Thread Lift For Droopy Jowls

When gravity takes its toll on the face, the result is a visage that tends to droop and sag – especially the bits from the cheekbones on down. Some people resort to having a face lift to appear younger and more refreshed, but sometimes the end result is a taut, stretched old-style Hollywood look that screams “I’ve had plastic surgery!” to everyone but the most casual onlooker.

A thread lift or contour thread lift, as it is called, is fairly simple – although it sounds brutal. Once the area is numbed, your surgeon will thread anywhere from six to 18 barbed sutures through your skin to lift bits that have tended to droop and sag with age, namely the jowls, cheek, neck and brow area.

If you don’t want to resort to radical surgery to look younger, there is a solution. A thread lift, or “lunchtime face lift”, is really what the name suggests: it’s a face lift without any surgery at all. Instead, using only local anesthesia, your doctor will give your face a lift without cutting away any excess flesh, but by simply using a simple needle and thread to achieve the results you desire.

All About a Thread Lift

A thread lift or contour thread lift, as it is called, is fairly simple – although it sounds brutal. Once the area is numbed, your surgeon will thread anywhere from six to 18 barbed sutures through your skin to lift bits that have tended to droop and sag with age, namely the jowls, cheek, neck and brow area.

The sutures are made from an FDA-approved material called polypropylene but with a difference: instead of being entirely smooth they have tiny cogs on them which tend to create suspension and thus lift the area when placed in the skin.

In some cases, however, patients choose to use a different type of thread altogether- one made of 24 karat gold. A Gold Thread Lift cleverly uses pure 24 karat gold thread along with gold thread woven with a certain type of polyglycol acid to achieve the same effect as the regular thread lift.

One theory is that using gold thread means that the gold does not oxidize while in the body, so the patient is likely to have fewer side effects than with other types of thread used. Also, it’s claimed that a reaction in your body to the gold means that the strands will eventually be covered in collagen, making your skin more elastic and supple, and therefore appear more youthful.

Another theory is that the surgeon performing the operation makes more money out of it…

Thread Lift Candidates

A thread lift is not for everyone. A typical patient has minor signs of jowls and is anywhere in their mid-thirties to mid-fifties. If your skin is very loose or there is a lot of excess skin due to weight loss etc, you would be better off having a classic face lift.

Please note: if you have very loose skin on your eyelids, you may develop worse crow’s feet after a thread lift unless you have other procedures performed on your eyes at the same time.

Advantages of a Thread Lift

* Minimally invasive and is non-surgical

* Scar-free solution to face lift

* Results are more subtle than a classic face lift

* Cheaper than a full face lift

* Down-time is considerably less

* Is reversible if you hate the results, and can be adjusted within one month to achieve results you require

Disadvantages of a Thread Lift

* Is not long-lasting. In fact, one study said the effect lasted only about three-four months, although it is advertised as lasting anywhere from two to four years

* Can result in infection, and you will have bruising and tenderness at first

* As the result depends, in part, on the skill of the surgeon, you may be left with an asymmetrical work and could experience numbness

What about a MACS Lift?

The full name of this procedure is the Minimal Access Cranial Suspension Lift – quite a mouthful – and it’s another variation of a thread lift. Advertised as being somewhere “in between a face lift and a thread lift”, it can take up to a week to recover from it.

Incisions are made in the temple area and sometimes where the sideburns are, then “looped” sutures are made to tie down the skin to a more youthful level. Loops are then used to lift the neck and the jowls, and you can have another one inserted to lift the cheek area.

However, excess skin is then removed, so this procedure, while known as being “minimally invasive” as compared to a full face lift, is still much more invasive than a simple thread lift. It will involve more anesthesia and there is also a bigger risk of infection than with a simple thread lift.

Exercises for Jowly Jowls

Many people find that exercise can also work to put those naughty jowls back where they belong, with no need for any surgery whatsoever. It’s not a quick fix, however – you will have to do your exercises religiously for at least a year before you see any real improvement, and will need to keep them up to keep the look.

Some facial work-out fans swear that doing facial exercises regularly can help you look as much as ten years younger (not great if you’re only 20 years old!). Here are a few that can produce good results and help you turn back the clock for free:

* Smile, Baby. Smile, close your lips tightly together and clench your neck muscles. Hold the position for a minute and repeat several times. Do several times daily.

* The Burn. Put bottom lip over top lip, tilt chin slightly and smile. Hold position until you feel a slight burn. Repeat several times.

* Chew Away. Raise your head slightly toward the sky, bring your lips almost together and simulate a chewing motion. Repeat about 20 times to reduce that double chin – without actually eating anything to put on even more weight!

If you are sick and tired of looking like your neighbor’s bulldog, you may be considering having something done to your jowls. But surgery is not for everyone, and is not a step to be taken lightly. You may want to try other ways to reduce your jowls first, such as weight loss and following a strict facial exercise routine. Then again, you might consider that simply accepting growing old gracefully is the way to go – and considerably safer and cheaper too!

The information in the article is not intended to substitute for the medical expertise and advice of your health care provider. We encourage you to discuss any decisions about treatment or care an appropriate health care provider.