If you’re after freshness rather than drastic alteration, the new breed of non-surgical face lift offers a viable alternative to the scalpel-based lift. Able to be completed in a lunchbreak with instant results and zero downtime, the so-called “liquid face lift” involves filler and botox being injected into specific areas of the face to rebalance what time and genetics have put out of whack.
The procedure is proving a hit with busy celebrities and career women wanting to stay on their complexion A-game. “People were doing invasive face lifts, and I thought, ‘Let’s do liquid face lifts, where you inject liquid to make changes,’” says Dr Joseph Hkeik, a Sydney-based aesthetic physician who pioneered the concept in Australia.
Advancements in filler technology have made facial restructuring possible without surgery. “We can create shape and volume [so] I can really sculpt,” says Hkeik, who uses filler to support slackened skin, fill age-related facial hollows and boost unbalanced features. “There’s no trauma. You can go straight back to work.”
Hkeik believes in a holistic approach rather than complete transformation. “You want people to say, ‘Oh my God, you look fresh,’ not, ‘What have you had done?’ There’s a big difference,” he explains.
Read more: Tried & Tested: The Liquid Facial
Effects are instant, but bear in mind that healthy skin will have the best results. Visit one of Hkeik’s three All Saints Skin Clinics in Sydney and you might be encouraged to work on the surface first. “You still have to address the skin,” says Hkeik. “You can create a harmonious face [with filler and botox], but you can get things that are distracting to the eye, like sun damage.”
Hkeik is a firm believer in a diligent skincare routine. He might also point you towards skin enhancers such as supplements, high-tech facial treatments (think LED and micro-needling), peels or laser to address any clarity issues. Filler will last up to two years, while botox sticks around for three to four months, so Hkeik asks his clients to come back after six months, “in case we need to improve [things], or lift it that extra bit,” he says.
With a background in sculptural art, Hkeik focuses on flow and proportion when working on his (often famous) clients’ faces. “I see where your face is today, and where it needs to be immediately after,” he says. “I look at it like a missing piece of the puzzle: what’s missing from the face-to-be. Then I know what needs to be done.”
This article originally appeared in the March 2019 issue of marie claire.