The eyebrow has a pivotal role in the appearance of our faces, framing of the eyes, and bestowing balance to the face. There are distinct differences in the shape of the male and female eyebrows. The male eyebrow tends to be wider, thicker and the female narrower, finer and more delicate looking. The lost of the eyebrows has a profound effect on the look of the individual. Most affected by this condition elect to either pencil in the eyebrow or have them tattooed. The tattoo eyebrows acquire a punk look by changing to a bluish color after the brown/ black pigment is engulfed by the macrophages in the skin. Those wishing to remove the tattoo should undertake its removal by laser before starting the transplantation process.
There are many causes of loss of the eyebrows. The most common is self-induced, by either plucking due to fashion of the times or due to an obsessive-compulsive disorder: trichotillomania. The OCD needs to be treated first and be cured or else the individual will pull out the transplanted eyebrows. Other causes include trauma, post-surgical, burns, and due to medical conditions such as hyperthyroidism, and alopecia areata.
Modern hair transplantation techniques make the successful reconstruction of the eyebrow possible ensuring a natural and usually undetectable result. These techniques include binocular microscopy, acute angling and dense packing. Binocular microscopy allows the precise trimming of single hair follicular units devoid of any excess tissue but with all the essential anatomic structures that ensure it’s growth. Secondly, acute angling to make sites that are nearly flush to the skin, so that the hairs lay nearly flat. The use of micro blades and small caliber needles allow the creation of sites that are close together and heal rapidly.
The growth of the transplanted eyebrow can take between six to eight months. Occasionally more that one transplant of the eyebrow needs to be performed to achieve the desired thickness. Results are usually very pleasing since they embellish and frame the eyes probably the single most important feature of the face. The eyebrows and eyes together are important in the perception of attractiveness and sex appeal.
One needs to remember that the transplanted eyebrow will at least initially grow at the rate of scalp hair since it is. Preliminary research by Hwang and Associates seems to indicate that the over time the transplanted hair may assume some of the receptive site hair characteristics. Plan on having to trim the transplanted eyebrow at least monthly. It is best to cut the transplanted hair at an angle to simulate the pointed end of the original eyebrow hairs. If some of the transplanted hairs are unruly using a styling gel can shape them. There are eyebrow-grooming kits available at Sephora.
The benefits derived usually far exceed any inconvenience, and most patients are very satisfied with their restored appearance. They are also very appreciative of their independence from the drudgery of “having to run, to pencil in their eyebrows upon first awakening.”