily routine.

Complete recovery will take anywhere from six to eight weeks. However, it is important to remember that swelling lingers for much longer and it will take you a couple of months to see the final results of both surgeries.

Read more about Surgery Recovery Tips.

Necklift (Platysmaplasty) Vs Lower Facelift (Rhytidectomy) FAQS

Below is a list of frequently asked questions regarding neck lift (platysmaplasty) and lower facelift (rhytidectomy) in Melbourne.

Is a neck lift (platysmaplasty) the same as a lower facelift (rhytidectomy)?

  • No, these two procedures are entirely different.
  • A lower facelift (rhytidectomy) focuses on the lower part of the face. It targets loose or excess skin around the cheeks, mouth, and jawline.
  • A neck lift (platysmaplasty) focuses on the neck and chin area by reducing excess skin and wrinkles on the neck.

Does a lower facelift (rhytidectomy) include the neck?

  • Lower facelift (rhytidectomy) can address the chin and jawline which can also affect the neck area.
  • However, it does not aim at lifting the loose skin of the neck.

How much is a lower facelift (rhytidectomy) and neck lift (platysmaplasty)?

  • The cost of a lower facelift (rhytidectomy) varies from $4,000 to $10,000, depending on multiple factors, including the surgeon’s skills and the location of the surgery.
  • The average cost of a neck lift (platysmaplasty) is around $5,774.

How long does lower face (rhytidectomy) and neck lift (platysmaplasty) last?

This will vary between patients and can be affected by individual factors. Generally, the results of lower facelift (rhytidectomy) and neck lift (platysmaplasty) can last up to 10 years.

At what age should you get a neck lift (platysmaplasty)?

  • You can get a neck lift (platysmaplasty) at any age, but it is usually more suited to people who have visible signs of ageing on the neck.
  • Most patients who get the surgery done are between the ages of forty and sixty.

Is a neck lift (platysmaplasty) worth it?

If you are concerned about excess or lax skin and neck jowls, the procedure can be an option. It is up to the individual to decide whether getting a surgical procedure is worth the risk, costs, and recovery involved.

Does a neck lift (platysmaplasty) get rid of jowls?

The aim of a neck lift (platysmaplasty) is to reduce excess skin on the neck, which can address concerns about the appearance of jowls. However, results will vary, so you should always discuss your goals and expectations with your chosen surgeon.

What is the best age to have a facelift (rhytidectomy)?

  • There is no right and wrong age to get a facelift (rhytidectomy) done.
  • Most people who get the surgery are between the ages of forties and sixties.
  • Learn more about when it may be appropriate to get a Face Lift (rhytidectomy).

What is the best neck tightening procedure?

  • There is no “best” procedure, only what works for the individual.
  • The decision to undergo any surgical procedure is a personal one that you should make in discussion with a qualified surgeon.

What does lower face (rhytidectomy) and neck lift (platysmaplasty) cost in Australia?

  • The cost of a lower facelift (rhytidectomy) varies from $4,000 to $10,000, depending on many factors, including the surgeon’s skills and location.
  • The average cost of a neck lift (platysmaplasty)is around $5,774.

What is a mini neck lift (platysmaplasty)?

  • A mini neck lift (platysmaplasty) is a less invasive procedure as compared to the traditional procedure.
  • It aims to remove a smaller amount of excess skin on the neck.

Mini facelift (rhytidectomy) vs neck lift (platysmaplasty): Which one is better?

  • Both these procedures can be appropriate for different patients.
  • For patients looking for a less invasive alternative to a traditional rhytidectomy, the “mini” version of the procedure may be a suitable choice.
  • On the other hand, platysmaplasty may be more suitable for patients who want to target the neck specifically.

Can I get a lower facelift (rhytidectomy) and neck lift (platysmaplasty) done at the same time?

Yes, you can have both of these procedures done at the same time. It depends on your cosmetic desires and the areas you are concerned about.

How long will the results of the mini neck lift (platysmaplasty) last?

  • The results of a mini neck lift (platysmaplasty) can last anywhere from two to five years.
  • It is fairly long-lasting. However, a traditional neck lift (platysmaplasty) can last for up to ten years.

What is a mini facelift (rhytidectomy)?

  • A mini facelift (rhytidectomy) is a less invasive form of the conventional procedure.
  • It uses smaller incisions and typically creates more subtle changes.
  • The surgery can be suitable for people who have minimal excess skin and jowls and wish to address minor signs of aging.

Specialist Plastic Surgeons and ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeon

With a wealth of experience and training, our Specialist Plastic and ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeons are dedicated to best-practice patient care and education, customising Surgery for each and every patient to best meet their needs and desired surgical outcomes.

Dr Craig Rubinstein
Dr Broughton Snell
Dr Stephen Kleid
Dr Gary Kode

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001124843

Dr Craig Rubinstein

Dr Craig Rubinstein is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon based in Hawthorn East, Melbourne. With over 20 years of surgical experience especially in all areas of Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery, but particularly in breast surgery. These include Breast Augmentation and Breast Reduction as well as Breast Surgery Revision.

Furthermore, he believes that surgical customisation, precision planning and technical expertise help him to provide optimal surgical outcomes for his patients.

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001190266

Dr Broughton Snell

Dr Broughton Snell is a Specialist Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon based in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. His training in Plastic Surgery took place in Australia and the United States of America (USA).

Dr Snell is a fully qualified specialist plastic surgeon having completed his Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in plastic and reconstructive surgery.

ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) Surgeon MED0001052799

Dr Stephen Kleid

Dr Stephen Kleid is an experienced Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Surgeon (Otolaryngologist) based in Melbourne with a passion for Septo-rhinoplasty, Septoplasty, as well as, a strong interest in Rhinoplasty Revision.

Dr Kleid trained at Melbourne University, then completed surgical training at various hospitals including Royal Melbourne, Royal Children’s, The Eye and Ear and St Vincents. He worked as a surgeon at the University of Florida Medical school for further experience.

Specialist Plastic Surgeon MED0001405964

Dr Gary Kode

Dr Gary Kode is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon, with experience in Aesthetic and Reconstructive Surgery, as well as non-surgical treatments.

Dr Kode is a member of several organisations, including the Australian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS), The International Confederation for Plastic and Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgery, and he holds a Fellowship with the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.

What to do next?

Our Patient Liaison Team can assist with any questions you may have when considering a procedure. You can send in an enquiry form below or call our Melbourne Clinic between 9 am – 5 pm Monday - Friday.

Disclaimer: Results depend on individual patient circumstances and can vary significantly. Results may also be impacted by a variety of factors including your lifestyle, weight, nutritional intake and overall health. Consult your Specialist Plastic Surgeon for details. This information is general in nature and is not intended to be medical advice nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Surgery risks and complications will be covered in detail during a consultation with your Surgeon.

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