Women have historically gotten the lion’s share of attention when it comes to plastic surgery, but times are changing. Over the past decade, there has been a huge jump in the number of men seeking out aesthetic procedures. While men tend to prefer to address their aging or body contouring issues with a non-surgical procedure, they are open to surgery when warranted.
Is plastic surgery different for men? Dr. Bruce Van Natta of Indianapolis, IN is joined by his colleagues Dr. Jason Pozner of Boca Raton, FL and Dr. Doug Steinbrech of New York City to discuss what men are looking to achieve? What is a “masculine” look? And does it differ by region?
Plastic Surgery for Men is on the Rise
According to the latest statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), there has been a 29% increase in the number of men seeking cosmetic procedures. If you break that down into surgical versus non-surgical and minimally-invasive procedures, the latter number jumped a whopping 72%.
All of which is to say that while men have embraced plastic surgery, they do prefer to address their facial aging and body contouring issues non-surgically whenever possible. The most popular non-surgical procedures for men are:
- non-surgical fat reduction, such as CoolSculpting
- laser hair removal
- chemical peel
- tattoo removal
In general, men have less tolerance for downtime and “fuss.” Most importantly, they never want anyone else to know that they had something done. Many male plastic surgery patients would rather commit to multiple non-surgical treatments and have to wait for their end results than opt for surgery.
Natural is the Aim with Men and Plastic Surgery
The important thing for men across the country is that they never want to look “done.” In South Florida, where Dr. Pozner practices, it’s all about the Marlboro man. Guys, including himself, imagine themselves on the horse with the hat. It’s one of the ultimate masculine ideals.
“Guys today want to look natural,” says Dr. Steinbrech. For his patients, the Marlboro man is an ideal, along with the guy on the outside of the Brawny paper towel package. It’s about looking rugged; men don’t want to erase all of their lines. They want to look younger, but they never want the work to be noticeable. “In my office in New York, 85% of my patients are men,” explains Dr. Steinbrech.
Who is the Typical Male Patient?
For Dr. Pozner, men make up about 15% of his practice. They tend to fall into two groups. In the first group, the wives drag their men into the office because “[they are] looking good and he’s not looking good and let’s fix him up,” he shares. The second group is men who’ve just sold their companies. “They want to chase girls and they want to look young.”
The most common surgical procedures in his practice are:
- neck lift
“[Men] want to look better, but they don’t want to go into witness protection,” explains Dr. Pozner. They just want to look natural and more youthful.
Plastic Surgery Helps Men Stay Competitive in the Workplace
In Dr. Steinbrech’s office, he also sees a third group of male patients who want to “stay competitive in the board room.” Like it or not, we live in an ageist society. Now that many men are retiring later, it means that they are often interacting and/or competing with younger colleagues. Looking more youthful makes men feel more vital and confident. This, in turn, translates to the work place. Again, however, whether they’re in a close board room, city sidewalk or crowded bar, men never want anyone else to know that they had some “work.”
Daddy Do Overs
As an expert in plastic surgery for men, Dr. Steinbrech performs a lot of body sculpting to the abdominals. This is probably the number one problem area for men. He’s also helped popularize the name, the “Daddy Do Over,” the male version of the Mommy Makeover. It’s a combination of procedures to address the main aging issues on the male body.
In his Daddy Do Over, Dr. Stenbreach liposuctions away the bad fat that no one wants around the middle, and then places this fat into areas of the body that often loose volume with age, typically the shoulders, pecs and traps, to really make them pop. He may also remove a pinch of skin from the eyelids and treat the neck.
Brad Pitt Has Still Got It
While men may want their work to be totally invisible, “[they still] want to look like a movie star,” says Dr. Steinbrech. In Dr. Pozner’s practice, Brad Pitt’s jaw is a favorite. That big, angled jaw is still considered the ultimate in masculinity. Dr. Pozner uses the filler Radiesse to the chin and jaw to get that really sculpted look. It’s a quick, easy way to take years off the face.
“It’s good to know that there’s hope for old guys like me!” says Dr. Van Natta.