Facelift vs. Botox—Choosing The Right Facial Procedure

Botox vs Facelift 

Between the ages of 30 and 50, our faces begin to develop wrinkles. Aging skin becomes less elastic over time, causing gravity to take its toll. Many types of facial structures can be modified through various surgical procedures.  

One of the most popular ways to attain a more youthful face is with a facelift. Although it doesn’t stop the aging process, a facelift can make you look years younger and achieves long lasting results.  

Botox injections can provide a more youthful, relaxed appearance at a significantly lower cost, but the results are shorter lived.

What does a Facelift Involve?

The surgery starts with a small hairline incision at the temple area. Excess skin and fat are removed, underlying muscles and tissue are tightened, and facial skin is then sutured back into place.  Temporary tubes may be placed to allow for excess fluids to drain from the incision areas. The face is gently bandaged for several days after the procedure.

Follow up appointments with the surgeon the following day and one week after surgery are necessary to monitor healing progress and to remove any bandages, drains and sutures. Overall recovery time varies but a postoperative recovery plan should be discussed prior to surgery.

What about Botox?

Another way to achieve a younger facial look is a non-surgical procedure using Botox. Botox is used to selectively restrict small muscle groups in the face from spasming, thereby smoothing out unwanted wrinkles of facial expression, particularly “frown lines”. The Botox injections can be used to decrease lines on the forehead and cheeks, or around the mouth and eyes. The procedure can be done in a single office visit, requires no anesthesia, and recovery is quick and relatively painless.

Facelift or Botox?

Many people struggle to decide which procedure to have performed. The decision depends on many factors, including cost, time for recovery, and how advanced the age-related changes are.  Here are some things to consider before taking the next step:

  • Botox is performed through simple facial injections. A facelift is a surgical operation.

  • Botox must be maintained regularly, typically every 3 to 6 months. A facelift is more permanent.

  • Botox cannot remove deep wrinkles, whereas a facelift can.

  • Botox can’t help sagging skin nearly as effectively as a facelift.

© 2013 Dr. Bryan McIntosh, All rights reserved. http://www.drbryanmcintosh.com

© 2013 Dr. Bryan McIntosh, All rights reserved. http://www.drbryanmcintosh.com

Which one is right for you?

If you’re trying to decide if you need Botox, a facelift, or some other facial procedure, and your best friend isn’t helping make the decision any easier, consider scheduling a free consultation for professional advice from a plastic surgeon. Any suggestions outside a professional consultation should not be taken as a medical recommendation.

  • Since a facelift is a surgical procedure,  often requiring general anesthesia, good health is recommended.  Ample post-procedure recovery time is essential.

  • Botox is a viable lower cost alternative for eliminating some of those annoying wrinkles. Desired outcome is immediate, but the injections will need to be repeated regularly to maintain the effects.

In the end, you are the one who knows your face the best, and are therefore the most qualified person to decide what is right for you.


How do I decide which option is best for me?

The best way to determine which treatment option is right for you is to consult with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon, such as Dr. Bryan McIntosh, who will provide you with a personalized treatment plan, and whose staff will assist you in every step of pre-treatment, the procedure, and recovery.