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What is a facelift?

A facelift in Michigan restores a younger appearance to the mid and lower face, including the neck. The procedure restores youthful facial contours with a result that usually offers a 10-year age improvement. In addition, a facelift with Dr. Ringler can:

  • Minimize heavy facial folds
  • Remove excess, sagging skin
  • Reposition sagging tissues throughout the face
  • Smooth away creases and lines
  • Define a jawline or neck that has been hidden by sagging jowls
  • Smooth sagging neck skin

Am I a candidate for a facelift?

You can be a candidate for facial rejuvenation in Grand Rapids at any age. Both women and men spanning various age groups choose to undergo procedures aimed at delaying or improving the visible signs of facial aging. Factors that typically define good candidates for facelift procedures include:

  • Sagging skin in your midface and/or jawline
  • Deep creases extending from your nose to the corners of your mouth (nasolabial folds)
  • Lines extending from each corner of your mouth down your chin (marionette lines)
  • Facial fat (volume) that has fallen or is displaced
  • Sagging and loss of muscle tone in the lower face, resulting in jowls
  • A double chin, resulting from loose skin and excess fatty deposits under the chin and jaw
  • Creased and sagging skin in your neck

If you are in good general health, have a positive attitude and realistic expectations, you are most likely a good candidate for this procedure.

Why choose Dr. Ringler for a Facelift?

As a leading Grand Rapids plastic surgeon, Dr. Ringler has focused on natural facelift procedures for over 40 years. His experience, knowledge and artistic judgement will be customized to help you achieve your own beautiful result. Dr. Ringler performed the very first MACS facelift in Grand Rapids MI and has been improving facelift techniques for many years. Facelifts are a particular specialty of Dr. Ringler’s and many patients from around the country seek his beautiful, natural facelift results.

When performing facelift surgery for his patients, Dr. Ringler focuses not on erasing all signs of the aging process – but on subtly smoothing and firming the skin so that you can age with grace. With Dr. Ringler, nothing looks pulled, tight or operated. Rather, you look like a young, restored, and beautiful version of you. Dr. Ringler often combines a facelift procedure with a neck lift, blepharoplasty (eye-lift), and fat grafting for beautiful results customized just for you.

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Facelift Types

At the Center for Aesthetics and Plastic Surgery, Dr. Steven Ringler provides a wide range of options. Schedule a consultation to discuss your goals and discover which facelift type is best suited for you.

Liquid Facelift

Using injectable dermal fillers, a liquid facelift adds fullness to your skin while smoothing creases and wrinkles. It is a nonsurgical means of achieving some of the same benefits as a traditional surgical facelift.


A surgical procedure using small incisions beneath the hairline to remove excess tissue and tighten your skin to smooth out fine lines and wrinkles. Mini facelifts aren’t as invasive as traditional facelifts but lead to significant cosmetic improvements while requiring minimal downtime.


The mid-facelift is a procedure in which invisible incisions are made around the hairline, over the ears and inside the mouth, to reposition the skin and fatty tissues of the cheeks. This procedure is used to elevate cheekbones and contour the cheeks.


Also called a temporal facelift, a brow lift pulls up the skin on your eyebrows, to lift drooping, sagging, or lowered eyebrows.

Cutaneous Facelift

In a cutaneous facelift, incisions are made around the ears and hairline to lift and tighten the skin to remove wrinkles from the neck and chin area.

Traditional Facelift

The traditional facelift is also the most invasive form of facelift and is used to remove moderate or severe signs of aging from the entire face, including the cheeks, chin, neck and jowls. During the procedure, the cosmetic surgeon creates incisions along the hairline, behind the ears and under the chin to access the underlying tissues. Your surgeon modifies the muscle, removes excess fat and trims the excess or sagging skin to tighten your skin and promote a youthful and taut appearance.

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The procedure What to expect

Facelifts are performed on an outpatient basis. The procedure is done under local anesthesia with sedation and does not require general anesthesia. There are various techniques that Dr. Ringler may use, depending on the specific signs of aging you’d like to address:

  • Incisions for a full facelift begin hidden just below the sideburn, often inside the ear. They continue in front of, under and behind the earlobe, and extend just below the hairline and behind the ear if more neck skin removal is required.
  • A smaller incision limited to just in front of the ear may be used to improve the mid-face alone.
  • A small incision beneath the chin may be added to improve a double chin or a sagging neck or perform liposuction of the neck.

Through your facelift openings, Dr. Ringler will gently redistribute fat and tissue throughout the face and trim away excess skin to restore your youthful contours. To complete the procedure, he will close the incisions with sutures.

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Steven L. Ringler, MD, FACS

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Facelift Recovery

You will need a capable adult with you for 24 hours after your surgery. Facelift recovery ranges from one to two weeks, depending on the specific procedure you had performed. However, most of our Grand Rapids patients are able to return to light, normal daily activities the day after surgery. The techniques used by Dr. Ringler are proven to shorten recovery, and patients are often surprised by how quickly they are able to resume normal social activities.

Maintaining your youthful results

Facelift results are long-lasting, but maintaining your youth is a lifestyle choice. Proper skincare is essential after surgery. Although a facelift improves the contour of your face and neck more than any other facial procedure, it will not improve the quality of your skin. Many of our non-surgical procedures such as SkinPen, Forever Young BBL, HALO, and an excellent skin care regimen can dramatically improve the results of your facelift. We typically recommend that patients begin improving the quality of their skin prior to a facelift for best results.

Facelift FAQ

Why might a facelift be recommended for me?

Looking younger and improving your facial appearance may be attained through facial rejuvenating procedures such as a facelift.

What are the risks?

All surgeries carry the potential for risks. Though facelift risks are rare when the procedure is performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon, like Dr. Ringler, they may include a poor reaction to the anesthesia, infection, facial nerve injury, sensation changes and more. During your consultation, all potential risks will be thoroughly discussed.

What will my scars look like?

Scarring is a common result of surgery, but rest assured that our skilled surgeons take great care to conceal incisions within the hairline and natural facial contours. During your consultation, we will thoroughly discuss the placement and pattern of incisions, ensuring that resulting scars are as discreet as possible.

How much does a facelift cost?

A facelift in Michigan can be one of the most intricate plastic surgery procedures of the bunch. At the Center for Aesthetics and Plastic Surgery, our facelifts range between $5,000 and $26,000 depending upon your needs.

How long will it take to heal after a facelift?

While each patient is different, you should plan to take two weeks off for recovery. Within 10 to 14 days, most patients have healed enough to return to work and resume their usual social activities. Within three months, most patients are fully recovered and can enjoy the results for years to come.

Can I drive myself home after a facelift?

Facelifts are typically performed with sedation, and patients cannot drive themselves home as the drugs have a lingering effect. You should plan on a family member or friend to drive you home and help you for the first day or two.

How should I best prepare for my facelift surgery?

Dr. Ringler will provide you with detailed instructions to prepare, but you can expect to stop smoking and taking any drugs, supplements, or herbs that can increase the risk of excess bleeding.

Can I get the same results with a non-surgical facelift?

While there are many effective non-surgical facelifts available, none will provide the level of results available with surgery. If you’re looking for dramatic, long lasting results and a significant improvement in your face, nothing compares to a surgical facelift.

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Steven L. Ringler, MD, FACS


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