Neck Lift (Platysmaplasty)

Neck lift surgery (platysmaplasty) can eliminate excess fat and sagging skin on your neck. The procedure also includes tightening your platysma muscle. You may wish to pursue this surgery if you have age-related skin changes or sagging skin from losing weight.


A person before and after neck lift surgery with changes to the skin on their neck.
A neck lift is a surgical procedure to eliminate excess and sagging skin on your neck.

What is a neck lift (platysmaplasty)?

A neck lift (platysmaplasty) is a cosmetic surgery that can give your neck a more contoured and youthful appearance. It works by lifting and tightening your platysma muscle.


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What is the platysma muscle?

Your platysma enables movement in your lower face. It’s a thin sheet of muscle that goes from your collarbones to your lower face. If your platysma weakens, it can affect your neck’s appearance.

Who is neck lift surgery for?

You may wish to pursue neck lift surgery if you have:

  • Excess fat in your neck.
  • Horizontal bands of skin (neck bands).
  • Lost a lot of weight and have loose skin on your neck.
  • Neck skin that appears saggy, similar to the tissue that hangs down from a turkey’s neck.
  • Wrinkles.


What’s the difference between a facelift and a neck lift?

A facelift restores a youthful appearance to the upper portion of your face. Facelifts often include components of a neck lift.

Neck lift surgery is a less invasive option. It focuses on the area below your chin and above your collarbone.

Can a platysmaplasty improve the appearance of a double chin?

During a neck left, surgeons remove some fat tissue. But if a double chin is your primary concern, you may wish to pursue other options such as double chin surgery.


Can I achieve the effects of a neck lift without surgery?

Cosmetic procedures can enhance the appearance of your neck (nonsurgical neck lift). It may take multiple procedures to achieve your goals. And the results are temporary.

Nonsurgical neck lift options include:

  • Botulinum toxin injections reduce the appearance of neck bands. Botulinum toxin injections work by injecting a substance that relaxes muscles that cause neck bands.
  • Deoxycholic acid is an injectable solution that destroys fat cells. Injecting it under your chin can give your neck a more sculpted appearance.
  • Dermal fillers restore volume by plumping sagging skin.
  • Fractionated laser treatments make skin texture more consistent. Laser skin resurfacing directs beams of light to heat layers of skin beneath the surface, smoothing out inconsistencies.

Procedure Details

How is a neck lift done?

Here’s what to expect during platysmaplasty:

  1. You’ll receive medication to help you stay comfortable during the procedure. This may include general anesthesia, which puts you to sleep and blocks sensation. Or you might have intravenous (IV) sedation, which you receive through a needle in your arm.
  2. Your surgeon will make an incision near your sideburn and around your ear, as well as under your chin. In some cases, it’s only around your ear.
  3. They’ll remove fat, reposition tissue under your neck and tighten your platysma muscle. They’ll also trim away excess skin.
  4. Before completing the procedure, they’ll use stitches (sutures) or special skin adhesive to close the incision.

Risks / Benefits

What are the benefits of a neck lift?

The benefits of a neck lift procedure last years longer than nonsurgical options and include:

  • Defined jawline.
  • Firmer, smoother skin.
  • Streamlined profile.
  • Youthful appearance.

What are the risks of platysmaplasty?

Neck lift surgery risks include:

Recovery and Outlook

What is neck lift recovery like?

A neck lift is typically an outpatient procedure, meaning you go home the same day. Neck lift recovery includes swelling and bruising immediately after the procedure. Your doctor may have placed small, temporary tubes to clear blood and other fluid from beneath your skin’s surface. You may also experience muscle tightness in your neck that lasts several months.

You’ll receive incision care and other at-home neck lift recovery instructions, which may include:

  • Avoiding alcohol and aspirin.
  • Keeping your head elevated while you sleep.
  • Not applying ice to your neck.
  • Not lift heavy objects.
  • Avoiding turning your head at your neck.

How long does a neck lift last?

The results of neck lift surgery can last years. Precisely how long is different for each person and depends on certain factors, such as:

  • Genetics impacting skin elasticity and muscle tone.
  • Lifestyle choices, such as smoking, that cause wrinkles and premature aging.
  • Sun exposure, which can damage your skin.
  • Your neck lift surgery recovery and whether there were any complications.

When To Call the Doctor

When should I contact my healthcare provider?

Call your surgeon if you experience signs of complications, including:

  • Bleeding.
  • Blood clot symptoms, such as abnormal swelling in your arm or leg.
  • Fever or chills, which can be a sign of infection.
  • If your incision is unusually sore to touch.
  • Pain that’s not responding to medications.

A note from Cleveland Clinic

A platysmaplasty can give your neck a more contoured appearance. The procedure minimizes neck bands, sagging skin and excess fat. Results can last for years. However, it doesn’t prevent age-related changes that occur after surgery. To get the most out of your procedure, follow care instructions, don’t smoke and protect your skin from the sun.

Medically Reviewed

Last reviewed on 06/28/2022.

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