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Everything You Want to Know About a Thread Lift Procedure

About

Thread lift procedure is a minimally invasive alternative to facelift surgery. Thread lifts claim to tighten your skin by inserting medical-grade thread material into your face and then “pulling” your skin up by tightening the thread.

Safety

Thread lifts are considered a low-risk procedure with minimal recovery time, but side effects of redness, bruising, and swelling do occur.

Convenience

This procedure can be performed in about 45 minutes, and, if you want to, you can go right back to work afterward. Finding a trained, licensed provider is the key to a safe, effective thread lift.

Cost

A thread lift is less expensive than a traditional facelift, but it’s not covered by insurance. Costs vary according to many factors, but the average cost is around $2,250.

Efficacy

Thread lift procedures aren’t as dramatically effective as facelifts, and studies on their long-term efficacy are lacking. Results from a thread lift last from 1 to 3 years. For best results, surgeons recommend combining a thread lift with other kinds of anti-aging procedures, such as ultherapy.

What is a thread lift?

A thread lift, also called a barbed suture lift, is a cosmetic procedure that aims to lift and sculpt the shape of your face or breasts. Thread lifts use temporary, medical-grade suture material to “stitch-up” your skin so that it’s drawn taut.

Thread lifts have been around since the 1990sTrusted Source, but innovations in the material used for thread lifts have led to an increase in popularity in recent years.

The typical candidate for a thread lift is in their late 30s to early 50s. A person who is generally in good health and is just starting to notice the signs of aging may benefit the most from the subtle impact of a thread lift.

Those who can’t have a surgical facelift because of medical conditions that make general anesthesia risky may consider a thread lift as a safer alternative.

How much does a thread lift cost?

The costs of a thread lift will vary widely according to where you live, how much experience your provider has, and how many areas you are going to target with your treatment.

One doctorTrusted Source calculated that a thread lift typically costs 40 percent of what a traditional facelift would cost. According to self-reported costs on RealSelf.com, the average cost of a thread lift in the United States is $2,250.

Your forehead, jowls, under-eye area, and eyebrow are all parts of your face that can be considered for a thread lift. You can choose to target just one area or several at once, increasing the cost. A thread lift used to draw up and tighten the breasts may be more costly.

Thread lifts don’t require general anesthesia, so you save money on the cost of sedation. You also don’t have to consider taking recovery time off from work. Recovery is minimal — it can even be done on your lunch break.

Your plastic surgeon may recommend that you get additional therapies or cosmetic procedures such as Botox or Juvederm to boost the effects of your thread lift. Make sure that you’re aware of any costs associated with these procedures.

How does a thread lift work?

The thread lift procedure works in two ways.

The first is fairly straightforward. By threading thin, dissolvable sutures underneath your skin, your doctor is able to pull your skin tight around your forehead, neck, or torso.

Invisible, painless “barbs” grab on to your skin and make sure that the thread grips your underlying tissue and muscles as the thread is pulled tight.

Once a barbed thread is inserted, your body’s healing response is triggered. Even though you’re not injured by the threads under your skin, your body detects a suture material and stimulates collagen production in the affected area. Collagen can fill gaps in sagging skin and restore a more youthful elasticity to your face.

A small 2017 studyTrusted Source suggested that the primary effect of a thread lift procedure is skin appearing tighter and more structured. After a year, this effect begins to decrease as the sutures dissolve. However, there was a secondary “rejuvenation” effect that stayed in place and was noticeable 3 years or more after the procedure.

A 2019 reviewTrusted Source of the literature concerning thread lifts concluded that more research was needed to understand the long-term effects of them, as technology and methods of providing thread lifts continue to evolve.

Thread lift procedure

The procedure for thread lift may be slightly different depending on the area you’re targeting as well as your provider’s preferences. The basic technique is usually the same.

  1. You’ll be asked to recline in the room where your procedure is being performed. Alcohol, as well as topical anesthetic, will be applied to your skin as it’s prepped for surgery.
  2. A thin needle or cannula will be used to insert the threads underneath your skin. Inserting the threads can take 30 to 45 minutes.
  3. After the threads are inserted, the method of insertion will be removed. You may feel light pressure or tightening under your skin.
  4. Within a few minutes of the needles being taken out, your procedure will be complete and you’ll be free to go home.

 

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