One could say, cosmetic surgery is seasonal. As summer starts to show its face, some plastic surgeons are seeing the faces of patients more and more.
Recently, many of the faces walking into those clinics belong to millennials. One of the biggest requests for this group: the drug botulinum toxin, commonly called Botox. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery Botox treatments for people 19 to 34 years old increased by 41 percent between 2011 and 2015.
It’s not just happening on the west coast. The trend has started infiltrating the Midwest, too. Sofia Lyford-Pike, M.D., Facial Plastic and Reconstructive surgeon in the Department of Otolaryngology in the University of Minnesota Medical School, reports the trend in her clinics, saying in the past few years more and more people in their 20’s have been coming in looking to take preventative measures.
“Patients often point to the natural lines on their face- the ones created from raising eyebrows for example,” explained Lyford-Pike. “They don’t want them.”
Filler is also a popular request for the younger crowd. Many ask for fuller lips.
“The American Beauty standard is changing, and fillers and Botox are part of it,” said Lyford-Pike.
Lyford-Pike says increased accessibility and acceptability has contributed to this trend. Over the years, plastic surgery and procedures like Botox have become socially accepted. In the past they were often hidden and unknown, done as more of a medical procedure. Now, thanks in part to celebrity endorsement, advertisement and social media, people wear them proudly.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if someday soon going to get Botox was a common-place as heading to the hair or nail salon,” commented Lyford-Pike.
By 2016 the total number of botulinum toxin injections had increased by nearly 10%, according to a study done by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. 453,281 of those patients were men. More than 4 million women followed the trend that year. About 15 percent, of men and women, were between 19-34 years old.
Perhaps a silver lining for anyone not quite on board with the latest millennial trend: it seems people are paying more attention to their skin at a younger age.