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Written by Dr. Matthew Blanton
Many of my patients have an interest in facial rejuvenation, but do not want to undergo surgery. In some cases, non-surgical options are better for a patient than surgical intervention. A patient’s age, previous surgery history, goals and expectations are all significant factors. My top non-invasive facial rejuvenation option is the Silhouette InstaLift®.
What Is the Silhouette InstaLift®?
The Silhouette InstaLift® is a non-surgical facelift that uses tiny, absorbable sutures. Each suture contains small cones full of collagen and the sutures are threaded under the top layer of the skin. This procedure has the dual benefit of lifting the skin and stimulating collagen formation, thus improving skin firmness and fullness. Europeans have been using suture technology for more than a decade, and the FDA approved its use in 2015. At Specialists in Plastic Surgery, we began offering the Silhouette InstaLift® in 2016 and our patients have had excellent results.
Who Is a Candidate for InstaLift®?
As this procedure addresses skin laxity, it’s most effective to do before developing severe loose skin. The ideal patient will have mild to moderate loose skin along their mid-face (upper cheeks) and jowl (lower face) region.
The Silhouette InstaLift® is more of a “pre-juvenation” option for patients in their early 30s to 40s. Due to their mild signs of facial aging, a “pre-juvenation” patient will rarely qualify for face lift surgery. The less common patient population seeking this procedure is the “post-face lift” patient. This would be someone who is several years out from a surgical face lift and is starting to see some minor skin laxity. In all these scenarios, the patient must have reasonable expectations.
How Is the Silhouette InstaLift® Procedure Performed?
Performed under local anesthesia, the Silhouette InstaLift® takes approximately one hour to complete. You will be awake the entire time and we can even carry on a conversation during the procedure!
To begin the procedure, I first make a few markings on your face. Then I administer the local anesthesia based on the markings placement. In sterile conditions, I thread the tiny coned sutures under the skin. Once the sutures are placed (typically 8 sutures; 4 on each side of the face), I engage the suture cones to create a natural looking lift. You will immediately see the lifted results before you leave the procedure room. If you can handle a thorough dental cleaning, you can tolerate this procedure – I promise!
What to Expect With Recovery and Downtime
You can drive yourself to the procedure and leave by yourself afterwards. The recovery and downtime is minimal. We recommend heading straight home and relaxing for the rest of the day. Expect some mild swelling, possible bruising and a general facial tightness. Keep your head elevated that evening and by the next morning you can resume your normal routine. No pain medication is necessary! I do ask you to refrain from exercising until 48 hours after the procedure. Also try to decrease facial mouth movements (i.e. opening mouth wide, flossing) for one week. Makeup can be applied as soon as 48 hours post-procedure.
How Long Do the Results Last?
Since this is a non-surgical procedure, the Silhouette InstaLift® results do not last forever. The typical longevity is 12-18 months.
Dr. Blanton’s Tips With the Silhouette InstaLift®
I recommend preparing your skin with medical grade skin care before any facial procedure. Ideally, a skin care regimen should be in place a few months before the procedure for best results. If you’re unable to begin a regimen until after your procedure, it is still important! The skin care regimen will help to prolong your results. I also recommend consuming a healthy diet both prior and post procedure.
I like to work with my aesthetics team to maximize your facial rejuvenation results. I’ll coordinate with them to create customized treatment options for you including chemicals peels, facials and injectables. The Silhouette InstaLift® works synergistically with these non-surgical treatments giving you a refreshed and youthful appearance.