Eyelid Lift

“I’m tired of looking tired” is a very common sentiment shared by people who struggle with drooping eyelids. The eyes are incredibly expressive – over time, even the subtlest of eye changes can contribute to the aging of the eyelids. An eyelid lift can rejuvenate the appearance of the eyes for a brighter, well rested look.

An eyelid lift, otherwise known as a blepharoplasty, is a procedure that Dr. Rankin can perform on the upper eyelids, lower eyelids, or both. Eyelid lifts can correct the sagging skin of the upper eyelid, while lower eyelid lifts mainly correct under-eye bags. 

Upper Eyelids 

The upper eyelid is crucial for our ability to see. It moves more than the lower eyelid to protect our eyes from the elements and works together with the eyebrows to optimize our vision.

As we age, our eyebrows begin to descend as we lose elasticity in our skin, and our upper eyelids begin to look droopy or “heavy.” The upper eyelids send signals back to the forehead to lift the eyebrows to optimize our vision. Because the eyebrows push down the upper eyelids over time, extra skin and fat on the eyelids can become more apparent and obstruct vision. 

Lower Eyelids

The bags you see under your eyes are often the product of volume loss in the cheeks. The fat around the eyes does not change along with the fat pads of the face. As the volume in your cheeks decreases, the normal amount of fat around the eyes is exposed, causing a puffy under eye appearance. While older eyelid lift procedures used to be aimed at removing this fat from around the eyes, it can leave the area around the eyes looking hollow, which is not as rejuvenating.

An upper eyelid lift is typically performed under local anesthesia. Dr. Rankin will make incisions that follow the eyelids’ natural shape to minimize the appearance of scarring. Often an upper eyelid lift involves mainly the excess skin, but sometimes Dr. Rankin tightens the muscles in the eyelid if necessary. After an upper eyelid lift, you will look more bright-eyed and awake.

A lower eyelid lift is more involved compared to an upper eyelid lift, so Dr. Rankin performs this surgery using general anesthesia. To correct the lower eyelid bags, Dr. Rankin uses a technique that involves blending the area where the lower eyelid and cheek meet to re-establish the youthful contours of the face and smooth the appearance of the under eyes. 

This typically entails fat grafting of the cheeks and rearranging the fat around the eyes to smooth the transition from the lower lid onto the cheek. Once this portion of the procedure is complete, the amount of skin removed is quite minimal, and the incision is hidden just under the lash line. 

After a lower eyelid lift, under-eye bags will be restored to a natural, youthful appearance. Some patients opt to pair an upper or lower eyelid lift with a brow lift, because the eyebrows can contribute to eyelid sagging.

Generally, recovery after an eyelid lift takes around one week. There may be bruising for the first week after your procedure, and at Norcal Plastic Surgery, we recommend sleeping with your head elevated while you recover from an eyelid lift. We recommend placing an antibiotic ointment on your incisions after washing gently. Dr. Rankin will give you full post-op recovery instructions. In general, recovery from an upper eyelid lift is faster than a lower eyelid lift. You should not exercise vigorously for 2 weeks.

Good candidates for an upper eyelid lift have an excess amount of skin on their upper eyelids. We also recommend those candidates have realistic goals for surgery and be physically healthy. 

For a lower eyelid lift candidate, they should have noticeable under-eye bags. Dr. Rankin will examine your face’s structure during your consultation to determine if a lower or upper eyelid lift is right for you.

How much an eyelid lift can cost will depend on your location, surgery fees, and the surgeon’s experience. The average cost of an eyelid lift, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, is $4,120. Sometimes upper eyelid surgery is covered by insurance if it obstructs vision. 

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Before and After
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Take the Next Step

Want to learn more about how an Eyelid Lift can help you gain more confidence in your appearance? Schedule your consultation with a NorCal Plastic Surgery provider by calling (925) 856-4800 or filling out the consultation request form below. We look forward to helping you achieve your aesthetic goals.