A facelift, also known as rhytidectomy, is a surgery that is designed to improve the appearance of the face and neck by reversing signs of aging. With time, aging occurs in the face. This results in downward descent, or “sagging” of the skin, fat, and muscles of the face, ultimately leading to accumulation of loose skin in the lower face and neck.

There are several types of facelifts. Dr. Seth performs the deep plane facelift, in which the deep layer of the face, known as the SMAS (superficial musculoaponeurotic system), is lifted and secured in a direction to counter the effects of aging. Lifting the SMAS brings with it the facial skin and fat, rejuvenating the face with a natural appearance. Without lifting the SMAS, the facelift does not provide a natural or long-lasting outcome.

Dr. Rahul Seth is magnificently skilled at deep plane facelifts and works with each individual to create a unique treatment plan to rejuvenate their face. His skillful facelift technique can be combined with other facial procedures including neck lift, brow lift, eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty), fat grafting, lip augmentation, and chin augmentation to achieve individualized aesthetic goals in a natural and balanced approach.


You may be a good facelift candidate if you are:

  • Generally healthy
  • A non-smoker
  • Between the ages of 50-80 years old
  • Concerned with midface sagging, deep facial creases, jowls, or loose skin at the chin, jaw, and neck

Facelifts do not change the eyelids, nose, or eyebrows. If you are looking for a more comprehensive facial rejuvenation, you may be a candidate to combine a facelift with other procedures to holistically treat the face. A detailed consultation and evaluation with Dr. Seth will be necessary to create a treatment package that is right for your goals. 

Of note, individuals planning to lose significant weight are advised to do so prior to any facelift surgery to optimize results.


A facelift is typically performed as an outpatient procedure under general anesthesia. The procedure takes about five hours and you are able to go home the same day with a friend or family member. We encourage you to have someone to spend the first night after surgery with you for monitoring.

Our facelift incisions are made along the hairline and within natural skin creases around the ear in order to conceal scars. The facial tissues are lifted, repositioned, and anchored. Excess loose skin is removed and stitches are used to close the incisions.


At Golden State Plastic Surgery, we are proud to provide extraordinary care at each step of your facial rejuvenation journey. Following your facelift, Dr. Seth will place a bandage over your incisions as well as apply an elastic compression dressing that should be worn for the first few days after surgery. You may have drainage tubes to remove excess fluid and assist in healing. These tubes will be removed the day following surgery. Stitches and surgical staples will be removed in the office after one week.

Throughout your recovery, we recommend being gentle with your face and hair and wait to shower until two days after surgery. You may experience swelling, bruising, numbness, and a feeling of tightness or tension in the face and neck. Most of these symptoms resolve within two to three weeks, and sensation typically returns to normal within a few months.

Pain medication is prescribed for pain relief, but most facelift patients are able to wean themselves off after a few days, taking Tylenol or Motrin only as needed.

Recovery time will depend on the scope and breadth of surgery. Typically, recovery takes two to three weeks with many patients going back to work and social activities after two weeks. Vigorous physical activity and exercise should be avoided after surgery in order to ensure the safest recovery with optimal results. At two weeks after surgery, patients can resume light activity and at four to six weeks all physical restrictions are lifted. Although results are visibly apparent after surgery, final and stable results take six months to achieve due to the body’s healing process.

How To Get Started

If you’re interested in a Facelift or want to learn more about your facial rejuvenation options with Dr. Rahul Seth, please request a consultation online or by phone at (925) 357-9050.

During your consultation, you will have time to discuss your aesthetic goals and treatment options. During this process, you will get to know Dr. Seth and the Golden State Plastic Surgery team that will be with you every step of your journey. Once your consultation is complete and your unique treatment plan is created, you will work with our patient care specialists to schedule and prepare for surgery. Once your surgery is scheduled, you will receive a pre-operative appointment to review your procedure, post-operative instructions, and expectations on your road to recovery.

Frequently Asked Questions

The face ages due to a combination of factors including:

  1. Genetics: Some people are predisposed to certain aging patterns and skin characteristics that can influence the way the face ages.
  2. Sun exposure: UV rays from the sun can damage the skin, causing wrinkles, age spots, and other signs of aging.
  3. Lifestyle factors: Smoking, alcohol consumption, and a poor diet can all contribute to the aging process.
  4. Hormonal changes: Hormonal changes that occur during the aging process can cause the skin to lose elasticity and volume, leading to sagging and wrinkles.
  5. Gravitational pull: Over time, the constant pull of gravity on the skin and underlying tissues can cause them to sag and lose elasticity.
  6. Muscle movement: The repeated movement of facial muscles when smiling, laughing, or frowning can also contribute to the formation of wrinkles.

It’s important to note that while aging is a natural process, some of the above factors can be modified or managed to reduce their impact on the appearance of the face. A healthy lifestyle, sun protection, and good skincare can all help to slow the aging process.

Here’s what you can expect after a facelift:

  1. Swelling and bruising: You can expect some swelling and bruising around the face and neck for 1-2 weeks after the procedure. This is normal and should subside gradually.
  2. Pain and discomfort: You may experience some pain and discomfort after the facelift, but this can be managed with pain medication prescribed.
  3. Stitches: The incisions from the facelift will be closed with stitches, which will need to be removed after a few days. Surgical staples are used to close the skin within the hair bearing scalp, as staples provide optimal healing. Dr. Seth closes the skin meticulously and in multiple layers so that you may have minimal scar. Stitches deep to the skin surface provide strong suspension to hold the incision together while it heals. These deep stitches are not visible and dissolve on their own over 6 months.
  4. Recovery time: The recovery time for a facelift can vary, but it usually takes about 2 weeks to return to normal activities. Strenuous activity and exercise should be avoided for several weeks.
  5. Results: You can expect to see the final results of your facelift after several months, when any swelling and bruising has subsided. The results of a facelift can last for many years, depending on factors such as your skin type, age, and lifestyle.

It’s important to keep in mind that a facelift is a major procedure, and you should only undergo it if you are in good health and have realistic expectations. Dr. Seth will be able to advise you on what to expect and will provide you with more information about the procedure.

A facelift is often combined with other cosmetic procedures to enhance the overall results and achieve a more youthful, refreshed appearance. Some of the most common procedures that are performed in conjunction with a facelift include:

  1. Brow lift: A brow lift, also known as a forehead lift, is a procedure that elevates the eyebrows to reduce wrinkles and sagging skin on the forehead.
  2. Eyelid surgery (Blepharoplasty): Blepharoplasty is a procedure that removes excess skin and fat from the upper and lower eyelids to rejuvenate the eye area.
  3. Neck lift: A neck lift is a procedure that tightens and lifts the skin on the neck to improve the appearance of excess skin that accumulates in the neck.
  4. Fat grafting: Fat grafting involves the transfer of fat from one area of the body, most commonly the abdomen or “love handles” to the face to restore volume and fullness to areas that have lost fat due to aging.
  5. Lip lift: Lifting the upper lip involves an incision just under the nose, hidden by the natural creases of the upper lip’s junction with the nose. As the upper lip appears to elongate with age, removal of some upper lip skin is able to shorten and rejuvenate the upper lip while enabling the red lip to appear fuller and more everted.
  6. Chin augmentation: Chin augmentation is a procedure that involves the use of implants or injectable fillers to enhance the shape and size of the chin. This allows the jaw line to appear more defined and elegant.
  7. Rhinoplasty: Rhinoplasty, also known as a nose job, is a procedure that alters the shape, size, or proportion of the nose to improve its appearance. As faces age, the nose can change in shape. Restoring, straightening, and refining the nose shape provides the face with a beautiful centerpiece.

It’s important to discuss your goals and expectations with Dr. Seth to determine which procedures are best suited to achieve the results you desire. As each patient’s goals and desires are different, Dr. Seth can help you to create a surgical plan that matches your desired results.

Before & After

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