Neck Lift

Woman with her hair in a bun touching her neckOur plastic surgeons perform neck lift surgery in Ann Arbor to help women and men rejuvenate the contours of the upper neck. This procedure helps define the chin-neck angle, providing a more definite distinction between the 2 areas. In most individuals, there is a combination of excess fat along with relaxation of the superficial neck muscles giving rise to the “turkey gobbler neck.”

Procedure Description

Most neck lift procedures begin with liposuction to remove excess fat. Fat is removed through a small incision just below the chin. The neck muscle (platysma) is sewn together, if necessary, to tighten the upper portion and decrease the sagging appearance. The incision is then closed and the areas treated are covered by a bandage or garment to help redrape the skin and contain the swelling.

When neck skin is loose, the skin can be tightened by removing some of the extra skin. This is usually performed in conjunction with a facelift procedure to be able to remove the maximal amount possible. In more limited situations, two incisions are made, one in front, under and/or behind each ear. If a full facelift is not necessary, a mini-facelift can be combined with the neck lift to provide more tightening. Sections of skin are trimmed and lifted into place and sutured. Tightening the neck muscles requires incisions below the chin and under, in front and/or behind each ear. These same incisions can be used for liposuction of the neck and tightening loose skin. Before the incisions are closed, a section of neck muscle is removed and the ends are sutured to bring them together at the front of the neck.

Patients with mild to moderate skin laxity on the neck may be candidates for the FaceTite treatment. This nonsurgical facelift and neck lift alternative provides effective skin tightening with minimal downtime.

Recuperation and Healing

You will be wearing a compression garment for several weeks to support the newly contoured skin. You should also avoid strenuous activities for several weeks.

You should plan to sleep with your head slightly elevated to help reduce swelling in the area. The contours of your neck may be swollen at first and facial movements may be somewhat stiff due to swelling. Bruising may last for several weeks.

Most people return to their usual activities and return to work approximately 1 to 2 weeks after surgery. Strenuous sports and other vigorous activities should not be performed for 3 to 4 weeks. You may drive when driving does not cause pain or when you are no longer taking pain medication.

Learn more about the recovery time following a neck lift here.

Nonsurgical Double Chin Treatments

Woman with long brown hair looking in the mirrorCoolSculpting®

CoolSculpting is a noninvasive method for eliminating fat cells by chilling them until they crystalize. During a treatment, the neck fat is placed into the curved applicator of the CoolMini. The arctic-level cold quickly numbs the area, so it’s pretty comfortable during the 45-minute treatment.

Here are some photos from clinical trials.

Chin and neck of woman before and after Coolsculpting treatment

Chin and neck of woman before and after Coolsculpting treatment


This innovative injectable treatment is FDA-approved to reduce excess fat under the chin (also known as submental fullness). Kybella® has been shown to create a more defined facial contour with an improved profile, eliminating the unwanted appearance of a double chin. The injectable is composed of deoxycholic acid, which occurs naturally in the body to break down dietary fat. It works by dissolving the targeted fat tissue, which is then removed through metabolic processes.

It’s important to note that Kybella can only be used for removal of fat under the chin. If you have loose skin in this area (“turkey neck”), Kybella can’t address that problem. If you have a double chin and saggy skin, Liposuction might be a better choice for you.

Here are some photos from clinical trials.


Profile of woman before Kybella treatment
Profile of woman after Kybella treatment


To find out what the best option is in your case, feel free to call our office at (734) 712-2323 with any questions or make an appointment for a consultation.

Insurance Guidelines

Neck lifts are considered cosmetic procedures and are not covered by insurance. The patient is responsible for payment.

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