If you were to peruse social media casually and look at beauty hashtags referring to body acceptance and natural beauty, you might come to the conclusion that cosmetic procedures are losing favorability with the public. This would be a misguided conclusion. In reality, the modern attitudes of body acceptance extend beyond the idea that everyone should make the same choices. Modern body acceptance extends to voluntary choices including the decision to opt for cosmetic procedures, tattoos, gender confirming surgeries, and much more.
With this in mind, modern attitudes have actually accepted cosmetic surgeries at historically high rates. While traditional surgeries and non-invasive procedures have certainly adapted over time, here is why they remain more popular than ever.
In 2020 Sex Still Sells
Whatever your attitude towards body modification might be, the fact remains that there is a certain population that makes a living based on their physical appearance. The “impossible” beauty standards of our modern society can push men and women to choose cosmetic surgery to remain competitive. This then creates a trickle down effect where young adults choose cosmetic surgery to meet these standards.
This is perhaps the most controversial reason that cosmetic procedure popularity is on the rise. One thing is certain, a large percentage of Instagram models, traditional models, movie stars, and other celebrities elect for cosmetic procedures ranging from surgeries to non-invasive “tweakments”.
Cosmetic Surgery has Lost Most of its Stigma
Although professionals within the cosmetic surgery field have been promoting healthy attitudes towards cosmetic procedures for years, there will always be a certain stigma associated with the field. Thankfully, these trends have been steadily reversing in recent years. This is tied to movements like the body acceptance movement, women’s rights, and individualism overall. Much like natural beauty advocates value their right to stay away from makeup or other “synthetic” products, so to do cosmetic surgery proponents value their right to make decisions about their own bodies.
This greater acceptance is again tied to what we discussed in the previous section: the prevalence of cosmetic procedures in the public realm. When a quick google search reveals list after list of celebrity before and after surgery pictures, it is obvious that the public is more willing to accept cosmetic procedures as an everyday part of life.
What Factors Lead Individuals to Opt for Cosmetic Procedures?
To further understand why cosmetic surgery remains so popular, we should also strive to understand the underlying reasons why individuals choose to undergo body modifications. Recent research points to common factors including:
Low self esteem: while we view cosmetic procedures as a positive, affirming choice, there is no denying that low self esteem in many individuals is the driving force for cosmetic surgeries. Something that has remained true for most cases is that cosmetic procedures do not effectively raise self esteem in the individual. This is a harsh truth that we must strive to understand as industry professionals — that cosmetic procedures are a positive choice for many patients but are not a magic solution to underlying issues.
High social media exposure: tying back into the topics discussed earlier, the prevalence of cosmetic surgery in the public light has led many impressionable young adults to seek cosmetic surgery based on what they see in social media. A mix of low self esteem and high media exposure is a major factor towards the likelihood of seeking cosmetic surgery.
The importance of understanding reasons for cosmetic surgery: at the end of the day, cosmetic procedures can be a positive, life changing experience. Yet this will not be the case for everyone. It is vital that patients honestly ask themselves why they are electing cosmetic procedures before committing to a procedure.
Cosmetic Surgery by the Numbers
Now that we understand how and why cosmetic surgery remains so popular in 2020 and beyond, let’s explore some cosmetic surgery statistics that show industry trends. The following numbers are from the latest reporting done for the full 2018 year:
- 17.7 million cosmetic procedures were performed in 2018. That was a 2 percent increase when compared to 2017.
- 15.9 million cosmetic procedures were considered non-invasive or minimally invasive. Trends appear to be moving more and more towards minimally invasive procedures moving forward.
- Year over year, most traditional surgeries have risen in popularity. Breast augmentation procedures are up 4 percent, liposuction procedures are up 5 percent, and nose reshaping procedures are down 2 percent.
- Year over year, non-invasive or minimally invasive procedures are generally gaining popularity as well. There was a 3 percent increase in Botox treatments, a 2 percent increase in filler treatments, and a 1 percent increase in chemical peels.
SCALE 2020 for Cosmetic Surgery Panels, Discussions, and More!
To learn more about cutting edge cosmetic procedures, laser tech, esthetic dermatology and much more, join us from July 22-25, 2020 for our annual Music City Scale Conference! SCALE is the premier multidisciplinary meeting for aesthetic medicine, surgery and dermatology in the United States. Join other industry professionals to discuss industry trends, emerging technologies, and more!
While our list is always expanding, click here to view our current exhibitors and sponsors for 2020. To register, follow this link. We look forward to seeing you this summer for the cosmetics industry event of the year!