There’s no disputing that women seek plastic surgery more often than men. But there have been subtle shifts in the year-end data that indicate men are more interested than they’re letting on and a Growing Number of Men are Turning to Noninvasive Procedures to Remain Relevant at Work.
Two of the largest segments of growth are wrinkle reducers and facial fillers. While men made up just 6% of the noninvasive, wrinkle-reducing procedures performed in 2017, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, that number is a 347% increase over 2000. Certain invasive procedures, like liposuction, have also been showing small but steady growth among men.
One of the biggest reasons for the new interest, according to industry experts: a rapidly evolving workplace that, more and more, values youth over experience. We may be living in an increasingly woke culture, but ageism remains a very real thing. Men, in turn, aren’t so much interested in completely erasing their ages as they are adding a bit of credibility by appearing distinguished and, at the same time, young enough not to be irrelevant.
‘We’d be kidding ourselves if we thought looks don’t matter’
Men are Turning to Noninvasive Procedures
Refinery29 recently profiled five such men, ranging in age from mid-thirties to fifties. Speaking from behind false names to protect their identities, they describe a simple, universal desire to look like better versions of themselves.
Steve, a media executive in his late thirties, got Kybella because he’d long been self-conscious about his double chin. Once he realized how quickly it could be resolved, he wasted little time. “In my job, I don’t have the luxury to take five days off. I can’t even take one day off,” he says. “I saw my best friend 72 hours after the procedure, and he still has no clue I had it done.”
Though his motivation wasn’t necessarily tied to his career, Steve says his performance soared. “We’d be kidding ourselves if we thought looks don’t matter,” he says. “No one gets a promotion because of plastic surgery unless they’re in porn. But, does it provide you with additional confidence to do your job every day? Emphatically, yes.”
‘I’m a slightly younger version of myself’
Chris, an advertising executive on the cusp of his 40th birthday, started getting injectable wrinkle reducers and Aquagold facials (a microneedle-type device delivers a small amount of dermal fillers and neurotoxins) to stay competitive in a youth-crazed industry. Valued as experience may be, looking like you earned it is a detriment.
“The perfect balance is somewhere between 35 and 50,” he says. Which is why he didn’t want to erase every line on his face. “I’m OK with maintaining a little bit of wrinkles, just enough so that it looks like I’m a slightly younger version of myself.”
‘I’m able to walk into a room and own it’
Derrick, a 35-year-old freelance stylist, has been getting injectable wrinkle reducers since he was 29 and filler for about three years. “I didn’t have one line on my face, and I still don’t all these years later,” he says.
Recently, he decided to get liposuction, too. Despite a rigorous workout regimen, Derrick felt he was lacking the definition he wanted. After his procedure, his confidence jumped, and his career’s benefitted. “Now I’m able to walk into a room and own it,” he says. “It’s allowed me to land bigger jobs, not because my work is better, but because I’m able to sell myself better.”