Buttock augmentation is big news. No matter where you look, there exists a new photo or video of a celebrity touting their derriere in tight fitting jeans. And while it’s nothing new for celebrities to show off their bodies, what’s new is the look.
The big, round, curvy butt is in. J Lo, Beyoncé, and Nicki Minaj are prime examples of this fresh aesthetic, but the woman that most would agree started the trend is Kim Kardashian. Our panel of experts discuss the “Kardashian “ effect and whether or not the rise in butt augmentation surgery can be attributed to this.
Buttock Augmentation On The Rise
According to the latest statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), there were about 10,000 Brazilian Butt Lifts (BBL) performed in 2014, a double digit increase. Is this solely due to what the media calls the “Kardashian” effect? Dr. Mark Epstein of Stony Brook, NY does believe that it’s part of the reason. If you look up “Kardashian Effect” in the Urban Dictionary, it is described as someone with no real talent or skill who has turned that into an asset. Bottom line, Kim Kardashian’s butt gets media attention, which has raised awareness. The positive side to this for plastic surgeons and patients, explains Epstein, is that women are understanding that, “there is a new part of their anatomy that’s been neglected that now can be aesthetically improved.”
Dr. Michael Lee of Dallas, TX finds that a lot of his patients don’t want a butt that looks too big. “Ironically, I hear more patients say, ‘I don’t want to look like Kim Kardashian’.” They just want to look like a better version of themselves. He agrees with Dr. Epstein that the Kardashian Effect has raised awareness. And, as you increase the public awareness, you realize that there are many more patients out there who have these problems or who want to have this issue corrected. “In my practice, they want curves,” says Lee, but not to the extent of the Kardashians which is why the consultation is so important. Each treatment must be individualized no matter what type of operation is being performed.
It’s About Re-shaping The Torso
For Epstein, he’s finding that a lot of his patients are coming in for a body consultation without really knowing that they want to have their butts enhanced. “When I look at them three dimensionally, from all views, I show them how the flanks blend into the butt and the abdomen and how we treat it as one giant, aesthetic unit,” explains Epstein. So, another reason for the huge increase in BBLs is that surgeons are now promoting the indication for this procedure because they’ve realized, for example, that increasing volume in the buttocks shrinks the waist. “Over the last decade, we’ve seen a huge advancement in body contouring surgery,” says Dr. Lee. It’s up to the surgeon to educate the patient on all of the options out there, and how to match desires with what’s possible based on unique anatomy.