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Blepharoplasty Recovery Timeline: What to Expect After Eyelid Surgery

Published on April 23, 2024

beautiful young woman face with arrows under eye

Undergoing blepharoplasty can dramatically improve the appearance of the eyelids. This post outlines the recovery timeline and what can typically be expected following the procedure.

Eyelid Surgery Healing Process

Week 1

The first few days after surgery are all about reducing swelling and bruising. Applying cold compresses and keeping your head elevated will be your biggest allies during this time.

Your doctor may prescribe antibiotic eye drops or medications you take by mouth to fight infection and keep you comfortable. It’s normal for your vision to be blurry during this recovery period, but this should clear up soon. To help your eyes heal, avoid straining them by limiting activities like reading, watching TV, or spending too much time on digital devices.

After the first 24 to 48 hours, you can take showers again. Just be gentle! Avoid aiming the water stream directly at your face or the surgical area.

Weeks 2 to 3

The swelling and bruising should be noticeably better by now. If you have stitches that don’t dissolve on their own, this is usually the time to get them removed. This can be a relief, making you more comfortable and giving you better vision.

You’ll likely be able to get back to most of your normal activities, including work, as long as it doesn’t involve heavy lifting or strenuous tasks. Light walking is a great way to keep your circulation going. Just remember to avoid anything that could dry out or strain your eyes for a while longer.

Weeks 4 to 6

Most of the swelling and bruising should be gone by now, revealing the initial results of your surgery. While the major healing is complete, the delicate tissues around your eyes will still be settling down. Scars will also begin to fade and become less noticeable.

This is a great time to get back to your exercise routine, but take it slow at first. Avoid contact sports or anything that could accidentally hit your face. It’s always best to check with your surgeon before starting any strenuous exercise to make sure you’re healing safely.

Months 4 to 6

You have likely fully recovered from blepharoplasty, experiencing minimal scarring with proper aftercare. After you have completely healed from eyelid surgery, you will notice your eyes looking younger and more vibrant.

Maximizing Your Recovery: Dos and Don’ts


  • Follow-up appointments: Attend all scheduled follow-ups and communicate any concerns to your surgeon.
  • Rest and sleep: Ensure adequate rest with your head elevated to reduce swelling.
  • Eye care: Follow your surgeon’s instructions for using prescribed eye drops or ointments.
  • Sun protection: Wear sunglasses to shield your eyes from sunlight and wind.


  • Rubbing your eyes: Avoid touching or rubbing your eyes to prevent infection.
  • Strenuous activity: Avoid activities that increase blood pressure for at least a few weeks.
  • Makeup: Hold off on eye makeup until your surgeon approves it.
  • Contact lenses: Avoid contact lenses for the recommended period to prevent irritation.
  • Smoking: Smoking hinders healing, so avoid it and secondhand smoke exposure.
  • Sun exposure on scars: Protect scars from sunlight to prevent darkening.
  • Long hours staring at screens: Limit screen time to avoid eye strain.

Long-term Results of Eyelid Surgery

The long-term results of eyelid surgery or blepharoplasty, can significantly enhance a patient’s facial appearance and, in some cases, improve vision impaired by drooping eyelids. Here are key aspects of the long-term outcomes patients can expect:

  • Youthful appearance: Reduced bags, corrected drooping eyelids, and sharper contours create a refreshed look.
  • Improved vision: For those with vision obstructed by drooping eyelids, blepharoplasty can improve peripheral and overall vision.
  • Increased confidence: The aesthetic improvements can boost self-esteem and confidence.
  • Long-lasting results: Blepharoplasty results are durable, with upper eyelid surgery potentially lasting a lifetime for many patients.

Maintenance of Results

To maximize the longevity of your blepharoplasty results, prioritizing a healthy lifestyle is key. This includes incorporating a good skincare routine that emphasizes sun protection for the delicate skin around the eyes. Additionally, maintaining a balanced diet and staying adequately hydrated contributes to overall skin health, which plays a vital role in how well your results endure.

Schedule Your Consultation

Considering blepharoplasty in Detroit? Contact us and schedule a consultation. Dr. Lytle, our board-certified plastic surgeon, will listen to your goals and discuss what you can expect from the recovery process.

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