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Facial Feminization Surgery

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Achieve a More Feminine-Looking Face

Facial feminization surgery (FFS) is a comprehensive approach that involves a series of procedures to soften masculine facial characteristics, ultimately enhancing an individual’s feminine appearance. Dr. Sarah Saxon is the region’s leading Facial Feminization Surgery expert and has developed her own techniques to allow for faster recovery and the most natural-looking results.
Facial feminization surgery (FFS) is a comprehensive approach that involves a series of procedures to soften masculine facial characteristics, ultimately enhancing an individual’s feminine appearance. Dr. Sarah Saxon is the region’s leading Facial Feminization Surgery expert and has developed her own techniques to allow for faster recovery and the most natural-looking results.

What is Facial Feminization Surgery?

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Facial feminization surgery (FFS) is a series of surgical procedures designed to address masculine features of the face. Through years of research, differences in masculine versus feminine facial features have been discovered so that a plan can be tailored toward each individual’s anatomy and goals.

Dr. Saxon trained with the world-renowned Dr. Jeffrey Spiegel in her fellowship at Boston University Medical Center and The Spiegel Center, where she spent an entire year studying the nuances of the feminine face. Dr. Spiegel developed the surgical techniques that are now more well-known in facial feminization. Since that time, she has fine-tuned her unique approach and built previous techniques for dramatic results with minimal downtime.

Before & After

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Facial Feminization for All Women

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Facial feminization surgery (FFS) is a valuable option for all women seeking facial refinement. Women may opt for FFS to enhance their facial features and achieve a more delicate and feminine appearance. Many women feel that their face looks masculine, and more well-known facial plastic surgical procedures do not give them the results they are looking for. Procedures like brow bone reduction, hairline lowering, lip lift, cheek augmentation, or jaw contouring can help those women attain the facial balance and elegance they desire.
Facial feminization surgery (FFS) plays a vital role in the gender affirmation journey for transgender women. For many women, aligning their facial features with their gender identity is essential for emotional well-being and self-confidence. FFS covers a range of procedures that collectively soften masculine features and enhance feminine characteristics. FFS contributes to reducing gender dysphoria and promoting a more authentic sense of self. By helping transgender women achieve a facial appearance that aligns with their gender identity, FFS supports their journey toward living openly as the women they truly are.

Gender Affirmation for Transgender Women

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Facial Feminization Overview

While each procedure within your facial feminization surgical plan will have its own set of desired improvements, Dr. Saxon’s overall focus when performing facial feminization surgery is to emphasize the upper portion of the face and refine the lower portion. Features such as large eyes and fuller cheeks are characteristically feminine, while stronger features in the lower face (such as a wide jaw or prominent chin) make a face appear more masculine. By enlarging and brightening the eyes and refining masculine features, the face will appear softer, more delicate, and more feminine overall.

During your facial feminization consultation with Dr. Saxon, you will discuss how you feel about your facial features and the adjustments you would like to achieve through your surgery. Dr. Saxon will explain what can realistically be achieved and recommend procedures to produce the best results. Together, you and Dr. Saxon will develop your surgical plan based on this conversation. You may need to undergo certain tests or meet specific criteria before your surgery to ensure facial feminization surgery is safe for you. Your medical history and a physical exam will help determine the necessary procedures for your facial feminization surgery.

Facial feminization surgery is a major surgical procedure, and recovery is significant. You should expect to experience swelling, pain, redness, and bruising in multiple areas of the face. Dr. Saxon uses tranexamic acid during surgery and will give you steroids after surgery to minimize swelling and bruising after surgery.

Swelling in the lower face as a result of jawline contouring may cause difficulty eating or speaking. This is to be expected but may be problematic. To minimize this risk, Dr. Saxon recommends that all patients supplement each meal with a protein shake to ensure that enough nutrients are taken in for optimal healing.

You are likely to need multiple dressings following your surgery, depending on what specific procedures are included in your treatment plan. Most facial feminization patients are dressed with an ACE head wrap and a cast on their nose. You are also likely to have several incisions to keep clean and protect. These may include an incision at or behind the hairline, under the nose, inside the cheeks, or other areas.

Dr. Saxon will remove all of your sutures one week after your surgery. You should expect to stay home from work or school for a minimum of two to three weeks. After this period, you will not need to wear any dressings, and you will be able to apply makeup to disguise any incisions or bruising.

Your Facial Feminization Results

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As facial feminization surgery requires substantial and lengthy recovery, your final results may take up to one year to realize. Throughout your recovery, you will be in contact with Dr. Saxon and any other specialists involved in your transition.

Facial Feminization FAQs

What is the average cost of facial feminization surgery (FFS)?
The cost of FFS varies depending on several factors, including the specific procedures needed, the surgeon’s experience, and the geographic location of the practice. On average, FFS can range from $20,000 to $50,000 USD.
Insurance coverage for FFS varies greatly depending on the insurance provider and the individual’s policy. Some insurance plans may cover certain aspects of FFS if deemed medically necessary for gender affirmation treatment. It’s essential to contact your insurance provider directly to inquire about coverage options. We do not accept insurance at Saxon MD, but we can provide any necessary documentation needed if you are seeking reimbursement.
The recovery period for FFS typically ranges from 2 to 4 weeks, although individual experiences may vary. During this time, patients may experience swelling, bruising, and discomfort, which gradually subside. Most patients can return to light activities within a week but should avoid strenuous exercise and heavy lifting for several weeks.
Some of the most common procedures in FFS include forehead contouring, rhinoplasty (nose reshaping), jaw and chin reduction, lip augmentation, cheek augmentation, and tracheal shave (Adam’s apple reduction). The specific combination of procedures depends on each patient’s unique facial anatomy and desired results.

It is common for individuals to have all of their procedures done at one time; however, some choose to have multiple stages depending on budget and overall health. If skin tightening is needed, Dr. Saxon will often recommend having this portion done about 6 months after bone refinement to allow for swelling to go down. At your consultation, Dr. Saxon will be able to guide you through prioritizing certain procedures over others if you need to stage them over time.

There are some nonsurgical options that can help feminize the face. Dermal fillers can be added to the cheeks to add more volume. Neuromodulators, like botox, can also be used to refine the shape of the jawline and neck if the muscles are enlarged. Addressing skin issues such as wrinkles and scarring is also an important component of facial feminization. Treatments such as laser skin resurfacing and morpheus8 can help with this either before or after surgery.


Explore our various Facial Feminization Surgery topics.

Why Choose Saxon MD?

Dr. Sarah Saxon is a double-board-certified Facial Plastic Surgeon and a leading specialist in facial feminization surgery. Patients travel from all across the country to have surgery with her for her particular expertise. Dr. Saxon also gives lectures and seminars at national conferences to teach others about her approach to facial feminization surgery. At Saxon MD, we strive to deliver the best facial feminization surgery has to offer and have built an experienced team to help make the whole process as seamless as possible. If you would like to discuss your facial feminization with Dr. Saxon, please contact our office to schedule your consultation. We look forward to helping you transform self-doubt into self-confidence!

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