Heavy, low eyebrows can cause you to look perpetually tired or angry. The brows gradually descend over time for a variety of reasons, including the natural aging process, sun damage, and genetics. Double board-certified facial plastic surgeon Dr. Houtan Chaboki performs brow lift surgery, also called a forehead lift, in Washington, DC, to help women and men look rested and youthful again. He specializes in a minimally invasive endoscopic brow lift technique that offers patients from Arlington and Ashburn, VA; Bethesda and Chevy Chase, MD; and surrounding cities distinct advantages over traditional methods.
Dr. Chaboki focuses his practice exclusively on facial plastic surgery. To learn more about brow lift surgery and other procedures that can minimize the signs of aging, request your cosmetic consultation with Dr. Chaboki online or call his office at
Sagging neck skin gradually develops as one gets older. In addition, fat accumulates under the chin and facial bones thin over time. Each factor plays a different role in every patient to create an aging neck or submental fullness (i.e. a double chin). Plastic surgery options will vary based on a patient's anatomy and personal... Read More
The eyes are a universal sign of beauty and often the first area one considers for plastic surgery. Extra skin and fat develops in the eyelids and around the eyes. In addition, the brow gradually descends with time, especially the sides of the brow. Sagging tissue can make the eyes appear smaller, narrower, or fatigued with tim... Read More
Excess skin, droopy eyelids, and a descending eyebrow in this metropolitan DC area woman had obstructed her visual field, in addition to making her appear older than she felt. She also had to strain or tilt her head to read. She underwent an upper face lift via a minimally invasive endoscopic brow approach (endobrow lift). Very small inc... Read More
Eyelid procedures are common in a Washington DC plastic surgery office. Both nonsurgical and surgical options are available to rejuvenate a person's appearance. Some may need smoother skin, while others may request improvement of eye bags and dark circles. The best plastic surgeons tailor procedures to the needs of each pa... Read More
Sagging skin and droopy eyelids are common complaints of Maryland patients considering cosmetic eyelid surgery. The extra skin and sagging tissue come primarily from a combination of natural aging and sun damage. In addition to appearing "tired" or "older", some cases of droopy eyebrows or eyelids may also obstruct or limit vision.This... Read More
Eyes are the first thing one notices and are a universal sign of health and beauty. As a result, cosmetic procedures around the eyes and forehead are very popular, including Botox® Cosmetic, brow lift, and eyelid surgery. Some of the first signs of wrinkling may appear around the eyes. The eyes may become gradually&nb... Read More
The eyebrow naturally descends and flattens with sun damage and age. Low eyebrows may inadvertantly convey a tired or angry appearance. Brow lift surgery can help "open" up the eyes to rejuvenate the face, in addition to recreating a natural arch to the eyebrow. Dr. Chaboki often performs an endoscopic brow lift with eyelid surgery (blepharop... Read More
Large, open eyes are a universal sign of youth and beauty. No wonder cosmetic procedures around the eyes and forehead are so popular, such as Botox® Cosmetic and eyelid surgery. In addition, the eyes may be the first area to show signs aging with wrinkles and sagging tissue. The eye area gradually becomes smaller, narrower, or tired appearing... Read More
A brow lift is cosmetic plastic surgery of the eyebrow and forehead area that provides one or more of the following improvements:
Raises the middle and outer portions of the brows
Tightens sagging skin
Removes bulging fat
Lifts drooping upper eyelids
Smoothes forehead wrinkles
The procedure can rejuvenate a patient’s facial appearance by opening up the area around the eyes and creating a smoother forehead. The aesthetic result is a more youthful, relaxed, and refreshed appearance.
How Much Does a Brow Lift Cost?
In Washington, D.C., most brow lifts cost between $5,000 and $10,000*. After your consultation, a member of our staff provides you with a written quote that reflects the specifics you and Dr. Chaboki discussed. Visit our Fees & Financing page to learn more about paying for your brow lift.
Brow Lift & Upper Eyelid Surgery
Patients are often uncertain about whether a brow lift or eyelid surgery will give them the improvements they want. Dr. Chaboki assesses the eyelids, especially the upper eyelids, when determining whether a patient may benefit from brow lift surgery.
To rejuvenate the upper third of the face, some patients need a brow lift alone, some need upper eyelid surgery, and some need both brow lift and upper eyelid surgery. As a facial rejuvenation specialist, Dr. Chaboki is able to determine the unique needs of each patient.
Houtan Chaboki, MD
Double Board-Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon
Certified by both the American Board of Otolaryngology and the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Dr. Chaboki has extensive knowledge of the intricacies of the face and neck. When you choose him for your procedure, you’re choosing one of the most reputable facial plastic surgeons in DC, as well as a nationwide leader in
Dr. Chaboki is trained and experienced in many variations of the brow lift procedure. After a comprehensive evaluation, he will recommend the options best suited to you based on your areas of concern, the amount of correction you would like to achieve, and your underlying facial anatomy. Brow lift options include:
The traditional brow lift, also called a coronal brow lift or complete brow lift, involves an incision behind the hairline that typically runs across the top of the head from ear to ear. A strip of scalp is usually removed during this procedure.
The endoscopic brow lift, also called a minimally invasive brow lift, involves small incisions hidden in the hairline
The lateral brow lift, also called a temporal brow lift, raises only the outer portion of the eyebrows and involves incisions placed about 1 to 2 centimeters behind the hairline at the temples that can range from 2 to 10 centimeters long.
The nonsurgical brow lift is performed with BOTOX® Cosmetic injections to temporarily lift the outer brows by relaxing the facial muscles that pull the brows down. The results are typically more subtle than those from surgery.
Advantages of the Endoscopic Technique
Although the endoscopic approach is technically more demanding and requires more specialized training, Dr. Chaboki prefers this technique because it offers several advantages over the traditional technique, including:
Lower rate of complications
Reduced scarring, bruising, bleeding, swelling, itching, and numbness
Comprehensive Facial Rejuvenation
Dr. Chaboki performs a variety of surgical and nonsurgical procedures to reduce the signs of aging. He can perform these procedures individually or along with a brow lift. Options include:
Facelift tightens lax skin and lifts sagging cheeks and jowls.
Eyelid surgery of the upper and lower eyelids removes sagging upper eyelid skin and reduces puffy under-eye bags.
Med spa treatments, such as facial fillers, chemical peels, and BOTOX Cosmetic, provide nonsurgical rejuvenation for patients who are not ready for cosmetic surgery.
Dr. Chaboki will review your options during your comprehensive evaluation and determine a treatment plan that addresses your unique needs and cosmetic goals. Visit his Facial Rejuvenation Overview page for additional information.
How Is Brow Lift Surgery Performed?
Brow lift surgery is an outpatient procedure that typically takes less than one hour to perform. During the endoscopic brow lift procedure, Dr. Chaboki may insert a small video camera (endoscope) into several small incisions placed just behind the hairline. The endoscope provides him with a clear view of the muscles and tissues beneath the forehead skin. Dr. Chaboki then inserts another instrument through one of the small incisions to lift the skin and remove or alter the brow muscle, if necessary.
During an endoscopic procedure, the eyebrows and forehead can be lifted and secured at the optimal height through the use of an advanced, suture-less mechanism called the Endotine® Forehead fixation device. Each Endotine device dissolves gradually following surgery while the tissues heal in their new, lifted position.
Recovery After Brow Lift Surgery
After brow lift surgery, patients commonly experience a mild headache, rather than pain, which is usually manageable with prescription pain medication. The endoscopic brow lift causes less discomfort than traditional brow lift surgery.
You will experience a certain amount of swelling and bruising for the first week or 2 after your procedure. As the incisions heal, you may experience some numbness or itching, both of which are normal and diminish with time. You can expect to resume light activity within a couple of days after brow lift surgery.
Most brow lift patients are very pleased with their refreshed and rejuvenated appearances. It may take several weeks to see the final results, but your new look will be well worth the wait.
How Long Do Brow Lift Results Last?
Although you will appear younger for a long time after brow lift surgery, it cannot stop the aging process. You should continue to see Dr. Chaboki for skin care and maintenance of plastic surgery results.
Brow Lift FAQs
Do I need a brow lift with a facelift?
Combined brow lift, eyelid lift, and facelift surgery is referred to as a “full facelift”. Facial plastic surgery is tailored to the unique needs of each patient, based on several factors such as individual anatomy, degree of facial aging, medical conditions, and patient personal preferences. While a brow lift, eyelid lift, and/or facelift are commonly performed together, these procedures don’t have to be performed at the same time.
When can I resume regular exercise after brow lift surgery?
Strenuous activities or exercise after plastic surgery will increase the risk of bleeding, swelling, and bruising. Activity restriction during the recovery period varies based on the operation performed and patient’s medical condition. Light activities, such as slow walking, may be performed soon after anesthesia. Heavy activity, such as aerobics, yoga, cycling, running, heavy lifting, or similar vigorous activities are allowed after 2 weeks from the procedure. Contact sports are generally allowed after 6 weeks from surgery.
Will I need time off work or school after brow lift surgery?
Patients can go to work or school the next day or work from home, if desired. Most patients, however, plan at least one week off from work or school after plastic surgery. A longer period of recovery may be necessary for combined procedures.
When can I travel after brow lift surgery?
Patients should remain in the area at least the first day after plastic surgery. Regional travel by car is allowed the following day after surgery. Patients should wait at least one week before air travel after plastic surgery, but waiting 2 weeks is preferred. The risks associated with travel reduce with time.
When can I wear makeup or contact lenses after brow lift surgery?
Makeup should not be used around the operated area for the first week after surgery. Contact lenses are usually allowed after the first week from brow lift surgery. As healing is monitored, Dr. Chaboki will help determine an appropriate time to resume makeup on operated areas.
How long should bruising last after brow lift surgery?
Bruising improves faster than swelling after plastic surgery. On average, most bruising resolves within the first 1 to 2 weeks in the early phase of healing.
How long should swelling last after a brow lift?
The immediate swelling after brow lift surgery may last approximately a week or 2, depending on several factors. After this initial healing period, swelling is still present, but usually only noticeable by the patient. The very last tiny bit of swelling takes several months to gradually dissolve.
It’s possible to have swelling in areas of the face and eyes adjacent to the surgery site, even though plastic surgery was not necessarily performed in those areas. This extension of facial swelling is due to gravity and the natural movement of fluid in the tissues. In addition, keep in mind that the eyelids, face, and nose are very sensitive to swelling from other factors, such as allergies, diet, hormones, gravity, sleep, etc.
How painful is brow lift surgery?
Patients are comfortable during surgery, whether the procedure is performed in the office via local anesthesia or in a surgical facility with IV sedation. Patients may experience a very brief, mild sting from the initial numbing medication.
A certain level of discomfort is normal and expected after plastic surgery. Patients often describe sensations as tightness, soreness, or discomfort that is easily managed by oral pain medication (e.g., acetaminophen, codeine). Many patients have reported not requiring prescription pain medication after the first day or so.
Severe pain, which is unusual, should always be reported immediately to your plastic surgeon.
What type of anesthesia is used during brow lift surgery?
Nonsurgical brow or forehead procedures (using BOTOX® or Restylane®) are performed in the office with local anesthesia. Minor surgery (e.g., direct brow lift) is also normally performed with local anesthesia. Brow lift surgery may be performed with either IV (twilight) sedation or general anesthesia at accredited facilities with a licensed anesthetist.
Patients are safe and comfortable during their procedures. The decision on the type of anesthesia used during plastic surgery depends on the extent of surgery, additional cosmetic surgery procedures along with the brow lift surgery, patient factors and preference, and surgeon factors and preference. After an evaluation, the plastic surgeon and patient decide together the appropriate anesthesia type for plastic surgery.
How long will results of brow lift surgery last?
After brow lift surgery, you should look better than nature intended for the remainder of your life. The aging process continues, however, so wrinkles and sagging skin will reappear years after facial surgery. You can always expect to look better than if you had not had the procedure in the first place. Patients may consider nonsurgical treatments to help maintain a rejuvenated appearance after cosmetic surgery.
What age is appropriate for brow lift surgery?
Patients may start considering cosmetic brow lift surgery at a young age, for those who were born with excess skin or fat. Many patients start considering cosmetic brow lift surgery after age 40.
There isn’t an ideal age for brow lift. Dr. Chaboki evaluates an individual’s anatomy (skin, muscle, fat, bone, etc.) and discusses the patient’s personal preferences (upper eyelid and/or lower eyelid, degree of change, recovery time, etc.). He will then suggest appropriate surgical or nonsurgical procedures based primarily on these 2 factors.
What are alternatives to brow lift surgery?
Nonsurgical alternatives to brow lift surgery include BOTOX® Cosmetic or Dysport® injections around the eyes and forehead to reduce wrinkles and improve brow position. Facial fillers (e.g., Restylane® or BELOTERO®) may reduce fine wrinkles and creases. Nonsurgical treatments last several months.
For optimal outcomes in patients with significant excess or loose skin, brow lift surgery is required.
How can I reduce the risks of brow lift surgery?
Education is the best method to reduce risks. Learning about the procedure and risks, including a discussion with your plastic surgeon helps promote safety.
Follow your plastic surgeon’s preoperative and postoperative care instructions. These care instructions are meant as a guide and do not replace specific instructions for you. Preparation reduces risks, both before surgery and during your recovery after cosmetic surgery.
How safe is brow lift surgery?
A patient’s safety is always our primary concern. Any plastic surgery has inherent risks, but brow lift surgery is considered a safe surgery in healthy patients.
Dr. Chaboki will review your medical history and medications, in addition to an appropriate examination to evaluate not only the aesthetic plan, but also to perform plastic surgery safely. Some patients may also need testing and/or preoperative medical evaluation by their primary care physician before surgery.
Where are the incisions placed for brow lift surgery?
Incisions for many brow lift techniques, including limited incision and endoscopic brow lifts, are hidden within the hair of the scalp. The incision for a transbleph brow lift is placed in the natural contour of the upper eyelid skin, hidden from view. Direct, mid brow, and trichophytic brow lifts have incisions placed along the eyebrow, forehead, and hairline junction, respectively.
The incision location and length varies largely based on the age of the patient and how much lift he or she needs. Dr. Chaboki will minimize the incision but maximize the lift, without creating an unnatural appearance. The brow lift surgery incision, regardless of exact location, fades from view over time.
Can I change my eye shape with brow lift surgery?
The shape of the eyes may appear to change in some patients after removal of sagging skin, muscle, or fat. Dr. Chaboki’s general goal in cosmetic surgery is not necessarily to change people, but rather to improve and freshen their existing appearance.
Is there a “mini” brow lift or nonsurgical lift with BOTOX® Cosmetic?
The newer techniques of brow lift surgery, such limited incision, endoscopic, or temporal lifts, are generally considered “mini” brow lifts as compared to older brow lift methods. These modern brow lifts do not create the long incision performed with other types of brow plastic surgery, such as coronal lift.
Nonsurgical brow lift can be performed with wrinkle relaxers such as BOTOX® Cosmetic or Dysport®. By relaxing the muscles than pull down the brow, BOTOX can provide a temporary brow lift. Results with a nonsurgical brow lift are subtler as compared to surgery.
For more information, read our blog post on lifting the brow without surgery.
How do I know if I need eyelid surgery or a brow lift?
Upper eyelid surgery primarily removes excess skin from the top eyelid, and generally does not directly change the eyebrow. A brow lift not only lifts the eyebrow, but also pulls up some extra skin from the upper eyelid area. For some, a brow lift alone may be sufficient to improve the appearance of the upper eyelid. For others, an upper blepharoplasty combined with brow lift surgery at the same time is preferred for upper facial rejuvenation.