Trend Watch: Male Plastic Surgery

Men are getting cosmetic procedures more than ever before.

Male Plastic SurgeryMale plastic surgery is more popular than ever before. Photo via Shutterstock.

With celebrities and reality stars constantly going under the knife, plastic surgery seems almost like the norm these days. And the trend doesn’t only apply to women—men are getting nipped and tucked with increasing regularity, too.

Dr. Michael Yaremchuk, a plastic surgeon and chief of craniofacial surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital, says he’s seeing more men now than ever before. Yaremchuk notes that about 30 percent of the people he sees for regenerative procedures like eye lifts and face lifts are men, and a whopping 40 percent of people going in for structural alterations (like chin implants) are male. Data from the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery also says nine percent of all cosmetic procedures in 2011 were done on men—a statistic that grows more impressive when you consider that’s a 121 percent increase from 1997. And most of these men, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reports, are coming in for the same things as women: rhinoplasty (nose jobs), eyelid surgery, and liposuction.

Yaremchuk attributes the increase in male plastic surgery to a combination of a fierce job market and a youth-obsessed culture. “A certain amount of men want to be more competitive in the workplace and work market, and they feel that it’s important for them to look younger and more attractive just so they can compete with younger people,” he says. “There used to be somewhat of a taboo on male cosmetic surgery, and now it’s certainly more accepted.”

Given Yaremchuk’s speciality of craniofacial surgery, he says most of his patients come in for skeletal augmentation, or facial shaping and restructuring. “To have a strong chin and a strong jaw, like Brad Pitt, is sought after,” he explains. Nonetheless, Yaremchuck says he also does plenty of facelifts, eyelid surgery, and rhinoplasty on male patients.

Though men are now making up a large chunk of Yaremchuk’s practice, he says caution is key since most cosmetic procedures “have been designed with women in mind.” He says the term is called sexual dimorphism, the fact that men and women have different features and different looks. “In your surgery you want to maintain those differences of masculinity and femininity,” Yaremchuck explains. He says there are some traditionally-feminine procedures, like brow lifts, that often look out of place on male patients.

Another trend Yaremchuk is seeing? Couples coming in for plastic surgery together. “A woman comes in to have a facelift and kind of breaks the ice and makes it not such a big deal, and so the husband will come in a couple nights later and have the same thing,” he says. “It’s not uncommon. It’s a real part of my practice.”

Now there’s a unique date idea.