Thread Lift vs Sculptra: Which is Right for You?

Sometimes people ask us about Thread Lift vs Sculptra injections. This is such an exciting time for people who are interested in achieving a younger-looking appearance through minimally invasive cosmetic procedures.

Whether a thread lift vs Sculptra treatment is right for you varies depending on your goals, your age, the condition of your skin, and your health. We hope this article helps as you weigh your choices, just be aware it isn’t a substitute for personalized advice from a board-certified plastic surgeon or nurse injector professional.

Before deciding which of these skin rejuvenations are best suited to your needs, it helps to understand a little more about each treatment and how they work. Both treatments work well for individuals who want to fight some of the signs of aging including the loss of skin elasticity but they do not yet need or feel ready for a facelift.

What Are Sculptra Injections?

Sculptra is an injectable cosmetic filler containing poly-L-lactic acid used to restore facial volume and stimulate collagen production. Some refer to Scultra as a “liquid facelift.”

Other fillers fill in volume and smooth fine lines, but the biocompatible synthetic substance in Sculptra also stimulates collagen production which slows with age. Other factors like illness and weight loss can exacerbate this natural process, in fact, Sculptra is also used to treat HIV-positive patients who experience fat loss in their face due to their illness.

Another thing that differentiates Sculptra from other fillers is that the gel dissipates within a few days. The actual results develop over time due to the increased collagen production over the weeks and even months following the injection or series of injections. Results from Sculptra typically last a couple of years.

The side effects are similar to other cosmetic injectables, including possible bruising at the injection site, tenderness, soreness, and redness for a few days.

What is a Thread Lift?

A thread lift is a less invasive alternative to a traditional facelift. Sometimes beauty press writers and others refer to it as a “weekend facelift” or even a “lunchtime facelift.” These nicknames refer to the fact that a thread lift is a shorter procedure than a facelift often taking around one hour. Since it is less invasive, recovery time is faster and the results show sooner as a result.

During the procedure, a practitioner uses medical-grade threading to pull the skin tighter in targeted areas.

The thread is absorbed into the body, but the process results in firmer, more taut skin and reduced wrinkles. A thread lift commonly targets the brow line, jowls, under-eye area, cheeks, and forehead.

Like Sculptra, the “threads” used in a thread lift also stimulate collagen production. It is different since the threads are placed into the skin rather than injectables.

The resulting collagen growth promotes firmer skin with improved elasticity. It also reduces the appearance of wrinkles.

The results from a thread lift usually last anywhere from one to two years. Some patients prefer to get a new thread lift annually to maintain their results as well as to continue to benefit from the rejuvenation benefits.

Since a thread lift is a  medical procedure so it may have side effects including:

  • Mild bruising
  • Inflammation
  • Tenderness or pain after the procedure
  • Sometimes people with thin skin may experience visible sutures
  • Problems resulting from snapped threads
  • Dimpling of the skin

Talk with your plastic surgeon or medical provider to determine whether it is right for you. Some patients may see better results from a traditional facelift or from another procedure like Sculptra. Different cosmetic treatment procedures better suit different individuals.

Thread lifts are a popular option for treating age-related sagging and loss of volume including marionette lines. The results appear sooner than Sculptra and may last longer.

Which is Right for You: Sculptra Injections or a Thread Lift

Both facial rejuvenation procedures help produce collagen.

Initial results from a thread lift appear sooner. This non-surgical “facelift” procedure immediately lifts sagging skin with minimal downtime for recovery. Over time, the threads stimulate collagen for better skin elasticity and texture. Of course, the procedure doesn’t remove excess skin like a traditional surgical facelift so it tends to work best on people in their 30s and 40s and maybe fifties with more modest “lifting” goals. Peak results happen after just one treatment, though many seek annual thread lifts to maintain the results over time.

The results from Sculptra take time to develop and are more gradual and may be more subtle. It is also possibly less painful since Sculptra is a dermal injectable while a thread lift is minor cosmetic surgery.

Either procedure is attractive to people who want to address early signs of aging and loss of elasticity who are not quite ready for a surgical facelift. Both also help rejuvenate aging skin and offer more gradual results than a more dramatic facelift operation.

Some people even combine thread lifts and fillers depending on their needs. To figure out which, if any, cosmetic treatment is right for you, meet with an experienced cosmetic surgeon or allied professional. Discuss your aesthetic goals, budget, lifestyle, and hopes.

Next Steps: Schedule a Consultation

Talk with your physician or master nurse injector to better understand what you can realistically expect as it varies depending on your age, genetics, and the condition of your skin.

Charlotte, NC residents trust The Skin Center at Charlotte Plastic Surgery to help them put their best face forward.  Dedicated to the science of healthy skin and the art of ageless beauty, we have transformed appearances in the region since the early 1950s. Not only are we experienced with tried-and-true traditional plastic surgery, but we are also knowledgeable about today’s top emerging cosmetic procedures including non-surgical treatments.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn what options are available to help you look and feel your most youthful self again.