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Would you pay $8,000 for Megan Fox's eyebrows?


A few minutes into her visit with plastic surgeon Dr. Jeffrey Epstein, a 40-something brunette pulls up a photo of Megan Fox on her iPhone.

But it’s not Fox’s nose or cheekbones that the patient wants.

“This is how I want my eyebrows,” she says.

The doctor smiles politely. It is the third time in a week he’s been shown a picture of the actress.

“I assured her that it’s not really necessary [for me to study the portrait], because I have the shape of Fox’s brows and the direction of hair growth imprinted in my brain,” says Epstein, recalling the client’s consultation last month. “The look is incredibly popular.”

Just as Jennifer Aniston’s “The Rachel” was the most requested hairdo of the mid-1990s, in this boom time for cosmetic enhancements, “The Megan” is the must-have eyebrow of 2012.

Powder and pencil can only go so far. With the bushier look back in vogue — fuller arches are the signature style of everyone from Kim Kardashian to Kate Middleton — specialists such as Epstein have seen a 30 percent rise in the demand for eyebrow transplants.

“Over the last two years, it’s got really big,” adds Epstein, who performs between 12 and 15 eyebrow surgeries in New York and Miami every month. “A lot of women want [to copy] the Kardashians, but Megan Fox is far and away the favorite.”

The painstaking and pricey treatment, originally developed for burn and dog-bite victims and later used to remedy baldness in men, is being increasingly used by women for vanity purposes.

And, for a new look, women can expect to pay between $4,000 and $8,000 for the process, which on average takes three hours.

It’s an amazing look to re-create,” he says. Using more technical speak, he explains, “The hairs go straight up at the head of her eyebrow and then go into a more crosshatch pattern as they taper off laterally.”

Manhattan health administrator Jana Jordan, 28, is certainly pleased with her “Megan,” which involved about 400 hair follicles being transplanted from her scalp to her brows.

The self-confessed overplucker blames genetics for her fine hair and formerly patchy brows.

Nevertheless Jordan admits to “going crazy” with the tweezers in high school, when the highly manicured “Gwen Stefani look” was all the rage.

“As time went by, and fashions changed, I’d see people with thick eyebrows and think: ‘Oh my God, they’re so great!’ ” recalls the Hell’s Kitchen resident. “I’d hear girls in the office saying to each other, ‘You have the best eyebrows!’ — but nobody ever said that to me.
“I would constantly color them in, but I was desperate for a permanent solution.”

She considered an eyebrow transplant after being prescribed the eyelash enhancement drug Latisse, which worked wonders on her lashes but not her brows.

“I’m so glad I did it because it’s exactly my hair color and it looks so natural,” says

Jordan, who had the surgery at Epstein’s East 56th Street office in July 2011.

The procedure took about 2¹/₂ hours while Jordan was sedated with Valium and Ambien, and received Lidocaine shots to numb the pain.

“My main concern was taking hair from my scalp,” she admits. “If you take an inch of hair from my head to add to my eyebrows, that’s a big deal.” She didn’t have to worry. There was no scarring, and the hair on her head grew back.

After the surgery, she was concerned when her fuller eyebrows started to fall out. The doctor had warned her this would happen as the follicles became dormant.

But three months later, the hair started growing. And growing. Unlike natural eyebrows, transplanted brows have to be trimmed because they grow at the same rate as the hair on your head.

“My eyebrows grew and grew and, by six months, I had this old grandfather look going on!” says Jordan. “I was too scared to cut them, and it took a lot of courage to finally do it!”

Some ladies go to the salon for that.

“They need to be trimmed regularly with scissors,” explains Janna Morein, resident eyebrow specialist at L’Institut Sothys spa in Midtown. But other than that, says Morein, they are just like normal eyebrow hairs.

Another hair-restoration expert, Dr. Alan Bauman, believes the trend for fuller brows began with haute couture models on the runways about four years ago. It reached the mainstream more recently when A-list stars like Angelina Jolie and Fox started embracing the look.

“It’s definitely become more desirable,” says Bauman, who performs between three and five such procedures per month, about double the number he did in 2008.

Homemaker Kelly Krauss, 44, of Tewksbury, NJ — a reformed overplucker — cherishes her new, fuller eyebrows and follows a strict maintenance regime of combing and trimming in front of the mirror.

Before her transplants, she used to wear a baseball cap because she was so self-conscious about people seeing her face. “I had bald spots all across my brows and scar tissue from picking at the skin,” says Krauss, who longed to have distinctive eyebrows like actress Brooke Shields.

Krauss’ husband, Charlie, an attorney, worried how much it was affecting her confidence and, after searching on the Internet, encouraged her to go ahead with the transplant.

“Fixing my eyebrows was the best decision I ever made,” says Krauss, who paid about $5,000 for the procedure. “I love the fuller look, and people say it looks very natural.”

Similarly Vinny Sarro, a 41-year-old mom of four, is getting used to her brows being praised after having the treatment in March.

“My eyebrows started thinning when I was about 27, just like my mom and my sister,” she says. “I penciled them in and colored them and did permanent makeup, but I wanted to experiment with something new.”

She calls the $5,500 cost of the surgery “money well spent.”

“It took about an hour and an half per eyebrow, and didn’t hurt at all,” says Sarro, of New Fairfield, Conn. “Now you can’t tell the difference between the natural hairs in my eyebrows and the ones which were transplanted.”

Bauman also believes more women are being drawn to the procedure because the technology has advanced so much.

“We use a minimally invasive technique known as Neograft, where the follicles can be taken out and re-implanted in the skin without the need for stitches,” he explains. “It just feels like you got a sunburn for the day.

“The recovery period is much shorter and, though there is a period of six to 12 weeks where the hairs fall out and reappear as stubble, [as the follicles regenerate] well over 90 percent of the transplanted follicles will grow new hair within six to nine months of the surgery.”

But he offers a word of caution. “People might ask to look like certain celebrities, but we have to work with their hair type and face shape to make sure they get the best possible eyebrow design for each patient,” he says. “A lot of artistry goes into it, and it is very individual.”

There’s also the issue of plastic surgery begetting more plastic surgery.

“I am really happy with my brows right now,” says Jordan. “My boyfriend doesn’t understand, of course, but I can see myself going back to have more hairs transplanted in the future.”


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