Why Choose Dr. Zenn?

  • Dr. Zenn’s primary focus is on facial rejuvenation procedures
  • He has provided thousands of patients with a refreshed, more youthful appearance through cosmetic facial surgeries
  • After graduating from Harvard Plastic Surgery residency, Dr. Zenn furthered his training with a fellowship in Head & Neck and Facial Surgery
  • While at Duke University, Dr. Zenn served as co-director of Duke’s Facial Reanimation Program
  • He served as an editorial board member for the medical journal Head & Neck Surgery
  • He has taught his cutting-edge techniques to hundreds of plastic surgeons
  • Dr. Zenn is a Castle Connolly Top Doctor for Cosmetic Surgery
  • Dr. Zenn holds board certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery

What is a Facelift?

The effects of time, gravity, and sun exposure can significantly age your appearance. If you are frustrated that the way you look no longer reflects the way you feel, you may be a good candidate for a facelift.

Facelift surgery is a procedure that targets aesthetic concerns in the mid-to-lower face and neck. This popular surgery eliminates excess skin around the neck and restores youthful fullness to facial features. A facelift can reverse signs of aging, such as wrinkles and sagging cheeks (jowls) due to loss of volume in the face, and skin excess due to inelasticity. Overall, this procedure will restore a more youthful appearance. Patients often have facelift surgery in combination with browlift, blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery), and facial fat grafting to get a more complete rejuvenation.



Dr. Zenn’s Approach

A facelift represents the most technically difficult and delicate procedure in plastic surgery. No other part of the body has so many critical structures like muscles, nerves, and blood vessels in such a small area. Hence, an intimate knowledge of facial anatomy and experience operating on the face are paramount.

Patients choose Dr. Zenn for their facelift because of his expertise, surgical skill, and artistic eye. His goal for facelift surgery is to provide a subtle, natural-looking result, while maintaining the highest level of patient safety.

To achieve this result Dr. Zenn will:

  • Lift and reposition the underlying facial support structures that have sagged over time
  • Avoid an unnatural-looking “windblown” effect by creating a proper foundation over which the skin can be gently re-draped—not tightly overstretched
  • Remove fat from unwanted areas of the patient’s body and use it to restore youthful fullness to facial features
  • Eliminate excess skin in the lower facial and neck regions

This powerful combination creates a smoother more youthful appearance and restores soft contours to the face as they existed at an earlier age. Elevating the supporting structures of the lower face also aids in giving patients a more defined neck and jawline. Keep in mind the procedure “facelift” is not uniform and each surgeon will perform it differently based on their ability and experience.

In fact, not all plastic surgeons in the Triangle perform facelift surgery. And of those who offer the procedure, many are not board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.


“Thank you for the pictures, I can really see the improvement. The change is subtle so I don’t look different, just better. That is exactly what I was hoping for. You did a wonderful job and you can be sure I’ll recommend you to all my friends.”

Your Facelift Consultation

Facelift Consultation with Dr. Zenn at Zenn Plastic Surgery in Raleigh, NC

When you meet Dr. Zenn for your initial consultation, you will spend time getting to know each other so he can learn about your aesthetic concerns. Based on your desires and your unique facial anatomy, he will discuss different treatment options.

As part of your visit Dr. Zenn will:

  • Conduct a thorough examination of your face
  • Assess your skin and supporting tissues
  • Develop a personalized treatment plan to address your concerns
  • Show you before and after photos of similar patients

Contrary to popular belief, a facelift is not a “full-face” procedure. Instead, it specifically addresses sagging, lack of fullness, and excess skin in the mid-to-lower face and neck. Depending on your desired improvements and specific areas of concern, Dr. Zenn may suggest a browlift, eyelid lift, facial fat grafting, or other procedures along with or instead of a facelift.

Dr. Zenn will create your personal treatment plan based on his aesthetic evaluation, your desires, and the amount of downtime you have available for recovery. When you are ready to move forward, you will schedule your pre-operative appointment and surgery.



Your Experience

For your safety and comfort, your facelift will take place in an accredited medical facility. Dr. Zenn will review your treatment plan with you on the day of your surgery and answer any final questions you might have.

In a typical procedure Dr. Zenn will:

  • Perform facelifts at accredited ambulatory surgery centers, not in an office OR. Surgery is performed under a general anesthesia by board certified Anesthesiologists (MDs). Dr. Zenn believes that anything less diminishes patient safety
  • Lift and reposition the underlying support structure of the mid-to-lower face, restructure the neck, and remove any excess skin that remains
  • Carefully place incisions in the natural folds of the ears, under the chin, and at the hairline behind the ear. This will help conceal and minimize scars
  • Use liposuction to remove body fat, which will be processed to serve as natural filler for facial features that have lost volume

“Two friends of mine went to Dr. Zenn for facelifts and I was incredibly impressed with their results. So, I bit the bullet and went in for a consultation. I was immediately impressed with his knowledge, demeanor, professionalism, kindness, and low-key approach. There was absolutely no pressure. I must say that I am extremely pleased with the results. Dr. Zenn is a true artist.”

What is the Recovery from a Facelift Like?

A facelift is an outpatient procedure. Accordingly, most patients will be able to leave the surgical facility an hour after surgery. For the first week after your procedure, you can expect to have swelling and bruising with minimal pain. You will want to rest at home, sleep on your back, and avoid wearing makeup while you heal. After a week, you should receive clearance to ease gently back into your normal routine. Patients can generally return to work two weeks after surgery. However, Dr. Zenn recommends his facelift patients do not return to full activity, including use of the gym, until three to four weeks after their procedure.

Although patients heal at different rates, most can be public facing in two weeks. While final healing can take anywhere from two to six months, residual swelling during this time actually looks good as it minimizes fine wrinkles. The entire process has remarkably little pain and most patients do not require pain medication for more than a day.


What is the Cost?

At Zenn Plastic Surgery, we take the time to understand your desires for seeking a facelift and Dr. Zenn works with you to determine what procedures will get you there. All of Dr. Zenn’s plastic surgery procedures are uniquely tailored to fit each individual client’s needs. Your facelift plan may involve components of skin removal, deep support, fat grafting to replace volume, and eye rejuvenation among other possibilities. Some of these procedures are not offered by other surgeons. This can explain why plastic surgeons have varying prices – each is doing different things, calling it a “facelift.”

At Zenn Plastic Surgery, the quoted package price is all-inclusive. Indeed, the total package price covers the initial consultation, pre-op appointment, before and after photos, scar gel, garments, all follow-up appointments, and facility and anesthesia fees. Additionally, all facelift patients receive a complimentary skin care evaluation with Mary Shaver, RN, BSN, CANS and a 10% discount on all skin care products for one year following surgery.

In order to make this procedure more accessible, Dr. Zenn offers several convenient payment options and plastic surgery financing through Care Credit and Alphaeon Credit.


Facelift FAQ

  • What’s the BEST age for a facelift?

    There is no best age for a facelift. The aging process is different for everyone. Some women benefit from facelift surgery in their 40’s, while others may not need to consider it until their 60’s or 70’s. Many factors such as sun damage, smoking, and most importantly genes play a role in determining when you will benefit most from cosmetic surgery.

    Those with bigger cheekbones, a more prominent chin and long slim necks stay “preserved” and youthful longer as they hide many of the aging changes that occur overtime. Thanks mom and dad! If you have flat cheeks, a small chin or a short neck, you may see jowls and extra neck skin as early as your 40’s.

    It is always best to address the signs of aging early before they are deeply established. In the case of facelifts, earlier is often better.

  • Do facelifts last forever?

    Facelifts can help turn back the clock, but they don’t stop it ticking entirely.

    Older facelift techniques, which many surgeons still use, rely on pulling and tightening the skin. Unfortunately gravity will prevail and the skin will loosen and sag again.

    That said, Dr. Zenn’s cutting edge technique addresses the supporting structures of the face and not just the skin. Which delivers a longer lasting result.

  • What will my experience be after surgery?

    Facelifts are an outpatient procedure, and patients are seen the next morning in the office. After that, patients are encouraged to stay home and rest for one week. You will be seen in the office post-op at week one and week two for suture removal.

    You will be able to reach Dr. Zenn or his nurse 24 hours a day for any questions that may arise post-surgery.

  • How visible are scars after a facelift?

    Dr. Zenn is extremely skilled at the placement of his facelift incisions. He knows the exact locations to target to reduce both the appearance and size of scars. Dr. Zenn minimizes the appearance of scars by choosing discrete and inconspicuous places for the incisions such as the natural folds of the ears, the hairline, or under the chin. That way, scars end up in your natural creases or obscured by your hair. After the initial healing is complete, most patients can’t even tell where the incisions were. Best of all, the scars will continue to fade over time.