A brow lift (forehead lift) is a surgical procedure that improves the appearance of the forehead, upper eyelids, and eyebrows.
During the procedure, a surgeon will remove excess skin and tissue and reposition the underlying muscles and tissues to create a more youthful and refreshed appearance.
Different Techniques Used to Perform a Brow Lift Surgery
A surgeon can use several different techniques to perform a brow lift, including:
- Traditional open technique: This technique involves the creation of a single, longer incision along the hairline, which allows the surgeon to lift and reposition the skin, muscles, and tissues in the forehead and eyebrows. It is used for more extensive treatments and may result in a longer recovery.
- Endoscopic technique: This technique involves using an endoscope, a thin, lighted instrument inserted through several small incisions in the scalp. The endoscope allows the surgeon to view the underlying muscles and tissues and to lift and reposition them as necessary. It is often used for less extensive treatments and may result in a shorter recovery time.
- Temporal lift: This technique involves the creation of small incisions in the temples, which allows the surgeon to lift and reposition the skin and muscles in the eyebrows and upper eyelids. It addresses sagging in the outer corners of the eyebrows. Your surgeon may combine it with other techniques for more comprehensive treatment.
Your surgeon will choose the most appropriate technique based on your specific needs and goals, as well as the extent of the treatment area.
Benefits of a Brow Lift
A brow lift can enhance the appearance of eyebrows, upper eyelids, and forehead.
Some of the potential benefits of a brow lift surgery include the following:
- A more youthful and refreshed appearance:
- Improved appearance of the forehead and eyebrows:
- Reduction in the appearance of wrinkles and lines on the forehead
- Enhanced appearance of the upper eyelids
Potential Risks and Complications of a Brow Lift
There are several potential risks and complications associated with a brow lift, including:
- Infection: As with any surgical procedure, there is a risk of infection with a brow lift. You can minimize this risk through proper wound care and hygiene and by following the surgeon’s instructions.
- Scarring: There may be scarring following a forehead lift, although this is typically minimal and well-hidden in the hairline. The extent of scarring will depend on the specific technique used and the individual patient’s healing process.
- Changes in sensation: There may be sensations in the treatment area following a brow lift, including numbness or tingling. These changes are typically temporary and will resolve over time.
- Asymmetry in the position of the brows: Asymmetry is a potential risk of a brow lift procedure and may require additional treatment to correct.
- Hair loss or thinning: A brow lift can cause hair loss or thinning in the treatment area that may require additional treatment to resolve.
Before deciding to get a brow lift, you should carefully consider the procedure’s pros and cons.
How You Prepare For the Procedure
If you are getting a brow lift, you can do a few things to get ready.
You can Talk to your doctor about the best way to prepare. Some things to do before the procedure may include:
- Consult with a qualified surgeon. You will initially consult an experienced facial plastic surgeon to discuss your specific needs and goals. During the consultation, the surgeon will perform a physical examination, evaluate your medical history, and discuss the potential risks and benefits you will likely get from the procedure. It will help to determine if a brow lift surgery is the most appropriate treatment for you.
- Follow pre-procedure instructions. Your surgeon will provide specific instructions before the procedure, including any necessary pre-operative tests or medications. It is essential to follow these instructions carefully to minimize the risk of complications.
- Arrange transportation and post-procedure care. After your surgery, you won’t be able to drive yourself home because of side effects from anesthesia. It is necessary to arrange for transportation and post-procedure care in advance. You will also need someone to help you with daily activities for a few days while you recover.
- Stop smoking. Smoking can decrease blood flow in the skin and slow the healing process. If you smoke, stop smoking at least two weeks before the procedure to improve healing and minimize the risk of complications.
- Avoid certain medications. Your surgeon may advise you to avoid certain medications, such as blood thinners or certain supplements, before the procedure.
By preparing ahead of time, you can help to ensure a smooth and successful procedure.
What You Can Expect During the Procedure
Your surgeon will administer intravenous sedation or general anesthesia during a brow lift to ensure comfort.
The procedure may take place in a hospital or outpatient surgical center.
Below is what you should expect during and after the procedure. During a forehead lift treatment, patients can expect the following:
- Anesthesia. A qualified healthcare provider will determine the type of anesthesia to use based on the patient’s specific needs and the extent of the treatment area. The options may include local anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia.
- Procedure length. It will depend on the specific technique used and the extent of the treatment area. For example, the traditional open technique typically takes between one and three hours to complete, while the endoscopic may be shorter in duration. The temporal lift is usually the quickest of the three techniques, taking approximately one hour to complete.
- Recovery. Following the procedure, patients may experience swelling, bruising, and discomfort in the treatment area. These side effects are typically temporary and will resolve over time. Patients may also experience changes in sensation, including numbness or tingling, which will also resolve over time.
- Post-treatment care. Patients need to follow the surgeon’s instructions for post-treatment care. It may include taking medications to manage pain and swelling, keeping the incisions clean and dry, and avoiding strenuous activity.
Overall, the healing process after a brow lift will differ for each person and depend on your surgeon’s treatment technique.
After a Brow Lift Procedure
You might have some swelling and bruises after surgery, but they should go away in about a week.
Your healthcare provider will remove the sutures about a week after surgery.
After this, you can resume your normal daily activities. For at least two weeks, avoid strenuous activities.
You should also pay attention to any signs of infection or other serious problems, such as fever, redness, or a discharge from the incision site.
In case you experience any signs of infection, contact your doctors immediately.
How Much Does a Brow Lift Surgery Cost?
The cost of a brow lift procedure can vary significantly, depending on several factors.
The average cost of a brow lift in the United States is around $4,000, although this can range from $2,000 to $7,000.
The cost of a forehead lift can be affected by a number of factors, including:
- The specific technique used: Different techniques may have different costs.
- The extent of the treatment area: A more extensive treatment area may result in a higher cost.
- The location of the practice: The cost of a forehead lift may vary depending on the practice’s location.
- The surgeon’s qualifications and experience: A surgeon with specialized training and experience may charge more for their services.
Most insurance plans do not cover brow lift surgery because they consider it a cosmetic procedure.
But some insurance plans may cover certain parts of the procedure if it is deemed medically necessary, such as treatment for ptosis (when the eyebrows droop).
It is essential to check with your insurance provider to determine if any part of the procedure is covered.
People who can’t pay for a brow lift procedure all at once may be able to get financing.
It includes getting a loan from the practice or a third-party lender, like a bank or credit union, to pay for your procedure.
If you decide to get a loan to pay for your procedure, make sure you read the terms and conditions of the loan carefully before making a decision.
How Long Will Your Results Last?
The results of a brow lift procedure generally last for many years.
But the effects of getting older, being in the sun, and bad habits like smoking can make the results go the other way.
If you want your results to last longer, you should practice a healthy lifestyle.
It includes taking good care of your skin and keeping it safe from the sun.
After you get a brow lift, taking good care of your skin will help you keep the results and make them last longer.
Brow Lift Scars
Scarring is a potential risk of any surgical procedure, including a brow lift.
The extent of scarring will depend on the type of brow lift procedure your healthcare provider uses and your healing process.
In most cases, the scars from a brow lift are minimal and well-hidden in the hairline.
Follow your doctor’s instructions about cleaning and taking care of your wound to reduce the chance of getting a scar.
It may mean keeping the wounds clean and dry, avoiding strenuous activity, and staying out of the sun.
In some cases, scars may be more prominent or need more treatment to make them less noticeable.
Your doctor may suggest using creams, gels, or other treatments like laser therapy or silicone sheets to get rid of scars.
Non-Surgical Brow Lift
If you want to lift and reshape your brow without going under the knife, a non-surgical brow lift may be the solution you’ve been looking for.
It is a quick, minimally invasive alternative to surgical forehead lifts that can give you natural-looking results.
Read our in-depth guide if you’re interested in learning more about non-invasive brow lifts.
We’ve addressed everything you want to know, including what to expect during the procedure, the benefits of a non-surgical brow lift, and more.
- American Society of Plastic Surgeons. (June 2018). Brow Lift Surgery. Retrieved from plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/brow-lift
- Endoscopic Brow Lift, Upper and Lower Blepharoplasty, Retinacular Canthopexy. (Nov 21, 2017). journals.lww.com/plasreconsurg/pages/video.aspx?autoPlay=false&v=1227
- American Board Cosmetic Surgery. (n.d). Brow Lift Guide. americanboardcosmeticsurgery.org/procedure-learning-center/face/brow-lift-guide/
- National Library of Medicine. (April 6, 2020). Techniques of Eyebrow Lifting: A Narrative Review. pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32308957/