First of all, let me speak to the elephant in the room. At age 41, I’m still young with healthy skin (thanks to a rigorous routine of cleansing, toning, treating, moisturizing, and sunscreening since age 14), and honestly, I feel much better. on my skin than ever before. But there is no denying collagen depletion and bone loss with age. Yes, that's right! Apparently, bone tumors are around the age of 25–30 years and gradually decrease after both men and women. Yay!
This is why I started having fillers at the age of 37 (you can read my previous articles where I lyricized about facial liquids and  lip fillers ). Now that I’m entering my 40s, I wanted to try something that not only filled in the exhausted areas but actually helped my own body produce its own collagen over time. Enter: thread lift. I first heard about the threads through a well -known medical aesthetic provider and founder of The Things We Do Vanessa Lee, RN . Her “natural beauty guide” philosophy has earned a major clientele on the A-list (everyone from Kate Kateson to Lucy Hale to Kourtney Kardashian are fans of her line of skincare and cosmetics), and it’s easy to see why: Lee’s work speaks for itself .
After he completed one side (I had threads on my cheek and under the jaw), Lee handed me a mirror with the results and I could hear him chasing. The results are immediate. Look below to see how much more lifting my face is on the left, compared to the right mid -process. I mean, you notice the lift-a noticeable difference! The whole procedure took a total of 30 minutes max and I was on my way home. I will say once the anesthetic is gone, there is a slight pain in the cheeks from which the threads are inserted but it cannot be endured. I took some mild painkillers before bed (please consult your provider first) and was told to go to bed for the next few nights to make sure the threads were not interrupted. As a sleeper on the side, this was probably the hardest part for me.
What are threads, exactly?
There are a couple of different types of threads that are popular in the US market. PDO threads are non -perishable absorbent seams made from polymer comparable to a sugar complex. Less popular are yarns made of poly-L lactic acid (same as Sculptra) and also made from absorbable polymers that signal collagen growth and tissue renewal.
They are known as "threads" in the aesthetic space but have been used in operations for decades under the name "sutures." That’s right — these cosmetic enhancing threads are made of the same materials surgeons use to close lungs and heart tissue.
The cosmetic use of sutures from plastic surgery gained real strength in the late 90s and early 2000s when threads were used to suspend damaged cheek tissue and soon after its, used permanent sutures to help lift the face, however, permanence served as more of a problem than a solution and it is recognized that absorbent sutures have fewer risks, is more pleasant, and can be placed and customized according to the patient’s aging process.
During these times, threads are used to help lift sagging brows, contour the midface, and tighten the jaw area prone to "jowling." The popularity is growing in the medical aesthetic industry every day.
What types of threads are there and how do you know which one is right for you?
PDO and PLLA threads are the two main types of threads you will find used in the US by providers, PDO being the most widely used. They are both bio stimulators, causing skin and tissues to strengthen and build collagen, but PDO threads tend to be made in a wider variety and in more flexible and customizable forms than PDO threads. PLLA is usually placed deeper into tissues and may have more risks of dimpling and granulomas.
I prefer to use PDO threads with my patients and within that framework, there are many different profiles of PDO threads. There are smooth threads to form skin thickening, twisted or dense threads to drive the reinforced skin thickening, there are barbed or cogged threads intended for lifting, and inside the choice of barbed thread, there are unidirectional and bi-directional threads depending on the support required to hold and suspend the tissues upwards.
Think of it like this: If your concern is to lift the face and tighten the jaw, you will probably need barbed threads. If your concern is more than skin thinning and loosening, you probably need a smooth or stormy thread, possibly in conjunction with a lift depending on the area.
How do threads work? Can you explain your method / process?
Threads are considered bio-stimulators in the sense that they signal our bodies to react and essentially heal themselves. Threads (both lifting and thickening) are placed mid to deep into the dermis tissue in a specific layout or pattern to drive collagen by increasing fibroblast activity. As the threads are absorbed, your collagen takes over the thread area.
For example, when lung tissue is sutured by PDO, the thread does not remain there permanently but instead promotes the surrounding lung tissue to take over and hold itself. It is a brilliant process of hinting to the body that some regeneration needs to happen.
You are familiar with your thread technique today and an early adopted process. How long have you been doing threads and why is this a technique you want to offer and become an expert on?
I have now been working on threads for four years. At first, when I first found out about the threads close to eight years ago, I didn’t feel like we were still there in science and techniques. There are a lot of complications that I have heard of and the training I have received does not leave me with confidence in the results, but fast forward to three years ago and we have very good threads with stronger barb, better techniques, and science are finer as we learn from our colleagues in Asia who have been aggressively working on threads over the past decade.
I have invested a lot of time and money in receiving training from not only Western providers but from South Korean aesthetic providers who have more experience and have a more subtle approach to significant changes.
Threads have become a major part of my practice because previously in filler and neuromodulator, I was able to strengthen and smooth a face but I was not able to lift a face without adding totality to specific areas. . The threads give me a way to lift and address thin skin without making the face heavier or redder in any way, and patients love it.
Skin thickening can be done on most areas of the face where thin skin is exposed, such as the mid-cheek, jawline, and forehead, but I also put thick threads on the thin skin on the elbow, arm, and leg. Lifting threads can be used to lift the brows, cheeks, and jawline, but I also used these threads to lift the skin around the knees as well as lift the front and back of the thighs.
How long is the treatment / procedure?
Anywhere from a few minutes to 30 minutes for the face depending on the procedure.
When do you expect to see results?
Usually the results are most noticeable between 4-8 weeks.
What is downtime? What else should you expect?
Slight swelling and bruising may occur and may last for several days but softening may occur up to 2-3 weeks with certain facial movements. For example, you may feel absolutely fine on day five of a cheek lift but suddenly say something and feel tenderness or pain in the area. This is normal and subsides on its own within a week or two for most patients but can take an additional week for the occasional patient.
How long is it?
The threads dissolve in your system (depending on which type is used) in an average of about 2-6 months, and after being absorbed, your collagen lasts until the aging process takes place again. aging, which can be anywhere from 12– 18 months for lift and 6-12 months for skin thickening.
Do you need a follow-up appointment?
It is good to have a follow-up appointment 1-2 months after treatment so that your provider can check the progress of the threads and so that you can see pictures of your baseline versus where you are in your treatment. -follow up. It is quite compelling to see the subtle but beautiful change.
How much does it cost?
Skin thickening is approximately $ 1400 per area, eyebrow lift and jawline definition is approximately $ 1500, and face lift is $ 2000.
Who the right candidate for the thread? Who is not the right candidate for threads? What age should you consider threads?
Anyone with significant skin sensitivity is a good candidate for threads. This treatment is contraindicated for someone who is prone to keloids. Your 30s is a good time to consider thread support because you can get away with less treatment and the duration of results is longer because collagen is still available in the skin compared to someone in their 60s. a patient over the age of 60 will see great results but will have to use many other threads and not get the duration you normally get when you are younger.
Why are threads so effective?
Threads are very effective because it's a sure thing that bets on your body being rebuilt. Our systems are very complex and we aim to heal so the science of using a sugar complex to trigger the body ' s natural healing response is always affecting. Whether it’s a gentle lift or maximum skin rebuilding, our skin does the work and we just need to trust the process.
What questions should you ask yourself before you get threads?
Do I have enough skin relief? A person without adequate skin relief will not see much difference. This patient tends to have very thick, oily skin and a full face. Threads will not help because the tissues and underlying fat pads are too dense to be lifted in most cases.
Do I have excessive skin sensitivity? If the skin is too thin, skin thickening threads should be put on for two months before lifting threads are considered. In some cases, the skin is too thin and the threads should not be placed at all and should be thick with PRFM, or platelet-rich fibrin matrix, which is thickening the skin of your growth factors from your blood.
Are my expectations realistic? If you want your skin to be lifted a few inches, this treatment is not for you. Great to consult for surgery. This lift is gentle but noticeable and for someone who is mindful of this type of therapy that prevents further skin cleansing and responds to skin soreness but is aware that this treatment is not replaces the operation.
Am I accountable to my inquirers? There is a trend of lifting threads outward and upward in a “fox eye” mode, creating a slanted, small eye frame. It is not culturally sensitive in the Asian community and it is blatantly taking culture in the purest form in my field. Be aware as a patient what cosmetic trends you are buying and be wary of what practices promote this type of advertising and treatment. We are in a time of deep study and meditation and it will not stop with your cosmetic treatments.
How do you find a good giver who doesn't over -give it and give a natural look? What questions should you ask?
Ask how long they have been doing these treatments and ask to see their thread portfolio. Pay attention to the appearance of your injector, this is a good indicator that if your provider looks too pulled or unnatural you will soon look the same as well if you stay in their seat.
What are some of the things that can go wrong with threads? Why? How can you avoid this?
Darkening can occur in threads placed too superficially and this causes the skin to adhere to the shallowly placed thread and give the appearance of a dimple. It usually resolves within a few weeks and can be accelerated by radiofrequency.
Infection can occur at the site of insertion which can be painful and inflammatory due to bacteria entering the site of insertion during the procedure or after. It can be cured with antibiotics and steroids.
Misplacement and asymmetry can occur in an inexperienced thread giver where one side of the face is held more tightly than the other, which can be addressed simply by turning for multiple threads. on the heavy side.
Thread removal can occur, meaning that one thread or more threads are not exposed within the tissues due to damage or forced pressure on the skin. It is best to avoid stable tissue pressure for two to four weeks If this happens, multiple threads can be placed.
What are the main thread legends there and what is true?
Myth 1: Threads don't last more than a few weeks.
Fact: Some plastic surgeons used to post about the effects of thread not lasting, and then a few months later, after some more in-depth training and proper technique, I saw on social media that they became fans of the thread after further education about them. There are many factors that lead to good results and thread duration, you need to use adequate, correct type according to the anatomy of the patient, and the techniques vary greatly. I have patients who have come in for two years who still don’t need a touch-up with good thread placement. The results last, they just need to reach the right provider.
Myth 2: Thread treatments are extremely painful.
Fact: Your provider should be providing you with enough local anesthesia that you should be able to talk to the appointment easily if you wish. I have heard extremely painful thread procedures due to the lack of numbness. It is necessary to have a comfortable and pleasant treatment. It was a strange feeling for sure, but very bearable.