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Do I Need a Brow Lift or an Upper Blepharoplasty or Both?

This question is really about how to best rejuvenate the eyes and make them appear more youthful. I prefer lifting the lateral brow endoscopically with a couple of small incisions. I can also accomplish this with a single small temporal incision. And rarely, we can use an old coronal style incision.

I often combine the brow lift with an upper blepharoplasty if the brow has descended and is drooping onto the upper eyelid. The eyelid skin is the thinnest skin on the body but the eyebrow skin is thick. Before removing excess eyelid skin through an upper blepharoplasty, the eyebrow skin, if drooping, needs to be lifted. When somebody has a lot of lateral fullness, we can’t really get a good result with blepharoplasty surgery alone. I also rarely do a brow lift alone. Somebody would have to have no redundant eyelid skin at all, which is often the case in young patients, for that to make sense.

Combining procedures results in longer downtime because the brow lift causes more swelling and bruising, but the result is worth it. 

What age should I get a brow lift or blepharoplasty?

The age at which someone should get a brow lift or blepharoplasty depends on skin condition. While I don’t recommend a brow lift for 25 year olds, some people have premature aging of their eyelids and their brows. 

There’s not an actual age for which these surgeries are recommended, but I do see some patients in their 30s, and I get a lot more patients in their 40s and 50s. I also have patients who don’t need this type of surgery until they’re 65. No matter what age this surgery is done, the most important thing is to choose an experienced surgeon. Removal of too much skin can cause major problems, such as not being able to fully close the eyes. 

How long does a brow lift or blepharoplasty last?

The length of time that a brow lift or blepharoplasty lasts depends on how that individual ages, and everyone ages differently. If it’s well done, either or combined surgeries could last 10 years. In my practice, my brow lift and upper blepharoplasty patients are having results that last 15 or 17 years.

The eyes are very individual and we all posture our eyes in different ways. If you look at me you’ll notice that I raise my eyebrows a lot, so I tend to have high eyebrows. I don’t really need a brow lift, but people who use the muscles that pull down their brows a lot, they tend to eventually need a brow lift. These expressions probably started when they were 18 years old and they began using either their elevators or their depressors more. 

During a consultation I can help you choose the procedure, or combination of procedures, that will work best for you. I look forward to seeing you in the office. Email me or call me. Your questions are important to me and seeing you is the most important. 

About Dr. Jonathan Sykes

Dr. Jonathan Sykes is a world-famous expert plastic surgeon who performs all cosmetic and functional plastic surgery procedures on the face and neck. He is a past president of The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, and served on their Board of Directors for over 10 years. He is also a Professor Emeritus in Facial Plastic Surgery from UC Davis Medical Center, and the former Director of Facial Plastic Surgery at that institution.

He is known as the expert’s expert, and is often called to consult and advise other plastic surgeons in both Northern California and Beverly Hills. He has a special interest in eyelid and browlift surgery, facial rejuvenation surgery including facelifts, and rhinoplasty. He also has a particular interest in facial feminization surgery. Have questions? Email Dr.Sykes at: [email protected]