There’s a particularly memorable scene in Terry Gilliam’s 1985 dystopian cult classic Brazil in which actress Katherine Helmond’s face is being pulled and prodded by a man in quasi-medical garb. “Just try to relax, and I’ll make you 20 years younger,” he says, laughing as he dramatically pins her skin back with binder clips and wraps it all taut with cellophane.

It’s a bizarre exaggeration, but it nails exactly what has long been the primary fear of anyone pondering a face-lift. “Everyone’s afraid of looking tight,” says New York plastic surgeon (and author of The Park Avenue Face) Andrew Jacono, alluding to that telltale stretched effect we all dread.

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