Wondering How Skin Elasticity Affects Plastic Surgery? 


If you’re considering plastic surgery, you may be so focused on your desired outcome that you haven’t considered how the elasticity of your skin may affect that outcome. 

But you can bet your plastic surgeon certainly has. 

The fact is, skin elasticity affects plastic surgery results. Especially when it comes to liposuction. So skin elasticity is something every plastic surgeon considers when consulting with their patients.  

What Is Skin Elasticity?  

Do you remember the first time you pulled up some skin on the back of your hand to see how quickly it snapped back into its original shape? Given that most of us did this as children the first time, the skin snapped back quickly, right? That’s elasticity. 

The skin is made up of three layers; the epidermis, the dermis, and the subcutis. The dermis is the middle layer and it contains two kinds of proteins known as elastin and collagen. They are responsible for elasticity.  

If you waited until later in life to play this game though, there probably wasn’t so much a snapping back as a slow descent. As we age, the skin loses its elasticity – a condition known as elastosis. The body’s production of collagen and elastin decline. And the increasing lack of elasticity causes the skin to sag, wrinkle, or even take on a leathery appearance. 

Are There Other Causes For Skin Elastosis? 

As previously mentioned, age is one of the biggest perpetrators. And until the enigmatic fountain of youth is discovered, it will almost always be one of the top factors for your skin not looking or behaving as it once did.  

Even so, there are other factors that play into the skin’s loss of elasticity.  

Environmental and lifestyle causes can certainly accelerate it. Excessive exposure to the sun, for example, breaks down collagen and elastin fibers and causes the skin to prematurely age. Smoking is also a factor. Tobacco smoke is notorious for drying out delicate facial skin.   

Finally, rapid and extensive weight gain or loss can also contribute to elastosis. The skin isn’t designed to hold a large amount of weight and then spring back when the weight quickly disappears. 

How Skin Elasticity Affects Plastic Surgery 

Many people come to plastic surgeons because they want to get rid of problematic fat or are looking for a sleeker, more streamlined appearance on some part of the body.  

In most cases, patients under 40 still have fairly elastic skin. For them, these procedures tend to go smoothly. The skin in the treated area maintains the same tone after the procedure and is able to re-drape tightly over the contoured part.  

Women under 40 who’ve gone through a single pregnancy may have reduced elasticity around the abdominal area, but it may spring back enough.  

Folks under 40 who’ve experienced dramatic fluctuations in weight, however, will likely have issues with their skin not bouncing back after the procedure.  

And nearly everyone over the age of 40 is going to have decreased skin elasticity to some degree. Again, those who have experienced major weight fluctuations (and/or multiple pregnancies) are going to be up against even more challenges. 

So in these cases, the plastic surgeon may encourage skin excision or lift procedures instead. A tummy tuck, for instance, will remove both excess fat and sagging skin. The same goes for a thigh lift or arm lift.  

For Every Problem. There’s a Solution 

Now that you have a firmer (pun intended) grasp on how skin elasticity affects plastic surgery, you may be reconsidering which procedure you want. 

You don’t need to think too much about it though.  

Instead, contact us to set up your free consultation to talk with one of our highly skilled surgeons. He or she will clearly guide you through exactly what you need.