Health Check: Eyebrow transplants grow in popularity
Most of us don't give them much thought, unless they need to be groomed.
"Eyebrows are very important on the face. It creates a balance. If people miss their eyebrows, just something looks very odd," said Dr. Robert Leonard, hair restoration expert.
Leonard discussed one case which involved a woman in her early 30s who over-plucked her eyebrows.
"And when you have long term pulling, which is plucking, the follicles get destroyed and they don't grow hair any longer," Leonard said.
So a year-and-a-half ago, she came in for an eyebrow transplant.
"Just like with hair transplantation on the scalp, I remove a small amount of skin with hair follicles in it and under magnification my team will dissect that strip in to individual hairs, single follicles and they're all placed in saline. And then I have the patient come in and actually ask them to mark the shape of the eyebrows that they want," Leonard said.
Leonard said the woman opted for a little more brow so she could shape them. The full effects took about 18 months.
Over the years, Leonard said he's done almost three dozen eyebrow transplants, and more in the last year.
"Last Friday, I had two women come in for eyebrow consultations, just out of the blue," he said.
Transplantation is one option. For thinning eyebrows, there are non-surgical choices.
"Rogaine foam. Rogaine grows hair on the head. It also will stimulate growth on the eyebrow and potentially stimulate growth on the eyebrows. And then Latisse, it's FDA approved for eyelash growth and it works beautifully for eyelashes, and I also have patients use it on the eyebrows. I've seen some benefits," Leonard said.
So how much does eyebrow transplantation cost?
On average about $5,000, more or less depending on how much hair is transplanted.