Facelift in Walnut Creek, CA

As you age, the skin on your face begins to lose its firm and flexible nature. This can cause facial skin and underlying tissues to loosen and sag, resulting in the appearance of jowls, creases, fine lines, and wrinkles.

A facelift (rhytidectomy) adjusts and tightens tissue to eliminate signs of aging and restore youth to your facial and neck. Facelift surgery can also boost self-confidence with natural-looking results.

Dr. Haena Kim uses her years of professional experience and knowledge to tailor your facelift to your cosmetic needs.

What Are the Benefits of a Facelift?

Smoother Fine Lines & Wrinkles

If you are bothered by fine lines and wrinkles in the lower two-thirds of your face, a facelift can provide a comprehensive solution. Excess skin is trimmed and tightened, while the underlying tissue can be lifted and repositioned to its original, more youthful position.

Reduction of Jowls

As your facial muscles age, sagging toward the jawline forms pockets of skin and tissue called jowls. Jowls hang from the jawline and contribute to an aged appearance. Facelift surgery can reduce or eliminate the appearance of jowls by lifting sagging tissue and tightening the underlying muscles.

Restoration of Facial Volume or Fullness

Fat in the cheeks and chin decreases and sags as you age, causing your face to look sunken and hollow. While a facelift can reposition the sagging tissues back to their original height, a fat transfer can also be performed to restore facial volume.

How Is Facelift Surgery Performed?

Step 1: Consultation

Dr. Haena Kim is a double board-certified facelift surgeon in the East Bay, specializing in facial plastic surgery. During your consultation, Dr. Kim will start a transparent dialogue with her patients, supporting their cosmetic goals and carefully guiding them through their transformation. Dr. Kim is ready to answer any of your questions and clarify any details.

Step 2: Anesthesia

Facelift surgery is performed under general anesthesia or sedation to ensure safety and comfort. Your safety is prioritized at all times.

Step 3: Procedure

Dr. Kim will customize the facelift techniques to address your specific aesthetic goals and facial anatomy.

Incisions will start at the hairline, continue behind each of your ears, and end at your lower scalp. This will minimize your incisions’ visibility and offer Dr. Kim full control when sculpting or redistributing underlying tissue. The face’s deep muscle layers will be lifted to help maintain natural-looking results.

Excess skin and fat can be removed or redistributed to smooth out fine lines, tighten skin, and define contours.

Sutures or skin adhesives will be used to close your facelift incisions. Your final results should not only provide a youthful appearance but accentuate your unique, natural beauty.

What Are Common Concerns After Facelift Surgery?


Once your facelift is complete, bandages will be placed around your face to help minimize swelling and bruising. Dr. Kim and her team will instruct you on the proper care for surgical sites and bandages during your recovery.

You will also be given information on when it is safe to continue strenuous activities and what healing concerns you should be on the lookout for.


It is normal for scars to develop from the incisions made at your hairline. The art of the facelift is also in concealing these scars so that they will fade over time and can be easily hidden.


During your consultation, Dr. Haena Kim will provide you with a customized estimate regarding the cost of a facelift in the East Bay. Facelift costs vary depending on individual anatomy and the extent of corrections. Other factors, such as the practice location, anesthesia fees, and pain medication, will play a role in your treatment’s total price as well.


General anesthesia is always administered by a board-certified anesthesiologist to ensure a safe, pain-free operation.

It is common to experience inflammation, discomfort, soreness, and bruising during your facelift recovery. To manage this, Dr. Kim will prescribe pain medication. Some patients choose to only use over-the-counter medication like TYLENOL® after the first few days.

Before & After

Facelift in Walnut Creek, CA - Patient Before 1
Facelift in Walnut Creek, CA - Patient After 1

Frequently Asked Questions About a Facelift

Q. How long will my facelift surgery take to perform?

A typical facelift can take between four and six hours to complete. However, the extent of your corrections and any additional cosmetic procedures will cause your operation time to vary.

Q. When will I see the final results of my facelift?

It will take two to three months for your face to return to “normal.” By this time, swelling and bruising should have subsided. However, it can take six months to one year for your facelift results to become fully visible.

Q. Why is ethnic plastic surgery important for a facelift?

Taking a one-size-fits-all approach to facelift surgery can cause dissatisfying and unattractive results. All cosmetic treatments, including facelifts, should be administered in a way that maintains a patient’s cultural beauty. Similarly, understanding each patient’s unique facial anatomy is critical to providing a high-quality and natural-looking facelift.

Dr. Haena Kim is uniquely qualified in this area and can provide examples of the results she has achieved for Asian patients and patients of diverse ethnic backgrounds.

Q. Are there non-surgical facelift options?

During your consultation, Dr. Kim will examine your cosmetic issues and suggest non-surgical facelift and cosmetic options when appropriate. A conservative approach like a thread lift can provide quick, easy, and natural results.

Q. Can I combine a facelift with other procedures?

The neck is where some of the most noticeable signs of aging appear. To combat this, many patients combine a facelift with a neck lift. A neck lift can accentuate your facial beauty and create a youthful and comprehensive balance to your overall appearance. 

Additionally, some patients choose to combine their facelift with rhinoplasty (nose augmentation). Asian nose surgery from Dr. Kim can preserve ethnic features while cosmetic issues are addressed.

Q. Does Dr. Kim provide facelift before and after photographs?

Dr. Kim is happy to provide you with facelift before-and-after photographs at your request or during your consultation. Photographs of past patients are also available in our online gallery.


A facelift can help improve and even eliminate the most aggravating signs of aging

Model image


When it comes to an aging face, nothing dries up the fountain of youth faster than the combination of time and gravity. Over time, essential proteins in the skin known as collagen and elastin, which work to keep the skin both firm and flexible throughout your youth, gradually break down. This gradual break down over time is responsible for the slackening of the skin present on your face and neck. The constant pull of gravity exacerbates this loosening effect and results in the appearance of jowls, creases, fine lines and wrinkles on the skin’s surface—particularly the lower portion of the face.

In addition to time and gravity, sun exposure, heredity, stress and lifestyle habits will further contribute to the visible signs of aging on the face and neck. While most individuals are aware of the inevitable changes that accompany getting older, there is nothing quite as disheartening as looking in the mirror one morning and not recognizing the face staring back at you. For men and women who are self-conscious about the aged appearance of their face or neck, facelift surgery with Haena Kim MD is the ultimate solution for comprehensive facial rejuvenation.

What is facelift surgery?

Facelift surgery, known technically as a rhytidectomy, is a surgical cosmetic procedure designed to eliminate the most aggravating signs of facial aging; such as sagging tissues, jowls, deep lines and folds found on the lower third of the face. While facelift surgery will not restore the flawless, supple complexion you had in your twenties, it will drastically improve upon your concerns and refresh your appearance with smoother and more youthful facial contours. Double-board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Kim has dedicated her practice exclusively to her specialties in restoring beauty to the face and neck and offers her patients the skill and artistry to deliver subtle and natural-looking results that last for years.

Who is a Candidate for Facelift Surgery?

As with most surgical procedures, the best candidates for facelift surgery are both men and women who are in good overall health, do not smoke and have realistic expectations as to what facelift surgery can do for them. While a vast majority of patients who undergo facelift surgery are over the age of 55 according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), there is no right or wrong age to have the procedure. Regardless of your age, if you are troubled by any of the following concerns, facelift surgery may be right for you:

  • Sagging skin around the midface, jawline and neck
  • Displaced facial volume or fullness
  • Creases extending from the nose to the edges of the mouth (nasolabial folds)
  • Creases extending from the edges of the mouth to the chin (marionette lines)
  • Jowls or a double chin

It is essential to understand that while facelift surgery is considered the gold standard of facial rejuvenation procedures, it cannot eliminate all signs of aging on the face or neck. However, for patients whose aesthetic concerns include areas like the upper portion of the face, the eyes or the neck, facelift surgery is an opportune time to combine multiple cosmetic treatments into one surgery for maximum anti-aging results and a single recovery period. At Dr. Haena Kim MD, patients will frequently opt for a neck lift, brow lift or eyelid lift to refresh multiple areas of their appearance. During your consultation at our office, Dr. Kim can help you to determine which procedure or procedures will yield the most optimal results for your needs.

How is Facelift Surgery Performed?

Your facelift surgery will be performed in the comfort of the operating room under general anesthesia so that you will not be conscious during the procedure. The total length of your operation can fall anywhere between four to six hours, depending on the extent of correction you require and whether any additional cosmetic procedures will be performed. For facelift surgery, Dr. Kim will place discreetly hidden incisions within the hairline and behind each of your ears to minimize their visibility followed by a meticulous closure.

Through these incisions, facial skin will be gently separated from the underlying muscles and connective tissues of the face so that they can be tightened and repositioned for more defined facial contours. Excess tissues or fat may be removed or rearranged depending on your unique facial structure, and the skin is then draped and pulled tightly back over the restored facial contours to smooth out lines, creases and wrinkles.

What is recovery like from facelift surgery?

Depending on the extent of your facelift procedure, the amount of downtime required after facelift surgery will vary from patient to patient. However, most patients will feel comfortable enough to resume their daily activities or return to work after about two full weeks of recovery. You can expect to experience residual bruising, swelling and stiffness immediately following your facelift surgery that will generally resolve on its own within 10 to 14 days of your operation. Dr. Kim can often speed up her patient’s overall recovery time by recommending specific oral vitamins to aid in your body’s healing process.

The skin treated on your face and neck will be particularly vulnerable to sun damage, so it is critical to apply sunscreen daily to ensure proper healing during this time. Strenuous activities such as exercise should be avoided for about four weeks, or until Dr. Kim gives you clearance at a follow-up appointment after your surgery. As long as you strictly adhere to your provided aftercare instructions, your beautiful results should begin to become apparent as swelling dissipates and incision lines fade.

What can I expect from my facelift surgery results?

While facelift surgery cannot stop the aging process, the results of your procedure will be long-lasting in comparison to any non-invasive technique. Most patients are able to enjoy their refreshed and youthful-looking appearance for 10 to 15 years before signs of aging begin to creep up once again. However, your restored facial contours will make you look years younger, and will age gracefully and naturally with you over time.

The skin treated on your face and neck will be particularly vulnerable to sun damage, so it is critical to apply sunscreen daily to ensure proper healing during this time. Strenuous activities such as exercise should be avoided for about four weeks, or until Dr. Kim gives you clearance at a follow-up appointment after your surgery. As long as you strictly adhere to your provided aftercare instructions, your beautiful results should begin to become apparent as swelling dissipates and incision lines fade.

If you are bothered by the telltale signs of aging or look older than you feel, facelift surgery is the most comprehensive solution to combating the effects of gravity and time on your skin’s appearance. To learn more about what facelift surgery can do for you, contact Dr. Haena Kim MD at 510-570-1566 to book your initial consultation today.

Dr. Haena Kim Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery is located in Walnut Creek, CA. We serve the surrounding East Bay areas, including Contra Costa County, San Ramon, Concord, Pleasant Hill, Danville, Richmond, San Pablo, and Lafayette.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will my treatment look overdone?

This question still ranks as among patients’ top concerns but it is one that need not worry today’s facelift patients. New techniques and a more detailed understanding of how to achieve subtle but deeply rejuvenating results have made the overly-tight or stretched look that patients fear a thing of the past. All patients who have a modern facelift will experience some initial tightness as they heal — a natural result wherever patients have sutured incisions — but tightness is limited to recovery. Smoothly draped skin that looks refreshed but not overdone is routinely attainable, especially when patients select a highly-qualified board-certified facial plastic surgeon, such as Dr. Haena Kim, to perform their surgery.

Is a facelift performed differently for Asian patients?

Understanding the unique anatomy of Asian patients can make a substantial difference in the quality and naturalness patients enjoy from their facelift results. Excellent surgical skills are necessary but not alone sufficient in achieving outstanding results for patients of Asian descent. A doctor with significant expertise and experience treating Asian patients can do more to preserve the features which reflect your ethnicity and individuality while adding the youthfulness you seek. Dr. Haena Kim is uniquely qualified in this area and can provide many examples of the results she has achieved for Asian patients who have had a facelift surgery performed by her.

Is a facelift all I need to youthful face I want?

A facelift provides substantial rejuvenation to the lower two-thirds of the face. However, some patients may wish to see more revitalization in the forehead area, as well. A brow lift can address excess or sagging skin in the upper third of the face for total rejuvenation of the facial area and the most comprehensive results. In most cases, patients who require both procedures can have them in a single surgery. This combined surgery is more complex and longer but provides outstanding results for qualifying patients. An in-person consultation is always the sole determinant of your course of treatment. A board-certified facial plastic surgeon, like Dr. Haena Kim, can help you determine the best surgical plan for your needs and goals.

Maintaining a healthy, natural beauty always starts with a first step.
Let us take that journey with you.

106 La Casa Via, Suite #200

Walnut Creek, CA 94598

(925) 891-4135

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