Forehead or Brow Lift

A Forehead Lift or Brow Lift is a procedure that restores a more youthful, refreshed look to the area above the eyes.
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The procedure corrects drooping brows and improves the horizontal lines and furrows that can make a person appear angry, sad or tired.

A forehead lift is most commonly performed in the 40 to 60 age range to minimize the visible effects of aging. However, it can also help people of any age who have developed furrows or frown lines due to stress or muscle activity. Individuals with inherited conditions, such as a low, heavy brow or furrowed lines above the nose can achieve a more alert and refreshed look with this procedure.

A forehead lift is often performed in conjunction with a facelift to provide a smoother overall look to the face. Eyelid surgery (Blepharoplasty) may also be performed at the same time as a forehead lift, especially if a patient has significant skin overhang in the upper eyelids. Sometimes, patients who believe they need upper-eyelid surgery find that a forehead lift better meets their surgical goals.

Meet Your Physicians

Duane O. Hartshorn, MD

Matthew R. Swelstad, MD

Forehead or Brow Lift FAQ's

Discover the benefits of a brow lift, also referred to as a forehead lift, which:

  • Reduces horizontal wrinkle lines on the forehead and those between the eyes on the bridge of the nose.
  • Improves frown lines, addressing vertical creases between the eyebrows.
  • Raises sagging brows, alleviating hooding on the upper eyelids.
  • Positions the eyebrows for a more alert and youthful appearance.

Explore additional cosmetic procedures that can complement a brow lift, including:

  • Upper and/or lower eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty).
  • Facelifting.
  • Various skin resurfacing techniques.

Is it right for me? 

Forehead/brow lifting is a highly individualized procedure, and you should do it for yourself, not to fulfill someone else’s desires or to try to fit any sort of ideal image. 

Face lifting may be a good option for:

  • Are physically healthy
  • Nonsmoker
  • Have a positive outlook and realistic goals

Your consultation is your time to ask the doctor about the procedure you’re considering, how he thinks it will work for you and any concerns you may have.

Questions to Consider:

  • What is the simplest and safest surgery to help me achieve my goals?
  • Are other options available?
  • What results can I expect, and how long do the typical results last?
  • Where will scars be located, and how noticeable will they be?
  • Will scars fade over time, and how long will this take?

Your surgeon will:

  • Assess your overall health and any pre-existing conditions or risk factors.
  • Capture photographs for reference.
  • Engage in discussions about available options and potential outcomes of the forehead/brow lift surgery, including risks and complications.


After your consultation with the physician, you will meet with the practice manager to discuss procedure costs.

Comprehensive comprehension of every facet of your arm lift procedure is crucial. It’s normal to experience a range of emotions, from excitement about the anticipated transformation to a bit of preoperative stress. Don’t hesitate to openly discuss these feelings with your plastic surgeon.

There are several things to do prior to your procedure that will make your recovery as smooth as possible and ease your pre-procedure anxiety.

Your Pre-Op Checklist:

  • Make sure you have arranged for someone to drive you to surgery and stay with you for a night. 
  • Consult with your surgeon and adhere to their instructions.
  • Take prescribed medications or modify current medication as directed.
  • Complete necessary lab tests within 30 days of your procedure.
  • Cease smoking, alcohol consumption, and drug use.
  • Refrain from taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs, or herbal supplements to mitigate potential bleeding.

 Day of Surgery:

  • Be on time for your scheduled surgery appointment.
  • Bring a companion aged 18 or older.
  • Refrain from eating or drinking after midnight prior to your surgery.
  • Opt for loose, comfortable clothing that is easy to put on and remove on the day of your surgery.

Above all, adhering to your surgeon’s pre-surgery recommendations is key to a successful and swift recovery.


Medications for comfort during arm lift surgery are administered, with options including intravenous sedation or general anesthesia, tailored to your specific needs by your doctor.

The Incision: 

The length and pattern of incisions in forehead/brow lift surgery are determined by the amount of change you would like to see. Options may include: 

  • Endoscopic Approach:
    • Utilizes an endoscope and specialized instruments through small incisions within the hairline.
    • Allows adjustment of tissue and muscles beneath the skin to correct visible creases and furrows on the forehead.
  • Coronal Incision Technique:
    • Involves a “coronal incision” from ear to ear across the top of the head within the hair-bearing skin.
    • Facilitates direct visualization for forehead skin lifting and muscle adjustment.
    • Results in a well-concealed scar within the hairline.

Closing Incisions:

Incisions will be closed using either dissolvable sutures or those that may need removal after a few days. Some surgeons opt for skin glues to seal the incisions. Once fully healed, facelift incision lines are discreetly hidden within the hairline and follow the natural contours of the face and ears.

Recovery durations after Forehead/brow Lifts vary for each patient (days to months).

Following your face lift procedure, dressings or bandages will be applied to the incisions. To minimize swelling during the healing process, an elastic bandage or compression garment may be wrapped around your arms.

In some cases a temporary, thin tube may be placed to drain excess blood or fluid.

You will receive detailed instructions covering:

  • Proper care post-surgery
  • Medications for healing and infection prevention
  • Specific signs to monitor at the surgical site and for overall health
  • Follow-up schedule with your plastic surgeon

Ensure you address specific queries about your individual recovery:

  • Post-surgery destination.
  • Prescribed medications.
  • Duration of dressings/bandages and removal timeline.
  • Are the stitches scheduled for removal, and if so, when is the expected timeframe? 
  • When can I safely resume normal activities and exercise? 
  • What is the recommended timing for my follow-up care appointment?

Your plastic surgeon and/or their team will provide detailed explanations of surgery-associated risks. Consent forms will be signed to ensure your full comprehension of the procedure and potential complications.

Some Risks Involved:

  • Anesthesia risks
  • Bleeding
  • Facial nerve injury with weakness
  • Fluid accumulation


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