Home Blog How to choose between a Liquid facelift or a Surgical facelift? (2019)

Liquid Facelift Graphics Specialist Skin Solutions

How to choose between a Liquid facelift or a Surgical facelift? (2019)

“I was unhappy with my tired looking self. I was after an effective non-surgical treatment. I still wanted to look very natural, but also obtain a significant result.

The liquid facelift was just the thing that I was looking for. I looked 5 to 10 years younger”*

Non surgical treatments for facial rejuvenation have come a long way in the last 5 years. If you are looking for a non-surgical treatment that can achieve similar results to a facelift then the liquid facelift is for you.

Patients who have the liquid facelift are looking at correcting a number of things, from wanting to look more refreshed, brighter, less tired, more feminine to even looking slimmer.

In this article we will have a detailed look at the liquid facelift.


  • Surgical facelift vs a liquid facelift.
  • What is the liquid facelift?
    • Why does it work?
      • SMAS.
      • Re-volumising.
  • How many mls are needed to achieve the best results with a liquid facelift?
  • Dermal filler used in the liquid facelift.
  • How long does it last?
  • How Dr Beldholm approaches treating loss of volume in your face.
    • Treating facial ageing using a modern approach.
      • Considering Foundation and refinement.

Surgical facelift vs a liquid facelift

In some regards this is like comparing apples and pears.

There are benefits and negatives with both approaches.

There are cases where a liquid facelift will achieve better results than a surgical facelift and in other cases the reverse is true.

This is a summary of the benefits and negatives with a liquid facelift.

Benefits of a liquid facelift

  • The cost is significantly less than the surgical option.
  • Can treat volume loss that occurs with ageing.
  • A subtle natural result can be created.
  • Lower risk than the surgical option.
  • Downtime is significantly less as it is an in-clinic treatment.
  • Treatment can be planned over a number of weeks.

Negatives of having a liquid facelift

  • You need to see an advanced injector that is able to provide you with a natural result. If not performed correctly it can lead to very un-natural looking results.
  • Results are not permanent.
  • Treatment will not work if there is excessive sagginess of the skin.


The most common amount of fillers required for a liquid facelift is 14 ml to 20 ml of dermal filler. The dermal filler that is used for volume replacement will last from 2 to 3 years. The filler that is used for refinement (See below for Dr Beldholm’s approach to dermal fillers) will last for 9 months to 12 months.

If you want to maintain your results from the liquid facelift then you will need to have dermal fillers once per year and you can expect to need approximately 4 mls of fillers.

To achieve a true liquid facelift you will need to spend approximately $10,000 in total.

There are many different types of facelifts & neck lifts. You can check out our price list here (click to go to pricelist). In general terms you can expect to pay two to three times the amount for a full facelift as opposed to a liquid facelift. However, a facelift should last you 10 years with minimal maintenance.

Over a period of 10 years the facelift will most likely cost significantly less than a liquid facelift.

Dr Bernard Beldholm Facelift Surgery

Natural results

This is among the most important considerations when it comes to facial rejuvenation. Twenty years ago Specialist Surgeons who offered facelifts would only do surgery for facial ageing. Dermal fillers and other skin treatments were not as well developed.

For volume replacement surgeons had a few options such as:

  • Chin implants
  • Cheek implants

There was significant issues with these options such as:

  • Infections
  • Malposition (displacement and rotation) of implants
  • Seromas
  • Nerve damage

Dermal fillers, and in some regards fat injections, have now replaced surgical implants and can provide significantly better results than has ever been possible in aesthetic surgery.

As the lines blur between what is possible non-surgically vs surgically your best option is to see a Specialist Surgeon who is skilled in both the non surgical options as well as the surgical options.

Want to know more about what you can do and what it all means? Get our guide: The 11 signs of ageing and what to do about it.

Perfect Candidate for Full Facelift

This patient has significant loose skin and saggy tissues. She is an ideal candidate for a full facelift with a neck lift. However, she also has a significant amount of volume loss in her face. If she were to choose to only have a facelift then she would have lifted and tight skin, however she would look very gaunt and potentially very unnatural.

To achieve the best possible natural result she would need to combine her treatment with dermal fillers to achieve a full, more youthful appearance.

Liquid Facelift Specialist Skin Solutions

This patient is well suited for a liquid facelift. She has primarily volume loss with minimal sagginess. Dermal treatments and muscle relaxants should be added to improve skin quality and reduce her deep wrinkles.

A liquid facelift will provide her with a more natural result than a mini or full facelift.

Old technique alert!

Avoid the chipmunk cheeks!

Facelift Avoid Chipmunks Cheeks

The new techniques that are used focus on natural results above all, which include lifting saggy tissues and re-volumising tissues that have lost volume with ageing. You should look younger, refreshed but still yourself.

The old injecting techniques focused on filling multiple areas such as Cheeks, Nasolabial lines, Marionette lines, Tear troughs and fine lines and wrinkles.

This tended to result in an unnatural, artificial appearance.


The liquid facelift is an in-clinic procedure which takes approximately 1 hour. There is a small risk of localised bruising, however this can be easily covered with makeup. Resulting in minimal to no downtime.

A facelift is a surgical procedure. Recovery times is between 2-4 weeks. The incision is well hidden in the hair line. It may take up to 12 months for the scars to fade.

Excess saggy tissue

A surgical facelift will address a significant amount of saggy skin. A liquid facelift will only address a small to moderate amount of saggy skin.

It is important to realise that having dermal fillers vs having a surgical facelift is not mutually exclusive. Combining both of these can provide a stunning result.

What is the liquid facelift?

The liquid facelift has been around for many years. It is not a new concept. It is only really in the last 3-5 years that the techniques and the dermal filler products have evolved to a point where it can replace a facelift in some women.

The main focus of the liquid facelift is:

  • Lifting sagging skin by using strategic points in the face.
  • Replacing volume that has been lost with ageing.

The main cause of an aged look is saggy skin. This causes a number of characteristic age changes.

  • Saggy eyebrows.
  • Deep tear troughs, causing a tired look.
  • Nasolabial lines.
  • Marionette lines.
  • Jowls.

One of the most important structures when considering facial rejuvenation treatment is the SMAS (Superficial muscular aponeurotic system). (link this to facelift article with info on SMAS.

Doing deep injection in certain areas such as the temples will lift this facia and therefore improve saggy skin.

Injections on the sides of the face, will further lift the skin.

Another change that is apparent with ageing is bone resorption. This is why your neck becomes less defined as the mandible bone shrinks. Using fillers in and around the jaw and chin will correct this and also lift the tissue up.


Replacing volume is also key to creating a great result.

Volume loss occurs in a number of locations in the face:

  • Cheeks.
  • Lips.
  • Around the mouth.
  • Chin.

You will look more refreshed as we replace the volume.

How many mls are needed to achieve the best results with a liquid facelift?

5ml Dermal Filler

It is important to get a perspective on how much 1ml of dermal fillers is.

It is a very small amount!

Consider that 5 ml of dermal filler will fit in a teaspoon.

The earlier that you have treatment the less volume loss there will be in the face. A women that comes in her late 30’s will need less fillers than someone in their late 40’s.

If you have a small amount of volume loss with minimal sagginess then having 4-6 mls of filler will usually be enough.

If you have a significant amount of volume loss, then 16 to 20 mls of dermal filler will be needed to achieve the result.

It is amazing that with only 16 mls of dermal filler we can achieve a result that is similar to a surgical facelift!

The deeper fillers that are used for lifting will last approximately 2 to 3 years, which means that you do not have to have all the dermal fillers performed in one sitting. You are in control of how quickly you achieve the final result.

Normally we would use 4-6 mls of filler per session, and you can decide to come back every 1-3 months for top ups.

How long does it last?

The deeper filler used to build foundation and replace volume will last approximately 2-3 years. The more superficial filler will last approximately 1 year. Once you have reached your optimum result, you will normally be put on a maintenance program of approximately 1-4 mls of filler per year.

How Dr Beldholm approaches treating sagginess in your face

The right approach to facial ageing is critical. If you want the best possible result then you need to replace volume first and then work on the refinement.

Dermal Filler Focus

Focusing on the fine lines and wrinkles first, is like putting an expensive sofa in a run down room.

Want to know more about what you can do and what it all means? Get our guide: The 11 signs of ageing and what to do about it.

Facelift Planning

It is critically important that we initially plan your treatment for you. The treatment that is planned will depend on a number of factors which include:

  • What result do you want?
  • What is your budget?
  • How quickly do you want the result?
  • What is your skin like?
  • What is your bone structure like?
  • What areas bother you the most?
  • How much volume loss do you have?
  • How saggy is your skin and tissues?

Once we have planned your treatment, it is just a matter of implementing it. You can do all the treatment at once or you can spread the treatment out over a couple of months.

The first step in the plan is always to work on the foundation of your face. Usually we use thicker fillers to do this that last approximately 2 to 3 years. Working on the foundation first has many benefits:

  • Replace volume loss.
  • Reduce sagginess.
  • Improves and rejuvenates your face.
  • Improves tear troughs, marionette lines and nasolabial lines.

Be replacing volume loss we reduce wrinkles in areas such as jowls, marionette lines and tear troughs without having to inject fillers directly into these areas.

Once the foundation is taken care of the refinement starts. This usually involves finer and thinner fillers to refine the tear trough, marionette lines, Nasolabial lines and fine lines and wrinkles.

As we age we accumulate sun damage and the skin cell turnover reduces as well as the elastin and collagen in the skin. This leads:

  • Age spots and pigmentation issues.
  • Uneven skin.
  • Dull looking skin.
  • Open pores.
  • Course skin.
  • Fine lines.

It is critically important if you want to look your best that you are investing in the right products and skin treatments for your skin type.

To help you, we have devised a skin survey, that will help you to determine which dermal therapies and skin treatments you need for your skin type.

Our plan for you

1. Call now for a consultation on 1300 370 307.

Specialist Icon

2. Sit down with our Doctor or nurse to discuss treatment.

Filler Icon

3. Receive your dermal filler treatment.

Lips Icon

4. Walk out of the clinic with a big smile!

Related Posts
Filter by
Post Page
The Facial Ageing Process Skin Concerns & Treatments Body sculpting Cosmetic Injections Skin Products
Sort by

© Specialist Skin Solutions 2020

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This