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EMFace vs. Rhytidectomy: Understanding the Difference Between Surgical and Non-Surgical Facelifts

We all go through aging, and its effects on our appearance can be distressing. Countless men and women turn to facelifts to restore a more youthful look. But the choice between surgical and non-surgical facelifts is confusing for many prospects. EMFace vs. Rhytidectomy—what’s the difference, and which should you get? Let’s dive into each, so you can choose the best way to achieve your desired look.

What Is EMFace?

EMFace is a non-surgical facelift option that treats three layers of the face:

  1. Deep muscle layer strengthened to support and lift face on deepest level
  2. Stimulate collagen
  3. Smooth wrinkles and tighten skin

This non-surgical, needle-free facelift delivers a noticeably more youthful appearance. Patients don’t have to worry about downtime and the risks of traditional surgical facelifts. Instead, it relies on synchronized RF energy and HIFES technology to boost collagen production. More collagen in the body tightens the skin and reduces wrinkles.

How Does EMFace Work?

EMFace uses radiofrequency energy and high-intensity focused electromagnetic technology to tighten and tone the skin. During the procedure, a specialist will use a device to emit RF energy to heat the deeper skin layers. This triggers collagen production and causes the skin to contract and tighten.

This new non-surgical facelift is a versatile treatment. You can target specific concern areas to achieve a lifted and youthful appearance. Popular treatment areas include the cheeks, jawline, or neck. Since it’s non-invasive, you won’t experience any pain or scarring. At most, you’ll feel a warming sensation during the procedure.

What to Expect During an EMFace Treatment

During EMFace treatment, we’ll instruct you to lie down on a treatment table. Next, we’ll clean your face in preparation for the procedure. To begin treatment, we’ll apply EMFace applicators to the targeted treatment areas. When we turn the devices on, you’ll begin to experience rapid and involuntary muscle contractions. These may feel strange but are an indication that the treatment is working. You’ll also feel a warming sensation emanating from the EMFace applicators. You shouldn’t feel any pain during your appointment.

In most cases, we can complete EMFace treatment in about 20 minutes. There’s no recovery time, so you can return to your normal routine right away if you want. It’s normal for the skin to look a bit red and sunburned for a few hours afterward.

Why Do People Love EMFace?

EMFace offers an easy and painless solution for facial renewal. Benefits of this novel facelift alternative include:

  •  Convenient and quick sessions
  •  Minimal downtime
  •  Comfortable procedure
  •  Natural-looking and long-lasting results
  •  More cost-effective than surgery
  •  Non-invasive (no needles, toxins, or fillers!)

When Will I See Non-Surgical Facelift Results?

Everyone’s experience with EMFace is unique. Most people need at least four sessions (one per week) to get optimal results.

You may notice subtle results right after the treatment. However, full effects appear within four to six weeks after your final session. They’ll continue to get better in the following weeks.

After the full results manifest, you’ll enjoy optimal facial muscle tone for about six months. Some clients may get more than six months out of their treatment. We recommend touch-up sessions every six months to maintain a top-notch outcome.

Rhytidectomy: What Is It and How Does It Work?

Our skin loses its elasticity and firmness with time. This leads to wrinkles and sagging skin. Rhytidectomy is a surgical facelift that removes excess skin and tightens the underlying muscles.

This surgery involves repositioning the skin and soft tissue for a younger appearance. Target areas include the jawline, cheeks, mid-face, and neck.1

During a rhytidectomy, you can expect incisions along the hairline near the temples, around the ears, and under the chin. These cuts allow the surgeon to access, lift, and tighten the underlying muscles and tissues.

Besides removing excess skin, a surgical facelift can address other aging signs like jowls, double chins, and sagging neck skin. Some patients may combine this procedure with other cosmetic treatments. For example, an eye lift or nose surgery can deliver a complete rejuvenation experience.

What to Expect During a Surgical Facelift

Your surgeon will most likely put you under general anesthesia before beginning a rhytidectomy facelift surgery. Once you’re asleep, the surgeon will make incisions in strategic areas. Depending on the type of facelift you receive, your incisions may be in any of the following areas:

  • Under your chin
  • Behind your ears
  • In your mouth
  • At the base of your scalp
  • Behind your temples (in your hairline)

Most facelifts involve the removal of excess facial skin and fat. The facial muscles and remaining skin are then repositioned, tightened, and secured in place with sutures.

Does Rhytidectomy Hurt?

One of the common concerns people have when considering a rhytidectomy is whether it’ll hurt. The thought of prolonged discomfort can be unsettling. Fortunately, modern cosmetic surgery techniques and anesthesia have made facelifts a more comfortable experience for most patients.

But compared to the EMFace non-surgical facelift, a rhytidectomy involves more discomfort and recovery time. Your body needs time to heal from incisions after the procedure. If you have a low pain tolerance and haven’t gotten a facelift before, EMFace may be the better choice. See if the non-invasive option can give the results you desire before going the invasive route.

How Long Does Facelift Surgery Take?

The duration of a rhytidectomy facelift surgery varies based on the:

  • Extent of the procedure
  •  Surgeon’s approach
  •  Patient’s needs and cosmetic goals

A full extensive facelift (including neck lifting and tightening) can take eight hours to complete. This is a significant time investment when stacked up with EMFace, which only takes 20 minutes per session.

EMFace Aftercare vs Traditional Facelift Aftercare

EMFace aftercare instructions are minimal because the procedure is not invasive. You don’t need to worry about downtime afterward and can immediately return to your regular routine. Nevertheless, it’s still wise to follow your provider’s aftercare instructions. Doing so will help you get the best results from your procedure.

After treatment, stay hydrated by drinking at least 64 ounces of water daily. Be sure to apply a 30 SPF or higher sunscreen to your face before heading outside. Your skin will be more sensitive to UV rays after EMFace. You can protect your skin from sun damage by avoiding direct sunlight and wearing sunglasses or sun hats while outside for prolonged periods.

We recommend scheduling a series of EMFace treatments to get optimal results. You’ll likely notice an improvement after just one treatment. However, most patients experience the best outcome after 4-6 treatments. We try to space each treatment about a week apart.

A rhytidectomy facelift is more invasive than EMFace. Therefore, following your rhytidectomy aftercare instructions is very important to avoid complications. After surgery, you’ll likely feel uncomfortable, sleepy, and unsteady. You should plan to spend the remainder of the day resting and taking it easy. It can take up to three months to fully recover from this surgical procedure.

Keep your head elevated when you sleep for at least two weeks after your procedure. We recommend sleeping in a recliner or using blocks to raise the head of your bead. You want to maintain a 45-degree angle while sleeping. This will help reduce post-operative swelling.

You’ll feel some discomfort after your rhytidectomy facelift, but don’t try to manage it by applying ice packs to the area. Instead, take anti-inflammatory and pain medications as recommended by your provider. We’ll give you more detailed aftercare instructions after your surgical appointment. Follow them carefully to reduce your risk of side effects and boost your likelihood of a good outcome.

EMFace vs. Rhytidectomy: Which Is Right for Me?

The decision of whether to get a surgical or non-surgical facelift is personal. It depends on various factors, such as your needs, goals, and budget. Both options have unique benefits and drawbacks. Understanding the key differences between the two is essential to make an educated decision.

EMFace doesn’t involve fillers, toxins, needles, or incisions. This makes it an attractive facelift option. The results may not be as dramatic or the same as what you’ll get from a surgical facelift. But it’s worth trying if you’re looking for a quick and convenient solution with minimal downtime.

On the other hand, rhytidectomy is an invasive procedure requiring incisions. It may be more effective at producing long-lasting results and addressing a more comprehensive range of aging concerns. But unlike EMFace, there’s discomfort and recovery involved. Those with a low pain tolerance prefer a more natural approach like EMFace.

Are you on the fence between EMFace and rhytidectomy? Consult with an expert to share your goals, concerns, and expectations. Get your questions answered before making a choice.

Enjoy a Non-surgical Facelift with EMFace

New England Center for Body Sculpting is a premier provider of cutting-edge beauty procedures, including the EMFace non-surgical facelift. Medical director Dr. Julia Edelman, MD, FACOG, NCMP, offers a range of treatments to help you look and feel your best. EMFace, in particular, provides a safe and effective solution to address aging signs without incisions or toxins.

Want to treat yourself to a non-invasive facial toning experience? Visit the New England Center of Body Sculpting. We are proud to be the leading provider of EMFace in Middleboro, MA, and New England. We serve the Greater Boston, Greater Providence, South Shore, Southcoast, MA, Eastern Massachusetts, and Cape Cod areas. Get started by calling 508 947-2852 to schedule a free consultation.






1. Rhytidectomy (Face-Lift Surgery), published in JAMA Network, Link
2. *BTL data on file

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