Face Lift Recovery: What To Expect


What is a Facelift?

“A face-lift (rhytidectomy) is a cosmetic surgical procedure to create a younger appearance in your face. The procedure can reduce the sagging or folds of skin on the cheeks and jawline and other changes in the shape of your face that occur with age.”


Skin on each side of the face is pulled back during a face-lift, and tissues beneath the skin are surgically changed to restore the face’s contour to a more youthful shape. Excess skin is removed before the flap is stitched shut.

What to Expect from Recovery 

You will require care for a few days after your facelift. You should take it easy and raise your head as you sleep. Your ears will have drain tubes inserted behind them, and bandages will be applied to your face and head to apply light pressure. This lessens bruising and swelling and reduces discomfort for some.

Within a few days of the surgery, you should start to feel better, but you might not want to leave the house. In order to check on your stitches, remove drainage tubes, and replace or remove your bandages, your surgeon will schedule follow-up sessions.

Will Recovery Be Painful?

It’s common to experience soreness after any surgery. Although you will be given medication to reduce any inflammation, the discomfort shouldn’t be too intense. Swelling and bruising are common side effects of recovery. Since a facelift is a relatively simple procedure, these side effects should disappear rapidly.

After surgery, you can lessen your pain by:

  • Refraining from bending over as much as you can
  • Wearing shirts with buttons or zippers
  • Refraining from rubbing your face.

When Can I go Back to Work?

Depending on how comfortable you are and how quickly you heal, you can return to work at any time. You might not feel normal for a few weeks or even months, but you can return to work and go to social gatherings as soon as you are able to.

To make an appointment with one of our double board-certified cosmetic surgeons, call 323.433.7744, or visit our contact page!