Your eyes are often called the windows to your soul, but when hooded eyelids obscure their beauty, it can affect your overall appearance and self-confidence.
Hooded eyelids, characterised by excess skin that droops over the upper eyelids, can make you look tired, older, and even affect your vision in severe cases.
Understanding hooded eyelids
Various factors, including genetics, ageing, and lifestyle, can cause hooded eyelids. The most common cause is the natural ageing process, which results in the loss of skin elasticity and the weakening of the muscles in the eyelid area. As a result, excess skin accumulates and sags over the upper eyelid, leading to the classic hooded appearance.
Hooded eyelids not only affect your appearance but can also have practical implications. They may obstruct your peripheral vision, causing discomfort and compromising your safety. Additionally, hooded eyelids can make you appear chronically fatigued, regardless of how well-rested you are. This aesthetic concern often prompts individuals to seek solutions, with upper blepharoplasty being one of the most effective.
Can you improve hooded eyelids naturally?
For very mild skin sagging over the eyelids, it is possible to induce a slight lift with non-surgical treatments.
Muscle relaxing injections are the most popular aesthetic treatment in the UK, and it is possible to lift hooded eyelids slightly by injecting botulinum toxin into the forehead muscles that pull the eyebrows downward. By weakening these muscles, the eyebrows can lift marginally, resulting in a more open and refreshed eye appearance. The effects are temporary, typically lasting just three to four months, and the procedure is quick with minimal downtime.
There are also treatments such as Ultherapy that use ultrasound technology to tighten and lift the skin on the brow. While it is not a specific eyelid procedure, it can indirectly benefit those with hooded eyelids by improving the overall tightness and tone of the skin around the eyes.
However, for patients with more significant hooding on the eyelids, surgery is typically the only option, and an upper blepharoplasty is an effective and long-lasting solution.
Upper blepharoplasty, also known as an eyelid lift or upper eyelid surgery, is a surgical procedure that aims to rejuvenate the appearance of the upper eyelids by removing excess skin and, if necessary, repositioning or altering the fat and muscles in the area. This surgical technique can restore a more youthful and refreshed look by eliminating the hooded appearance.
The difference between hooded eyelids and ptosis
Hooded eyes and ptosis are similar conditions affecting the upper eyelid but are not the same. Ptosis is a medical condition characterised by drooping or sagging of the upper eyelid, resulting in it partially or entirely covering the eye. It can be caused by muscle or nerve damage or age-related weakening of the muscles that control the eyelids.
In some cases, people with hooded eyes may also have ptosis, and ptosis repair may need to be combined with an upper blepharoplasty to different extents to deliver symmetry. An oculoplastic surgeon has the required training and experience to provide an individually tailored surgical plan. Small, precise changes are made to the delicate muscles and tendons that are responsible for lifting the eyelid.
In this patient, the eye on our left shows significant ptosis (eyelid droop) with a compensatory raised eyebrow and a prolapsed inner fat pad. The eye on our right shows significant skin excess (dermatochalasis), requiring a blepharoplasty. Both surgical procedures were carried out to different degrees on each side in order to deliver a symmetric eye size, symmetric eyelid and symmetric brow.