How to Get Rid of Forehead Wrinkles?

 Which wrinkle treatments will get rid of forehead lines?

Doctor Answers 66

Botox or browlift for forehead wrinkles

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Wrinkles across the forehead are usually a sign that your eyebrows are dropping and you are frequently raising your brows to try to hold your eyelids up. This usually begins sometime in the 30s. Sometimes the forehead has dropped so much that the brows can be pushing down on the upper eyelid skin and impairing your vision.

If your case is mild, carefully placed Botox can soften the lines by decreasing the ability of those muscles to contract. But, be careful! If you weaken those muscles too much, you won't be able to raise your eyebrows. Your brows will droop and although you'll have a nice, smooth forehead, your eyebrows will be lower, your upper eyelids will appear fuller, and most importantly, you will not be happy.

If you go the Botox route, know that you will need to repeat the treatment every 3 to 4 months to maintain the effect.

A more permanent solution would be to have a brow lift. This will surgically raise the forehead and brows so that you do not have the need to raise your eyebrows constantly. For most people, I perform an endoscopic browlift through 5 tiny incisions in the scalp. In some instances, I'll use various different incisions without an endoscope, especially if you do not have hair on your head to cover the scars.

If your wrinkles are between the brows and not horizontally across the forehead, this can make you look angry. Botox is the preferred treatment for this area.

Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon

Skillful Botox is key for natural results for forehead wrinkles

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Because forehead/frown wrinkles nearly always come from the frowning/furrowed brow muscles, the careful use of Botox can nearly always lead to a much smoother, less worried brow. Often, this pattern of a worried look is hereditary and can start to appear even in one's 20's.

Starting early with limited Botox (sometimes as little as 20 units makes a big difference in a 20- or 30-something) really helps to prevent the etching-in of these forehead/frown lines. If you've already got "etched-in" lines, then Botox plus fractional laser resurfacing may be necessary.

Guys, bad news; those thick muscles of yours need more Botox. You might even need up to 50 or 60 units. If you need to look really angry for your work, don't do it. If you charge by the unit (like we do), then the less Botox you need, the less you pay. Two to three times a year to look less angry and and get a lift to your forehead is what it takes.

Occasionally, a really deep crease between the eyebrows may also need a filler such as hyaluronic acid. But forehead/frown lines nearly always can be helped, the earlier the better.

Treatment with an experienced board-certified "core" physician with long-term expertise in this type of treatment will lead to a better, more natural result.

Margaret Weiss, MD
Baltimore Dermatologic Surgeon
3.9 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Botox is all that 90% of people need to get rid of forehead wrinkles

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To Marian,

1) Typically, both the horizontal forehead lines and the vertical frown lines between the eyebrows need to be treated with Botox. You will need between 30 and 50 units, and injection technique is very important. You see the full effect in 2 weeks, and patients usually get Botox twice a year.

2) As mentioned by other doctors, if you have deep, etched lines, you may also need fillers (Restylane), laser resurfacing, or a forehead lift.

Creams don't help. Start with Botox. You will probably be happy!

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

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Botox for forehead wrinkles or surgery for permanent correction

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Your concerns result from a ubiquitous human condition.

  • We all begin to experience descent of our eyebrows and forehead tissue generally in our late 30s.
  • This leads to an unperceived blockage of our vision by upper eyelid skin.
  • Unconciously, the forehead muscles contract to raise the eyebrow and eliminate the barrier to full vision.
  • This vertical contraction results in the typical horizontal forehead wrinkles you mention.

Botox Cosmetic® can be injected into these muscles to smooth out the forehead but unfortunately, in many people, this can result in lowering of the brows producing and older, angrier look. Should this occur or be likely to occur if Botox is used, it can be nicely corrected with a forehead lift done through small incisions hidden behind the hairline (endoscopic).

The angry look you describe may also come from over active frowning muscles just above the nose (corrugator and procerus muscles). This problem is generally easily and very effectively managed by Botox injection in this area.

For Botox non-responders (about 4 % of the general population), or those patients who would like a more permanent correction, these muscles can be weakend at the time of endoscopic brow lifting or upper eyelid blepharoplasty.

None of these interventions, if done correctly, should produce an unnatural or frozen look.

Roger A. Dailey, MD, FACS
Portland Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Getting Rid of Forehead Wrinkles

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Those bothersome wrinkles in the forehead that we all get as we get a bit older come primarily from the repeated movement of the forehead due to expression; these are called dynamic wrinkles. It is impossible to prevent these, but we are able to get rid of them very nicely with a little Botox.

The main goal in doing this is to eliminate the deep wrinkles and lines, but not eliminate facial expression. There are too many people walking around who have overdone the Botox and look like the Stepford wives with frozen or flat expression.

It is very important to go to a well-qualified and well-trained cosmetic specialist for this treatment. There are serious adverse side effects if Botox treatment is not done by well-trained and specialist physicians, so select your doctor carefully.

Arnold W. Klein, MD (in memoriam)
Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon

Getting rid of forehead wrinkles depends on defining the...

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Getting rid of forehead wrinkles depends on defining the cause of the wrinkles. Some forehead wrinkles are due to motion of the muscles of the forehead and some are due to tethering of the skin to the deeper structures in the forehead.

For instance, some people, without even realizing it, always act to pull up their eyebrows so they can see. This creates forehead wrinkles. Other people are very animated and can use their forehead muscles in making expressions which can create wrinkles.

There are several treatments for forehead wrinkles:

  1. Botox - Botox works by paralyzing the muscles of the forehead. It can take 20-40Units to fully paralyze the main muscle of the forehead, the frontalis muscle. Once paralyzed, wrinkles caused by contraction of that muscle will fade. Unfortunately, they will return with return of function of the muscle.
  2. Forehead or brow lift - This surgical procedure can help in two ways. First, by elevating the brow and placing it into a more natural position, some people will no longer contract the forehead muscles to elevate the brow. Second, by pulling the skin and deeper structures tighter, some wrinkles can be smoothed.
  3. Ablative skin resurfacing - Using CO2 or erbium lasers, newer plasma technology, or deep chemical peels, forehead wrinkles can be improved by removing the outer layers of skin and promoting collagen tightening.
  4. Fillers - Several fillers on the market today, including the popular hyaluronic acid fillers such as Juvederm, Restylane, and Perlane, can fill in individual lines. Again, this effect is temporary and would need to be repeated every 6 months to a year.
  5. Microdermabrasion - This procedure is good for taking off the outer layer of skin cells and exfoliates the skin. It can help with very fine lines but is unlikely to do much for deeper wrinkles.

As always, a trained and experienced physician can determine the cause of the wrinkles and suggest a course of action likely to produce the desired results.

D.J. Verret, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon

Different forehead wrinkles require different treatment modalities

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Forehead wrinkle treatment depends on the underlying cause and extent of damage to the skin.

Dynamic wrinkles are those that are present only during animation (active movement of the face) and are best treated with Botox. Botox will temporarily stop the underlying frontalis muscle from pulling on the skin and creating the furrows and wrinkles. A typical treatment will last three months.

Static wrinkles are those that are always present even when the face is at rest. If these creases are deep, a combination of Botox to stop the primary culprit (frontalis muscle) and a filler material (e.g. Restylane, Juvederm) to fill the dermal defect are quite useful. Filler materials are temporary as well lasting six months or more.

More aggressive and longer lasting treatments include Fractional laser resurfacing that work well on static wrinkles as well as a forehead lift in which the frontalis muscle is weakened.

Every individual requires a customized approach to meet their goals and expectations within their budget and recovery time constraints.

Brian J. Lee, MD
Fort Wayne Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Botox is the place to start for forehead wrinkle treatment

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For patients with dynamic wrinkles (those caused by active movement), Botox is the best, minimally invasive way to address your forehead wrinkles.

For static wrinkles (those already present without contracting your forehead muscles), Botox may help soften these wrinkles but will not cause them to completely go away. You may need additional procedures, such as laser treatments, to improve your results.

Soft tissue fillers, Juvederm and Restylane, may also be beneficial when used in conjunction with these procedures.

David A. Robinson, MD
Munster Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Botox can treat forehead lines

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Vertical frown lines between the eyebrows, and horizontal ('worry') lines on the forehead can be treated with Botox.

Permanent removal of frown muscles (aptly named the 'corrugator' muscles) which create vertical frown lines between the eyebrows can be removed at the time of a browlift.

This can be done endoscopically, through small incisions behind the hairline directly above the frown lines, or through an upper lid incision if upper blepharoplasty is being performed.

Michael Law, MD
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 123 reviews

Botox vs. Surgery for forehead wrinkles

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Forehead wrinkles are caused by overactive frontalis muscles underneath the skin of the forehead. These muscles are deactivated by a commercially available medicine: botox.

Botox works by inhibiting the release of acetylcholine neurotransmitters across the synaptic junction. Once blocked, the muscles are not able to tighten and this minimizes, temporarily, the wrinkles found on the forehead.

Another option would be treatment of the skin with RR Retinoid Repair Cream

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.