Facial enhancement is a complex art and, if performed correctly, won’t result in a tight, pulled, or unnatural look. This is where Dr. BYUN’s extra training in facial enhancement is crucial. As the leading expert in his field, Dr. BYUN recommends customized variations of this procedure for a refreshed, restored, and natural look. Plan out a time for rest and recovery, then return to your daily routines with a new outlook and confidence.
Dr. BYUN’s Midface Technique was presented at the national meeting of Plastic Surgery.
The technique was featured as a video at the American College of Surgeons at the Orlando meeting May 1998.
The delicate aging process of the midface involves the relationships between the lower eye, the cheek area, and the corner of the mouth. Thus, the process of one area affects the other.
The concept of Dr BYUN’s facelift is to restore the natural youthful disposition of the cheek by elevating the descended malar cheek pad through very small incisions therefore helping to reshape the central face and achieving a revitalized look.
Unfortunately, ear lobe cannot be cut and replaced, skin and muscle inferior to the ear lobe have to be lifted to reduce tension along the ear lobe. This is the reason why quick skin based facelift will always cause a bad appearance of the ear lobe. Good news is it can be corrected with midface facelift or muscle based facelift along with the ear lobe.
He has been the pioneer and one of the very first to work on mid facelift or muscle lift of the face since 1997. As a matter of fact Dr. BYUN was the first to perform the surgery at Northwestern University in 1998 and his video of ‘VECS’ was first presented to the American College of Surgery in 1998. His presentation of Vertical lift, Endoscopic assisted, Composite muscle flap Suspension technique (VECS) was its first at Chicago plastic surgery meeting in 1998. He has been perfecting his method of face muscle lift since then, now almost 20 years.
Male Facelift using Dr. BYUN’s Muscle Repair Facelift Technique, centralizing his droopy tissues back to the midline of the face.
“I now dedicate my life to a healthy mind, body, and spirit. My face however, was starting to look sad and tired. Thanks to Dr. BYUN’s skills as a surgeon, I now look so youthful and well-rested. It’s very natural looking. A ‘rebirth’ is what I’ve experienced from Dr. BYUN.”
After photos were taken 5 months post surgery.
- Lower Blepharoplasty
- Endoscopic Brow Lift
- Midface Lift
- Jowl Lift
- Neck Lift
- Lipo Chin
- Dermabrasion To Brow Scar
- Brow Scar Release
- Fascia Graft
Skin Sparing Facelift to restore signs of aging, using Dr. BYUN’s Muscle Repair Technique.
This patient flew in from New Zealand after finding Dr. BYUN on the internet.
As a medical professional, she knew how to distinguish fact from fiction. After her first consultation, she realized that Dr. BYUN’s experience, artistry, and technique could not be matched.
After Dr. BYUN repairs the facial elements, the skin for the face, neck, and eyes are gently pulled over the muscle groups. Dr. BYUN calls this a skin sparing face lift. It is well known from research done on plastic surgery procedures that a full thickness skin graft shrinks significantly. Undermining the skin on your face from the tissues below is an essential part of a face lift. As a result of Dr. BYUN’s extensive experience, and the skin’s propensity to shrink from a full thickness skin graft, Dr. BYUN removes the minimal amount of skin from the face.
Dr. BYUN believes that it is erroneous to pull the skin tight because this will result in an unnatural look. It is absolutely archaic to take inches of skin from your face. This antiquated approach will result in a imbalance of tissue tension which will eventually cause abnormal aging. One can think of many examples of a celebrity who have tight bands forming from the sides of their mouth pulling the corners towards their ears. Also, some look like they are balding at the temple area because someone took too much skin from the hair area such as their sideburns.
Dr. BYUN’s approach gives the patient the opportunity to have dramatic changes with natural looking results. Dr. BYUN moves important muscles vertically, he then separates the skin gently, and pulls the skin over gracefully. Dr. BYUN relies on the natural shrinking property of the skin. One should pay special attention to the shape of the mouth/lips when looking at the post-op photos of face lift patients. The lips should be the same length or shorter after surgery if the face lift was performed correctly. The shadow at the corner of the mouth should be smaller or it should be lifted.
This unique approach to the face was developed by Dr. Michael BYUN. Dr. BYUN calls this a muscle lift, multiple vector pull, vertical lift, and multi-plane lift. Dr. BYUN’s procedure is not a face lift, it is an “Expression Lift.” As a result, Dr. BYUN reminds his patients that his procedure is a repair and treatment, not a vanity celebrity makeover.
Patients often choose to add upper eye, brow and the neck area since the recovery time for additional procedures are about the same as the face muscle repair, Dr. BYUN calls this a ‘muscle repositioning’.
- Midface Lift
- Muscle Facelift
- Jowl Lift
- Neck Lift
- Lower & Upper Blepharoplasty
- Brow Lift
Deep Plane Rhytidectomy with an Expression Lift to improve patient’s tired, “frown” look, done by world-renowned Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Michael BYUN.
This patient wanted to improve her tired, mean look. After Dr. BYUN’s Expression Lift, she looks more energetic and youthful.
Patients often choose to add the upper eye, brow, the neck area, or more Zones since the recovery time for additional procedures are about the same as the face muscle repair. This is what world renowned plastic surgeon Dr. BYUN calls a ‘muscle restoration’.
Listen to what Dr. Byun’s Facelift patient has to say about her procedure.
Expression Lift to restore drooping facial muscles back to the midline, using Dr. BYUN’s Muscle Repair.
The patient is a healthy female who wanted to improve excess lines while avoiding drastic changes. She wanted to keep eye shape the same, sticking with a more natural look. She had quite significant ripples on the central face, lower eye, and cheek to the mouth area. Slight volume was also missing from the cheek area. These ripples improved, and volume was restored because the muscles were lifted up where they once were.
Photos taken 3-1/2 months after.
She had a brow ptosis, which is where the space between eyebrow and upper eyelash becomes shorter. The skin on her upper lid is touching the eyelash, so you cannot see her upper eye crease. Notice that the fillers under the eye have stretched the muscle, creating a prominent tear trough.………This is also called a prominent nasojugal line (different from nasolabial fold which indicates the smile line). As a matter of fact, her nasolabial fold has gotten deeper, and her marionette lines next to the corner of her mouth got deeper. An Interesting note is her chin- she has a fold above the chin that makes the chin appear short. Also, her lower lip had two bulging circles underneath making her lower lip look heavy (dumbbells below lower lip or above the chin). Her main concern? ‘ I look way tired and mean!’ After using Dr. BYUN’s famous signature ‘ BYUN muscle repair’ lift, she looks relaxed, brighter, and younger.
Notice how the brow is released, but not too pulled. Now you can see her eyelashes and upper eye crease space. Her nasojugal line and nasolabial fold are shorter and shallow. The triangle that holds the cheek muscle is smaller and lifted. Notice the creases at the corner of the mouth and the marionette lines, which are much less apparent. Her lower lip and the chin are much less crowded. The projection of her chin is better by relaxing the muscles around the mouth, without using a chin implant. This was achieved by relaxing the mentalis muscle, and lifting the buccinator muscle which adds a fold to the marionette line. This was all reversed by the famous ‘BYUN face muscle repair’. Dr. BYUN emphasizes that the mouth muscles should never be pulled sideways. All the muscles should stay where they start and end. He often talks about a hammock that’s stretched and touching the ground. If it were to be a muscle, they need to be tightened within that space, not pulled away from point A and B. The muscles simply need to be tightened within that compartment. This demonstrates the one and only BYUN difference. All that is listed above can be achieved by his famous muscle lift using an endoscope. He visualizes the eye muscle, cheek muscle (malar cheek pads that include zygomaticus major muscle), buccinator, and mentalis chin muscle). He tightens them and puts them onto the periosteum where the muscle used to be. Then he separates the skin so it holds the newly repositioned higher forever.
- Endoscopic-assisted face, jowl, and muscle lift
- Fat graft from the abdomen to the face, cheek, and nasolabial fold.
Central Facelift using Dr. BYUN’s Muscle Repair Facelift.
The first two photos before and after surgery. The third photo is showing 10 years after surgery in her 60’s, and the fourth photo showing 15 years after surgery in her 70’s. The BYUN difference truly stands the test of time!
- Signature BYUN muscle repair to improve chin oral area
- Cheek and lower eye blepharoplasty
Dynamic Muscle lift to reverse and pause early signs of aging, using Dr. BYUN’s Muscle Repair Technique.
Even the appearance of your most vibrant smile improves after the “BYUN Dynamic Muscle lift”
A very animated face, as well as the hyperactivity of the muscles show the early signs of aging. This is a good chance to repair and re-train her muscles to not be used so much.
- Midface muscle lift
- Jowl lift
- Neck lift
- Chin mentalis muscle release
- Brow lift
- Frownline muscle corrugator release
- Bilateral lower eye lids blepharoplasty
- Fascia graft to mentalis muscle
Filler complications repaired by Dr. BYUN’s signature Muscle Repositioning Technique.
This patient chose to add the upper eye, brow, and the neck area since the recovery time for additional procedures are about the same as the face muscle repair, which is common with our patients.
Photos were taken 3 weeks after surgery.
- Endoscopic-assisted muscle lift of the midface, buccinator, and the buccal fat and jowl area
- Lower lid canthoplasty with blepharoplasty
- Upper lid blepharoplasty with anchor technique
- Chin and neck lift
- Fat graft to the temple area
Expression Lift (corrects a “mean” and “tired” look) repaired by Facelift Guru Dr. BYUN, using his signature Reverse Facelift Technique.
This patient is a 60 –year old female who is a nurse and would like to improve her facial features.
This patient chose to add upper eye, brow, and the neck area since the recovery time for additional procedures are about the same as the face muscle repair. This is quite common amongst patients.
- Upper lid blepharoplasty
- Anchor technique bilateral
- Lower lid subculiary incision approach blepharoplasty with preservation of pretarsal muscles, bilateral
- Mid-face jowl lift
- Buccinator buccal fat lift
- Brow lift
- Neck lift
- Chin muscle release
- Juvederm and platelet injection to the perioral area.
Expression Facelift, Executive Facelift using Top Plastic Surgeon Dr. BYUN’s Vertical Facelift Technique.
This patient is a male who wanted to improve facial aging. He wanted to look similar to a younger version of himself without pulling his skin too much.
- Endoscopic-assisted brow lift
- Midface lift
- Jowl/Neck lift
- Lower and Upper eye blepharoplasty
- Liposuction chin
Fat Graft Complication with visible lumpiness, corrected by Dr. BYUN’s Muscle Repair Facelift Technique.
She had a previous fat graft to her lower eye area by another doctor, which resulted in puffiness, irregular scar tissue, and visible lumpiness to the area. After a rhinoplasty by another doctor, she felt that her nose was too boxy. This was corrected during the procedure.
Patients often choose to add upper eye, brow, and the neck area since the recovery time for additional procedures are about the same as the face muscle repair.
This after photo was taken at 5 weeks post op, during the early stages of healing, without makeup. She continues to observe progress toward her optimal results.
- Corrective Rhinoplasty
- Endoscoptic-assisted Midface composite left jowl lift
- Brow lift
- Neck lift
- Lower blepharoplasty
- Shaving and removal of the previous bulging fat graft from the lower lids
- Upper blepharoplasty
- Dermabrasion to the nose scars and the right temple scars
This patient is a 40 year old former actress and model. Her facial features and bone structure were already great, but she wanted some improvement. Dr. BYUN’s Midface Lift was the perfect choice to correct this patient’s tired, aged look and deep lines using Dr. BYUN’s Signature Muscle Repair Technique.
What is the Signature BYUN Facelift?
This patient is a 53 year old who started noticing the subtle signs of aging creeping up on her. Top plastic surgeon Dr. BYUN opted for his famous Vertical Facelift using his Signature Muscle Repair Technique to take the patient back in time, and back to herself.
Skin Sparing Facelift to reduce the signs of aging. This was using Dr. BYUN’s Vertical Facelift Technique.
Midface Lift done to reposition facial muscles back to where they fell from. Dr. BYUN used his Muscle Repair Technique.
Muscle Repair Facelift to create a more youthful appearance, achieved with Dr. BYUN’s Vertical Facelift Technique.
Expression Muscle Lift to correct this patient’s “angry/tired look,” and repositioning of drooping muscles due to aging by using Dr. BYUN’s Signature Vertical Facelift Technique. Her image was kept, but her tissues were centralized again.
This patient is in her 70s and started to see that aging was catching up to her. She felt she appeared more tired, and older than she felt. Dr. BYUN was able to restore her youth with a Skin Sparing Muscle Repair to create a more youthful appearance, using Dr. BYUN’s Signature Facelift Technique.
Muscle Lift to slow down signs of aging using Dr. BYUN’s Deep Plane Rhytidectomy.
Muscle Repair to bring droopy skin and muscles back to midpoint using Dr. BYUN’s Vertical Facelift Technique
Expression Lift to bring muscles and other tissues back to the midline using Dr. BYUN’s Signature Muscle Repair Technique.
What Exactly is a Facelift?
The way that the industry defines a ‘facelift’ is all too vague. Between extreme commercialism and gimmicky marketing, the term facelift has actually become quite confusing. We can, however, gain some clarity, but only when proper terminology is applied. This article will help the reader categorize the vast number of confusing facelift terms and be able to identify which procedure may actually be right for them.
The real way to categorize facelifts is by these FACTORS:
- Anatomical Site/Region
- Anatomical Layers/Depth
- Fixation Method
- Direction of the Repair
- Injection Method (what goes inside)
- Method of Exposure
Let’s dive in…
1. Facelift, is a face lift.
You are lifting something. What are we lifting? That depends on what Anatomical Site or Region is the focus:
Midface Lift, is lifting the mid part of the face (cheek & under eye).
Jowl Lift, is lifting the muscles near the mandible.
Neck Lift, is lifting regions of the neck.
Brow Lift, is lifting the upper part of the face (eyebrow & forehead).
These terms are used to define anatomical regions of the face.
2. This category is very important for the consumer or patient to visualize and understand; the Anatomical Layer, or Depth of the Facelift. People often talk about Deep Plane Rhytidectomy vs Superficial Facelift vs the Mini Facelift. Confusing right? Let’s zoom out; Starting from the outside of the face (skin layer), we can then move deeper through the layers of tissue and stop at the skull (bone layer).
As a rule of thumb, Superficial Facelifts are defined by the dissection being below the skin, but above the muscle. A Skin Facelift only goes as deep as the subcutaneous level. Other examples include, the Mini Facelift, Subcutaneous Level Facelift and the Ponytail Lift or the Ponytail Facelift. No matter who does it and no matter what commercialized terminology the procedure has, facelifts involving skin and fat layers will always be a very superficial lift, as these are not lifting the muscles.
The problem with just pulling and fixating these layers without carefully separating them causes abnormal scarring due to uneven tension. This also interferes with normal aging. The layers above should all be independently moved up as a flap and independently secured. For these reasons, Dr. BYUN does not endorse any of the above procedures.
A Composite Lift, includes multiple layers -skin, fat and muscle. As we move deeper to the muscle layer, common facelifts you will hear about are SMAS (superficial musculoaponeurotic system), which is the top of the muscle that’s lifted. A Deep Plane Facelift is a dissection under the muscle. Subperiosteal Lift, is a dissection below the muscle and the periosteum, which makes it the deepest level, right above the bone. These terms are used to define the depth of the procedure.
Dr. BYUN’s facelift utilizes all of these layers. So simply asking your doctor “what level are you dissecting to?” can help the patient see through the commercialized terminologies.
3. The third part of the differentiation is the Method of Fixation. Therefore, how do you get the layers to stay exactly where you want them? Most surgeons are using absorbable sutures, permanent sutures, or staples. You also need to ask your doctor “what fixation method will be used?” This is where the following terms come from:
Suture Lift, which is using a suture under the skin to temporarily lift and tighten the skin. Often referred to as a Lunchtime Facelift. A Feather Lift is when threads are inserted in the subcutaneous level to temporarily lift sagging skin. PDO Threads or the PDO Thread Lift, use dissolvable sutures to temporarily and lift the skin.
These terminologies are basically describing the fixation, material, and method. So does it really matter? Yes, but very impartially. Because every surgeon has a way to fixate the layers that they separate at the regions described above. Since the beauty industry has started reaching outside of their area of expertise, they have come up with sensationalized and highly commercialized phrases. These are all discouraged by Dr. BYUN. Some of the most common lifts using these methods are: the Lifestyle Lift, the Weekend Facelift, or Weekend Lift, MiniLift, or Mini Facelift, Quick Recovery Lift, No Scar Lift, and the list goes on. These are examples of more gimmicky phrases that consumers should not pay attention to as they are not true facelift techniques.
4. The Direction of the Repair is very important and it’s what truly separates Dr. BYUN from the masses. As we age our muscles move Down and Out, to reverse this, Dr. BYUN repairs Up and In. Tissues that have aged are reversed, meaning that tissues are NOT pulled laterally (out/away), but rather they are pulled medially (up/in). Ask your surgeon, “What direction are you pulling the muscles?” If the answer is up and away or up and out, you should run up and out of that surgeon’s office. Many surgeons use the term Vertical Facelift. This means that they move the tissue layers up. Because most surgeons want to get rid of all the wrinkles, they pull up and lateral (out/away) towards the ears causing distortion. Dr. BYUN utilizes the Vertical method, BUT he is about the only one who pulls the muscles back to the midline.
5. Whether or not a surgeon utilizes an Injection Method is helpful to ask. Liquid Facelifts utilize synthetic, man made fillers, which cause complications such as migration and lumpiness. Fat Graft Facelifts cause lumpiness and calcifications. A Microfat Facelift, or Emulsified Fat Graft although sound good, will eventually meet the same fate as the Fat Graft Facelift. This set of terminologies describe the materials used and not the region, layer, or fixation method. So, what does that mean? Simply, they are not true Facelift methods. It goes without saying, but Doctor BYUN does not recommend any of these methods, he believes that for the most natural results, volume should not be added or subtracted from your face, but only repositioned.
6. The final part of the differentiation is the Method of Exposure. Most of the time, the method is open. This means the surgeon creates large incisions in the front of the ear, the back of the ear, and down the hairline on the forehead. This is the traditional technique and is NOT recommended by Dr. BYUN. Here are a few terms that describe an Open Facelift: Short Scar Facelift, S Shape Facelift and Limited Incision Facelift. Alternative to the Open technique is the Endoscopic technique. The Endoscopic Facelift, is when an endoscope (small thin camera) is utilized to work on hard to reach areas. This technique utilizes very small incisions. These terminologies all describe how much of a cut is required to do the procedure and is heavily dependent on the surgeon’s skill level. Dr. BYUN’s opinion is that less skilled surgeons will make larger incisions, or open the skin more.
The BYUN Difference
Since almost all of the techniques mentioned above aren’t able to correct the main reason for a facelift, (the aging/sagging muscles) Dr. Michael BYUN created his own technique over 25 years ago at Northwestern. He was able to recognize that the way facelift procedures were being performed was quite wrong and didn’t fix the root of the problem. Traditionally, surgeons are taught to pull the skin, fatty tissues and muscles Up and Away. Doing this brings the muscles to a non-native and therefore non-natural location on the face. Because muscles aren’t placed back to where they started to fall from, surgeons resorted to shoving fat grafts and fillers into places where the muscles should be.
With Dr. BYUN’s repair, he simply dives underneath the muscles and repositions the muscles back to their origin. His technique not only leads to results lasting 10+ years, but patients look natural, they age more gracefully and most importantly, they look like themselves!
With all of this information drawn out, you can start to see the magic of the BYUN difference; let’s break down his methods using the guidelines above:
- Dr. BYUN loves to do “The Works” for patients which includes the whole face and neck. He has broken the face into four (4) different zones so that patients can still benefit from having his repair work done even if it’s not for the whole face and neck.
- As for the layer, Dr. BYUN has all the layers covered. He separates the SMAS that’s above the periosteum and works in the supraperiosteal layer which is essentially a deep plane or a Supraperiosteal Facelift. The skin is secured tightly enough to show off the new muscle form, but loose enough to not cause any scar spreading or tissue damage. Dr. BYUN was one of the first to describe the VECS Lift (vertical endoscopic composite system). This utilizes deep plane rhytidectomy, SMAS, skin and fat lifting techniques.
- Dr. BYUN uses a very special multi-suture securement method as he places the muscles back onto the bone they fell from.
- By far the most important differentiation of a BYUN facelift is the direction of repositioning. We age Down and Out, he repairs Up and In. Tissues that have aged are reversed, meaning that tissues are NOT pulled sideways, but rather they are pulled back to the midline. Since he is leading the way and is the ONLY one restoring the face in this way, this is Dr. BYUN’s contribution to the field of plastic surgery and he hopes to one day win the Nobel Prize in Medicine.
- It goes without saying, but Doctor BYUN does not recommend any injection methods, he believes that for the most natural results, volume should not be added or subtracted from your face, but only repositioned. Like a squeeze ball that has been squeezed from the top and pouches out the bottom, to restore the structure, one must squeeze the bottom to restore the contents back up to the top. This mirrors the aging process, as we age our muscles succumb to gravity and move down and out. Therefore, the most physiologically correct way to restore the face is to bring the contents back UP and IN; but no other surgeon is doing this! Other surgeons pull muscles to a third location (UP and OUT). This distorts the face because muscles are no longer in their native location, to counter this, they will fill the face with fat graphs and fillers to try to create a more normal bulk appearance of where the muscle SHOULD be. Over time, fat grafts cause lumpiness and fillers migrate, both causing heaviness to the face and thus age it more rapidly.
- A big aspect of the BYUN difference is that he uses small incisions with the endoscopic technique. Even with this challenging technique, Dr. BYUN can perform an entire face and neck lift. He was one of the first surgeons to use a small endoscope back in 1998 at Northwestern University.
In The Media
What You Need To Know Before Getting a Facelift
Six things to be aware of before going under the knife.
When the Young, Bright Prodigy Evolves into the Great Seasoned Master
Dr. Michael BYUN is a serious doctor with seriously comprehensive experience unlike many of his peers setting him heads and shoulders above all the rest.
Chicago Magazine Profile
Chicago magazine profile of Dr. BYUN.