A brow lift, or forehead lift, is an operation performed to reposition a low or sagging brow. This procedure also helps to reduce deep furrows across the forehead, as well as skin changes that can impart an angry or tired appearance. While brow and forehead changes are part of the aging process in many patients, deep frown lines or a low brow position are inherited conditions for others, and sometimes these characteristics present at a very young age.
To rejuvenate the brow area, Dr. Brian Braithwaite and Dr. Lorri Cobbins must elevate the skin and muscles of the forehead and suspend them in a more desirable location. Muscle is sometimes removed and suspension is usually maintained by absorbable sutures and fixation devices. Several techniques are available to assist patients with a variety of different hairstyles and hairlines, including both a traditional and endoscopic approach. Each method has its advantages, depending on the desired goals of the procedure, and our doctors will choose the approach that can help you achieve the best possible outcome. In addition, Dr. Braithwaite and Dr. Cobbins can often perform brow lift surgery in conjunction with other facial aesthetic procedures, such as face lift and blepharoplasty, for a more comprehensive facial enhancement.
Determining Candidacy for a Brow Lift
To determine if you are a good candidate for brow lift surgery, your doctor will review your health history and perform an examination during your consultation. He or she will carefully examine your upper face, assessing brow position, skin creases, eyelid position, and underlying muscle activity. To help understand your goals, we recommend that you bring photographs of your younger self to the consultation. Preoperative photos will also be taken during your visit. During the consultation, your doctor will gain a thorough understanding of your needs and goals, as well as review available techniques and incision locations that can safely and effectively help you attain your desired results.
The Brow Lift Procedure
Dr. Braithwaite and Dr. Cobbins perform brow lift surgery as an outpatient procedure under general anesthesia. The traditional open approach, or coronal brow lift, involves a lengthy incision in the hairline and removal of excess skin or scalp. Less invasive, the endoscopic technique utilizes several small incisions and video equipment to view the relevant structures. Common incision sites include the central scalp and temples (either behind or at the hairline), and most scalp scars heal extremely well after these procedures. For the majority of patients, brow lift surgery takes approximately one hour to complete, though this may vary based on the specific technique employed and whether or not the procedure is performed in conjunction with another treatment.
Recovery from Brow Lift Surgery
Following brow lift surgery, some temporary swelling and/or bruising in the forehead region can be expected, but these symptoms should subside relatively quickly. Often described as mild, any potential discomfort can usually be managed with medication and should resolve over time. Patients may drive and return to office-based work once they discontinue narcotic pain medicine, though any vigorous activity or strenuous exercise should be avoided for at least several weeks to allow for proper healing.
Brow Lift FAQs
Our plastic surgeons have answered the following frequently asked brow lift questions to help you become more informed about this procedure.
Q: What are the benefits of a brow lift?
A: Brow lift surgery offers numerous benefits to women and men seeking to rejuvenate the appearance of their forehead region. Based on each individual’s needs and aesthetic desires, this procedure can help:
- Reduce deep forehead wrinkles and creases
- Smooth furrows between the eyebrows
- Relieve forehead muscle tension
- Achieve a more desireable eyebrow position
- Resolve a perpetually “tired” or “angry” look
Q: Will I have any visible brow lift scars?
A: The extent and visibility of any potential brow lift scarring will depend on the specific technique utilized, as well as the unique needs of the individual. That being said, incisions are typically made either at or behind the hairline, often allowing one’s hair to conceal any evidence of surgery.
Q: How long will my brow lift results last?
A: Results achieved with brow lift surgery tend to last approximately 10–15 years, but this can vary based on skin care, stress, sun exposure, lifestyle choices, genetics, natural aging, and numerous other factors unique to every person. It is important to keep in mind that regardless of how long one’s results last, patients who received a brow lift will still look younger years down the road than they would if they never underwent treatment.
Q: How much does a brow lift cost?
A: Like all cosmetic procedures, the cost of brow lift surgery will depend on the extent of one’s needs, the particular technique employed, whether or not treatment is combined with another procedure, and several other components. At The Aesthetic Institute of Chicago, every brow lift is custom-tailored for the patient, so an in-person consultation will be needed to determine pricing. At this time, our surgeons can perform a thorough evaluation and provide an individualized price quote based on your specific aesthetic concerns and goals.
Q: Are there any non-surgical brow lift alternatives?
A: BOTOX® Cosmetic can often be a great minimally invasive alternative to brow lifting for individuals who do not yet need—or desire—a surgical procedure to treat concerns such as forehead lines and creases. That said, regular touch-up visits will be needed to maintain one’s results, and the capabilities of BOTOX® Cosmetic are not as extensive as brow lift surgery.
Contact The Aesthetic Institute of Chicago
For more information about brow lift surgery or to schedule a consultation at our Chicago plastic surgery practice, please contact us via email or call (312) 361-8108 today.