Loose, sagging cheeks are among the most common signs of aging, and although perfectly natural, they create a tired appearance with time. It’s hard to be prepared for such changes, even when you know they’re coming, but the good news is you have options. Aesthetic treatments today can specifically correct midface sagging, and at Keller Plastic Surgery and Rejuvalase Medical Spa in Santa Barbara, CA, we have a cheeklift technique just right for you.
How Can I Lift My Cheeks?
The first step in answering this question is determining whether you want a surgical or non-surgical treatment option. Therapies in both categories can effectively correct:
- Heavy or sagging skin below the cheeks
- Loss of definition in the jawline
- Hollowness or large, dark bags under the eyes
Endotine Midface Lift Technique
This surgical treatment is a great alternative to a full facelift; it targets the midface to restore cheek definition while minimizing scarring and damage to surrounding tissues. It employs the Endotine implant, a thin strip with five small tines at one end. Effects are not permanent, but treatment can readjust the position of both the skin and subcutaneous tissues to tighten skin, reduce the appearance of wrinkles and creases, and of course redefine cheeks.
We make a small incision that’s often hidden behind the hairline and insert the device below soft tissues in the cheek. It works to hold overlying tissues in place. After a time, the body absorbs this implant; it’s made of polylactic acid and is therefore completely safe. By the time it’s been fully absorbed, the surrounding tissues have recovered and will remain in their new, lifted positions for up to several years.
What to Expect
Endotine implants are performed as outpatient procedures, and you can return home soon after surgery to begin your recovery. Keep in mind you will need assistance from a friend or family member, but healing is relatively easy and fast. You’ll also enjoy:
- A more youthful look with fewer wrinkles, softer skin, and fuller cheeks
- Long-lasting results that are comparable to a full facelift
- Improvements that are immediately visible
- Accurate control over results so we can position your implants appropriately
- A smooth and natural appearance
An in-office treatment that doesn’t require surgery, InstaLife employs fully dissolvable threads to lift and reposition sagging skin in the midface region. These threads move fat in the jowls and cheeks to define and elevate contours. You’ll see immediate and long-term results without the potential discomfort or recovery often associated with surgery.
But this treatment doesn’t stop with instant results; it also encourages collagen production to lift skin in the most natural way possible. Collagen is a key component of the extra-cellular matrix (ECM), the underlying support system that gives skin its shape and structure. As part of the body’s aging process, collagen synthesis slows around age 25 and leaves gaps in the ECM where lines and wrinkles develop.
Restoring collagen levels is key to enjoying a more youthful appearance. This effect peaks around eight to 12 weeks after treatment but continues long-term; once collagen production increases, levels will remain elevated for an indefinite period of time. And with an increase in collagen, you can also expect to see a brighter complexion and improved skin tone and texture.
Those looking for the most natural treatment possible will appreciate the Vampire Lift, a cheeklift technique that relies on your body’s inherent healing powers to deliver a refreshed appearance. Let’s start at the beginning; the Vampire Lift uses platelet-rich plasma (PRP) derived from your own blood for one of the safest treatments on the market.
We draw your blood just like your medical doctor might, place it into a centrifuge, and isolate the PRP to apply to your face. The most immediately visible effect is a radiant glow. Then, in the coming days and weeks, your face will look tighter and more contoured.
What is the significance of PRP? It contains growth factors that encourage deep tissue remodeling. It also stimulates collagen that, as we mentioned just a moment ago, can fill droopy areas. Your cheeks will lift and wrinkles will smooth.
If you’re thinking these effects sound too good to be true, we can assure you this treatment is backed by science. A study published by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) confirms PRP contains bioactive factors that can enhance the body’s healing responses; they also support cell regeneration for deep tissue healing. Results typically last a year before a repeat treatment is necessary.
This technique provides a subtler, more natural-looking alternative to implants. We use a micro-syringe that allows for total precision throughout the treatment. And because only very small quantities of fat are injected into the cheeks, the likelihood of rejection by the body is almost non-existent.
Considered a minimally-invasive treatment, fat injections are delivered under local anesthesia and require minimal downtime. The technique is proven to be highly effective and can be performed alongside additional facial rejuvenation services, such as lip augmentation and/or brow lift.
Stem Cell Facelift
A facelift might be the gold standard of rejuvenation treatments, but not everyone is quite ready for this surgery. For these patients, we recommend a stem cell facelift – a low-risk therapy that harnesses the regenerative powers of your own body.
During treatment, we inject stem cells into your face to stimulate and mimic surrounding cells. This revives healing processes that naturally slow as we age. In turn, you see smoother, younger-looking skin. Treatment also plumps and volumizes to provide the cheeklift you want.
How It Works
We use a local anesthetic to ensure your comfort throughout treatment. Fatty tissue is then extracted from your abdomen or thigh using a very small needle. We target these areas because they contain adipose cells, known to contain higher stem cell concentrations than other areas of the body. Those are mixed with growth factors, and the final solution is injected into your face to encourage existing cells to regenerate.
Stem cells are beneficial because they can transform into different cell types required by the body for optimal health – including skin, muscle, and bone. We, therefore, use this facelift to eliminate old cells and replace them with those that are younger, stronger, and healthier.
Also known as dermal fillers, these treatments are designed to address a variety of concerns – especially volume loss. Many visible signs of aging can be traced to this single effect, but fillers replace lost volume to smooth wrinkles and define contours. And most have the added benefit of delivering immediate results.
This workhorse filler is made with hyaluronic acid (HA). As you’ll quickly see, HA is a common ingredient in most fillers because it’s biocompatible with the body, hydrates tissues, and even encourages collagen synthesis. The end result is plumper, smoother skin that looks and feels softer.
Belotero is formulated to easily integrate with your skin. It can:
- Reduce etched-in lines and wrinkles
- Improve nasolabial folds
- Erase vertical lip lines
- Reduce forehead creases
- Lift sagging cheek tissues
Expect Beautiful Results
Belotero can be used to contour the face, a major benefit for people who have lost natural definition. This means a more shapely forehead, sharper jawline, and plumper cheek pads with higher cheekbones. And none of this requires surgery – injections are simply made in strategic spots to help you look younger. Full results usually develop in two to three weeks, and thanks to this subtle evolution, most people won’t even know you’ve had work done.
Juvederm Voluma, also formulated with HA, is designed specifically to lift and contour cheeks. It has a thick, gel-like consistency that, once injected below the skin’s surface, immediately plumps your cheek pads. As it settles and integrates with supporting tissues, your cheeks will look naturally lifted as well.
Juvederm is heralded for its longevity–most products under this umbrella last 18 to 24 months–and Voluma is no exception. A series of injections can rejuvenate your mid-face for significantly longer than most other fillers. For broader results, Voluma can also be used to plump thinning lips.
Another filler option, Restylane Lyft is composed of a thicker, firmer texture than the majority of other fillers. This means it can be injected deeper into the skin to restore volume in a very natural-looking way. It immediately plumps cheeks and also improves hollows, contours, and sagging. And because it, too, is made with HA, the formula’s molecules continually attract moisture to help retain mid-face volume.
If your goal is subtle lifting in the cheek area, Sculptra may be the treatment for you. Unlike the other fillers we’ve mentioned to this point, it’s made with a biocompatible material known as poly-L-lactic acid (PLA) injected deep into skin. As the body gradually absorbs the PLLA, collagen synthesis ramps up to restore softer, plumper contours.
Patients who choose Sculptra rarely choose to try other fillers because they like the smooth, subtle results it provides. And by targeting the underlying cause of aging, a decline in collagen, this filler also helps wrinkles and folds disappear. Skin not only looks more lifted but healthier overall. Finally, results develop gradually so patients never feel they look “overdone.”
Here’s another filler that deviates from the HA category. Instead, Radiesse is composed of calcium hydroxyapatite, a mineral already found within the body that integrates well with cheekbones. We can easily mold and shape this serum upon injection to achieve the desired contours, meaning treatment is highly customizable. You can expect results to last around 18 months, but the collagen synthesis induced by treatment will likely continue longer.
Care for Your Skin
The way you care for your skin is just as important as the therapy you choose. To protect your newly youthful appearance, we recommend you apply sunscreen every day. Wearing a wide-brimmed hat is also a good idea. The goal is to shield your face from solar rays that can break down collagen and cause additional sags, hollows, and wrinkles.
Also, be mindful of the products you put on your face. Moisturizers soothe dry skin and can help you radiate a youthful glow. Exfoliants are just as important because they slough away dead skin cells that can make you look dull and tired. Finally, drink plenty of water – it really is the proverbial fountain of youth – and eat wholesome foods that give your skin the nutrients it needs.
Find Out Today if a Cheeklift Is for You
The cheeklift therapies listed here are equally beneficial, so you need not worry about making a bad choice. The question, therefore, is which one most ideally suits your needs? Schedule your consultation today by calling Keller Plastic Surgery and Rejuvalase Medical Spa in Santa Barbara, CA.