The malar fat pad is lifted with an upper-face lift, sometimes called a mid-face lift or a mini facelift. It lifts the part of the cheek between your eye and the jawline. There are minimally invasive lifts, such as the temporal lift, that have been abandoned, or thread lifts, that don’t last very long, but the best way to lift the malar fat pads is with an upper facelift or a mini facelift.
What is a malar fat pad?
The malar fat pad is a fat pad that creates the apple of your cheek. It’s the front part of your cheek.
What is the difference between a malar fat pad and a buccal fat pad?
The malar fat pad and the buccal fat pad are located in different layers and compartments within the face. There are a number of different compartments in the face that contain fat to give it shape.
The malar fat pad is in the front part of the cheek, which is the apple of the cheek, whereas the buccal fat pad is just outside of the corners of your mouth and is in a deeper layer than the malar fat pad.
The compartment that contains the buccal fat pad is very large, spanning the gap between the lower part of the cheek all the way up to just below the side of your cheekbone. When we address the buccal fat pad, it only addresses the fullness in the lower part of the cheek. So when you look at the difference between the malar fat pad and buccal fat pad, the difference you’re seeing is the malar is higher in the cheek under the eye, and the buccal is lower by the mouth.
Can a malar fat pad be removed?
It’s not a great idea to remove the malar fat pad. Removing it would leave the face very flat, irregular, and the opposite of youthful. When people lose this fat, they appear gaunt, aged, and/or ill. In fact, many people come in requesting filler in this area to restore a youthful appearance.
On the flip side, people with fuller faces or malar fat pads that have drooped may think they want these fat pads removed. Removing it is not the best option and it would be difficult to do without having visible incisions. Rather than removing the fat pad, it can be repositioned with an upper facelift.
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About Dr. Angela Sturm
Dr. Angela Sturm is a double-board certified facial plastic surgeon with certifications with the American Board of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery and the American Board of Facial Plastic Surgery. Dr. Sturm’s meticulous nature makes for exceptional results and satisfied patients. Dr. Sturm was named Texas Monthly’s Super Doctors Rising Star in 2016-2017, Texas Monthly’s Super Doctor in 2018-2019, H Texas Magazine’s Top Doc in 2013-2018, Top Doc by Houstonia magazine in 2016-2018, Houston Business Journal’s People on the Move and 40 under 40, Blazing Star Award by Texas Women’s Chamber of Commerce, Top Women in Business, one of the Top 30 Influential Women of Houston, Best Female Cosmetic Surgeon in Out Smart, and given the Patients’ Choice Award, On Time Doctor Award and Compassionate Doctor Award by Vitals.com.