The eyebrows are one of the most important facial features when showing expression. Even at rest, one can look tired or angry as a result of the natural position of the eyebrows. Refining the shape and position of the eyebrows can change not only how youthful and energetic one looks, but can also change whether one appears sad or angry at rest.
Older methods of adjusting the position of the eyebrows involved an incision that went across the top of the head. While this approach is still used and can be very helpful in some patients (patients with receeding hair lines or those in need of a forehead reduction), a newer technique uses three to four small incisions, each less than the width of a fingernail, that are hidden in the hair above the forehead. Using endoscopic equipment and cameras, the brows are placed into the proper position and secured there using a fastener that is placed under the skin in the area above the hairline. This small device is then dissolved by the body over the course of 6 months, as the tissues heal and no longer require the support of the fastener. Other methods of adjusting the position of the brow include using the incision that is used for upper eyelid rejuvenation or making an incision that is hidden in the eyebrow itself.
A brow lift is often combined with other face procedures to address excess skin or fat around the eyelids. With a brow lift procedure, it is often possible to remove less skin—or even no skin—from the upper eyelids. Recovery takes a few weeks. During this time, there is little pain, but expect some bruising and swelling. Since all of the incisions are hidden in the hair-bearing scalp or in the crease of the eyelid, it is quite easy to hide this procedure once the swelling and bruising subsides. After two weeks, patients are allowed to return to strenuous activities.
This page and its contents have been reviewed for accuracy and approved by board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Kevin Cross