Dr. Little’s Philosophies
Personal Motivations for Facial Rejuvenation
Individuals seek out facelift and other forms of facial rejuvenation for a variety of reasons.
Reasons for Facelift
For some, the outward effects of aging bring a disconnect with their inner sense of self and their earlier internal image: they may become disconcerted that they no longer appear as “themselves” or that they have begun to resemble Mother (or Father) sooner than they were prepared for. Others, as alluded to, may have invested considerable effort in a healthy lifestyle and appearance, but find their aging faces out of sync with their toned bodies. By the way, Dr. Little firmly believes that facial rejuvenation reinforces a healthy lifestyle. The person who has finished their evening meal and is faced with a decision between an after-dinner dessert or an after-dinner walk is more likely to embrace the latter if the image looking back at them in the mirror is one of health and vitality; when the image is less vital or fatigued, the temptation is to think “why bother?” and reach for the dessert spoon. Others focus on the loss of beauty that may accompany facial aging and recognize that they have taken pride in their appearance lifelong, as they have also surrounded themselves with objects of beauty at home; should they not then seek some restoration of their own outward beauty? [For those with concerns about their own personal motivations for facelift, Dr. Little recommends Part I of the new book In Your Face: The hidden history of plastic surgery and why looks matter, as listed in the Philosophies / Further Reading subsection.]
The Most Common Reason
But of all the personal motivations that Dr. Little encounters, the most common remains the desire to remain competitive in one’s job or career, as one is surrounded by an ever younger coterie of co-workers in an era of undeniable ageism. In this regard, investment in a facelift may make particular economic sense; Dr. Little has found that an architectual approach to facial rejuvenation has been highly effective in returning a look of heath, vitality, and stamina to individuals with such concerns. But ultimately, there are probably as many specific reasons to have a facelift as there are facelift patients, each with her own personal mix of motivations. One thing is sure, however: when an individual feels self-confident in her personal appearance at any age, that same self-confidence inevitably spills over into multiple other areas of her life.
Illustration: detail from Leonardo da Vinci, “St. John the Baptist,” ca. 1513-1516, Musée du Louvre, Paris