A neck lift is a surgical procedure that tights the loose skin of your neck, as well as tightening of the neck muscles. Often removal of some neck fat can be done, and the muscles of the neck are tightened as well. The incision can be placed in front of the ear, but usually, the incision is underneath the earlobe and extends behind the ear.
If you have a lot of loose neck skin, then you may want to consider a neck lift. A surgical incision is made near the ear area, typically behind the ear. The skin is lifted up all the way from the ear to the midline of the chin and neck area. After lifting the skin, the underlying muscle and soft tissue can also be tightened as needed. If you have some fat in the neck, then this can be removed using liposuction or direct excision.
A neck lift is usually done along with a face lift. Even if you only want your neck skin to appear tighter, you may also want to consider fixing the loose skin in that area to get a natural look with a hidden incision. If you have very loose neck skin, trimming it and tightening it may result in a fair amount of loose skin in the earlobe area. This loose skin is unnatural in appearance, so to achieve a better result; it is recommended that you undergo a facelift as well.
If you have loose neck muscles or prominent muscle bands, then you may need your neck muscles tightened. The muscles that are tightened in the neck are the platysma muscles. The muscle tightening can be done by tightening the platysma muscles from the sides of the neck or by making an incision right underneath the chin and tightening the neck muscles in the midline of the neck. Sometimes both incisions are needed.
If you have some fat in your neck or in the area under your chin, then fat removal may be recommended. This can be done by either liposuction or by direct excision.
Redraping and tightening the remaining skin is performed by gathering up the loose neck skin and carefully placing it possibly around the ear, under the ear lobe, and/or behind the ear. Generally, the more loose skin you have, the more tightening and the longer the incision you may need to properly drape your skin.
At the end of the operation, drains are sometimes used and placed under the neck skin to ensure as little swelling and bruising as possible. The sutures are removed anywhere from 5-14 days after surgery and you will recover over time to allow the swelling and bruising to go away.