Cosmetic Surgery Tips

Liposuction For The Neck

Liposuction for the neck may be the key to a more youthful and attractive appearance. A modified neck lift or full-fat transfer can help remove volume from under your chin and neck, which are common places to accumulate excess fat. Complete these procedures by adding a facelift, eyelid or brow lift, or ear surgery.

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Liposuction For The Neck

Neck liposuction (also called submental liposuction) is a technique that removes excess fatty tissue beneath the neck. Generally, the procedure removes a genetic accumulation of fat that occurs and gives the neck a full appearance. The best candidates for neck liposuction are usually younger, such as patients in their 20s and 30s, and who have good skin quality. With neck liposuction, patients can have a sculpted, more shapely neck that can enhance the overall look of the entire face.

In the San Diego and La Jolla areas, neck liposuction is a sought-after procedure. Such thriving metropolitan areas demand that one puts their best face forward, and a slim, yet strong neck can be a desirable look for one’s appearance. For women, a slim chin is equated with beauty and grace, whereas for men a firm jawline exudes strength and confidence. Both can be achieved with neck liposuction. San Diego and La Jolla area locals choose Dr. Paul Chasan, a board-certified plastic surgeon with over 20 years’ experience, to fulfill their unique aesthetic needs and give them the look they deserve.

Neck liposuction is one of those plastic surgery procedures that can have life changing and dramatic results, yet also has the advantage of minimal downtime. For those with large necks or double chins, neck liposuction is a relatively simple means of reducing excess fatty neck tissue and revealing the slim, firm neck beneath. Even physically active patients may be unable to reduce this extra tissue through regular exercise, which is where the contouring qualities of neck liposuction comes into play.

What Happens During Neck Liposuction?

Neck liposuction is a relatively quick type of neck surgery. It can sometimes require local anaesthesia, although sedatives may also be given if necessary. The procedure typically begins with one or two small incisions beneath the chin or behind the ears.

From there, excess fat is removed using a suction wand (called a cannula), which lets the skin flatten and tighten and allows the neck to take on a more contoured, sculpted appearance.

What Is Neck Liposuction Recovery Like?

After neck liposuction, most patients are able to return to work in just three days. However, it is not uncommon for patients to need a week-long recovery period. A chin strap is worn for several days following the procedure, where it may then be worn only at night for a few weeks more.

Neck Liposuction Results

Most patients who have returned to their San Diego or La Jolla hometowns receive comments such as “You look thinner!” and “Have you lost weight?” after receiving neck liposuction. Unlike some other procedures, the results of this treatment begin working immediately, and patients can resume their daily lives and extracurricular activities without an overly long recovery period. Full recovery with no swelling can occur after about a month, in which the patient’s skin will fully recover and allow him or her to proudly show off their newly restored neck.

Neck Lift vs. Neck Liposuction

What is the difference between a Neck Lift and Neck Liposuction?  A neck lift and neck liposuction are two different procedures.

A neck lift deals with removing excess skin from the neck, allowing the patient’s skin to contract into a smoother appearance. A neck lift is more suited for older patients who experience the common “turkey neck” look and whose skin lacks the typical elasticity that younger patients have.

Neck liposuction may not be ideal for older patients because the skin left after the excess fat is removed may continue sagging. Instead, a neck lift removes excess neck skin or tightens the neck muscles to give the patient a fuller, smoother neck. The recovery period for a neck lift is also slightly longer than that of neck liposuction (typically up to two weeks).

Both neck lifts and liposuction are excellent neck surgery choices to improve or restore your appearance, however, they are suited for patients of slightly varying ages and needs. Please consult Dr. Chasan to find out which procedure he recommends for your unique needs, and view neck liposuction and neck lift before and after photos to see what you can expect.

What is Neck Liposuction?

As we age, fat accumulates in places such as the neck. Very few things make a person feel self-conscious in a photograph like a double chin. Neck Liposuction reduces the fat in the neck area and the submental area (under the chin). Fat is suctioned out of the area, leaving it slimmer, less bulky, and younger-looking

How Does Neck Liposuction Work?

Fat accumulations around the neck can be impossible to remove with weight management. However, liposuction can remove this fat through very small incisions that will leave nearly invisible scars. 

After sedating you so you feel nothing during the procedure, your surgeon will make several small incisions, hidden either in the hairline or under the chin. These incisions allow the surgeon to insert the tubes they will use to suction out the fat in the area. 

Since you sleep through the surgery, you will not feel anything during the process. After you wake up, your doctor will provide you with appropriate pain medications to manage your discomfort. 

Neck liposuction can also be performed under local anesthesia, should you desire to avoid sedation or general anesthesia.

What Is Recovery From Neck Liposuction Like?

You will return home the same day as your surgery. Because of the anesthetic, you will need someone to drive you home. You will have prescription pain medication for up to 72 hours, at which point your pain should be manageable with over-the-counter medications. 

After the procedure, your neck area will look bruised and swollen. For most people, the bruising and swelling subsides within about a week, and they can return to work and other activities. People should avoid strenuous activities for a few more weeks, especially if they still feel sore. 

Am I a Good Candidate?

Since liposuction does not tighten skin, the best candidates are people in their 20’s to 40’s who do not have much loose skin in the area. 

What Results Can I Expect?

You can expect to see a more defined and contoured neck and jawline. 

What is Neck Contouring Surgery?

Neck contouring creates a firmer, smoother and more refined appearance to the neck and chin. Even without making any other changes to the face, improving a thick, wrinkled or sagging neck can dramatically improve one’s appearance, helping a patient look years younger or even as though he or she has lost weight. Neck contouring can also help restore balance to facial features by providing a better-defined jawline that frames the rest of the face.

Neck Contouring Options

Neck contouring isn’t defined by a surgical technique, but rather the patient’s aesthetic goals. A cosmetic surgeon will use a completely different surgical approach for a patient who wants to reshape a full chin versus a patient who wants to eliminate a sagging “turkey neck.” Neck contouring can be performed as a single procedure, or be combined with other facial cosmetic surgery procedures for more comprehensive improvements.

Neck Liposuction

Do you feel that you have an excessively full or “double chin,”  despite being at a healthy weight? Liposuction of the neck can achieve a better defined, more graceful neckline by permanently

Because liposuction removes excess fat, but cannot significantly improve sagging skin, the typical neck liposuction patient will be younger, his or her 20’s through early 50’s, as younger patients typically have good skin elasticity, which is necessary for the skin to contract smoothly and evenly after liposuction. 

For most patients, neck liposuction is a fairly quick procedure, and many times it can be performed using local anesthesia. Through 1 or 2 tiny incisions, concealed beneath the chin or behind the ears, a cosmetic surgeon insert a small liposuction cannula, removing excess fat and sculpting a natural contour to the chin and neck. Following the procedure, patients typically wear a special supportive chin strap for about 3 or 4 days, return to work within 1 week, and be ready to return to full activity after about 2 weeks. It is typical to experience some swelling and bruising after neck liposuction; this should resolve during the first 10 to 14 days after surgery.

Considerations & goals with neck liposuction:

  • Improves the appearance of a “double chin” or fullness underneath the chin
  • Refines the jawline to enhance the chin or bring balance to facial features
  • Patients with good skin tone will typically see the best results
  • Can be combined with chin augmentation or rhinoplasty to further enhance facial contours
  • Results are permanent so long as a patient maintains a stable weight

Neck Lift Surgery

If you are bothered by sagging, loose skin on your neck, then a neck lift surgery procedure, may provide a solution. You may hear neck lift surgery referred to as cervicoplasty (to remove excess skin) or platysmaplasty (to tighten loose neck muscles). Cosmetic surgeons will perform one or both of these procedures to tighten loose neck muscles and remove excess, sagging skin, restoring a smoother, firmer, and better-defined appearance to the neck.

A neck lift procedure is typically performed as an outpatient procedure under general anesthesia or intravenous sedation. Your cosmetic surgeon will make a small incision behind each ear, and depending on your needs may also make a third small incision underneath the chin. Through these incisions, he or she will tighten the neck muscles and/or underlying tissues and remove excess, sagging skin to restore a smoother, firmer, and more youthful appearance to the neck.

Recovery time after a neck lift will depend on the individual, as well as the extent of surgery. Typically, patients return to daily activities, including a return to work, within 2 weeks after surgery. Expect your neck to feel tight for a few weeks, and know that bruising and swelling are normal. These effects should subside gradually, with visible bruising typically gone after the first week, and that “tight” feeling remaining for up to several months. Your cosmetic surgeon will provide you with detailed instructions for recovery and aftercare.

Considerations & goals with neck lift surgery:

  • Reduces or eliminates a “turkey neck” by removing excess, sagging skin
  • Smoothes out wrinkles and creases throughout the neck
  • Improves the appearance of vertical neck bands
  • Results are long-lasting and will age naturally with a patient
  • Can be combined with a facelift for more comprehensive facial rejuvenation

Non-Surgical Neck Contouring Procedures

Non-surgical cosmetic procedures are becoming increasingly popular for their non-invasive nature and minimal recovery time, and neck contouring is no exemption. If you want to improve the appearance of your neck without surgery, you have a few options, which we’ll discuss here.

  • Botox. When most people think of opens in a new windowBotox, the face comes to mind. However, Botox is also very effective at temporarily treating dynamic wrinkles in the neck. A neck lift using Botox is also referred to as a “Nefertiti lift” because patients can expect their neck to look longer and thinner after treatment, like the ancient Egyptian Queen Nefertiti. During a Botox neck lift, your cosmetic surgeon or nurse aesthetician will inject Botox into the platysma band of muscles (the muscles that stand out when you flex your neck) to reduce the appearance of turkey neck and define the jaw. Neck lift results using Botox typically last between 3-4 months. opens in a new windowLearn more about Botox »
  • Fillers. Dermal fillers made of hyaluronic acid or calcium hydroxylapatite can be injected into the neck and jawline to plump up sagging skin, fill in wrinkles, and improve skin tone. Dermal filler neck lifts, also known as “liquid neck lifts,” last for approximately 6-12 months, depending on the brand of filler. Because these fillers encourage collagen production, patients can expect to notice smoother, more youthful-looking neck skin in the months following their injections. Popular fillers for a non-surgical neck lift include opens in a new windowRestylane and opens in a new windowRadiesse. opens in a new windowLearn more about dermal fillers »
  • Kybella. opens in a new windowKybella is an injectable formula comprised of deoxycholic acid that eliminates fat under the chin and in the upper neck. Kybella is often used to treat patients struggling with a “double chin,” a notoriously difficult area to sculpt without liposuction. Similar to liposuction, fat cells that are treated with Kybella will no longer be able to store fat, meaning you can expect to keep weight off in this area for good. For optimal results, most cosmetic surgeons recommend 4-6 Kybella treatments spaced 1 month apart. Results typically appear 4-6 weeks after your first injection.
  • Microneedling. Microneedling uses tiny needles to create “micro-injuries” in the skin to increase collagen & elastin and trigger fibroblast cell growth. Microneedling can quickly improve the appearance of sun damage, wrinkles, and more on the neck and décolletage with little-to-no downtime. Popular microneedling brands include opens in a new windowDermapen and opens in a new windowSkinPen.Microneedling can also be combined with radiofrequency (known as “RF microneedling”) to heat deep layers of the skin via insulated needles to encourage further collagen growth and tissue tightening. Popular RF microneedling brands include opens in a new windowMorpheus8 and opens in a new windowGenius.While many companies offer DIY microneedling kits, it’s important to choose a board certified cosmetic surgeon to perform your microneedling procedure, as neck and décolletage skin is very thin and can be easily damaged.
  • Ultherapy. opens in a new windowUltherapy is a newer technology that relies on ultrasound energy to tighten skin. When applied to the neck, Ultherapy can lift and tighten deep layers of skin and underlying muscles. Ultherapy is a great way to preview the results of a surgical neck lift to see if you want to pursue the procedure later on. Most patients see a noticeable difference in their skin quality 2-3 months after their Ultherapy treatment. Similar to other non-surgical skincare treatments, Ultherapy stimulates collagen production in the skin for a noticeably smoother, younger-looking neck. opens in a new windowLearn more about Ultherapy »
  • Fractional CO2 laser treatment. Fractional CO2 lasers opens in a new windowhave been proven to improve skin quality and skin tone in the neck with long-lasting results. Fractional CO2 lasers are considered the gold-standard for skin resurfacing because of their effectiveness in treating advanced signs of skin aging. By heating skin from deep below its surface, fractional CO2 lasers can increase collagen in the neck without damaging surrounding tissues. And because they’re fractional—meaning the laser is dispersed across the treated skin in “fractions”—these lasers require minimal downtime. Popular fractional CO2 laser brands include opens in a new windowMiXto Pro and opens in a new windowFraxel.

Combining Neck Contouring & Facial Procedures

As the face, eyes and neck work together to create a person’s facial appearance, it is common to combine face and neck procedures to achieve a patient’s goals. Doing so helps to ensure smooth, refined lines and a naturally balanced appearance. Below are some of the common procedures that patients choose to accompany their neck contouring surgery:

  • Facelift. It is rare that a cosmetic surgeon will perform a facelift without also incorporating some element of neck contouring. Combining a facelift and neck lift allows a cosmetic surgeon to address jowling, sagging cheeks, and lax neck tissues in a single procedure. Learn more about facelift surgery »
  • Chin augmentation. A skilled, qualified cosmetic surgeon can insert a custom-fit chin implant during a neck liposuction procedure, typically using the same incisions, to refine the neckline and add definition to a weak or receding chin.
  • Rhinoplasty. Balanced proportions are key to an attractive face. Reshaping the nose to better fit a patient’s face while also improving the jawline can dramatically enhance this sense of balance. Learn more about rhinoplasty »

Choosing a Cosmetic Surgeon

Improving the appearance of the neck requires a surgeon to understand the unique relationship between the anatomy of the face and the neck, and how each contributes to a patient’s natural appearance. To perform neck contouring safely and successfully, a cosmetic surgeon must have experience in multiple facial cosmetic procedures as well as a highly-developed aesthetic eye. However, many doctors who practice cosmetic surgery do not receive adequate training in aesthetic face and neck surgery in their residency training, so it’s important to do your homework before choosing a cosmetic surgeon.

Choosing a board certified cosmetic surgeon ensures that your surgeon is specifically trained and experienced in cosmetic surgery, including all facial procedures, and that your procedure will be performed in an accredited surgical facility. Read our tips for choosing a cosmetic surgeon.

When consulting with a potential cosmetic surgeon, ask about his or her experience with neck contouring, facelift surgery, and liposuction, and view before and after photos of prior neck contouring patients during your consultation—this will help you get a feel for a cosmetic surgeon’s aesthetic style.

When performed by a qualified cosmetic surgeon, neck contouring can achieve dramatic improvements with small changes. If you are unhappy with the appearance of your face, neck or chin, consulting with a board certified cosmetic surgeon can help you learn more about your options to make lasting changes. We invite you to use our ABCS Find-a-Surgeon tool to find cosmetic surgeons in your area.

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