Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty)

Loose skin above the eyes, tired eyes or bags under the eyes can be improved dramatically with eyelid surgery, also known as blepharoplasty. Eyelid surgery improves the appearance of your upper eyelids, lower eyelids or both.

Surgeons at Cleveland Clinic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center offer a total care approach to ensure a rejuvenated appearance to the surrounding area of the eyes – resulting in a more rested, alert look.

Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center

855.383.7843

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Before & After Photos

Before

After

before eyelid surgery after eyelid surgery

Woman in her early fifties that underwent a lower blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery). Patient is shown before procedure (left), and five months after surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Woman in her early fifties that underwent a lower blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery). Patient is shown before procedure (left), and five months after surgery (right).

before eyelid surgery after eyelid surgery

Woman in her mid-fifties that underwent a face lift, upper blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery), and perioral peel. Patient is shown before surgery (left), and two months after surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Woman in her mid-fifties that underwent a face lift, upper blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery), and perioral peel. Patient is shown before surgery (left), and two months after surgery (right).

before eyelid surgery after eyelid surgery

Woman in her mid-fifties who underwent upper and lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty). Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and nine months after surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Woman in her mid-fifties who underwent upper and lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty). Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and nine months after surgery (right).

before eyelid surgery after eyelid surgery

Female in her late fifties underwent cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) and is shown before surgery (left), and four months following procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her late fifties underwent cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) and is shown before surgery (left), and four months following procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her late sixties concerned with drooping upper eyelids and bags under her lower lids. Patient underwent upper and lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) and is shown before surgery (left), and one month following procedures (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her late sixties concerned with drooping upper eyelids and bags under her lower lids. Patient underwent upper and lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) and is shown before surgery (left), and one month following procedures (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her mid-fifties concerned about dark circles in her lower lids. Patient underwent upper and lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) and a chemical peel on her lower lids. Patient is shown before surgery (left), and two years following procedures (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her mid-fifties concerned about dark circles in her lower lids. Patient underwent upper and lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) and a chemical peel on her lower lids. Patient is shown before surgery (left), and two years following procedures (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoploasty

Woman in her early fifties worried about her tired appearance, and interested in an upper lid ptosis repair. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and seven months after the procedure (right).

after blepharoploasty

Woman in her early fifties worried about her tired appearance, and interested in an upper lid ptosis repair. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and seven months after the procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoploasty

Woman in her early sixties concerned about upper lid skin excess and lower lid bags. Patient underwent upper and lower blepharoplasty (eyelid) surgery, and is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and three months after procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoploasty

Woman in her early sixties concerned about upper lid skin excess and lower lid bags. Patient underwent upper and lower blepharoplasty (eyelid) surgery, and is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and three months after procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoploasty

Female in her sixties who had an upper eyelid ptosis repair for droopy upper lids. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and three months after procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoploasty

Female in her sixties who had an upper eyelid ptosis repair for droopy upper lids. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and three months after procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoploasty

Female in her late fifties who had an upper lid ptosis repair. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and one month after the procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoploasty

Female in her late fifties who had an upper lid ptosis repair. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and one month after the procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoploasty

Female in her late sixties who had an upper lid ptosis repair for droopy upper lids. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and two months after procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her sixties who had an upper blepharoplasty and ptosis repair for droopy upper lids. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and six weeks after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her sixties who had an upper blepharoplasty and ptosis repair for droopy upper lids. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and six weeks after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her sixties who had an upper blepharoplasty and ptosis repair for droopy upper lids. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and six weeks after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her early fifties concerned about heavy upper eyelids, and interested in cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty). Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and three months after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her early fifties concerned about heavy upper eyelids, and interested in cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty). Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and three months after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her early fifties concerned about heavy upper eyelids, and interested in cosmetic eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty). Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and three months after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her mid-sixties who had an upper blepharoplasty. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and one month after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her mid-sixties who had an upper blepharoplasty. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and one month after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her late seventies who had upper and lower lid blepharoplasties for skin excess and bags. Patient is shown before upper and lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and two months after cosmetic eyelid surgeries (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her late seventies who had upper and lower lid blepharoplasties for skin excess and bags. Patient is shown before upper and lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (left) and two months after cosmetic eyelid surgeries (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Patient before upper and lower cosmetic eyelid surgery, and endoscopic browlift (left). Patient one month after procedures (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her late sixties who had an upper lid ptosis repair. Patient is shown before upper cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and seven months after upper cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her late sixties who had an upper lid ptosis repair. Patient is shown before upper cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and seven months after upper cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Male in his early fifties who had a lower blepharoplasty to improve bags under his eyes and skin excess. Patient is shown before lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and two months after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Male in his early fifties who had a lower blepharoplasty to improve bags under his eyes and skin excess. Patient is shown before lower cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and two months after cosmetic eyelid surgery (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her mid fifties concerned about heavy upper eyelids and a drooping brow. Patient was interested in an endoscopic brow lift and upper eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty), and is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and patient four months after procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her mid fifties concerned about heavy upper eyelids and a drooping brow. Patient was interested in an endoscopic brow lift and upper eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty), and is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and patient four months after procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her late fifties who had an upper and lower lid blepharoplasties for skin excess and bags. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and four months after procedure (right).

before blepharoplasty after blepharoplasty

Female in her late fifties who had an upper and lower lid blepharoplasties for skin excess and bags. Patient is shown before cosmetic eyelid surgery (left), and four months after procedure (right).

Am I candidate for eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty)?

A common cosmetic procedure in patients age 30 and older, eyelid surgery is used primarily to fight the effects of aging skin. As skin ages, it gradually loses its elasticity, and this, combined with the constant pull from gravity, leads to excessive skin collecting in the upper eyelids, causing drooping of the eyelids. The primary cause of lower-lid aging is loosening of skin and the underlying muscle.

The best candidates for eyelid surgery are adult men and women who have healthy facial tissue and muscles and realistic goals for improving the upper and/or lower eyelids and surrounding area.

Candidates for eyelid surgery include:

  • Healthy individuals who do not have a life-threatening illness
  • Individuals with a positive outlook and specific goals in mind for blepharoplasty
  • Individuals without serious eye conditions.

The first step in learning if you are a candidate for eyelid surgery is to schedule a physician consultation at Cleveland Clinic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center.

You should tell your cosmetic surgeon if you have any of the following medical conditions:

  • Eye disease, such as glaucoma, dry eye or a detached retina
  • Thyroid disorders, such as Graves’ disease and under or overactive thyroid
  • Cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure or other circulatory disorders
  • Diabetes.

How do I prepare for eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty)?

Preparation for your eyelid surgery at Cleveland Clinic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center includes:

  • Lab testing or a medical evaluation
  • Taking certain medications or adjusting your current medications
  • Stopping smoking well in advance of surgery
  • Avoiding taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs and herbal supplements due to the risk of increased bleeding.

Will the fine wrinkles around my eyes go away after eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty)?

As the skin tightens following your eyelid surgery, many wrinkles go away. Some fine wrinkles may not. Other wrinkles are the result of natural interaction of the skin and the underlying muscles and are part of normal expressions. Cleveland Clinic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center surgeons also offer skin treatments that can minimize fine wrinkles, which can be done in combination with eyelid surgery.

Will eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) help my sagging eyebrows and dark circles under my eyes?

Eyelid surgery will not eliminate the wrinkles around your eyes (crow's feet) nor will it lift a droopy eyebrow. There are other procedures designed for these purposes. Dark circles under the eyes may improve a bit if this is related to large bags, but most often the dark appearance of the lower eyelid skin remains. Dark circles may be better treated by peeling techniques (chemical peel or laser peel).

How will my ability to wear cosmetics be affected by eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty)?

Some people are initially drawn to eyelid surgery when they can no longer apply cosmetics to the upper eyelid because of excess, drooping skin. After surgery, most people can wear eyelid cosmetics.

When can I start wearing my contact lens again?

You can try to put them in a week after your eyelid surgery. If it doesn’t feel right, remove them and wait a few days longer.

One of the best ways to decide if cosmetic surgery is right for you is by meeting with a cosmetic or plastic surgeon at the Cleveland Clinic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center.

During this first consultation, you and your surgeon will discuss your goals and expectations. Your surgeon will also:

How is eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) performed?

Eyelid surgery can involve the upper eyelids, lower eyelids, or both eyelids depending upon the goals of the surgery and recommendations of your surgeon:

Upper eyelid surgery
involves the placement of incisions in the natural crease of the upper lid, making them well hidden when the eyes are open. The excess skin and protruding fat are removed and the incision is closed.
An entire upper eyelid surgery can be completed in approximately 45 minutes to one hour. Cleveland Clinic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center surgeons may combine upper eyelid surgery with an eyebrow lift to achieve optimal rejuvenation results if the eyebrows are too low.
Lower eyelid surgery
can correct conditions with an incision just below the lower lash line. Excess skin in the lower eyelid is removed through this incision. Your cosmetic surgeon may also use an incision hidden inside the lower eyelid, or a transconjunctival incision, as an alternative technique to correct lower eyelid conditions and redistribute or remove excess fat.

If the transconjunctival approach is used, there is no visible incision. If the lower eyelids are lax, as they are in many middle-aged individuals, your surgeon may recommend tightening the lower lids in addition to removing skin and/or fat (canthopexy or canthoplasty).

Eyelid surgery usually takes about two hours to complete if both upper and lower eyelids are completed at the same time. Typically, a local anesthesia is combined with conscious sedation (also known as “twilight sleep”).

What results can I expect?

The final results of your eyelid surgery will appear within several weeks. While eyelid surgery will not stop your eyes from aging, the procedure is typically very long lasting. The effects of upper eyelid surgery can last many years to an entire lifetime, while lower eyelid surgery rarely needs to be repeated. Follow-up with your Cleveland Clinic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center surgeon in addition to life-long sun protection is very important to maintaining your results.

What is involved in recovery?

After your eyelid surgery, lubricating ointment and cold compresses may be applied, in addition to your eyes being loosely covered with gauze.

Eyelid surgery is usually performed as an outpatient procedure at Cleveland Clinic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center. If this is the case, be certain to plan for someone to drive you home after surgery and stay with you at least the first night following surgery.

Initial healing throughout the first one to two weeks following your eyelid surgery may include:

  • Swelling
  • Bruising
  • Irritation or dry eyes
  • Irritation at the incision sites.

It is important that you practice careful sun protection, including using darkly tinted sunglasses until the healing process is fully complete.

Is eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) safe?

All surgical procedures carry some risk. Although rare, possible complications from eyelid surgery include:

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Dry eyes
  • Abnormal discoloration of the skin of the eyelids
  • An inability to fully close the eyes
  • Eyelid skin that folds in or out abnormally
  • A pulled down lower lid lash line 
  • Possible loss of vision (extremely rare).

Why Choose Us

If you’re considering eyelid surgery, look for a board-certified plastic or oculoplastic surgeon with specialized training and significant experience performing eyelid surgery procedures.  Consider going to a cosmetic surgeon who is affiliated with a major medical center, such as Cleveland Clinic. Ask your cosmetic surgeon about credentials, training and how many eyelid surgeries he or she has performed.

 Facial Cosmetic Surgeries at Cleveland Clinic

Is this procedure covered by health insurance?

Like all cosmetic procedures, eyelid surgery is not covered by health insurance. However, when eyelid surgery is performed to eliminate the redundant skin covering the eyelashes, it may be covered by insurance. Ask to talk with a financial representative from Cleveland Clinic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center who can explain costs of the procedure and if insurance coverage is an option for you.

This information is provided by the Cleveland Clinic and is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. Please consult your health care provider for advice about a specific medical condition.

Have Questions? Contact the Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery Center

855.383.7843