What is Hairline Reduction Surgery?

Forehead reduction surgery is a cosmetic procedure that can help to reduce the height of your forehead.

Larger foreheads may be due to genetics, hair loss, or other cosmetic procedures. This surgical option — also known as hairline lowering surgery — can help balance the proportions of your face. It’s different from a brow lift procedure.

What Does a Forehead Reduction Procedure Involve?

Forehead reduction surgery is a surgical procedure that is typically done under general anesthesia. A local anesthetic is also used in the forehead area to help reduce pain and bleeding.


Your plastic surgeon will take the following steps during the procedure:

  1. The hairline and area of the forehead to be removed will be marked with a surgical skin marker. Great care is taken to ensure that the cut along the hairline preserves the hair follicles and nerves.
  2. The entire forehead, from the hairline to just above the brows, is numbed using a local anesthetic.
  3. An incision is made along the marked area of the forehead and hairline (also called the pretrial incision). The surgeon will carefully separate the skin from the connective tissue underneath and cut out the area that has been marked for removal.
  4. The top incision along the hairline is then pulled down to join the forehead incision. This closes the gap and shortens the forehead.
  5. The skin is sutured together in a way that minimizes scar formation and is hidden almost completely by the hairline upon hair regrowth.

It should be noted that although forehead reduction surgery reduces the height of the forehead and may change the appearance of the eyebrows, it does not necessarily raise the eyebrows.

If necessary, a separate surgery called a brow lift can be performed at the same time as the hairline lowering surgery.


Most people can return home within a few hours after the surgery. You’ll need to return to the office for suture removal over the following week and a half. You’ll also be asked to return for observation and post-operative checkups roughly 2 to 4 weeks after surgery.

As with any surgery that involves an incision, great care should be taken to keep the wound clean and allow it to heal properly.

You’ll want to check often for any signs of infection at the site of the incision. Your doctor will also provide you with post-operative instructions for how to properly care for your surgery incision, including how to reduce pain, swelling, and risk of infection/

What ‘s a good candidate for forehead reduction surgery?

Forehead reduction surgery can be used to balance the proportions of one’s overall facial structure. You may benefit from forehead reduction surgery if you have:

  • a high hairline and want to lower your hairline
  • a large forehead and want to shorten your forehead
  • thick hair that’s disproportionate to the height of your hairline
  • low or heavy eyebrows and want to change the proportions of your face
  • recently had a hair grafting procedure and wish to increase your hairline
  • recently had a brow lift procedure and wish to bring your hairline forward

However, even with these criteria, not everyone is a suitable candidate for forehead reduction surgery.

In order to have a successful forehead reduction surgery, you must first have good scalp laxity (the ability of the scalp tissues to stretch). If you have a family history of pattern balding, forehead reduction surgery may not be right for you.

If you have any other medical conditions that would place you at risk for surgery complications, you should discuss these with your doctor before moving forward

Head Doctors

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