There has been a lot written in the recent past about the pandemic plastic surgery boom that saw patients race to have procedures after experiencing lockdown for many months. As restrictions have been lifted and the public tries to resume its pre-pandemic life, studies are being conducted about how the plastic surgery industry continues to evolve with the ongoing concerns about coronavirus, The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery recently released the results of its 2021 member survey which shows some of the latest plastic surgery trends.
One of the trends that has increased as vaccinations have become more widespread is consultation appointments with plastic surgeons. As more people prepare to return to the office on a regular basis, they want to take advantage of their remaining downtime and gain a more youthful and rejuvenated look before they see their coworkers in person again.
There is also a trend among patients asking for procedures they are not a candidate for according to medical professionals. Many doctors say social media platforms such as TikTok and Instagram have created unrealistic expectations about what can be achieved through cosmetic procedures. These patients might not be healthy enough for a particular treatment or they might be too young to have plastic surgery because their bodies and features are still growing and evolving.
Since so many people have worked at home throughout the pandemic, they have not felt rushed to return to the office within a certain amount of time. In turn, this has resulted in safer patient recoveries because the majority of patients are not looking for shortcuts in their recovery process so they can get back to work faster. Instead, they seem to be taking the necessary time to recover at a natural pace and practice greater self-care.
Over the past couple of years, there has been a lot of discussion about subtle facial enhancements known as “tweakments.” This trend seems to be over as patients are turning their attention to gaining results that are long-lasting and remain stable over time. One doctor even noted in an online interview that patients are willing to gain long-term benefits even if it means they have to experience more downtime. They would rather enjoy long-term benefits from an invasive or non-invasive procedure instead of having to undergo a series of treatments that do not provide lasting results and/or need to have additional treatments on a regular basis to maintain the results.
The desire to maintain a youthful look has resulted in some younger patients having procedures that have normally been associated with patients that are older. These preventative procedures are designed to improve the texture of the skin and they can be performed using surgical or non-surgical methods. For example, many patients want to improve or rejuvenate the appearance of the eye area with an eye lift that removes excess skin and also eliminates the baggy look that can form on the lower eyelids.
Many doctors have reported an increase in male patients coming in for treatments to make them look younger so they can remain competitive in the business world. There are some male patients who are still interested in non-invasive treatments such as Botox and fillers that eliminate the look of fine lines and wrinkles. On the other hand, some male plastic surgery patients want to go straight to surgical procedures such as liposuction so they can gain a more contoured look to the body or the jawline while also eliminating the need for multiple visits as treatments such as Kybella require three or four treatments to achieve the look patients want for their body.
Radiofrequency treatments remain popular as patients have them to improve the quality of the skin without the need for invasive surgery. Some of the skin discoloration or blemishes that can be treated with radiofrequency energy include acne scarring, evening out the tone of the skin and improving the texture of the skin on the face or body.
While surgeons often have mixed feelings about the impact of social media on patients seeking plastic surgery, they do realize that viewing procedures and seeing results online does improve the comfort level of the patient thanks to the plastic surgery education and information they view online.
However, social media can tend to create unrealistic expectations about the type of results that can be achieved by their procedure of choice. It is up to the doctor to manage expectations and make sure the patient is actually an ideal candidate for the particular procedure they are interested in undergoing in the future.
Plus, social media invites a lot of comparisons as patients look at the results of others and try to determine if the results they achieved are better than, or equal to, other results they have viewed online.