The short patch of hair above each eye – the eyebrows – play a significant role in facial balancing. They also help with the expression of our emotions. In addition, they function to direct sweat/water away from the eyes while capturing dirt. Due to different reasons, some people experience permanent eyebrow hair loss. They can undergo an eyebrow transplant to restore hair growth in the area.
Eyebrow Transplantation Overview
According to the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ISHRS), in 2020, eyebrow transplantation was the third most popular hair restoration surgery among men and the second most popular among women. In an eyebrow hair transplant, the surgeon uses the follicular unit extraction (FUE) technique for harvesting individual hair follicles from the back/sides of the scalp. These hair roots are transplanted in the recipient areas. To make sure that the patient doesn’t feel any pain or discomfort during the surgery, eyebrow hair transplantation takes place under local anaesthesia.
The angle, direction, and density of the hair follicles in eyebrows varies across different regions. The central region is thicker and wider than the tail of the brow; the hair in the middle region is projected above and to the sides. While the hair is straight up right next to the glabella (the skin between the eyebrows), it grows increasingly lateral (sideways) as we move up and down the arch. Therefore, the surgeon needs to be precise to ensure natural-looking eyebrows. Moreover, the texture and colour of the donor area hair should match the eyebrow hair.
What Is Eyebrow Transplant Cost
There are many eyebrow transplantation operations performed in Turkey each year. In Turkey, public and private healthcare are more affordable, which is why many people from the UK or Europe become medical tourists. It is financed by taxes, getting government subsidies, which has driven down costs.
Moreover, eyebrow transplant prices are lower because of the currency exchange. The fees of the surgeon, hospital rooms, and medical infrastructure are also lower, in general. The patients get the maximum number of grafts, along with accommodation, private transfer, interpreters, and aftercare in their eyebrow transplant treatment package.
Who Can Have Eyebrow Transplant Operation & Why
You are a good candidate for eyebrow transplant if you:
- Have thin, uneven, sparse, or patchy eyebrows due to predisposition to androgenetic alopecia.
- Suffer from trichotillomania – a hair-pulling disorder.
- Have permanently lost eyebrow hair due to physical trauma (burn, accident, injury, surgical scars, chemical/heat damage).
- Underwent chemotherapy/radiotherapy for cancer treatment or had a tumour removed from the eyebrow area.
- Suffer from an underlying medical condition (hyperthyroidism/hypothyroidism and autoimmune disorders, such as alopecia areata and lupus)
- Have over-plucked your eyebrows to the extent that it has permanently damaged the hair roots.
- Naturally have thin eyebrow hairs. Filling them each day for hours may be inconvenient for many people, which is why they seek a more permanent solution to their problem.
Am I Suitable For Hair Transplant?
What To Think About Before You Have Eyebrow Transplant
Before choosing the surgeon for an eyebrow transplant, you should ask them the following questions:
- What are their credentials and experience?
- How many eyebrow transplants have they performed, and for how many years?
- What is the complication rate of eyebrow transplants, and how did the surgeon treat complications in his/her previous patients?
- Can I take a look at the surgeon’s portfolio and meet one of their previous patients?
- What are the overall patient satisfaction rates in eyebrow transplantation?
How To Best Prepare for Eyebrow Transplant
Patients need to make the following preparations before eyebrow hair transplants:
- Discontinue anticoagulants 10 days before eyebrow transplant surgery to ensure normal blood clotting.
- Stop consuming tobacco products 1 week before surgery. In addition, you should stop drinking alcohol or taking recreational drugs 3 days before the eyebrow hair transplant.
- Avoid getting any exfoliating facial treatment before the surgery, as it can easily irritate the skin.
- Remove any makeup or piercings over the eyebrows.
What Eyebrow Hair Transplantation Involves
First and foremost, the surgeon draws the new eyebrow shape to address the aesthetic concerns of the patient. S/he takes the face shape into consideration so that the eyebrows sit naturally on the face.
After that, the surgeon shaves the donor area whose hair follicles have a similar texture to eyebrow hair. Since not many hair follicles are needed, the donor area is very small. If you have long hair, it may seem that the surgery has taken place without shaving any of the head.
Using the FUE method, the surgeon extracts the individual follicular units with a micro punch tool, after which they’re stored in a saline solution. Then micro incisions are made in the eyebrow area for implanting the new hair. The surgeon will adjust the orientation and density of the follicular units across the different regions of the eyebrow.
The surgical time for eyebrow hair transplant is 3-5 hours; it may be more or less depending on the desired aesthetic appearance of the eyebrows and the grafts needed for it. Some patients may need more than one surgical session to achieve their desired density.
Book A Free Consultation With Our Patient Consultants
We offer free consultations for patients across the UK & Ireland, so you can discuss your individual requirements with our specialists. Book A Free Consultation With Our Patient Consultants today.
Eyebrow Hair Transplant Recovery & Results
Eyebrow transplant is an outpatient surgery, and you can return to your accommodation the same day. You might feel some pain and discomfort following the surgery. Therefore, make sure to take your prescribed medicines.
A few days after the surgery, you’ll form scabs in the donor and recipient areas. Do not scratch, even when it itches. It is normal for the new hairs of the eyebrows to fall out a few weeks after the transplantation. Your eyebrow hairs will start growing after 3-4 months. You can see the final results after a full year.
Eyebrow Hair Transplant Aftercare
After the surgery, make sure that your head is in an upright position most of the time. Even when lying down, elevate your head using pillows. Do not try to conceal the eyebrows by applying any makeup on them. You also shouldn’t try hiding it in caps, hats or scarves.
Avoid all activities that make you sweat for 1 month. If you have any piercings, you should not wear them back for at least a month as they can result in graft displacement. You should only wash the eyebrow hair with special shampoo and lotion given by the surgeon. Do not use any personal skin care products.
Side Effects To Expect After Eyebrow Hair Transplant
Some patients may experience the following side effects from eyebrow transplantation:
What Could Go Wrong After Eyebrow Hair Transplant
Physical trauma can permanently damage the implants. The displacement of grafts can also result in hair growth in the wrong direction. Other than that, you may develop an infection. Make sure to follow the aftercare instructions and take your antibiotics.
What To Do If You Have Problems After Eyebrow Hair Transplant
An eyebrow transplant is a low-risk procedure. However, if you do develop any complications, immediately reach out to the aftercare team online. You can also call them. Other than that, you can communicate your concerns to the surgeon via the Patient Relations Specialist.
Alternatives To Eyebrow Transplant
If you have significant scarring, suffer from an inflammatory disease or have a weak donor area, you are not a suitable candidate for eyebrow transplantation. In that case, you can get microblading, where the practitioner creates hair strokes with tattoo ink. It gives the illusion of fuller brows.
Other Procedures To Have With Eyebrow Hair Transplant
Right after the eyebrow transplantation, you can get platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections. The growth factors and proteins in PRP stimulate the healing process, which can help the newly transplanted hair in the eyebrows. You can also have other facial hair restoration surgeries with eyebrow transplants.
How many hair grafts do I need for eyebrow transplantation?
It depends on the desired shape and density of the eyebrows. However, on average, patients need 200-400 grafts for each eyebrow.
Is an eyebrow transplant permanent?
Yes, the results are permanent. The hair may fall out temporarily, but the hair will start growing after 3 months.
Do I have to trim my eyebrows after transplantation?
Yes, you will have to trim the eyebrow hairs. How often you trim them depends on how fast your hair grows. Keep in mind, do not use scissors on your eyebrow hair for at least 2 months after the surgery. You can use a trimmer after 3 months and a razor after 6 months.
Can I tweeze my eyebrows after the eyebrow transplant surgery?
Yes, but you can only start tweezing after 3 months. That’s because you’ll start growing normal hair around this time after experiencing shock loss.
Does the doctor, clinic or hospital have insurance that covers eyebrow transplantation?
The surgeon performing your eyebrow transplant will have medical liability insurance. The clinic/hospital will have malpractice policies in place to ensure patient safety.
Will follow-up checks for eyebrow transplantation be offered in the UK, and who will do them?
You can have face-to-face consultation and/or checkup appointments with specialist surgeons in our London clinic.
Reviewed and Approved by Dr Kuddusi Onay