Both clinician and researcher, Dr. Amy Taub is a board-certified dermatologist who is the founder of Advanced Dermatology, a state-of the-art medical and cosmetic dermatology practice in Lincolnshire, Illinois. She also founded www.skinfo.com , a professional skincare website that offers physician-dispensed and cosmeceutical-grade skincare products and product information to the public. In addition, she founded SKINQRI, Advanced Research in Dermatology, which tests the safety and efficacy of pharmaceuticals and laser treatments. Born and raised in the Chicago area, Dr. Taub graduated from Northwestern University Medical School in 1985 and completed her internal medicine internship and dermatology residency at its affiliated hospital, Northwestern Memorial, in 1989. She is a frequent consultant to leading laser and drug companies, and in that role educates and trains physicians from all over the country.
When did the Liquid Facelift first enter the aesthetic world?
In 2000, Lisa Donofrio published a paper on using fat to rejuvenate the entire aging face. Around 2003-2004, there was an interest in restoring volume to the faces of those inflicted with AIDS. They often had a severe form of facial wasting that was not cosmetically desirable and also marked them visually as having the disease. Various attempts at restoring larger areas of volume using fat, silicone and poly-l-lactic acid were undertaken. Through these studies it became clearer to more dermatologists and plastic surgeons that replacement of volume was a very important consideration for effective results when treating facial aging.
What does a Liquid Facelift consist of?
A Liquid Facelift uses a material that is able to be injected via a syringe into the face to create volume that is an overall anti-aging treatment and mimics some of the effects that people try to achieve with surgical face lifts. This is not a scientific term, however, with a precise definition.
What’s the upkeep to maintaining a Liquid Facelift?
It really depends on the material used, the severity of the volume loss, the age of the person, the injector, the way a person individually metabolizes the material etc. That said, most people will need some touch ups at a six months to 1 year. There are so many variables…there may be people who get fat or poly-l-lactic acid injected and can wait three years between sessions, but may have needed multiple sessions in the beginning to achieve that. That said, different materials perform differently in certain areas. So a liquid facelift may consist of more than one material being injected at one time.
Who can perform a Liquid Facelift?
A cosmetically oriented dermatologist or plastic surgeon would be my choices. It takes a lot of experience and artistry to achieve a natural looking result. In addition, some of these materials are not easily removed, so you want to get it right and do your homework on who to go to.
What kind of training goes into mastering the technique?
It requires many years of performing injectables and studying the anatomy of the face, with underlying training on the medical aspects of injections. It would be training beyond that required by the average residency in dermatology or plastic surgery in that it does require much experience to master.
What parts of the face and neck are treated?
Usually the central cheeks, the area under the eye, the area around the mouth and the lips are the primary areas. Occasionally there is need for restoration of the temples and this is often paired with botulinium toxin (in itself an injectable and part of the process) to relax the overactive muscles of the forehead, the brow and the area around the eyes.
Who is a candidate for a Liquid Facelift?
A candidate is anybody who is healthy and who needs volume in their face. This could be just about anybody over 40. Just because you have a liquid facelift doesn’t mean you necessarily are in need of an actual face lift. The volume of the face changes even in a few years, so that sometimes people only need certain areas and not others. A younger person often needs volume replacement first under the eyes.
Do men also have the treatment?
Yes, but men have more reservations about treatments that require maintenance. They often seem to opt more for “permanent” procedures, like surgery. Unfortunately, most people don’t seem to realize that surgery isn’t a permanent answer either, because as you continue to age the skin will undergo redraping and you will still lose volume. So in a matter of five to 10 years something else will need to be done, and sometimes reoperation yields non-natural results. However, to be fair, Liquid Facelifts can also yield non-natural results if not done with expertise.
How do the outcomes compare to a traditional facelift?
To my knowledge, no published study has compared the surgical facelift with a Liquid Facelift. However, a recent study published in the American Society of Plastic Surgery revealed that the average improvement in facial age as judged by the patients themselves (http://www.plasticsurgery.org/news-and-resources/press-release-archives/2011-press-release-archives/facelift-makes-you-look-12-years-younger.html). You can contrast this with the study that I performed with full face correction with hyaluronic acid filler (“Liquid Facelift”) where the average patient thought they looked 7.8 to 9 years younger in two to four weeks. However, also note that the patients with the surgical facelift needed six days of oral pain medications and an average of 24 days off of work. (Dermatol Surg. 2010 Mar;36(3):322-8. Epub 2010 Jan 19.Effect of multisyringe hyaluronic acid facial rejuvenation on perceived age.Taub AF, Sarnoff D, Gold M, Jacob C.