Plastic surgeons say they're seeing more patients who want facial surgery, and they attribute the rise to social media and the growing "selfie" trend.
In response to a survey conducted by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, one in three plastic surgeons reported seeing an increase in requests for facial procedures by patients who wanted to look better online. The doctors reported that between 2012 and 2013, they saw a 10 percent rise in nose jobs, a 7 percent rise in hair transplants, and a 6 percent rise in eyelid surgery.
"Social platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and the iPhone app Selfie.im, which are solely image based, force patients to hold a microscope up to their own image and often look at it with a more self-critical eye than ever before," Dr. Edward Farrior, president of the academy, said in a news release. "These images are often the first impressions young people put out there to prospective friends, romantic interests, and employers, and our patients want to put their best face forward."
In part because of social media, surgeons reported that plastic-surgery patients are getting younger.
The annual poll queries a select group of the organization's 2,700 members to get a sense of the latest trends in facial plastic surgery. This year, 58 percent of the doctors surveyed said they saw an increase in patients under 30 coming in for plastic surgery and injections in the last year.
The study found that bullying is also a factor in young people deciding to get surgery, "but most surgeons surveyed report children and teens are undergoing plastic surgery as a result of being bullied (69 percent) rather than to prevent being bullied (31 percent)."
Women are still plastic surgery's primary customers, accounting for 81 percent of all procedures and injections, but men are increasingly becoming more interested in plastic surgery. Whereas women more often ask for facelifts and eye lifts, men are more interested in keeping their hair and combating wrinkles.
Meanwhile, in the under-35 category, the nose job remained the most popular elective surgical procedure for both genders, accounting for 90 percent of procedures in women and 86 percent in men.
Have your selfies ever made you feel self-conscious about the way you look?