Conveniently located to serve the areas of San Diego, CA

America's Best Facelift Plastic Surgeons List by Newsweek 2023

A facelift is the classic surgical solution to reverse the many signs of facial aging. And although it has remained the gold standard for decades, new advances and techniques have made this procedure quicker and more effective, with more beautifully natural-looking results than ever before. Beauty is more than skin deep, but unfortunately, so are the signs of aging! A facelift addresses these changes by artfully restoring the underlying facial structure to its youthful contours. It also smooths and tightens skin that has been impacted by time, gravity, and genetics. 

Dr. Steven R. Cohen has dedicated his career to restoring and enhancing the structures of the face and has pioneered groundbreaking techniques to combat the signs of aging.

At FACES+ in San Diego, we offer patients an informative and transformative experience that utilizes the science behind the aging process to turn back the clock. Dr. Cohen’s vast experience and knowledge allow us to offer a full range of facelift procedures that can be tailored to the patient’s unique needs. To learn more about the advantages that a facelift at FACES+ offers, schedule a consultation at our beautiful offices in San Diego. Set up your appointment today online, or by calling 858.453.7224.

Before and After Photos


facelift san diego

Unfortunately, aging occurs from the surface of our skin down to the skeletal foundation of our face. Decreased collagen production and growth hormones leave us more susceptible to the effects of gravity and the constant toll of our environment. And while wrinkles and newfound laxity in our facial skin may be the most obvious signs of aging, there’s more happening under the surface. We spend a lot of time worrying about it and trying to eliminate it, but in reality, the contours of a youthful face are buoyed by many separate compartments of fat. As the years pass, these begin to atrophy and become repositioned in the face. For better or worse, because they are compartmentalized, not all areas of fat undergo the same changes simultaneously, which leads our cheeks to become flatter and the lower third of our face to appear more fleshy. Increased skin laxity doesn’t help. The dermis, the deep layer of our skin, contains the components that allow our skin to be strong, thick, retain hydration, and its ability to “snap back.” As these elements, chiefly collagen and elastin slow in production, what’s left naturally degrades. (1) And while all this may make you question the expression “aging gracefully,” men and women can halt this disheartening process with a facelift procedure. Not that it’s a new idea: doctors began to perform the first versions of facelifts as early as the 1900s!

Modern medicine has increased our understanding of the aging processes and allowed doctors to develop increasingly dynamic facelift techniques. Rather than just “lifting” facial tissue upwards, doctors can now address volume and structural issues. (2)  At FACES +, Dr. Cohen incorporates innovative advantages into the standard facelift procedure.

Benefits of a Facelift

There’s a reason that a facelift is the ultimate in anti-aging surgery. No other procedure addresses the multiple signs of aging on such a deep level. And, no other procedure acts as the ultimate preventative measure. While fillers are a great way to test drive smoother skin with improved volume, a facelift offers more significant, enduring benefits without the ups and downs that occur between injection sessions. 

At FACES +, Dr. Cohen performs comprehensive facelift procedures that treat both the intrinsic signs of aging (which naturally occur as the years pass) and the extrinsic signs of aging (damage accrued from environmental factors and lifestyle choices). 

A facelift is an effective solution for:

  • Sagging skin
  • Jowls 
  • Loss of volume
  • Hollow cheeks
  • Under eye bags
  • Submental fullness 
  • Static and mimetic wrinkles and creases

A Personalized Procedure

A facelift contours and repositions the skin and underlying structures of the face to eliminate some of the most obvious signs of aging. Rather than just lifting and tightening the skin, Dr. Cohen accesses the connective tissues and muscles which can then be tightened and strategically sutured to firm and restore volume. 

Incisions are discreetly located above the hairline and around the ears. This allows Dr. Cohen to access the superficial musculoaponeurotic system, or SMAS. This critical sheath of tissue connects our facial muscles to our skin and separates the important layers of fat that give our face its youthful contours. (4) Once the skin has been separated from the SMAS, Dr. Cohen can adjust this layer, eliminating the ligaments that cause lines and pinching in skin, repositioning pads of fat, and tightening the muscles. The facial skin is then carefully redraped, tension is adjusted, and incisions are sutured closed. Once healed, any scarring will be virtually impossible to detect. 

Mini Face Lift

mini facelift procedure

For those most concerned with the lower third of their face, a mini facelift is an excellent way to address targeted areas with smaller incisions and a faster recovery time.

It’s also a preventative measure that can stop the signs of aging from becoming more pronounced. This procedure is less invasive, but just as effective in offering patients youthful contours and a defined jawline. Incisions are concealed around the ears, which also allows Dr. Cohen to improve the appearance of the neck. 

California Face Lift

Dr. Cohen developed the California facelift to offer patients the ultimate in comprehensive anti-aging. It addresses all the common complaints of those looking to turn back the clock. Jowls are smoothed, cheeks are lifted, and patients enjoy streamlined contours. This procedure also pays special attention to the neck. But what truly sets Dr. Cohen’s California facelift apart from other procedures is his innovative addition of Cohen Injectable Tissue Regeneration Treatments™. Dr. Cohen has developed a proprietary technique that turns a patient’s unwanted body fat into a filler that does so much more than just add volume. Fat contains valuable growth factors and stem cells. When introduced to the face, these essential components allow the tissue to regenerate, leaving the patient with long-term results and sustained anti-aging abilities.

Dr. Cohen offers a wide range of facelift techniques that are custom to each individual who undergoes this procedure. Some of the options available include:

  • Deep Plane Lift
  • Mini Lift
  • SMAS Lift
  • Ponytail Lift
  • Vertical Lift


Ideal candidates for a facelift want a long term-solution that reverses the signs of aging and reduces the future impact of time on their appearance. Candidates should be in good health, have good skin elasticity, and ready to commit to a responsible recovery. This ensures that the patient will be able to enjoy all of the exceptional results that have come to define Dr. Cohen’s practice. FACES + is a top provider of facelifts for patients in San Diego and beyond. Those traveling to La Jolla to take advantage of Dr. Cohen’s talent and expertise enjoy concierge service and logistical assistance for a relaxing, supported experience. 

Personal Consultation

A personal consultation at FACES+ is an important first step when considering a facelift. This appointment is your opportunity to learn more about the procedure and to learn more about yourself! Dr. Cohen will examine your facial skin and structure to explain more about your unique anatomy and how the aging process has affected your individual case. Once he’s understood your concerns and desires, he’ll be able to determine the best course of treatment for you. 

If a facelift is right for you, Dr. Cohen will design a treatment plan and surgical approach to take years off your appearance and give you the natural-looking rejuvenating transformation that has put FACES+ on the map. To get started, schedule a consultation today by calling 858.453.7224.


Before your facelift, you’ll need to avoid aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for at least 2 weeks before the date of your procedure, and smoking for at least a month. Filling Dr. Cohen’s prescriptions for pain medication and antibiotics before the procedure will ensure that you’ll have them close at hand when you need them.

Facelift procedures are typically performed under general anesthesia, so you’ll need to fast as instructed the night before your procedure. You’ll also need to designate a friend or family member to drive and or escort you home after your operation. 

Recovery and Results

facelift procedure san diego

After the first few days of recovery, patients may feel ready for light activity. However, facelift patients should plan on taking a week off of work to get the proper rest they need to heal. Total recovery time will depend on the surgical techniques used, and the body’s unique rate of healing. 

Within a month, most of the swelling and bruising will have subsided, and patients will begin to see their new, youthful contours emerging. 

Corresponding & Complementary Procedures 

The aging process varies from patient to patient, and so Dr. Cohen may recommend an additional procedure to achieve an overall rejuvenated appearance, and allow the results of the facelift to truly shine. 

A brow lift is an excellent addition to a facelift procedure and can be performed at the same time as facelift surgery. This procedure lifts the eyebrow and lower forehead area to eliminate the drooping that can obscure the eyes and cause patients to look older or more tired than they actually are. Patients that choose to address sagging skin around the eyes can benefit from a blepharoplasty, or eyelid enhancement and enjoy a younger appearance, improved field of vision, and more alert expression.

Patients who want plumper, more youthful lips can complement their facelift with a lip enhancement. Or, for chin enhancement, a genioplasty can adjust the proportions of the face for better chin and jawline definition.

Dr. Cohen has developed an important autologous fat grafting technique that uses unwanted body fat to restore volume and harness the power of the body’s own regenerative properties. Facial fat grafting uses injectable tissue replacement to stimulate collagen production in key areas.


The final cost of your procedure will depend on the details of your personalized treatment plan. You’ll have the opportunity to discuss pricing and receive an accurate estimate for the price of your facelift during your personal consultation. 


  1. Swift A, Liew S, Weinkle S, Garcia JK, Silberberg MB. The Facial Aging Process From the “Inside Out.” Aesthetic Surgery Journal. 2020;41(10). doi:10.1093/asj/sjaa339
  2. Barrett DM, Casanueva FJ, Wang TD. Evolution of the rhytidectomy. World Journal of Otorhinolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery. 2016;2(1):38-44. doi:10.1016/j.wjorl.2015.12.001
  3. Park DM. Total Facelift: Forehead Lift, Midface Lift, and Neck Lift. Archives of Plastic Surgery. 2015;42(2):111. doi:10.5999/aps.2015.42.2.111
  4. Whitney ZB, Jain M, Zito PM. Anatomy, Skin, Superficial Musculoaponeurotic System (SMAS) Fascia. PubMed. Published 2020. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK519014/