A brow lift, also known as a forehead lift is a surgical operation to elevate the eyebrows.  The underlying muscles can be trimmed reducing frown lines.

At A Glance

Operation time

45 - 90 minutes


General or local

Hospital stay



3 - 4 weeks


48 hours depending on vision

Back to work

2 weeks


 2 days

Full Recovery

2 weeks

Frequenty Asked Questions

Am I suitable for a brow lift?

Brow lift are worth considering if you have:

  • A low eyebrow position creates a tired, sad or grumpy appearance
  • Deep horizontal creases across the forehead
  • Frown lines or furrows between the eyebrows or across the top of your nose
  • Excess skin or fatty tissue hanging over your eyes

How does the brow age?

The eyebrow is very important in facial expression. A lowered brow may give the impression of being tired or cross, whilst an elevated brow can give a surprised or startled look. With ageing, the brow tends to become lowered and the brow lift aims to correct this. Usually, the outer aspect drops more, which can result in a sad look. This brow droop (ptosis) is often accompanied by increased frown lines across the forehead and between the eyebrows. The brow lift procedure aims to correct these changes by elevating the eyebrows and in some cases partly resecting some of the muscles responsible for the frown lines. Several techniques are available, depending on patient preference and what is required.


Are there any other options other than surgery?

It should be noted that in some cases surgery may not be the best option and that treatment with botulinum toxin and/or dermal fillers may be preferable. When appropriate, this will be discussed at the initial consultation.

What are the surgical options for a brow lift?

Brow lift procedures are tailored to the patients’ requirements and are frequently performed at the same time as other facial rejuvenation operations, such as a facelift and eyelid corrections. The exact technique used will depend on a variety of factors, including what effect is desired, where the scars are placed and what other procedures are being undertaken. The further the incision is from the eyebrow the more tension is required, and the less dramatic the effect. The main techniques available are described in the following sections:


  • Supraciliary Brow Lift (Direct Brow Lift)
  • The Open (Bicoronal) Brow Lift
  • Foreheadplasty
  • Endoscopic (Endobrow) Lift
  • Lateral Temporal (Outer Brow) Lift

What is the direct brow lift?

This is a relatively simple operation that corrects the eyebrow droop by excising an ellipse of skin above the eyebrow. By itself, it may be undertaken under local anaesthetic and can be performed as a minor operation in the Outpatient setting. It has the advantage of being simple and relatively risk- free and also enables shaping of the eyebrow. It has the disadvantage of leaving a scar above the eyebrow, although in many cases this fades extremely well and is concealed in the junction between the eyebrow and the forehead. The stitches are usually left in place for 7-14 days, and recovery is very rapid, with most patients returning to all normal activities within 3-4 weeks. Most of the details in this information sheet are not relevant to this procedure. There is a separate information sheet specifically for this procedure.

What is the lateral temporal (Outer Brow) Lift?

A lateral brow lift aims to elevate the outer aspect of the eyebrow and is undertaken via an incision that extends upwards from the ear in the hair-bearing scalp.

What does the operation involve?

The brow lift operation is usually performed under a general anaesthetic and takes 45 – 60 minutes. Drains may be inserted; these are positioned under the incision and come out behind the hairline. They are usually removed the following day. The incision may be closed with either staples or sutures. This will be discussed at the initial consultation. When staples or non-dissolving sutures are required these are usually removed at 7-14 days postoperatively. Cold moist gauze is applied to the forehead and anterior scalp to reduce swelling and a bandage applied.

One dose of antibiotic is given at operation to reduce the risk of infection and one dose of steroid to reduce postoperative swelling.

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