I lost my eyebrows

I lost my eyebrows slowly about 3 years ago. I was getting my make up done by my favorite make up artist and she said ” hey you’re balding on your eyebrows!” Little did I know it was the beginning of the end. Truth be told, I never really noticed or gave a damn about my eyebrows. I cared about how I applied my make up and took care of myself, but eyebrows were…well, secondary. I got them taken care of back in my 20’s by shaping them professionally by my aesthetician with electrolosys but that’s pretty much all the attention I’ve ever gave them for a lifetime. Until recently.

I hadn’t seen a friend in a while and when she saw me she asked me why I looked so tired. I wasn’t! I couldn’t understand why everyone was asking me if I was. I’m full of energy all the time. I noticed that I had to wear make up often because I had to pencil my eyebrows in in order to frame my eyes. And when I did, I took one good look at them and realized…they were gone! Completely bald on one eyebrow and losing it slowing on the other. But why?…I did blood tests, went to see my doctor, and all results were negative. My thyroid which is the ringing bell to eyebrow loss was fine. Everything was fine. “are you stressed?” asked my doctor. “who isn’t?” was my reply….I’m as stressed as the next person.

And so my research started….

I am based out of Montreal and so I obviously wanted to have a doctor in my town. But who? I didn’t know anyone who has ever done a transplant before. I found one online, went to visit..I paid for a consultation. His face was so botoxed he couldn’t even speak. I left there thinking if he can’t even take care of his own face, how can he take care of mine…he’s x-out. And so the long nights of research started. I found what seemed to be a brillant doctor in Miami and NYC, but 7000$ and a fligth there later….were my eyebrows really worth that much? Hell, I’d rather go to Europe with that money. I was really left discouraged. Until I hit forums and Dr. Rahal’s name just kept on coming up. So I did plenty of research on him and found a lot of information and decided to call. Chad returned my calls and my many questions without any hesitation. Larissa followed up with pleasant emails and put me at ease. And I just knew I was going the right direction for this. They seemed like a tight shop! (And they were)

I decided I was doing it.

And so off I went to Ottawa, that 2 hour drive was filled with “Wow, I’m really doing this? I’m really driving my butt 2 hours to rip hair off my head and plant them on my face? Who am I? …wow…” And then the other part of me was also happy  and thinking  “By the time my birthday comes around, I will have a full set of eyebrows again!  So happy! Less make up and more natural…yay for eyebrows!!” (Just a little side note to understand the build up getting to a transplant: as women we always look at what other women have “she has great hair”, “great legs”, ” love her dress”…but can I just say I was becoming obsessed with eyebrows!! I’d turn to my boyfriend and be like “wow! Did you see that girl’s eyebrows?” – my poor and patient boyfriend. God Bless him. I knew I had to do this.)

And so I arrived at the clinic. For those of you reading this and wondering what its like. My first thought was “it smells nice in here”. The place is clean, modern and fresh. The receptionist is a breath of fresh hair (ha ha). Larissa, came to introduce herself and all of a sudden I felt more comfortable. The consultation with the doctor was short but to the point. He traced my eyebrows and looked at it properly and repeatedly asked me to speak up if I wasn’t sure or happy. Clearly his intentions were to make sure I was happy and sure of my decision. Minutes later, a nurse named April came to get me, photos were done, and the prep started.

The Transplant:

Can I just hear a hurray for Ativan? yap…

I was relaxed and pain free. Unconcerned at all, until a nurse brought me two stress balls with smiley faces on them. I was high on Ativan so I laughed and said “oh so cute” until it hit me…wait a minute. “Why are you giving me stress balls?..will I be in pain?”
“You will need these”, she said, and walked away…Oh sweet Ativan, stay with me…

I did need them!

The donor area hurt a little bit but was nothing compared to the injections they give you to freeze your eyebrows. Its painful, and it burns. Luckily, Dr. Rahal is quick. But yeah…that pain was brutal. Luckily, after that, its easy breezy..no pain.

 

4 hours and a meal later (they feed you) , I was driven down the street to their guest house (http://brooklineguesthouse.com) and stayed there overnight. It was clean and comfortable and right down the street. Two more guys were there one from NYC and the other from Australia, both Dr. Rahal’s patients. They were sweet and offered to order food for all of us, but I was too tired to eat so I slept pretty much the whole time I was there.

The next day I went back, Dr.Rahal checked me and so did the head nurse April. She gave me a good explanation on how to take care of myself in post-op. Its quite elaborate and more detailed that I thought. I wasn’t expecting it to be so high maintenance (vitamin e application x2 day, wash x2 a day, saline spray every 2 hours). If you’re going to do this; take 2 weeks off. I’m on day 6, sleeping is difficult because you don’t want to touch your graphs, but they itch, and your donor area is filled with polysporin so your hair is just greasy no matter how often you wash it. You will NEED a lazyboy or a sleep method that allows you to sleep at a 45 degree. Its a must. So organize that prior to your graph. It will help your swelling tremendously.

 

I’m on day 6 recovery now. My only problem is ITCHINESS.  Its a good sign of healing.

Hope this helps all of you,

I posted my eyebrows before, the drawing the day after, up to day 5. Just so you can get an idea. I will post more as soon as I get an update.

This is me, pre transplant. As you can see i was left with a few hair...

This is me, pre transplant. As you can see i was left with a few hairs…

 

post op

post-op- 4 hours transplant: I was very swollen and couldn’t blink. But I was in no pain whatsoever.

 

swelling is going down but this bruising isn't just yet.

day 2: swelling is going down but this bruising isn’t just yet.

 

swelling is almost gone.

day 3: swelling is almost gone.

 

day 4

day 4

day 5 super itchy

day 5 super itchy

EyebrowQueen

 

Comments

  1. Wow, they look fantastic! Thanks for your update!

  2. Your eyebrows look beautiful and frame your face so well! I’m so happy to see you taking care of yourself and you’re looking great!

  3. Eyebrow Queen, your recovery is looking great so far! Great post 🙂 As I mentioned to you before, the first 14 days are the hardest and most maintenance, but you are half way there, and you are doing such a fantastic job! Keep up the good work 🙂

  4. Looking great so far EyebrowQueen! That was a great post 🙂 Keep up the good work, you will start seeing results in no time! 😀

  5. I love them!!!! You are such a positive spirit and I am so happy for you and I cannot wait to see your full eyebrows!!

  6. Great post! What a great read! Looks like the healing is right on track so far. You will be enjoying those beautiful brows in no time 🙂

  7. Do you have a picture of your final result?

    • hi Ashley,
      I don’t have full results just yet. I did this in april, we are in July now so 3 months in and I have a “few” little growths here and there that are starting to show. But the full results should be coming in within 4-6 months. I am planning to put another photo up as soon as I have full results. I find there is little information on the net for it, and I would like to help people. The only thing I can tell you right now is this: I have straight hair, and I think this procedure would give better results to people with wavy to curly hair. The reason being is that, the few hairs that are growing, are growing straight, so when I cut it (to groom it) it stays up and I need (hair) gel to keep them down…a bit annoying and unnatural for now. But by the same token, I am new at figuring out how to take care of them..So I am confident that I will get the hang of it, and I will make them look more natural (with figuring out what length looks natural etc) for myself. For now; 3 months in, all redness is gone. I still have pink pigment around the bridge of the nose, but that’s ok because it gives me a reference of where to pencil and powder in my eyebrows for the time being. If you’re unsure, and willing to wait, I can give you more results in 2 months and I will post a photo.
      Hope this helps!

      • How much did your procedure cost? I’ve had a consult with a few doctors and I was told that the grafts will grow in the same direction as the rest of your hair. You mentioned that yours are growing straight out. Is that normal after an eyebrow transplant?

        • My eyebrows are not growing straight out because it wasn’t planted properly. It is clearly is due to my hair type. I have super straight hair, so it grows straight and so if you look at my face on the side, it looks like its standing up a little bit.

          I’m hoping that when the full set grows in, that will all tame down.
          We’ll see…keep you posted!
          but it wasn’t the actual implant.
          as for the cost; i did research and I got more graphs for my money with this doctor. Chad is the man to call for the cost.

    • check out my new post
      i’m on month 4 post transplant

  8. Did you experience any shock loss (ie. loss of existing hair follicles) after your transplant?

    • hi Ashley,
      I guess I must of, because I had less than when I went to see the doctor.
      I’m on my 3rd month and its really starting to grow now…Today I actually felt like I had a nice shape with very little effort (make up)
      I will post a new photo in a few, check it out

  9. Thank you for answering my questions. I am considering have an eyebrow transplant from Dr. Rahal. My concern is the risk of shock loss because I don’t want to lose the hair I already have. Did your original eyebrow hair grow back or did you lose it permanently?

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