The 2014 plastic-surgery statistics will be released later today by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS). Thanks to an advance peek, I can report that butts are getting bigger, while breasts are getting smaller.
Buttock augmentations are up 86 percent over 2013. Michael C. Edwards, a plastic surgeon and the president of the ASAPS notes that most women don’t want giant backsides, they just want more shapely ones. The other big news is breast revisions, which are up 30.4 percent. Many attribute that rise to aging implants in need of replacement, along with many women’s desire to switch from saline to silicone-gel-filled implants, which may not have been available when they originally had surgery. What’s more, insiders say most of these women are exchanging their old implants for smaller replacements.
The other news in the numbers is a five percent drop in overall procedures: 10,663,607 in 2014, down from 11,419,610 in 2013. The decrease was mostly in minimally-invasive procedures like Botox and fillers. No explanation for this was offered by the ASAPS, but could it be what I call injection fatigue? Many women I’ve spoken to don’t want to return again and again for refills. Surgical procedures fell only 1.5 percent from 1,883,048 to 1,764,956, a drop that the number crunchers say is not statistically significant.
Fat—and getting rid of it—is still a high priority. In recent years the top surgical procedures for women have flipped back and forth between breast implants and liposuction. In 2014, liposuction held the number one spot, followed by breast augmentation (down 8.5 percent), tummy tuck, blepharoplasty (or eye lift), and in fifth place, the breast lift. Facelifts are in eighth place.
Liposuction may still be king (or is it queen?) in the surgical department, but non-surgical fat reduction with devices such as CoolSculpting and VASERshape rose a whopping 42.7 percent, from 94,922 in 2013 to 135,448 in 2014. That number could rise even more this year if ATX-101, an injection for fat reduction under the chin, gets FDA clearance, which it’s expected to receive.
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A new cosmetic surgery s on the rise because of an unflattering sag. It seems as if ear lobes are one of the first signs of aging and in order to curb this unattractive droop women everywhere are getting an ear lift. “Gravity takes its toll on earlobes — they droop like chins and breasts do, and can make you look older.”
And while age can play a big part in droopy lobes, another factor can be wearing heavy earrings too often.
“Years of wearing heavy earrings also cause the lobe to get stretched out of shape. An earlobe reduction is a simple operation that reshapes the earlobe to a better proportion. Another issue for women is a torn earlobe, where the hole from a pierced ear gets so stretched that the lobe tears open and has to be stitched together.”
But if going under the knife isn’t exactly something you would want to do, scientists have been developing other methods as well.
“Most clients want to have their ears plumped up with a bit of filler, to make them look younger and fuller. It’s quick, easy and relatively pain-free,” said Lesley.
When it comes to social media, we’re huge advocates of using it to the best of your abilities. It opens up communication, allows us to share photos and ideas with our friends, and in general, gives everyone a voice. Today, however, we found out social media is doing another influential thing: contributing to the plastic surgery craze (it’s okay if you need to re-read that last sentence, we get it).
According to the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, reports on their annual findings on surgery found that the world of social media is strongly linked to the increase in plastic surgery, mainly because Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the like are making those who frequently use the sites more critical of themselves. Below are some of the statistics from the study that have us a little concerned:
- Because of social media photo sharing, 31% of surgeons have seen an increase in requests for plastic surgery because patients have a more critical eye on themselves.
- 73% of procedures (up from 62% the previous year) were cosmetic versus reconstructive in nature.
- Studies show that people are more drawn towards images in specific proportions, like facial features, making them more aesthetically pleasing.
So what does this all mean? When people look at pictures of themselves on social media, they’re looking at much more than just themselves. They’re also comparing themselves to the people that they follow, whether they be friends, models, celebrities, etc. and users are being much more critical of themselves because of the comparisons they’re making. This, in turn, is contributing to a rise in plastic surgery requests. Call us crazy, but we’re pretty sure that one or two bad Instagram photos aren’t worth thousands of dollars in surgery to look like someone else.