Facelift Transformation

How to Prepare for a Facelift: A Comprehensive Guide

So, you’re considering facelift surgery. Congratulations on taking this step towards a younger-looking and more confident you! With the right plastic surgeon, a facelift can take years off your appearance and boost your self-esteem. 

Like any surgery, preparation is key to achieving the best results and ensuring a smooth recovery. At Wave Plastic Surgery, we recommend starting to prepare for your facelift at least six weeks before your surgery date. Read on to discover our top tips on how to prepare for a facelift.  

Six Weeks to a Month Before the Procedure

Whether you’re having a mini facelift, traditional facelift, or endoscopic facelift, the earlier you start preparing for plastic surgery, the better. Cosmetic procedures are generally scheduled several weeks in advance, and facelifts are no exception. 

If you haven’t already, the first step is to book an initial consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon. After you’ve met with your doctor and scheduled your procedure, you can start getting ready for face surgery. Here’s how to prepare:

Adjust Medications and Supplements

Talk to your surgeon and primary physician about any supplements and medications you may be taking. Some medicines can affect your recovery and potentially interfere with anesthesia, so you may have to temporarily adjust your medication regime to lower associated risks. 

Stop Smoking

Smoking, vaping, or using tobacco products can put you at risk of serious complications during and after surgery. Nicotine can decrease blood flow and slow the body’s healing process. Stop smoking at least four to six weeks before the procedure and refrain from smoking for at least four weeks after your facelift surgery. This will help minimize the risks of complications such as blood clots, heart attacks, strokes, and pneumonia.

Plan for Help Post-Surgery

Facelift procedures are typically performed under general anesthesia, which means that you’ll need to arrange for someone to drive you home after the surgery. It’s common to experience some grogginess and discomfort after the procedure, and the bandages used post-op may restrict your vision and motion. It’s also important to have someone who can stay with you and assist you with your daily tasks, especially childcare if needed, for a few days after the surgery. 

Protect Your Skin

Hydrating before face surgery — either by opting for a non-invasive facial like the Hydrafacial or by amping up your skin-care routine with a hydrating serum or moisturizer — will help your skin remain healthy and plump, which can promote faster healing after your procedure. Avoid excessive sun exposure and always wear SPF sunscreen, even indoors, to protect your skin from harmful UV rays up till the day of your procedure.

Two to Three Weeks Before the Procedure

As your surgery date draws near, here are steps you should take to prepare for plastic surgery in the two to three weeks prior to the procedure:

Prepare Your Home

Chances are you won’t feel like doing much in the days following your facelift. In the weeks leading up to your procedure, set up a cozy recovery nook in the room where you’re planning to spend most of your time for those first few days. Choose an area that’s close to a bathroom and has a comfortable bed or chair with pillows so you can rest with your head elevated. Have books, magazines, or whatever entertainment you enjoy nearby. Sunlight can be uncomfortable for the first few days following facelift surgery, so avoid setting up your recovery area in a place with direct sunlight.

Stock Up on Supplies

Fill your prescriptions ahead of time, have ice packs on hand, and purchase any post-op care supplies recommended by your surgeon or primary care physician. If you don’t have anyone to help you cook during the first few days after surgery, consider preparing a few meals ahead of time and freezing them or setting up a meal delivery service. Choose foods low in sodium and high in protein, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. 

Eat Healthy Meals & Drink Plenty of Water

Your plastic surgery prep period is an ideal time to ensure you’re nourishing your body and building your immune system for a speedy recovery. You can do this by eating a nutrient-rich diet packed with fruits and vegetables, high-quality protein, and healthy fats. Keep your skin and body hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day up till the day you go in for surgery. 

One Week Before the Procedure

The week leading up to your procedure is the time to check off the last few to-dos from your plastic surgery preparation list: 

Finalize Arrangements for Boarding & Transportation 

If you’re traveling far for your surgery, consider booking a hotel nearby to make things easier for you and your caretaker. Confirm your ride and ensure you have at least one person available to help on the agreed-upon dates and times. 

Take Care of Last-Minute Details

Take care of any routine appointments, important events, and other things on your to-do list. You won’t be able to manage these during your recovery, so it’s best to get them done beforehand. Make a list of all the errands you need to run before the procedure, like grocery shopping, pet grooming, pharmacy visits, dry cleaning, and so on. 

The Day Before or Day of the Procedure

The big day’s finally here! It’s completely normal to feel some nerves before undergoing any surgical procedure. If pre-surgery anxiety is causing you distress, don’t hesitate to reach out to your doctor or plastic surgeon. Here are the last steps you need to take before the procedure: 

Choose the Right Clothing

Wear loose-fitting clothes that don’t have to be pulled over your head (button-down shirts or front-zip sweatshirts are ideal). This also applies to the clothing you wear on the first few days of recovery. Remove contacts, jewelry, and don’t apply makeup, deodorant, or hair styling products. 

Follow Any Preoperative Instructions

While these tips on how to prepare for face surgery can certainly help you get the best start possible on your procedure and recovery, the most important part of the pre-op phase is to follow your doctor’s recommendations. Your surgeon will provide personalized instructions on how to prepare for plastic surgery based on your medical history, the specific procedure planned, and your individual needs. They’ll also explain how to prep for rhinoplasty, eye procedures, or neck lift surgery if you’re combining procedures. 

Schedule a Facelift Consultation With Wave Plastic Surgery

At Wave Plastic Surgery, we understand how frustrating it can be to see yourself in the mirror and find that the reflection doesn’t quite match how you feel inside. That’s why we offer various facelift options, including endoscopic procedures that don’t require full anesthesia for a faster recovery time. 

If you’re considering a facelift, reach out today to schedule a consultation. Our team of board-certified plastic surgeons will perform an examination to evaluate the state of your skin, understand your goals for treatment, and recommend an approach that will help you achieve the results you desire. We understand that surgery is not a simple decision and we’re here to guide you through the process. Our team is ready to answer any questions you may have about how to prepare for a facelift and what to expect. Contact us today!

Peter Lee

Peter Lee

Dr. Peter Lee, MD, FACS, Founder, CEO and Chief Surgeon of WAVE Plastic Surgery Center and Advanced Endotine Bioskills surgeon educator and trainer, is a top Los Angeles board-certified Plastic, Reconstructive, and Cosmetic Surgeon. Dr. Peter Lee is a board-certified Diplomate of the American Board of Plastic Surgery and Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. Drawing patients from around the world, he is both an innovator and thought leader who has advanced the discipline of plastic surgery through his lifelong commitment to excellence and education. In addition to being bilingual in English and Korean, Dr. Lee has mentored and trained master surgeons in South Korea, China and other Asian countries in state-of-the-art techniques and scientific advancements in the field.

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With a wide range of breast, body, and face procedures, our goal at Wave Plastic Surgery is to allow for all of our patients to achieve their ideal appearance, no matter their age or ethnicity. Our doctors all have extensive experience working with patients of all different backgrounds and have developed expertise in Asian plastic surgery procedures such as eyelid and nose surgery. We work with all sorts of men and women—both local to the Los Angeles area and from far out of town—to help find the right procedure to help them reach their goals.

Wave Plastic Surgery offers an inclusive menu of non-surgical treatment options that will cover all types of anti-aging and skin concerns from wrinkles, sagging skin, hair loss, women’s health, poor skin texture, large pores, skin discoloration, Rosacea, acne, scars, volume loss, and aging hands, neck and chest.