Facial feminization surgery is a combination of surgical procedures which reduce masculine facial features and give your face a feminine look. There are several procedures that can help achieve this. During a personal consultation, Dr Bart van de Ven advises you which of the procedures are the most suitable for you.
When you look at a man’s or a woman’s face, you will notice that there are some considerable differences. Men have a bigger chin, a broader jawline, a larger forehead, a prominent nose, etc. They also have a lot more facial hair, such as thicker eyebrows, a beard, a moustache and sideburns. The surgery primarily focuses on the shape of the face. A more feminine nose, a finer jawline, reducing the size of the forehead and raising the cheekbones are just a few examples that can help create a more feminine face.
Check out the example of male to female facial feminization surgery (FFS) below and see for yourself. Evelyn underwent facial feminization surgery (FFS), and this is what leading FFS surgeon Dr Bart van de Ven did:
Go to the FFS before and after gallery
No one can explain this better than Nicole, a trans woman who underwent a facial feminization surgery herself:
“When I go to the store, I want people to address me as a woman without there being any signs of doubt on their voice. This recognition and acknowledgement from strangers is really important to me. Feminizing your face is a procedure that is visible to everyone, yourself and those around you. It is a major change, a milestone in my life: the start of a new life.”
Pain is subjective. It depends on your pain threshold and which procedures Dr Bart van de Ven performs. Our patients usually say that it’s more ‘uncomfortable’ than ‘painful’. After your facial feminization surgery, you can stay at our guesthouse. Depending on the type of operation, you can stay here for up to a week. In this guesthouse, you – together with other trans women– have the time to recover from your surgery. Jolanda, our friendly resident, is on hand to help you 24/7.
If Dr Bart van de Ven has carried out a procedure to change the bone structure of your face, you will most likely experience numbness in that area for a certain period of time (for example, the forehead, chin or jaw – depending on the procedure). In any case, you really don’t need to worry because it’s completely normal. This numbness occurs because your skin is detached from your bones during the surgery, which affects the nerves under your skin. So it’s not surprising that it takes a while to fully recover from facial feminization surgery. It’s not unusual for a procedure to have a 12-month recovery period, but after two to five weeks you’ll be ready to get back to work.
According to Dr Bart van de Ven, there’s no need to delay your facial feminization surgery. You can schedule your operation as soon as you feel mentally and physically ready.
At 2pass Clinic, the surgery is performed by the respected oral and maxillofacial surgeon Dr Bart van de Ven. Every week he performs four to six surgeries at 2pass Clinic. This makes him probably the most experienced facial feminization surgeon in the world. Dr Bart van de Ven’s goal is to create a natural, feminine look. The end result of the surgery is just as important to him as it is to you. He refined his techniques with one goal: make you pass without complications. He has an incredible eye for detail and strives for perfection.
During the surgeries, Dr Bart van de Ven is assisted by Els and Thaïsa – two very experienced nurses. Our anaesthesiologist have training in open heart surgery: technically the most demanding operation for an anaesthesiologist. After the surgery Bart, the recovery nurse with intensive care education will take care of you. At night Elke or Tamara are there to keep an eye on you and take care of you. We have three promises we can make you: we put your safety first, we will take care of you and we promise in the end you will pass.
Our guesthouse is located on the top floor of 2pass Clinic, where Jolanda is ready to welcome you with open arms. Here we have seven rooms available for our patients. In this warm, welcoming oasis you have time to recover from your surgery. You can also share your experiences with other trans women staying in the guesthouse. It is more like a family environment then a clinic.
Jolanda is the resident at the 2pass Clinic guesthouse. She is on hand to help you 24/7. Jolanda was once one of Dr Bart van de Ven’s patients, so she knows exactly what kind of help you will need throughout the entire process. Every day she makes a delicious breakfast and fresh meals packed with nutritious ingredients to help you get back on your feet after your surgery.
Book your consultation
During an initial consultation with Dr Bart van de Ven, you will discuss your facial feminization surgery. What are the options? Which are the best procedures for you? How does it all work? During this initial consultation you will have all your questions answered. Consultations can be arranged at the 2pass Clinic in Antwerp, but it’s also possible to schedule appointments with Dr Bart van de Ven in London, Munich, Berlin and New York. Find out when Dr Bart van de Ven is in your area >
Book your facial feminization surgery
In the second step, you plan your surgery. The waiting time for facial feminization surgery is approximately three months. Once you have chosen a date, we ask you to fill out a form. This form includes a list of questions, so we have all the information we need to help you as best we can during your stay at 2pass Clinic. We will then ask you to transfer an advance payment within seven days. Once we have received your payment, we can confirm your facial feminization surgery.
Your facial feminization surgery
You are expected at 2pass Clinic one day before your facial feminization surgery. Our patient coordinator welcomes you at the reception and accompanies you to our guesthouse. This gives you the chance to settle in to your home for the next few days. You can have a chat with the other patients, ask Jolanda questions and relax and unwind. The day before your facial feminization surgery you will have a one hour face-to-face consultation with Dr Bart van de Ven, during which he will talk you through the entire operation step by step.
After your facial feminization surgery you will stay at the guesthouse for a couple of days so that you can recover and get back on your feet. On the first days after your operation, we will take care of your every need. By the time you are ready to return home, you will no longer require any extra care. Should there be any complications following your facial feminization surgery, we will of course provide the necessary treatment to rectify the situation – without additional fees for the surgical procedure (only the costs have to be covered).
Four months after your facial feminization surgery you are expected to visit Dr Bart van de Ven for a check-up. This appointment is scheduled automatically after booking your facial feminization surgery. It is possible to change the date and time of this appointment. The check-up takes place at the 2pass Clinic in Antwerp, London, Munich, Berlin or New York – depending on Dr Bart van de Ven’s schedule.
We have had this situation 2 times in more than 700 surgeries. In case this would be because of a mistake from our side we have an insurance that covers the cost. More likely is that it happens without anyone having made a mistake. In that case most health insurances cover these costs. If you don’t have a health insurance it’s your (financial) risk.
All care in Antwerp is provided. In general no extra care is needed in your home country. Check-up with Dr Bart is after 4 months and can be in any city where Dr Bart van de Ven provides consultations.
Yes, we use very small titanium screws and plates which are never a problem for an MRI. Also the bonecement does not contain metal.
You can continue your HRT treatment before, during and after your FFS. You will receive an anti-thrombotic injection the day before surgery to prevent blood clotting. We prefer you to continue taking your hormones because FFS is emotionally already perturbing enough without messing with your hormone balance.
Only for implant surgery of the buttock and hips we ask to stop one week before the surgery. The day after surgery you can continue your HRT treatment. This because this type of surgery implies some immobilisation (obliged) after the surgery. In this case the risk for blood clots is higher.
You still have another question? Feel free to ask! We will answer your question and if generally applicable add it to the FAQ of this page.