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End of the Beauty Recession?

Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr. Timothy Neavin discusses the rise in cosmetic procedures last year.

In Beverly Hills, where beauty and vanity are the rule, plastic surgery for many is not just a luxury, but a necessity. Even as the Dow dipped to multi-year lows in 2011, men and women in the City of Angels have continued to rise above and beyond the standard of beauty. The quest for perfect beauty is not dead in Hollywood, but for some, the idea has been forced to be put on hold. Virtually every economic sector has taken a blow in the last few years, and plastic surgery, even in a city where pretty is a priority,  has not been immune to the economic anemia. From Wall Street to Main Street, we witnessed cash combusted in a raging savings disco inferno in 2008, 2009, and 2010.  Is Ugly Street next?  No. Not even close. In fact, 1.6 cosmetic procedures were performed in 2011, a 2% increase over the previous year. Below are some details on the top five in 2011 compared to 2010:

  • Breast augmentation- 307,000. A rise of 4%
  • Rhinoplasty (nose job) – 244,000. A drop of 3%
  • Liposuction (liposculpture) – 205,000. A rise of 1%
  • Blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery) – 196,000. A reduction of 6%
  • Rhytidectomy (facelift) – 119,00. A rise of 5%

Facelifts replaced tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) for fifth place in 2011.

Surprisingly, chin augmentations, also known as “chin implants”, rose 71% to approximately 21,000 procedures in 2011. And lip enhancement, also known as “lip augmentation” increased by 49% to 25,000 procedures carried out last year.

While it is true that many plastic surgeons are operating less frequently than from 2006, being beautiful is still within the budget for many men and women. And because beauty can be high maintenance, many men and women are turning to less expensive rejuvenation methods such as Botox®, and ‘fillers’ such as Juvederm and Restylane, as they weather the financial storm. Through the thunder and lightning, injectables, at least in the short term, can offer a more affordable appearance boost than most facial surgeries, such as facelift or facial fat grafting. But one must understand that injectables, although quick, safe, and effective, are often insufficient for optimal correction of many facial aging signs. In other words, some people are just ‘beyond injectables’.

Injectables, while fantastic, do have their limitations. In fact, one can easily end up spending an equal amount or more on frequent large volume injections, than on more permanent anti-aging maneuvers from surgery or facial fat grafting.
Prior to signing up for any injectable, one should discuss with your plastic surgeon your expectations, potential risks, potential side effects, expected product duration, and reasonable alternatives to the injectable, ranging from surgery to doing nothing at all. With a skilled plastic surgeon and the right plan, injectables can be a wonderful beauty adjunct.
Below is a list of some of the more commonly used injectables in alphabetical order with their active component.

  • Artefill® ,Artecoll® (polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) microspheres)
  • Botox® (protein derived from Botulism toxin)
  • CosmoDermTM and CosmoPlastTM (purified form of human collagen)
  • ElevessTM (hyaluronic acid (HA))
  • Evolence (porcine derived collagen)
  • Fat (autologous, or ‘your own’ fat)
  • Hyalaform® (hyaluronic acid (HA))
  • JuvidermTM (hyaluronic acid. (HA))
  • Perlane® (hyaluronic acid)
  • Radiesse® (calcium hydraxylapetite)
  • Restylane® (hyaluronic acid (HA))
  • SculptraTM (poly-L-lactic acid)

For more information about injectables, the following website is filled, pun intended, with very helpful information: injectablesafety.org.

Beverly Hills Breast Augmentation specialist Dr. Tim Neavin, founder of Artisan of Beauty Plastic Surgery located in Beverly Hills, Dubai, and Glendora

Beverly Hills breast augmentation specialist Dr. Tim Neavin is a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. Dr. Neavin has offices in Beverly Hills, Dubai, and Glendora.

Story by Timothy Neavin, MD

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