The eyebrows and forehead region of the face are quick to show signs of aging. Low, heavy eyebrows can make you appear older, look tired, and in some cases, impact your vision. A brow lift procedure could be an excellent solution to your cosmetic concerns. This plastic surgery procedure repositions the brows and may excise forehead skin to provide a youthful, well-rested appearance.
If you’re interested in a brow lift, contact Restore Plastic Surgery in Pensacola today at (850) 500-7527 to schedule your initial consultation or choose our free virtual consultation. Our board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Ben Brown, serves patients nationwide and in surrounding areas of Florida and Mobile, Alabama.
How A Brow Lift differs from a Facelift
The name “facelift” can make some people believe the procedure rejuvenates the entire face — it doesn’t. Facelifts address the mid-face area down to the chin. They do not improve the brows and forehead. That’s the job of a brow lift. Dr. Brown often combines the two procedures into a single surgical session for full facial rejuvenation.
There is a simple test you can perform to see if a brow lift would help. Stand in front of the mirror and place the lower palms of each hand just above your eyebrows on each side of your head. Slightly pull those palms outward and upward and you’ll see how a brow lift will reposition your sagging skin and tissues.
How Should I Prepare For Brow Lift Surgery?
These procedures with Dr. Brown are surgery, so they entail all the same preparation as with any surgery. You’ll need to stop taking any blood thinners, anti-inflammatory medications, aspirin, and most herbal supplements for one week prior to your surgery, as they can all lead to excessive bleeding and subsequent bruising. If you smoke, you’ll need to stop for at least two weeks prior to surgery and afterwards. This is because smoking constricts the blood vessels, and this impedes tissue healing.
You’ll want to prepare for your recovery. Dr. Brown will adjust and reposition a good deal of tissue in these procedures, and this creates bruising and swelling. It’s important to keep your head elevated above the level of your torso for at least three days after surgery, and this takes some preparation. You’ll want to arrange your recovery area to be able to keep your head up, and you’ll sleep on your back. If your work involves heavy lifting or is quite strenuous, you’ll need to arrange to have those duties or tasks removed for about one month, as you cannot risk elevating blood pressure to your face. So, you’ll need to arrange these changes at work before you have your brow lift.
Your Brow Lift Options at Restore Plastic Surgery
Sagging brows and lines and wrinkles in the forehead and between the eyebrows are a natural part of the aging process that can be exacerbated by sun exposure, lifestyle habits, and repeated facial expressions. As you get older, your skin loses elasticity and produces less and less collagen—a natural protein responsible for youthful, taut skin—causing the brows to droop, horizontal forehead lines, and vertical wrinkles called “11s” between the eyebrows.
While injectables and other minimally invasive treatments can temporarily improve the appearance of these lines and wrinkles, they can’t address brow sagging. A brow lift (also called a forehead lift) provides dramatic, long-lasting results for men and women who are tired of looking tired. Depending on the current state and location of your brows, our plastic surgeons will use one of four brow lift techniques:
1. The Direct Brow Lift
A direct brow lift removes forehead tissue above the eyebrows, hiding the excision scar in an existing forehead wrinkle. This precise, simple brow lift technique is best for those with fair skin who have existing forehead wrinkles that can camouflage the resulting scar. This procedure can deliver great results, and laser treatments can also be used to improve scar appearance.
2. The Open Brow Lift
Patients who have a high hairline and/or long forehead can benefit the most from an open brow lift. This technique removes excess skin tissue from the forehead side of the incision to elevate the brow, hiding the resulting scar along the hairline. This brow lift option offers forehead rejuvenation, repositions the hairline, and reduces forehead size along with lifting the brow.
3. The Closed (Endoscopic) Brow Lift
The closed brow lift is the most commonly used technique that elevates the eyebrows using five short incisions that are hidden within the hair behind the hairline. No skin tissue is removed with this brow lift option, and the forehead and brows are repositioned to a more appropriate location.
4. The Internal Brow Pexy
This technique is the least invasive brow lift option that uses an incision most often utilized in upper eyelid blepharoplasty underneath the eyebrow. The undersurface (deep side) of the eyebrow is sutured down to the bone in a more elevated position. Internal brow pexy elevates brow location by “pushing” from below. However, this is a less powerful method than pulling from above like other brow lift variations.
The brow lift can be combined with another face procedure such as eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) to provide further facial rejuvenation.
What is Recovery like after A Brow Lift?
Your recovery will vary with the technique employed by Dr. Brown. The direct and open brow lift methods involve the most recovery time, as they involve tissue excision and repositioning. The closed/endoscopic method and internal brow pexy feature easier recoveries.
There is a good deal of tissue adjustment and repositioning with brow lifts, and this creates bruising and swelling. Often this can migrate from the forehead down around your eyes and into the cheeks. This isn’t pretty, but it usually clears in a week to 10 days. It’s important for brow lift patients to keep their head elevated above the level of the torso for three days after your surgery, including when sleeping.
Recovery is more involved if Dr. Brown uses the open-brow lift method. This is due to the length of the incision and the degree of re-draping of the skin. Patients usually have numbness across the forehead. This will transition to itching along the incision. Both of these will pass; they are the result of nerves adjusting to the changes. Often, the hair near the incision will fall out or thin, but normal hair growth should return within weeks or a few months.
Closed/endoscopic brow lifts will also involve some numbness due to the tissue manipulation, but there is far less itching than traditional methods. This is because the incisions are minimal compared with the traditional method. Patients can usually return to work within 10 days, particularly to sedentary jobs. But if your job entails heavy lifting or physical labor, you may need more time. Strenuous exercise and heavy lifting will need to be put off for one month, as you must avoid elevating the blood pressure to your face.
How painful is Brow Lift recovery?
The forehead area is not populated by the number of nerves as are found in the lower face, so there isn’t much acute pain after these surgeries. But patients will have some numbing, and this will often transition to itching along the incision sites and with other areas where tissue was heavily elevated. These will pass with time as the nerves adjust.
When you can return to normal activities after having a Brow Lift
Every patient is unique in the way they recover. Still, most of our Restore Plastic Surgery brow lift patients can return to work within 10 days. There are some limits, however: heavy lifting and vigorous physical exertion will need to wait for around one month. With less invasive methods you may not need that much time. It won’t take that long to be able to walk and go to the store and the like. But you will probably have some significant bruising, and this can make you want to stay out of the public eye.
Are Brow Lifts permanent or will I need another surgery at some point?
These are meant to be single surgeries in a person’s lifetime. Your future sagging and any possible descension of your brows will never be anywhere near where they were prior to this surgery. You’ll be pleased with your refreshed, more alert appearance for the long term.
When to expect your results of the Brow Lift
Your results are immediate, although they will be masked for some time by the swelling and bruising. Still, after 10 days or so, you’ll get a real idea of the improvements. You’ll look more alert and younger. As any lingering swelling completely resolves, your results will continue to improve. From there, you will still age on your brows, but the sagging and development of forehead lines will never remotely approach where they were previously.
Schedule Your Brow Lift Consultation in Pensacola
Please call Restore Plastic Surgery today at 850-500-7527 to schedule your consultation or schedule online. Our office in Pensacola, Florida serves patients from across the state, Mobile Alabama, and throughout the country.