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It takes a while for your face to feel completely normal again after you’ve had a facelift. It’s common to feel a change in texture, numbness, tingling, and tightness of the skin around your incisions—especially in the early stage of recovery. Since you’ll initially have a lot of swelling and bruising from the procedure, it will usually take around two weeks for you to be comfortable going out in public, up to a month to get a good idea of what the final outcome will look like, and for the results gradually improve. As you heal, it’s important to be gentle with your skin. For our patients choosing West County Plastic Surgeons in St. Louis for cosmetic surgery, we stress the importance of actively taking steps to protect the skin to avoid complications and prolong the long-term results from any procedure. Follow these tips for specifically caring for your facial skin after a facelift:
1. Continue Daily Sun Protection
A facelift can elevate sagging tissue, but it won’t prevent UV rays from having a damaging effect on your skin if you continue to get exposed to a lot of sunlight. Ultraviolet radiation will continue to break down the structure of your skin and lead to more signs of aging unless you cover up with clothing and wear broad-spectrum sunscreen each day. There is also a higher risk of hyperpigmentation on the skin and scars after surgery if you expose them to sunlight.
2. Be Gentle on Your Skin
Your skin is particularly delicate after surgery, so keep harsh chemicals or anything abrasive away. You’ll need to clean and moisturize your face, as usual, but be sure follow your surgeon’s instructions and find products that are fragrance-free, mild, and hypoallergenic. Pat the skin gently instead of rubbing it, and stop yourself from picking at scars to avoid infections.
3. Give Your Skin Extra Care
After having a facelift, be sure to upgrade your skin routine by including powerful ingredients like retinoids and antioxidants that will not only protect your skin from damage, but also repair it from the inside out.
When it comes to tightening sagging skin, facelifts remain the gold standard. Explore options for this and other types of cosmetic surgery available from West County Plastic Surgeons of Washington University. Call (314) 996-8800, or submit a contact form to request a consultation.