Tweakment Finder TWEAKMENT



Thread Lifting

Written by: Alice Hart-Davis

Updated by: Becki Murray

Last Updated: 12 January 2024

What is a thread lift?

A thread lift is a kind of instant facelift that uses ‘threads’ – fine sutures of biodegradable material – instead of scalpels. The sutures are threaded along your face under the skin using a needle, then pulled tight to hoist saggy parts of the face back to where you would prefer they had remained.

Using a narrow-bore needle, the practitioner places the threads in the superficial fat layer beneath the skin, above the muscle and also above the fibrous layer that lies between the muscle and the fat. This fat layer, you’ll be glad to hear, is clear of nerve endings, so you shouldn’t feel any discomfort while the practitioner is placing threads in it. Thread lifting can also be used on some parts of the body – specifically the arms – to help combat sagging skin in those areas. 

Scroll down for more info and all the FAQs about thread lifting.


£ 1500


30 - 60 minutes


18 months


Numbing cream


1 - 2 days

Find a Practitioner


What does a thread lift do?

A thread lift has two effects:

  • First, the threads actually lift your face. The threads have tiny barbs or cone-shaped lumps along them, so as they are pulled tight, they lift the skin tissues and anchor them into a new position. They work in a similar way to tighten the sagging skin on your arms. 
  • Second, the threads stimulate the production of new collagen. The threads take about three months to be absorbed by the body. During this time, new collagen grows to help hold the skin tissues in their lifted position.

A thread lift can be a good choice if your skin is losing its elasticity and sagging somewhat. If performed expertly, a thread lift can make your skin look tighter and fresher while still looking natural.

What I think about thread lifts

How long does a thread lift last?

A thread lift lasts from 15 to 18 months on average.

You can prolong the effects by treating your skin and your body gently. If you’re highly active – for example, if you run and work out frequently – the thread lift won’t last as long as it might otherwise because your activities will put greater stress on your tissues. Collagen-impairing activities such as smoking will also cut down the longevity of the thread lift.


Bingo Wings

You know a body concern is particularly irritating when it gets its own nickname, and that extra ‘jiggle’ you have around the underside...

Read More
Nose-to-mouth Lines

Nose to mouth lines, also known as nasolabial folds or smile lines, are the creases that run from the corner of your nose to the top corner...

Read More
Sagging Jawline

A sagging jawline, or “jowls” is the term used to describe the excess skin that forms under the chin and jawline with age. It can make...

Read More
Sagging Skin

Sagging skin is a common sign of ageing but it can also be caused by dramatic weight loss. Sagging skin can be present on the face and body...

Read More

Brands We Love

What are the differences between different types of threads?

Apart from being made from different materials, threads can have different designs that give different effects. Here are three examples:

  • Barbed sutures (yes, that sounds grim) are good for gathering skin and giving a greater lift. The barbs are spaced along the threads.
  • Sutures with bidirectional cones anchor the threads firmly, making retightening more effective. Like the barbs, the cones are spaced along the threads.
  • Smooth sutures are primarily used to stimulate the production of collagen.

These are important differences to remember, so download my full thread lifts factsheet here to refer back to later on.

Threadlifting 100

Thread lift Silhouette Soft 5 1

Are there any side effects to thread lifts?

After a thread lift, you will have small holes in your face or arms from where the practitioner inserted the threads and drew them tight. You are also likely to experience the following side effects:

  • Swelling. The treated area is likely to swell from the insertion of the threads and the manipulation of your flesh. The swelling should subside over the next few days.
  • Bruising. You may also develop bruises from the procedure. Any bruises should dissipate in a week or so.

If the thread lift is not entirely successful, the following side effects can occur:

  • Rippling of the skin. If the practitioner over-tightens the threads, the skin may be rippled rather than smooth.
  • Granulomas. Granulomas are grainy growths. They can form along the threads.
  • Threads sticking out of the skin. Barbs, cones, or the ends of threads can stick out of the skin if the practitioner doesn’t get their positioning quite right.

Thread Lifts - Before & After

FAQ ABOUT Thread Lifting

Do thread lifts work?

Yes. Thread lifts are effective, but they’re not suitable for everyone.

To find out if your face and skin are suitable for a thread lift, consult an experienced practitioner.

Is a thread lift as good as a facelift?

No. A thread lift moves the superficial tissues of the face and has a temporary effect. A surgical facelift goes deeper, and repositions the deeper layers of the face, and has a permanent effect.

What are the threads used in a thread lift made from?

The threads are made from biodegradable substances that are safe in the body, such as these:

  • Poly-L-lactic acid (PLLA). This is a bioplastic that is used in dissolvable stitches, so it is well-proven to be safe.
  • Polydioxanone (PDO). This is a biodegradable synthetic polymer.

Silhouette Soft threads and NovaThreads have both received FDA approval for lifting facial tissue. Silhouette Soft uses PLLA; NovaThreads uses PDO.

Where can I get a thread lift?

You can use the Find a Practitioner tool on this website to find a practitioner who performs thread lifts.

How much does a thread lift cost?

The cost depends on how many threads are used. As an example, the cost of an average four-thread lift using Silhouette Soft threads is around £1,500.

How long does a thread lift take?

A thread lift normally takes 30 minutes to an hour, depending on how many threads the practitioner inserts.

What is it like to have a thread lift?

A thread lift starts with an initial consultation at which you discuss your goals with the practitioner. The practitioner examines you, looking in particular at how much loose skin there is in which areas, and assesses whether a thread lift would work for you.

Assuming the practitioner finds the thread lift suitable, and you decide to proceed, a facial thread lift normally goes something like this:

  • The practitioner decides how many threads to use and where to place them. The practitioner draws on your face to mark where the threads and cones will go, also marking the exit points for the threads. The exit points tend to be in the eyelid closure line, the line that runs from the outer corner of your eye around toward your ear.
  • The practitioner injects a small amount of anaesthetic to numb the entry point, then uses a needle to make a hole through the skin and a ‘well’ down to the fat layer.
  • The practitioner pulls the thread to close the knots in it, then drops the thread into the well and passes the thread along under the skin to the exit point.
  • With the thread in place, the practitioner pulls it taut. Then, starting from the entry point, the practitioner works along the thread, inching the tissue over the cones until it is in the right place to achieve the lift.
  • As the practitioner works, you’ll feel the pressure as they pass the threads under your skin. You may feel some smarting, but there should be no pain as such. Hard as it may be to believe, a fair number of patients actually fall asleep while having the threads inserted.
  • The process is incredibly similar when thread lifting is used on the body too.

What is the downtime like after a thread lift?

After having a thread lift, you must treat your face or arms gently for at least the first two weeks to give the threads time to settle down. That means not only shunning vigorous activity and impact sports but also avoiding anything that will require stretching your mouth open wide, from having a dental appointment to biting into a whole apple. You should also be scrupulous about washing your hands before touching your skin – harder than it sounds – and absolutely do not rub it. Your practitioner will likely also recommend staying out of the sun and avoiding alcohol, ibuprofen, or anything that might encourage bleeding.

Remember, you can download my thread lifts factsheet to keep all these details on file.


Alice answers your question. Want to ask Alice a question? Pop it in here and check back in a few days for the answer.

Please could you review the new Spring Thread? It is supposed to have more longevity and superior lift but is there a big risk as it is not dissolvable? I have also heard it may bunch. Thank you for all your help.

I haven't done any stories around spring threads but I'm going to be filming soon with a threads expert and will see what I can find out.

Hi Alice. I have read about Ellevate for neck treatments. I think it’s quite new. Do you have any information on it?

Hiya, TTG editor Georgia here. It looks to essentially be a thread lift procedure to contour the jaw and neck, so could be a good solution for sagging skin in that area that needs some structural support and tightening. I don't know loads about it but there are some TTG-registered practitioners who offer it, like Dr Munir Somji of Dr MediSpa in London and Essex.

Tweakments post-treatment for breast cancer – at 58, I've been lucky that, due to good genes and looking after my skin, I've only needed toxin and cheek fillers every 12-18 months. Now I've lost volume to my face, my jaw is sagging and I've...

Hiya, TTG editor Georgia here. First, make sure you have clearance from your oncologist for injectables and energy-based devices, and following that, ensure that the practitioner(s) you're considering for treatment have your full, up-to-date medical history from the get-go. Providing you get the go-ahead, something like ultrasound could indeed be a good bet to tighten up your jawline – look into Sofwave as well as Ultherapy. The under-eye bags are tricker to treat because it depends what's causing them – if it's fluid retention, sagging skin or a result of the fat pads slipping down under the eyes. A practitioner experienced in treating...

Hi Alice, can dermal fillers yield as good a result as threading or would I best to bite the bullet and go with the latter? I am unhappy with my sagging face and the pronounced nose-to-mouth lines as well as loss of volume in my cheeks and jawline....

You need to get your face in front of a great practitioner who can offer both fillers and threads and ask their opinion – they will probably suggest that you have threads and see how much difference that makes, and then perhaps use filler to add in any extra volume that would benefit your face after that.

Will thread lifting will help the drooping lines vertically from the corners of my mouth or should I go for a lower facelift? I am 75 but look much younger.

Hiya, TTG editor Georgia here. While we're a little wary of threads, you can get a great result if you go to a very experienced practitioner who really knows what they're doing. If you're thinking you might eventually go for a lower lift though, it's important to know that a lot of surgeons won't operate on a face that has previously been treated with threads. This is because they can create thickened lines of fibrous tissue though the skin, which makes the surgeon's job harder and puts you at risk of either having complications or just not getting a very good outcome. A surgical lift will give a more definitive result which will last much...

Hello, I'm in my mid-40's with increasing sagging (mainly drooping upper eyelids, jowls and marionette lines). I've had three Ultherapy procedures at a highly-regarded clinic over the past five years to lift and tighten my face and neck. The last...

Hi, I'm sorry to hear that you had no improvement from your last Ultherapy treatment – surgeons are not keen on it as, in pursuit of the skin, it can (as one put it to me), 'mash up' the layers under the skin which makes it more difficult for surgeons to work on – not impossible but it makes their job trickier. They see the same result from treatments like radiofrequency microneedling (Morpheus8 et al) though many surgeons will still use RF microneedling for non-surgical tightening as it is a safe and effective treatment for the right candidate. Thread lifts can reposition sagging jowls, but if cosmetic surgeons don't like...

The dreaded neck area – can Profhilo, toxin, a thread lift or Morpheus8 etc. help to tighten and lift it while I'm saving up for a neck lift? Practitioners of these kinds of tweakments say they absolutely can, but the surgeon I'm considering going...

Hiya, TTG editor Georgia here. So, Profhilo and other injectable moisturisers: minimal tightening, no lift. Toxin: can help to soften 'stringiness' in the neck caused by over-tight muscles, but will only last 3-6 months. Threads: absolutely avoid because a lot of surgeons are very wary of performing a lift on a face or neck that has previously been altered with threads – they can complicate the procedure. Morpheus8 or other radiofrequency microneedling devices, and ultrasound: great options for achieving a small amount of tightening and lifting but not cheap and won't give the big results you're looking for. So they're both right -...

Hi Alice, could I please ask what your thoughts on threads are? I could do with some help with my jowls and under my chin. Many thanks! X

Hiya, editor Georgia here. Threads can achieve great lifting and tightening results in the right hands and providing you’re a suitable candidate. There are different types of threads and some are better suited to certain indications than others (e.g. the degree of skin laxity). You can also have bio-stimulating threads which help stimulate collagen within the skin, so you also get a gradual improvement in skin firmness. Threads are deemed 'minimally-invasive' but they aren’t for the faint-hearted, and things can go wrong. Plus, the results don't always last as long as advertised. It’s really important to find someone who knows what...


Hello, how can we help?

Hi, I’m The Tweakments Chatbot.

I have been designed to help you get information and advice on your concerns. I am currently in training. In case I am unable to answer your question, I would like to ask for some details, so that Alice or one of our team can contact you and ensure you get all the advice you need.

Thank you for using The Tweakments Chatbot. We would like to know how was your experience with us today. Can you spare a minute to share your feedback?

Was the chatbot helpful in finding what you were looking for today?

Yes No

In few words could you please tell us why, so we can improve your experience in the future.

Would you use the chatbot next time you visit the website?

Yes No

In few words could you please tell us why, so we can improve your experience in the future.

Overall, how would you rate your experience using The Tweakments chatbot.