The Quest for a Perfect Neck… Part 1

When I was younger, my neck was long and slender. In fact I was told that  this was one of my best  physical assets.. a long beautiful  swan like neck…  Now, when I look in the mirror or at pictures, I long for that once  long beautiful neck and straight jaw line.  To me it looks no longer lean and long nor beautiful.. to me it looks stringy, saggy, crepey  and old!!  Or at least aging.  I no longer look at my face in photos- I only see my neck.  I discovered Photoshop does wonders to smooth out an aging  neck and bring it back to its true beauty.
A sagging neck is also known  as the “family neck” because the condition tends to be inherited.  Some of us may have good facial bone structure, minimal wrinkles and lines, but lousy necks.  Luckily, I am blessed with attractive  facial features, good bone structure and smooth skin- but my neck.. well that is a different story.  I know heredity plays a significant role in how we age.  My mother had  beautiful skin, minimal wrinkles and  lines,however, her neck was a tale tell sign of her age.
I begin noticing her turkey waddle neck forming in her early 50’s and remember thinking to myself.. oh no.. is this what I have to look forward to. She sometimes mentioned her sagging neck to me, but never considered cosmetic surgery as an option. I would look in the mirror in my  late 30’s and see the signs of what was to come.  As I approached my late 40’s it became more apparent  to me that sooner or later, my neckline would disappear and the waddle would appear like my mom’s neck.
Today,  as I approach my late 50’s , I can see my jaw- line losing its definition, and my vertical bands  down my are stringy.    As the aging process continues, I know this will worsen and years to my appearance.
There are two places one can tell a woman’s age. First the neck, second the hands. The hands are easy to fix. A little dermal filler perhaps and IPL plus lightening creams. That usually does the trick..with not much cost or downtime.  On the other hand… no pun intended! :-) the magic treatment exists.  Yes, there are Laser tightening treatments such as Laser LipoThermage, Titan, the Thread Lift, Laser necklifts.. just to name a few.  Some practitioners even inject Botox into this area.  All of these cosmetic procedures  may help firm and tighten the skin along the jaw line.  I think of these treatments as quick fixes -which  tide you over until you are ready for surgery.   Additonally,these  treatment are  pricey and can cost several thousand of dollars and outcomes vary.   I did try Thermage when it first was introduced into the market., it was quite painful and the results were minimal if at all.
There comes a time when “The Knife” is the only solution for an aging neck.
A neck lift can help correct a fleshy neck,  jowls, plastysma or neck banding, and what is commonly referred to turkey waddle.
I want my jawline back…. it is more than vanity.. it is about  looking as good as you can..  Feeling good about yourself .  When you feel young… what’s wrong with looking young!!  By young- I don’t mean looking like you are 30 when you are 50!!.
Now begins the quest of finding the right skillful  surgeon to  rejuvenate my saggy neck and  contour it back to the way it once was.. or at least as close as possible.
Choosing a surgeon is complicated when you are the one doing the choosing, even if you are in the Beauty Industry, as I am .
I visited five  Plastic Surgeons offices in the Bay Area  over the course of seven months,  all of my consults were complimentary with the exception of one, which cost $125.00, which would be put towards the surgery costs at booking time..
At one surgeon’s office I saw a woman guessing in her mid  60’s, sitting in the waiting room. She had way too much filler in her cheeks, her face was unnaturally tight, her breasts were huge and  she was bragging about all the work she had  by this surgeon. I crossed him off my list even before I entered his consulting room.
My search became very overwhelming, I researched , spoke to past patients and   asked many questions. I  saw before and after pictures, and basically got more and more confused.   During one of my consults, I spent an hour with a surgeon  who proceeded to  show me picture after picture of all the women he had transformed. He had stories to tell about each them.  They were all beautiful women, yet  he seemed more impressed by himself and his work then he did of my needs.   His fees were double that of all the other surgeons that I had met with.  He has a reputation as one of the top surgeons in the country, but he was not for me.
All the surgeons with the exception of one did not  try to sell me anything more than I originally came in for.  My case would be easy according to all of them.. and now was the appropriate time because I still had good elasticity to my skin.
During my quest  I confided in only a few people.  My husband did not know that I was on this quest for several personal reasons.
I had finally narrowed it down to two esteemed  surgeons in the Bay Area, whom I  felt comfortable with. However, something was still holding me back.
I then met with a fellow industry colleague who lived back East,  and  said she knew of  the perfect surgeon for me .  His practice is in New York on Park Avenue, is skilled, caring and  well respected.  He performs surgery  on the West Coast about once  a month or so.  I thought.. this may be a good choice ( being an East Coast gal)  , it was worth yet another consult. So, I booked a consult for the next time he was coming to the Bay Area.
I liked him from the start. He was very professional, warm and caring. He did not try to sell me, nor try to talk me into added  procedures.   He did not talk about himself and seemed  genuinely concerned about my concerns. He assured me that my surgery was easy.. not being a complicated case due to good bone structure and elasticity.  I left his office with a good feeling.. no deposit yet!!  I needed to speak with his other  patients and   finally make a decision…Meanwhile, I still had not told my husband and was becoming increasingly anxious of how and when to tell him. I knew the doctor’s schedule for the upcoming months and had tentatively set a date for my facelift.

The patient  referrals I was given  supported my initial instinct and I was very pleased. One referral was from a medical nurse who had interviewed several surgeons across the country. I was impressed that she choose this surgeon.  I made my decision and booked my surgery date… and now had to gently  tell  my husband. To be continued……

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  1. What products are good for dry, pelineg face?I just had a baby a few months ago and my face has been really dry for the last couple of weeks. I have a cleanser, toner, moisturizer that I am using now and I was planning on switching anyway! I\’ve looked up products like Obagi and Kinerase. I just wanted to know if those products were especially good for dry, sensitive skin. Could the dry and pelineg skin be related to postpartum and winter? I\’ve never had this issue before. Any thoughts??Btw, I also eat very well (health nut here!) and exercise and only drink water every day.


  2. Well! Did you do it? Who is the surgeon? I have been through a similiar process but still have not found anyone….


      1. can u pls tell me the outcome of your surgery, before and after photo, cost and who was your surgeon. thank u so much


      2. Hi Rosie,

        Please read the update I posted regarding after the facelift.
        I am planning on a revision due to residual laxity – no fault of the surgeon. It sometimes happen, unfortunately it happened to me. Costs for a facelift range anywhere from $10,000- $20,000 depending on the surgeon and market. My surgeons name is Dr Paul Lorenc.
        Hope this helps.


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