Since the early 1900s, plastic surgery has existed. It has seen both good and bad publicity. Cosmetic procedures are now more popular than ever and seem to be socially acceptable. Although medical technology has advanced to the point that most cosmetic surgeries are now routine and safe, many people find surgery intimidating. Permanent irreversible effects can make it difficult for them to continue their lives. Medical advancements have made it possible to develop cosmetic treatments that don't require patients to undergo surgery.
Non-surgical cosmetic procedures can broadly be divided into two types: minimally invasive and non-invasive.
The most minimally invasive cosmetic procedures involve using a needle to inject medication or an injectable implant. A non-invasive treatment is one that uses only topical treatments, or does not require the use of needles.They are not invasive and do not require any surgical intervention. This makes them an excellent alternative for people who don't want to be under anesthesia or scalpel to achieve their aesthetic goals.
There are two major options for plastic surgery: body contouring enhancements and skin tightening and tightening. These are some of the most popular minimally invasive options to replace surgical counterparts.

Minimally Invasive Skin Tightening and Lifting Options

A surgical facelift is the most well-known skin lifting procedure. This is the gold standard in facial rejuvenation and has gained worldwide acceptance from both doctors and patients. The surgical facelift aims to remove excess skin that has developed secondary to gravity and the loss of collagen and elastic. If given the option, many people would not choose to have their faces cut and stitched. Not everyone has the skin laxity or willingness to undergo such extensive surgery. The surgery does not address facial volume loss which is an important part of aging. The following procedures can achieve similar results, but without the inherent risks of every surgical procedure.

PDO thread lifting

PDO (Polydioxanone thread lift) is a minimally invasive option to a surgical facial. It involves the insertion and removal of surgical threads. The threads are held in place by the barbs that are gently pulled up with the surrounding skin. This secures the underlying skin. It is similar to its surgical counterpart, but it does not address facial volume loss. Experts say that PDO is only effective when there's minimal or mild skin excess. This is because no skin is removed during the procedure. Barbed sutures are not invasive and patients can resume their normal activities within a few days.

Liquid facelift

As mentioned, facial aging is primarily caused by the loss of facial fat pads. This can lead to a sunken appearance. This problem was previously solved by allographic (from the same patient). Adipose tissue was taken from one area and injected into another. Medical innovation led to soft semi-permanent implants, which are made of a hyaluronic gel. The excellent biocompatibility of the product and its natural results allowed for a wide range of products to be available on the market, allowing doctors to choose the right material to suit their individual needs. The plastic surgery industry has been transformed by dermal fillers, which produce surgical-like results with minimal side effects. The gel expands gently under the skin to replace previously lost volume. It can last up to 15 years before requiring a touch-up.


Microneedling can be used to tighten, firm, and smoothen the skin. The microneedling process involves a handheld device with several small needles that puncture skin. This causes controlled damage to the epidermis as well as the dermis. The body repairs itself and stimulates collagen and elastic production, which results in tighter skin. Although this is not a surgery facelift, it can be very effective for those with early signs of aging and who want to tighten their skin.

Fractional laser treatments

Laser rejuvenation for facials works by causing controlled damage to the superficial layers of skin. This reduces wrinkles, scarring, irregularities and scarring. It also results in skin tightening via collagen and elastin stimulation. Although fractional laser treatments can take several sessions to achieve the best results, you will notice a firmer and tighter skin after each session. You will need to continue these results by having follow-up sessions every 12 months.  This resource provides additional information about Fraxel laser treatments and can guide your expectations with outcomes you are trying to achieve. 


Ultherapy uses focused ultrasound energy to heat the superficial musculoaponeurotic layer (also known as the SMAS layer of skin). This causes micro-scarring, which results in tightening of the affected area. The treatment is most common around the neck and jawline, but it can be painful.

Body contouring and body enhancements

Plastic surgery is a very popular field. These procedures can produce amazing results, but not everyone wants permanent enhancements. These body contouring procedures can be done in a minimally invasive way with a few options, including Kybella, cryolipolysis and Sculptra Butt Lifts.


Cryolipolysis, a scientific breakthrough uses freezing temperatures to reduce stubborn fat and certain areas of the face. It's completely non-invasive, requires no downtime, and is painless. A vacuum applicator is used to place the tool on the fat accumulation. This tool is used to freeze the fat over a period of 35-50 minutes. The lymphatics then process the dead cells and they are safely expelled. Although the results are permanent, you will need to wait for a few months to see them.


Kybella is an injectable that can be used to reduce unwanted fat, such as double chins. It is made of deoxycholic, an acid that is naturally produced in the body's digestive system to help break down fat. The injection is done to the problem area and slowly breaks down the fat cells. This is then metabolized by your body over the next 1 to 2 months. Although this procedure is not invasive, it can cause some swelling and may require several sessions to achieve the desired results.

Sculptra Butt Lift

Sculptra, an injectable option to the surgical Brazilian Butt Lift, is an injectable solution. This involves transferring fat from one side of the body into the butt. The butt is injected with poly-L-lactic Acid (PLLA), which stimulates collagen production in subcutaneous fat layers. The new collagen is wrapped around PLLA particles, creating three-dimensional volume. This gradually increases the buttock size. Although results can be seen in a matter of months, it may take up to four sessions before you achieve the desired size.

Do Your Research

Both injections and surgery have their advantages and disadvantages. Although minimally invasive or non-invasive surgery is great, some surgical procedures can have more dramatic and lasting results than those that are not. It doesn't matter if you choose to undergo a surgery or not. The best way to determine what is right for you is to talk to a medical specialist to ensure that you are able to actually undergo the treatment you want. You may benefit greatly from either one depending on your anatomy or overall goals. However, a professional opinion is the best way to guide you.


Sarah Graham