The Selfie Chin Solution: How Neck Liposuction Can Improve Your Profile

Before and after neck and chin liposuction in a woman

Liposuction is Highly Effective

I speak quite a bit about how dramatically Smartlipo™ neck liposuction improves my New York patients’ profiles. While I usually call this neck liposuction, I find that many of my patients refer to it as chin liposuction. I think that’s because many of them have a “selfie chin”–and they all seem to hate it! In the end, it really doesn’t matter what we call it. The point is that nowadays, we can improve the profile for men and women using a relatively simple technique that both contours the jawline and tightens the skin at the same time.

Until recently, “experts” might have told patients that a face steamer lift was necessary to remove jowls–and sometimes it still is but NOT all of the time. A facelift takes hours to perform nicely and involves significant downtime, whereas a liposuction procedure on the chin or neck only takes about 45 minutes to complete (under local anesthetic in the comfort of my office), and the recovery time is just a few days.

Selfie Chin Can Be Easily Removed

Double Chin Removed with Smartlipo Liposuction of the Neck
Double chin or “Selfie Chin” – removed with Smartlipo liposuction of the neck

I find that a lot of patients come in these days because a FaceTime or Skype video showed their double chin. I also know a professional photographer who tells me that the first things she Photoshops for her clients are their neck and jawline because the subjects look so much better. She then pointed out that these people pay thousands for her pictures and even more for her Photoshop abilities to make them look better. In fact, for the same money, they can potentially have their real double chins removed and then not have to pay her for the computer morphing time.

It’s a Simple Procedure

The nicest part about Smartlipo™ on the neck or chin is that it can be done using a local anesthetic. We begin by making a few pinholes in the skin so that we can infiltrate the area with a local anesthetic. That’s right, no scalpel is necessary! I like to make the needle holes in the chin and behind each ear. Don’t worry, there are no perceptible scars when we are done. The local anesthetic injection might burn a little, but it only lasts for about 90 seconds to 2 minutes. Once this step is complete, patients don’t feel any discomfort.

Next, we treat the tissues with the Smartlipo laser. The Smartlipo device is actually a big box with a laser. We connect a small sterile fiber-optic cable to the device, and the cable slides into a cannula that is used to treat the area. The cannula is inserted into the pin holes we made earlier, and when we fire the laser, it melts the fat.

Skin Tightening is Remarkable

The best part about this procedure is the contraction of the tissues around the chin and neck. This is a topic that has received a lot of attention in the surgical literature because many of us are skeptical, but some studies are convincing.  There seems to be no need for the removal of excess skin in well-chosen cases.

Even in the example below, I truly thought I was going to need to perform a neck lift operation to provide the patient with a nice result. But a neck lift wasn’t needed. I will admit that she still has a little loose skin directly behind the chin, but this is nothing compared to where she started. She was the original patient who made me believe that the laser energy from the Smartlipo really does help the skin to tighten a bit.

Smartlipo liposuction neck before after
I expected this patient to need a neck lift, but the Smartlipo Laser seems to have caused enough skin contraction to avoid that

Now, I should pause here to explain something about this technology: Plastic surgeons all agree that the laser helps to melt fat, but we disagree on whether or not it tightens skin. I am clearly a believer. In my experience, skin on the neck and arms truly seems to get more snug, and my results are better than they were a few years ago (before I had a Smartlipo machine). That said, I am not so convinced that it tightens skin on the abdomen or flanks–good thing this post is about the neck and chin!

Profile Can Improve Nicely

There is a very nice improvement in patients’ profiles, but there does seem to be a difference between the genders. In men, the results tend to be a little more subtle and can take a few weeks to develop. In some ways, that is good because they are much more secretive than women about cosmetic procedures. So small changes are sometimes better for men. You can read more about all neck lift options for men in one of our earlier blog posts

Profile Improvement with Dr. Sterry's Selfie Chin Solution
Profile Improvement with Dr. Sterry’s Selfie Chin Solution

In women, recovery seems to take two forms: They either get results immediately, or it takes 3 to 6 weeks for the outcome to be apparent. Importantly, however, friends and family can’t typically figure out what has changed. They just notice that my patient looks good! If you want to see more double chin removal results from our NYC practice, browse through our photo gallery.

Patients Look Thinner

Neck Liposuction Mimics Weight Loss
Neck liposuction mimics weight loss

It’s a funny thing how such a relatively small amount of tissue removal can make such a significant change in the appearance of a patient. I typically take out only about 200 cc of fat and fluid (the tumescent fluid that is injected), yet the change in the appearance of the patients is remarkable, and patients appear to be impressively more slender. Patients tell me that the most common question they get from friends and family is whether they’ve lost weight. I repeat it’s only 200 cc of liposuction, but the area is noticeably slimmer. Again, I love the fact that patients look better, but nobody can quite tell why.

Additional Small Procedures Augment Results

Neck Liposuction with Filler
A little bit of Mid-Cheek injectable filler helped this patient regain her appearance from years ago.

Rather than having one big procedure that can dramatically change a patient’s look (e.g., a full facelift), sometimes the subtleties of multiple small changes can have a stealthy but impressive facial contouring outcome for my NYC patients. For instance, many times a patient who wants neck or chin liposuction will also be a good candidate for some facial fillers. Again, “subtle” is the operative word in my office. I am not a fan of pumping gallons of filler or BOTOX® into patients’ faces and making them look strange. I just like to replenish some of their lost volume or play down some of the lines that may have developed over the years.

Patients Appear Younger

This is a matter of opinion, but in my mind, the majority of neck liposuction patients look younger. I know this is subject to interpretation, but looking at the examples I’ve presented here, I think most readers would agree with me.

Results in Male Neck Liposuction
Results in Smartlipo of the neck for men can take longer to mature but are still significant

There is some science to theories of beauty, and I don’t think I’m completely off-base here. As people get older, they tend to develop a heavier neck and jowls. So even if a young person has a heavy neck or jowl, they look a little older because of the density around their jaw. When we take that heavy appearance away, the onlooker doesn’t interpret their appearance to be as old anymore.

How Long Will the Results of Chin Liposuction last?

We have no reason to think that these results are not permanent. I have stated in other posts that, once the fat cells are removed from an area, it is very difficult to re-gain fat in that region. That said, the proof is in the pudding. I have had several patients return to my office years after having Smartlipo of the neck, and they all seem to maintain very nice results. An example is the woman pictured below who came in 3 years after her neck lipo and still looks great.

Patient Shown Before, at 3 months post, and 3 years after Smartlipo of the Neck and Chin.
Patient Shown Before, at 3 months post, and 3 years after Smartlipo of the Neck and Chin.

If you are interested in learning more about your options for double chin removal with liposuction, contact our NYC office at (212) 249-4020 or use our online form to request a consultation.

24 Responses to The Selfie Chin Solution: How Neck Liposuction Can Improve Your Profile

  • Amy says:

    Are consultations free? I want to come in and have you take a look and see what you can do for my double chin & also I wanted some high cheekbones :/ my cheeks are flat. Please email me!

  • Michelle O'freddy says:

    Hi
    I’m looking into chin/neck liposuction for my daughter Georgia. She’s 16 years old and I just wanted to know if she can have it done at this age?
    If she can have it done at this age how much is it to get it done?
    Many thanks Michelle

    • I would have to examine her, but would certainly consider it. A lot of slender people have a double chin and this procedure clearly helps improve their self esteem. Furthermore, many 16 year olds get rhinoplasty (nose jobs) and I would put this procedure in the same category. So, if she has an isolated and clearly out of proportion fatty collection in the area, I would probably go ahead and take it out.

  • angie says:

    I live in Texas. How long is the downtime after this procedure? Would I be able to catch a flight home same day or have to wait a few days?

    • You will need to wear a compression garment for about 4 days making is really tough to be seen in public. However, there doesn’t seem to be any real “pain”. The only other thing I would say is I’ve had two or three complaints about feeling “tight” around three weeks post-op. Generally speaking this procedure is a home run. Good Luck!

    • Let’s just say that we try to stay affordable for most people. I really can’t start quoting surgery costs online, but if you call my office, they will be glad to help you out in that regard.

  • Carole says:

    Hi, I would like to know the price for the neck liposuction. I guess it depends between cases but would like to know the range of prices if possible. Thank you so much.

    • We don’t publish numbers like that on the internet, but the fee for neck lip is standard in my office. We don’t play games. Call us at (212) 249-4020 and I’m sure Alex will be happy to fill you in.
      I hope we get a chance to meet!

  • Scot says:

    I have been told that there is a risk of lower lip paralysis that can occur when a nerve is hit while doing smartlipo (Lazerlift) to the neck and lower jaw. What is the prevalence of this occurring in patients that you have worked with, and what is the duration of time that it takes for the nerve to “bounce” back so that there is no noticeable change in the smile. I would like to have this done but am concerned about this risk. One particular doctor mentioned that it happens 1-2% of the time. Could you please give me some detailed feedback on your thoughts on the subject. Thank you

    • Wow! That is a lot of nerve injuries, but I’ve done a few hundred of these cases and haven’t had one yet. That said, I know some very good surgeons who had one in their career. Both told me that the nerve improved in about 2-3 weeks. It’s apparently not so noticeable unless you try to move the lower lip down or make a big smile.

  • Lyndyn says:

    Hi Doctor ____ my respect to you …. amazing work you do … I would love to do my chin and jaw line … is that a quick procedure.. live in Boston mass .. what’s the price .. do I need to send you picture .. I did kybella so that softened my skin under my neck … lol am also a lisence aesthetician.. work with skin as well .. tell me what can you do and the price hope not tooo muchhh…

  • Sarah says:

    Hi there from Merry Old England!
    As much as I’d live to fly out to the States and have you treat me, I can only justify paying for the treatment itself and the cost of flights/hotel is just too much. Do you know of or can recommend a Dr in the UK that you know could give me results like this?
    I’m also after having a hump removed from the back of my neck/shoulders.
    Currently sick of looking like a vulture….
    Thank you!

    • First, THANK YOU for making me laugh!
      Unfortunately, I have no idea who does this kind of work in Britain, but I’m sure that they exist. Have you done a proper search? I imagine that somewhere in London You can find a very good Plastic Surgeon to help you out. Don’t get me wrong, you’re more than welcome here!
      Good Luck!

  • Mike says:

    Hi doctor,
    what’s the difference between this laser treatment and the standard lipo? Is there a limit of how much fat can be taken out? If i send you a picture is there a way you guys can digital show me how it will look after the procedure?

    • The laser helps to melt fat and, in theory, to tighten the skin also. I find my outcomes are better when I use the laser, so I’m sticking with it.
      I don’t morph photos for patients because it’s not real. You can do anything with photoshop, and our motto has become, “Real Patients. Real Results.”
      If you want to send photos you can email them to photos@drsterry.com

  • Sam says:

    Hi Doc, if I’m understanding this procedure correctly the incisions are smaller than traditional liposuction, is that correct. How big of an incision is needed under the chin for example? Also, what do you think of alternative options like kybella?

    • There is no scalpel used and all of the needle holes we make “almost” disappear in a few months. The chin hole measures about 2.0 mm and is in the chin crease, which helps to hide it.
      As far as Kybella is concerned, I have had no luck with that product – ever – at all. It’s been a huge disappointment, although I do still have it in my office if a patient requests it.

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