While many have heard of the term blepharoplasty, or an eyelid lift, this word refers to many types of eyelid procedures. You can have an upper or lower eyelid lift by removing excess skin or it can refer to the removal of fat from the upper or lower eyelid, often in conjunction with skin removal. And then you have Asian Blepharoplasty.
Asian blepharoplasty is a procedure, also poorly termed “double eyelid surgery”, that creates a crease in the upper eyelid in persons of Pacific Asian descent. Why is this procedure requested? First we have to understand the difference in Pacific Asian and Western eyelids. The underlying anatomy in the upper eyelid contributes to the crease in the upper eyelid depending on ethnicity. In Western eyelids, the underlying tissue in the eyelid attaches to the skin and creates a crease that is higher up on the eyelid whereas in Pacific Asian eyelids, the underlying tissue does not attach to the undersurface of the skin, therefore no crease is made and upper eyelid fat sits lower down in the eyelid, possibly creating a “tired” appearance. By placing a crease in the upper eyelid, patients that undergo Asian Blepharoplasty state that it is easier to put on eyeliner when a crease is present and they look less tired when upper eyelid fat is shifted upwards, as in the Western eyelid.
While some feel that Asian Blepharoplasty is an attempt at Western assimilation, I disagree. The procedure does not change the distinctive ethnic shape of the eyes. While it does create a crease in the upper eyelid that was not present before, the attractive, Asian appearing eye is still present.
As you can see in these photos, the patient’s eyes are still clearly Pacific Asian in appearance, but with the addition of an upper eyelid crease. While I can’t comment as to whether it is easier to put on eyeliner, since I don’t wear any, patients are very adamant that Asian Blepharoplasty makes them look less tired and they emphasize that they don’t want the shape of the eyes altered.
Do you think there is anything wrong with patients of Pacific Asian descent having eyelid altering surgery? Is it a sign of Western assimilation? To learn more about blepharoplasty or to find out how much it costs from a board certified plastic surgeon in your area, click here.