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Facelifts: The Ultimate Guide to Rhytidectomy
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What Is Facial Feminization Surgery?

Facial feminization surgery (FFS) is a plastic surgery procedure that changes your facial features. The goal is to reduce masculinized features and increase feminine shape. Transgender women and or non-binary trans individuals often pursue this type of procedure.

FFS is a customizable procedure for each individual and may include all areas of the face and neck. FFS emphasizes restructuring of the bone structure, especially the jaw and chin area, which are primarily associated with masculine facial aesthetics.

Because of this, one of the main procedures involved in Facial Feminization is mandible or jaw reduction. This is a technically advanced surgery that can be used to slim and soften the jawline.

Facial Feminization Surgery Cost

FFS is not covered by government healthcare. However, some insurance is now covering FFS from some surgeons. Costs for FFS are typically between $20,000 and $50,000, depending on the surgeon and the number of components involved. Individual procedures can also be performed independently to address areas that the patient and surgeon prioritize as most important.

Insurance companies often categorize FFS as cosmetic surgery. FFS may have a greater effect on an individual’s mental health and social well-being. The medical field seems to gradually acknowledge FFS as a necessary component of transgender treatment rather than an optional and elective component.

What Is the Purpose of Facial Feminization Surgery?

Everyone has their own reason to ask about FFS. You may choose FFS if you meet the following criteria:

  • Transitioning your gender from male to female
  • You are a cisgender woman who wants to feminize your face
  • Possess a gender dysphoria diagnosis

Whatever the reason is, it’s important to consult your doctor first. This is to ensure that you are a candidate for the surgery.

Who Is Not a Candidate for Face Feminization Surgery?

Not everyone can undergo this surgery. You are unsuitable for FFS if you meet the following criteria:

  • Are under the age of eighteen
  • Have unrealistic expectations about the outcome
  • Have a health problem that makes surgery risky
  • Suffer from a mental health condition that affects your capacity to make sound decisions

For many, FFS is an affirming procedure, marking a significant step in their journey toward change and embodying their true identity. The best way to know if you are fit for the surgery is to talk to your doctor.

Get Your Facial Feminization Consultation

Give us a call today to schedule your Facial Feminization Surgery consultation with one of our plastic surgeons at Wave Plastic Surgery.

What Does FFS Entail?

Masculine and feminine facial features overlap, but there are subtle distinctions that help us determine an individual’s gender. So, what is FFS surgery going to consist of? What areas will it target, and what techniques will be used throughout the process? Here are different surgical procedures of FFS:

Jaw Contouring

Jaw contouring helps soften and feminize prominent masculine jawlines. The male jaw’s rear “corner” may be altered to be rounder and smoother. To make the jawline seem thinner, the bone may be shaved off at the bottom border of the jaw.

Jaw contouring works by narrowing the face’s general breadth and shape. It also gently refines the jawline angles, and improves the overall proportions of facial features to create a more feminine appearance. Individuals with uneven or lopsided facial appearances benefit from this treatment.

Chin & Jaw Reduction

Similar to Jaw Contouring, Chin and Jaw reduction surgery  (genioplasty/mentoplasty) alters the form of a prominent chin. This treatment aims to restore natural equilibrium by lowering and reshaping the chin to make it:

  • Smaller
  • Less angular
  • More feminine looking

Another procedure often used for chin contouring is a T-osteotomy. This entails cutting and removing a T-shaped section of the bone and then fusing the remaining chin bones together. It is difficult to fix both a square jaw and a thin “V-Line” shape to the chin without using this method.

Lift The Brows

The form and location of the brow’s “tail” are more essential than its total height for an aesthetically appealing look. As we grow older, the volume of our face in the temple region diminishes. Luckily, natural filler, such as the patient’s own body fat, can fix this.

Brow lift surgery is often done under general anesthesia using an “open” technique. Alternatively, Eyebrow Lift Surgery is popular because it offers similar results with less scarring and healing time due to the minimally invasive technique.

Nasal Surgery

Rhinoplasty lowers the size of the nose and changes its shape to give it a more feminine appearance. This involves internally narrowing and modifying the nose. It also reshapes and relocates the nasal cartilage.

Rhinoplasty surgery is an incredibly delicate skill. It is often done concurrently with forehead feminization and lowering the hairline to get an aesthetically pleasing outcome.

Cheek Enhancement

If a person believes their cheeks are excessively masculine, cheek augmentation can help. It reshapes and smooths out the cheeks to give them a more feminine look. Some patients want elevated, more prominent cheekbones while decreasing the “chubby cheeks” appearance.

Non-surgical fat transfer or Wave’s double-pure fat grafting can help enhance the cheeks. This treatment entails the removal of fatty tissue from another area of the patient’s body and injecting it into the cheeks or the hollow area beneath the eye sockets.

Reshaping The Lips

Lip feminization may include a variety of treatments, depending on the patient’s characteristics, age, and intended result. Lip feminization is often done in conjunction with a larger face feminization procedure. The most commonly performed lip FFS treatments are as follows:

  • Upper lip lift repositions the upper lip in a more feminine and “open” posture
  • Lip Augmentation gives them a plump look, which makes them look more feminine
  • Lifting the Corners of the Mouth

If a person is insecure about their lips, they may consider these procedures.


A Facelift Surgery (rhytidectomy) counteracts the signs of aging on the face and neck. The treatment:

  • Tightens sagging skin
  • Minimizes lines and wrinkles
  • Eliminates extra fat

A facelift should be performed six months after any facial feminization operations. Any weight reduction goals should be accomplished before undergoing any facelift operations.

Deep Plane Facelift or SMAS Facelift

Following feminization surgery, the most often performed facelift technique is the deep plane facelift. The surgeon works with the deep layer of facial muscle underneath the skin.

A similar technique is called the SMAS Facelift, which addresses the SMAS (superficial muscular aponeurotic system). The SMAS is the thin layer of muscle and connective tissue beneath the surface of the skin in the middle and lower third of the face. By reshaping and tightening this section of the face, a plastic surgeon can hollow or drooping cheeks as well as jowls and smile lines.

Neck Lift

The neck often ages before the face. A neck lift may be suggested in conjunction with a facelift. Combining both of these treatments maximizes excellent outcomes and guarantees face-aesthetic harmony. WAVE plastic surgeons offer a high SMAS Face and Neck Lift to address drooping, saggy skin in the lower portion of the face as well as the neck.

Additional FFS Procedures

The following facial procedures are treatments related to Facial Feminization Surgery that are not currently offered at WAVE Plastic Surgery.   If you or a loved one are interested in these procedures, we can recommend a skilled specialist who can perform these procedures.

Forehead Reduction

The forehead takes up one-third of the human face. The forehead and brow are important markers of gender since they exhibit considerable differences between men and women. Reducing the size and contour of the forehead is often a goal in FFS.

Reducing and contouring the forehead results in a more naturally feminine look. Concurrently, the surgeon can correct existing facial bone asymmetries. The surgery involves altering the brow and the bones that surround the eye sockets.

Scalp Advancement

Scalp advancement surgery relocates the scalp and hair follicles to the brow. The treatment begins with a trichophytic incision along the desired hairline on the forehead. Then pushes the whole scalp forward.

At the conclusion of the operation, the hair follicles may be buried under the skin closure. This allows the hair to sprout through the scar and in front of the hairline. Hair follicle transplantation on the hairline will provide a more feminine appearance.

Reduce The Adam's Apple

A surgical technique called the tracheal shave helps decrease the size of the Adam’s apple. It entails shaving or decreasing the thyroid cartilage to reduce the size of the Adam’s apple. This treatment gives the neck and throat a more feminine appearance and aids in achieving facial gender confirmation objectives.

The operation begins with a neck incision slightly under the chin. After that, the throat’s vertical muscles reveal the Adam’s apple, and the tracheal cartilage is shaved to decrease its size.

Get Your Facial Feminization Consultation

Give us a call today to schedule your Facial Feminization Surgery consultation with one of our plastic surgeons at Wave Plastic Surgery.

Facial Feminization Surgery Preparation

Surgeons require patients to discontinue hormone replacement treatment two weeks before surgery. Patients will also have to wait two weeks after surgery before restarting. Inform your surgeon of any additional medication you are using.

Your surgeon may have additional criteria depending on the operation you’re having. This includes fasting if you are undergoing general anesthesia.

FFS Risks and Potential Adverse Effects

Like any surgical procedure, FFS does have some risks. Among the risks associated with FFS are the following:

  • Damage to the nerves in the jaw or chin
  • Loss of sensation or function in the face and tongue
  • Infections developed as a result of chin and cheek implants
  • Damaged Nerves during the scalp incision

If you choose lip or brow fillers, use extreme caution for permanent fillers such as silicone. Dissolvable fillers (such as hyaluronic acid) enable you to alter the look of your soft tissue as you age.

Facial Feminization Surgery Expectations

Your facial feminization surgery results vary based on a variety of factors. Recovery times vary according to the procedures undertaken. In general, you may anticipate returning home after surgery.

You will almost certainly need two weeks of complete rest. For six weeks, you should abstain from employment and carrying heavy items. For forehead and brow surgery, avoid plucking your brows for several weeks to allow the anchors to set and the tissue to recover.

How to Select a Physician

To find the appropriate surgeon, do as many in-person or virtual consultations as possible. You want to get the feel of each surgeon’s technique and bedside manner.

Numerous surgeons speak or consult in major cities and attend transgender conferences. It is also beneficial to contact past patients of the doctors that interest you. This may be accomplished via the use of internet forums, support groups, or common connections.

Get FFS at Wave Plastic Surgery

Now that you are aware of Facial Feminization Surgery, you are probably wondering where to get it. You want to choose a clinic with years of experience and excellent results with this procedure. Make sure to check the reviews to see if their customers had a great experience or not.

At Wave Plastic Surgery, we pride ourselves on providing exceptional care to all our clients who undergo FFS surgery. Our clinical team of experts will discuss and tailor a specific plan that aligns with your desired outcomes.

If you are looking for a plastic surgeon, we can help. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.

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