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What is facial feminization surgery?

Facial feminization surgery is essential to the male-to-female transformation as it helps patients transform their faces to better align with their inner selves and gender presentation. FFS is one part of an overall feminization strategy that may include hormone therapy and other surgical procedures in other body areas. If you are interested in facial feminization surgery in Kirkland, Dr. Tseng can help.

FFS changes features on your face, so they appear more traditionally feminine and less masculine. It might involve one surgery or a series of procedures to reshape the face's bone, cartilage, and soft tissue. After a thorough discussion and examination by Dr. Tseng, including a detailed 2-D and 3-D evaluation, a surgical plan is curated to help you confidently look and feel feminine.

What is included in facial feminization surgery?

Because traditionally masculine facial features tend to be square and sharp, facial feminization surgery in Kirkland softens these features to create a face that is more oval-shaped. The forehead and brow ridge are also reshaped to create a softer contour with feminine highlights. 

Some of the most common surgical procedures included in facial feminization surgery include the following:

Hairline lowering

The male hairline has an M-shape and generally recedes at the temples on both sides. Women typically have an oval-shaped hairline. An incision is made along the hairline, and the skin section is removed from the forehead. Dr. Tseng pulls down the scalp to its new position and staples it into the rest of the forehead.

Brow lift

A heavy, sagging, or creased forehead can appear more traditionally masculine. A custom brow lift will:

  • Smooth the skin and tissues of the forehead
  • Subtly lift the eyelids
  • Restore the eyebrows to a more youthful position if they have descended lower with age.

Forehead contouring

Men have a pronounced bone just above the eyebrow ridge. For facial feminization, Dr. Tseng may surgically remove part of this bone and reshape it to give a smoother appearance.

Eyelid surgery

If your eyelids droop and sag, it significantly ages your overall facial appearance, leaving you looking tired and unhappy. In facial feminization, drooping or sagging eyelids can appear more masculine, while more open eyes are generally associated with feminine features. An eyelid lift procedure can rejuvenate the upper or lower lids or both.

Chin and jaw modification

Men tend to have more prominent and wide square chins and jaws. Dr. Tseng can reduce the size of your chin and reshape it for a more pointed or oval shape, and shave away layers of bone to reduce the size and sharp angles of your jaw.

Cheek augmentation

Women have higher cheekbones and more fat in their cheeks, so when a more traditionally feminine appearance is the goal, Dr. Tseng may suggest cheek augmentation. Augmentation may be done with silicone implants or fat injections, such as facial fat transfer. Facial fat transfer uses your natural fat cells that are harvested, cleansed, and injected for long-lasting, entirely natural results. The injected fat cells become part of your natural facial structure, integrating into the tissues to restore or add volume.


Rhinoplasty is a crucial procedure in facial feminization surgery. Men’s noses are longer, wider, and more prominent than women’s, which are generally narrower, shorter, and slightly concave. A rhinoplasty, or “nose job,” in Auburn, WA, will help you achieve a more feminine nose to provide overall facial balance and aesthetic appeal.

Lip lift and augmentation

Women’s top lips tend to be larger and closer to their noses than men’s. Dr. Tseng can raise the height of your top lip with a small incision under your nostrils and create fuller lips with fat injections or fillers.

Lip augmentation involves injecting the lips with hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers to give you a more youthful, attractive, and feminine smile.

Tracheal shave

Men tend to have larger Adam’s apples, which refers to when the cartilage of the trachea protrudes at the front of your throat. During a tracheal shave, Dr. Tseng makes an incision under your chin and shaves away some of the cartilage for a more traditionally feminine appearance.

Am I a good candidate for facial feminization surgery?

You may choose facial feminization surgery if you:

  • Are transitioning from male to female
  • Are a cisgender woman who wants to feminize her face
  • Have a diagnosis of gender dysphoria

It is important to note that you may not be a good candidate for FFS if you:

  • Are under the age of 18
  • Have unrealistic expectations about the results
  • Have a health condition that makes surgery dangerous
  • Have impaired ability to make appropriate personal decisions

Facial feminization surgery preparation and recovery

When preparing for facial feminization surgery, you may be required to have a medical evaluation or undergo laboratory testing. New medications may need to be taken, or your current medications may need to be adjusted. You will be asked to stop smoking and to avoid taking medications that increase the risk of bleeding, such as:

  • Anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Aspirin
  • Herbal supplements

If all comprehensive surgeries are done at once, the FFS process may take nine hours or more, which is why many surgeons recommend separating the procedures with a break of weeks to months in between. Doing so allows your face to heal in between; however, the downside is additional recovery time.

After surgery, you may need to use a support garment or elastic bandage to avoid swelling after extensive surgery. A small drain may be placed under the skin to remove blood or other fluids. Because swelling will be significant, ice packs benefit the first 48-72 hours after surgery.

During the several weeks of recovery, your facial shape will improve while swelling decreases. Follow Dr. Tseng’s instructions and attend all recommended follow-up visits to ensure optimal healing and results.

Results of facial feminization surgery

Once the inflammation and swelling disappear following your facial feminization surgery in Kirkland, your face will have a much more traditionally female appearance. FFS can make it easier for others to see you as your actual gender and have your reflection mirror who you feel you are.

Mark H. Tseng, M.D.
Mark H. Tseng, M.D.

Why choose Tseng Aesthetics for facial feminization surgery?

Ideal beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and you deserve to love what you see in the mirror. Residents of Kirkland, WA, Auburn, WA and nearby communities trust the skills and expertise of Dr. Mark Tseng, who has established a private clinic built on honesty and integrity.

You deserve a top-quality surgeon with reasonable rates. Dr. Tseng genuinely cares about his patients and is dedicated to outcomes that appear natural and authentic, not fake or overdone. He is known for achieving superior results, making Tseng Aesthetics the best choice for facial feminization surgery.

Mark H. Tseng, M.D.
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