Beyond Brotox: Are More Men Getting Cosmetic Surgery?

Chako S. on 15 Oct 2014 at 11:00pm

Beyond Brotox

Here’s a dose of #realtalk: More years don't necessarily get you more respect in the office. At least that’s what The New Republic was saying in its article exploring ageism and cosmetic surgery in cutthroat workplace environments. According to its interviewee, San Francisco-based plastic surgeon Dr. Seth Matarasso, working men in Silicon Valley have a pretty straight-forward goal: "Hey, I’m 40 years old and I have to get in front of a board of fresh-faced kids. I can’t look like I have a wife and two-point-five kids and a mortgage." Dr. Matarasso reveals that not only are the clients coming into his office getting younger and younger, but that the number of men seeking a little assistance continues to get larger.

MORE: How Much Does Botox Cost?

Has this become a widespread trend? Are more men getting cosmetic procedures, or this a singular trait of the Bay Area and its competitive tech industry? To find out, we turned to a group of of top doctors from our community of more than 6,000 board-certified plastic surgeons, dermatologists, and cosmetic dentists. Here are our most interesting findings:

  • More Men: 72% of doctors surveyed report an increase in male patients in the last year.
  • And they’re younger, too! Doctors report that over 50% of new male patients who visit their practice are between the ages of 25 and 44.
  • They’re looking for work above the neck... 50% of doctors say that facial rejuvenation (procedures to restore a more youthful look, such as a brow lifteyelid surgery, and toning sagging skin) are the most popular among men.
  • … and below! The most popular procedure for the body is CoolSculping — a nonsurgical fat removal technique that boasts lower cost and less downtime than liposuction.

Overall, RealSelf doctors agree that men are striving to look their best at a time when they're likely competing for jobs or venture funding against much younger guys. Doctors report that male patients want to look alert, refreshed, and on the top of their game. What’s more, the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery reports that the number of cosmetic procedures for men has increased 273% since 1997. 

MORE: Male Plastic Surgery: Common Concerns and Procedures

While injectables like Botox and Juvederm are the most performed procedures, the trend goes beyond the minimally invasive. The pressure to conform to a new set of standards has driven a huge increase in men getting surgical procedures such as liposuctionab-sculpting, and chin augmentation. As RealSelf discovered while filming our first documentary, Superhero Bodies, the media's played a role in the growing desire to measure up. "The superhero body inspired me to get into fitness in the first place," a Comic Con-goer told us.

However, we can't just blame the media for perpetuating what some see as unrealistic expectations. "The Hollywood action hero mold is an evolutionary one," says Marc Bernardin, the former senior editor of The Hollywood Reporter. "As the social climates change, we want more out of our superheroes. That's why you get to Ben Affleck and Christian Bale. Guys who feel like they register onscreen in a way that Adam West didn't have to. A lot of it is what's required from the audience. Are they willing to tolerate the less-than-buff, or do we just need these guy to be Terminators?"

As the audience demands more from the industry, men in the industry are going to greater lengths to stay relevant. “Liposuction is definitely a very big part of Hollywood success,” reveals Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr. Jay Calvert.

“You’re in this town, you’re trying to make it. You do what you feel like you’ve got to do to be a success,” adds 300 actor Bo Roberts. “You’re controlling your career. If somebody wants to do that, I don’t fault them at all.”

The moral of the story? Just as much as buying a professional wardrobe or taking an HTML course, cosmetic surgery is a business decision that could further a career... no matter the industry you're in.

Photo credit:  dirk_friedrich on Instagram