Mini Facelift

If you want to look refreshed and natural looking but do not have the time for a long recovery, then a mini facelift might be the best option. A mini facelift, also called a sub-total or partial facelift is the perfect procedure for those looking to get rid of the sagging cheek areas and wrinkles in that part of the face. The surgery starts with an incision in the hairline behind your ear with minimal downtime, bruising, and swelling. Scars are hidden in the hairline. It is a good alternative if you are unable to commit to the recovery of a full facelift. 

The mini face lift reduces the signs of ageing in the face, cheek, jowls, and often the neck. Other names for the treatment include S-lift, lunchtime facelift, weekend facelift, and ponytail facelift. There are other slight differences, and they all come down to the length of the incisions. 

A small incision is made in the hairline and often extends behind the ear. Your surgeon will then tighten muscles on one side of your face at a time, pulling back that area's skin. 

The mini face lift will tighten the skin and remove sagging along the jawline, on the cheeks, and reduce wrinkles in this area. Your expert facial plastic surgeon will discuss the options best suited to your face. One advantage of the mini lift is that recovery can be quick, and you can be back to work in less than a week. 

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  • Over 90 years of collective experience
  • We focus exclusively on facial procedures
  • UK based GMC Specialist Register plastic surgeons
  • Experts - our surgeons have performed hundreds of facelifts and necklifts
  • See our videos to find out more

What can a mini facelift achieve?

A mini facelift is a perfect procedure for eliminating the sagging cheek areas and wrinkles around that area of the face. A mini-facelift can be just what you need to feel refreshed. 

  • Lift the sagging cheek area 
  • Reduce wrinkles in the area lifted
  • Reduce jowls 
  • More defined jawline

The above is determined by the face's facial structure, muscularity or muscle tone, and skin looseness.

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Mini Facelift - Key Information

Procedure time

1.5h to 2h


General anaesthesia

Hospital stay

Day care

Up & mobile

Same day

Sleeping position

On your back for around 2 weeks


1 week to 10 days

Sexual activity

Restricted for 4 weeks

Back to work

1 week to 10 days


4 to 6 weeks

Who is suitable for a mini facelift?

A mini face lift is a facial rejuvenation procedure that treats sagging of the cheek area, mouth corners, and can help the jawline. If you are looking to improve laugh lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin in the cheek area and you are in your 40's or 50's, the treatment might be right for you. 

We would carry out a mini-lift on a patient in their 60’s, this is often combined with a SMAS, mid to lower facelift. We would not recommend a mini facelift for someone in their 70s due to greater skin and muscle laxity. The full facelift options can be discussed in your consultation. 

Compared to the SMAS facelift or the deep plane lift, this procedure does not require an incision in the temporal or upper forehead region. 

How does a mini face lift work?

Compared to the SMAS facelift or the deep plane lift, this procedure does not require an incision in the temporal or upper forehead region. It is a less invasive procedure because it only requires one single cut around your ear. The results are not as prominent as a full facelift however it has other advantages such as a lower down time and less swelling and bruising. You may not need a full facelift. We recommend that you discuss the options with a facial plastic surgeon in a consultation. 

Your Journey with Kensington Medical

We offer specialist facial rejuvenation treatments in the heart of London. Our team of expert plastic surgeons is dedicated to providing you with a comprehensive and personalised experience. With our expertise in facial cosmetic surgery, we can help you fight back the years and delicately recover your facial freshness and youthful appearance.

Your journey begins with a dialogue between you and your surgeon: the pre-operative consultation, which is central to the operation's success. At Kensington Medical, patients interested in surgery undergo several consultations with the surgeon. We are keen for our patients to be fully informed before deciding whether to proceed with surgery. So, we encourage them to see the surgeon more than once and ask as many questions as they wish. Typically, our patients go through two pre-operative consultations.

The first consultation tends to be face-to-face. During it, the surgeon will:

  • Listen to your concerns and understand what you would like to achieve;
  • Examine you;
  • Show you examples of their work in the form of before-and-after photographs;
  • Suggest a treatment plan.

Following the first consultation, we will:

  • Write to you summarising the surgeon’s recommendations;
  • Quote for the treatment plan suggested by the surgeon;
  • Send you extensive information about the procedure, the risks involved and the precautions you should take pre- and post-operatively.

A second consultation is often necessary for the following reasons:

  • After the first pre-operative consultation, and once you have been through the information sent to you, it is likely that you will have more questions for the surgeon.
  • The surgeon often finds it necessary to speak to patients again to ensure they have fully understood the risks of surgery and they know exactly what to expect from surgery.
  • It is common that several treatment options are discussed at the first consultation, and another meeting is necessary to decide which is the most appropriate.

The second consultation can also be face-to-face. Alternatively, it can be via a video call.

Following your consultations, our medical team is always available should you have further questions before your surgery.

Once you have decided to go ahead with surgery, we will book your operation in one of our specialist cosmetic surgery hospitals.

Before your operation, you will be sent a health questionnaire. This will be reviewed by your anaesthetist, who may call you to discuss specific aspects of your medical history. In certain cases, you may be required to attend the clinic for blood tests. This will be discussed with you by one of our medical team members before your scheduled appointment date.

We will also issue you with preoperative instructions. In particular:

  • You should discontinue smoking for several weeks before your facelift, as smoking can increase the risk of complications during the healing process.
  • You should refrain from taking blood-thinning drugs (such as aspirin) for ten days before your procedure.
  • You should not eat six hours before surgery; you should not drink two hours before surgery.

You will arrive at least one hour before the time of your procedure. The nursing staff at the hospital will monitor your blood pressure and other relevant essentials. You will then meet your anaesthetist and surgeon for a final markup.

The actual operation involves carefully sculpting and repositioning underlying tissue and fat within the face to create a more youthful contour around the eyes, chin, neckline, and jawline area. The result is smoother skin texture while preserving natural facial expressions throughout different movements. The incisions are then closed using sutures. This will leave small scars hidden along areas such as the hairline or scalp, which can fade over time depending on how well they are cared for.

We typically perform this procedure under general anaesthesia. It lasts 2.5h to 3.5h.

Aftercare following a facelift is essential to ensure we achieve optimal results.

Following your surgery, you will be transferred to the hospital’s recovery room, where the nursing staff will ensure that your recovery is smooth. You should stay there for two to four hours, depending on the surgery. Once the nursing team are happy that you are in a fit state to go home, you will leave the hospital accompanied by a friend or a family member. You should also arrange for someone to stay with you overnight for the first night following your operation. Generally, post-operative pain is minimal, but you will be given pain killers in case you need them.

Once you have been discharged from the hospital, our nursing team will be available 24/7 to ensure your post-operative journey is comfortable and pain-free and to field any questions you may have.

Your surgeon will see you a number of times in the weeks following your operation to monitor the facial skin and scars and to support you:

  • The next day, the surgeon will remove the drains and check the wounds and dressings.
  • One week post-operatively, there will be another consultation and depending on your healing progress, the surgeon may decide to remove sutures then.
  • You will see the surgeon again two weeks post-operatively, at which stage all remaining sutures will be removed and your progress monitored.
  • The last post-operative consultation is at six weeks. Generally, you will be discharged from the surgeon's care at that stage.

Bruising and swelling can last up to one month following this surgery.

Our medical team will provide detailed aftercare instructions based on your current health status and treatment received, including when it is appropriate for you to resume normal activities such as exercise, wearing makeup, and strenuous movements. It is essential to follow these instructions carefully to avoid complications or risks associated with the procedure.

Protecting your face from sun exposure is especially important, as it can cause scarring, discolouration, and other unwanted side effects. Wear sunscreen when outdoors and use hats or umbrellas if possible. It would be best to avoid strenuous activities involving facial movements, such as exercise and sports, until cleared by our medical team at Kensington Medical.

By following the instructions of our medical team and taking precautions to protect your face, you can ensure that you achieve the best results from facelift surgery. Following a healthy lifestyle with sufficient rest, nutrition, and hydration is essential for healing and maintaining long-term effects. It is strongly recommended to avoid smoking and alcohol consumption before and during the recovery period.

Mini Facelift Surgeons

What other treatments can complement a mini or micro facelift?

Other procedures that can complement a mini facelift are based on the severity of wrinkling, skin laxity and fat loss. In your consultation, your plastic surgeon may recommend combining your mini facelift with an eyelid lift (upper blepharoplasty) or lower eye bag removal (lower blepharoplasty)  Upper and Lower Eye Lift. For patients over 60, our plastic surgeons may prefer to recommend a SMAS Facelift or mid to lower facelift  Mid-Facelift

Fat transfer (see Fat Grafting) is performed if the face has lost volume in the cheek area. It can create a more youthful look. If you are interested, please ask your surgeon in consultation, who can advise on the best way forward. 

Laser skin resurfacing can help if you have acne scars, wrinkles, age spots and general discolouration. We can advise on the best options for you. 

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Frequently asked questions

A mini facelift has fewer risks and a shorter recovery time than a full facelift. Following the procedure, you may experience discomfort and pain, swelling, and bruising. Additionally, your face will be red and sensitive. You might feel numb in your face for a few days while it heals. This response is normal and should go away after 24-48 hours. The risks will be explained in consultation with your plastic surgeon.

We advise at least two days to rest. Depending on the type of work, you can return to your job in as little as one to two weeks. It is best to avoid strenuous activity for a minimum of two weeks.

View all facelift videos


All scarring is minimal and hidden by the natural contours in the skin and hairline. 

The micro or mini facelift is not permanent. Everyone will continue to age. The procedure is popular because it is minimally invasive and quickly addresses wrinkles and sagging skin. Scarring is minimal and recovery can be fast. The results last about three to six years. The results are less dramatic than the full facelift procedure. 

View all facelift videos


At Kensington Medical located in Harley street and Wimbledon, a mini face lift cost £7,650. If you are interested in finding out more the best option is to contact us to discuss and arrange a personal consultation with our best mini facelift plastic surgeons. They will listen to what you are wanting to achieve, discuss the procedure, the time lines, recovery and look at time lines if you have an event or date you are working towards. A mini facelift is a highly successful procedure, particularly if you are short on time. We have many working professionals who decide to have a mini facelfit for that very reason.

Your facial cosmetic surgeon will discuss how to prepare for the procedure in your face to face consultation. They will discuss your medical history and general lifestyle to ensure that you are in good shape for the procedure and feeling confident.

A full pre-operative medical will detail the steps before and after the mini facelift procedure. We use local anaesthesia and sedation for the procedure, so that you will have a much shorter recovery.

Following the treatment, you will not be able to drive so we advise that you get a friend of family member to look after you. We have a 24 hour phone contact if need be.

During your consultation, your surgeon will share before and after images of previous mini facelift patients that they have performed onso that you can see the types of results you should expect.

View all facelift videos


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The next step to a refreshed you

At Kensington Medical, the process is an exciting journey. A consultation with your mini facelift surgeon is the starting point. At the consultation your Consultant Plastic Surgeon will discuss your mini or micro facelift and any complementary procedures you are having with the cosmetic surgery. 

At your consultation with your plastic surgeon, you will have a discussion about your facial structure, skin and muscle laxity, and other concerns. You will be able to see our before and after photos. Your Plastic Surgeon will create a personalised plan so you can achieve your goals which can include ensuring you achieve any dates you may have in mind. 

To book a consultation in our Harley street, London or Wimbledon clinic please fill in the contact us form or give us a phone call.

Medically reviewed by Mr David Gateley MA, FRCS, FRCS (Plast), GMC number 2939470 on 20, February, 2024.