Beautiful Eyes Start Here

What Happens During an Eyelid Lift?

Patients who undergo eyelid surgery often remark that not only do they feel and look more youthful–but they can also see better. This has something to do with the way the human body ages and the way eyelid lift procedures are performed. Excess skin accumulates around the eyes over time, and removing that tissue can lead to many benefits. Patients can look more alert, more youthful, and more rejuvenated. Because the benefits of blepharoplasty are so powerful, many patients are curious as to how, exactly, those benefits are achieved. The surgeons at the Sanctuary Cosmetic Center, Dr. Rostami and Dr. Nazemzadeh, are among the premiere eyelid surgeons in Washington D.C. and the surrounding metro area (not to mention the nation). Known as the “Queens of Eyes” in the world of oculofacial plastic surgery, they believe in educating their patients and ensuring they are highly informed.

If you’re curious about what eyelid surgery can do for you and how it can be accomplished, the best way to get individualized information is to schedule a one-on-one consultation with one of our surgeons. During this consultation, Dr. Rostami or Dr. Nazemzadeh, can answer your questions and provide feedback about your unique eye structure and symptoms. If you want to schedule a consultation, contact the Sanctuary Cosmetic Center, in McLean, VA, today to make an appointment.

An Eyelid Lift is a Surgical Procedure

virginia eyelid lift before and after actual patientAn eyelid lift is a surgical procedure, however there are non-surgical options available for some clients with very specific symptoms.The removal of excess eyelid tissue is generally performed surgically. Nearly all of Dr. Rostami’s and Dr. Nazemzadeh’s eyelid procedures are performed at the Sanctuary Cosmetic Center, in one of our state-of-the-art surgical suites. These suites provide nearly all of the safety benefits of a hospital setting but with higher degree of comfort for the patient.

Eyelid lift surgery is generally performed under local anesthesia. In fact, our surgeons perform eyelid surgery with simple local anesthesia to the eyelids. Patients walk out 30 minutes later with a beautiful eyelid lift, hence the introduction of the “lunchtime lift” at the Sanctuary Cosmetic Center (see below). Some patients will opt to take a mild sedative to relax them prior to the procedure. The decision to use sedatives before or during the procedure will be part of the initial consultation and largely depends on the patient’s preference and if the upper and lowers eyelids are being operated on simultaneously (quad eyelid lift). Dr. Rostami and Dr. Nazemzadeh work with all of their patients to ensure that they are as comfortable as possible during surgery.

What Happens During Surgery

In many cases, the basic premise of eyelid surgery is quite simple: the removal of excess tissue around the eye. But because everyone accumulates excess tissues in different ways and in different areas, each patient receives an individualized approach. Add to that the expertise of our surgeons as oculofacial plastic surgeons, each patient’s eyelids are treated with the utmost care.

However, eyelid surgery can generally be broken down into two basic categories:

  • Upper Eyelid: Removing excess tissue from the upper eyelid requires a careful approach. The incision is usually made along the natural lines and folds of the eyelid. This way, any scarring is hidden by the the normal contours of the eye. Once the incision is made, the excess tissue is removed, including any excess skin or fat deposits that may have accumulated around the eye. At this point, any lax muscles in the upper eyelid area can be tightened in order to give a more firm appearance. The incisions are then closed.
  • Lower Eyelid: Much like the upper eyelid can accumulate excess skin and tissue, the lower lids can accumulate even more, along with fat. If excess skin is present, the incision is made along the lower eyelid below the lash line in order to best hide any scarring that may develop. Additionally, Dr. Rostami and Dr. Nazemzadeh can tighten the muscles around the eyelid if they appear lax. Once the work is done, the incision is closed and the patient is sent to recovery.
  • Transconjunctival Incision: In some cases, excess fat is the problem. For these patients, a transconjunctival incision may be appropriate. The incision is made on the inside of the lower eyelid, allowing our surgeons to redistribute or remove any excess fat that may be causing eyelid problems. No skin, excess or otherwise, is removed with the use of this technique, but it has the added benefit of being minimally invasive and conveniently hiding any scar tissue that may develop.

In many cases, Dr. Rostami and Dr. Nazemzadeh may perform an upper and a lower eyelid lift on the same patient and may use multiple techniques on the same patients to get a customized and optimal effect.

How Long Does the Procedure Take?

All in all, upper blepharoplasties take roughly 30 to 45 minutes, while lower blepharoplasty procedures require 1 hour. Combined, these procedures take less than 2 hours to complete. At Sanctuary Cosmetic Center, eyelid surgery procedures are performed on an outpatient basis, making the Sanctuary Cosmetic Center’s surgical suite an excellent option. Patients can return home the same day as their procedure for a more comfortable recovery duration. Some patients choose to stay next door at the Ritz Carlton Hotel. Patients who choose to do so are escorted to their rooms and can be seen in their hotel room the next day by their surgeon. You can learn more about recovery from eyelid surgery on our recovery page.

What is a Lunchtime Lift?

Sanctuary Cosmetic Center offers a lunch timeupper eyelid lift at our state of the art, state certified surgical suite. Having accumulated years of experience and practice in facial and oculofacial plastic surgery, our surgeons are able to perform the lunch hour eyelid lift under local anesthesia with the procedure taking less than an hour (30-45 mins)! Recovery is this case is immediate and patients can drive themselves home after the procedure.

Are the Benefits Worth it?

Eyelid surgery is consistently rated as a high-satisfaction procedure. Our Washington Metropolitan Area eyelid surgery patients find that the procedure is comfortable, easy, and requires little to no down-time. In fact, most patients can look forward to some of the following benefits:

  • Better vision
  • A more youthful looking appearance
  • Eyes that are more alert and vibrant
  • Eyes that do not look consistently sad or tired
  • A boost in confidence, self-esteem and even sometimes energy

If you’re curious about what an eyelid lift operation would involve for your particular set of symptoms, your best option is to contact the Sanctuary Cosmetic Center and schedule a private consultation. Dr. Rostami and Dr. Nazemzadeh will be able to tell you specifically what techniques will generate the best results for your eyelid lift procedure, and as two of the most renowned eyelid surgeons in the nation, you can be sure you’re getting an experienced and expert opinion. Contact us today to get started on your eyelid transformation!


In the year 2015, over 200,000 eyelid procedures were performed in the United States.


Most eyelid lift procedures take anywhere from 1.5 to 3 hours for surgeons to perform.


Dr. Rostami has performed 1000s of eyelid lift procedures; that's why she's among the foremost eyelid experts

I have visited numerous facilities and doctors, and I have found the right one for me. I received eyelid surgery and brow lift by Dr. Rostami and the results are amazing and very natural looking. I am impressed with Dr. Rostami's surgical skill not to mention her warm personality. I have complete trust in her and look forward to my upcoming lower facelift.

Robin H.