I have always had a thing for older men. In fact, I married a man who is 15 years older than me and constantly tell him he SHOULD NOT color his gray hair (mainly because I don’t want him to walk around with a head looking like its covered in shoe polish but I digress). To me his deep-set wrinkles remind me of his distinguished life and honestly I am more attracted to him now than I was 16 years ago when we first met. Now however, the old adage that men age gracefully and are considered “distinguished and mature” is getting a bit of a re-examination among boomers.
A growing majority of men are no longer satisfied with keeping their wrinkles and are choosing eye-jobs over sports cars. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, in 2013 men had more than 1 million cosmetic procedures, 9.4% of the total, and the number of cosmetic procedures for men increased over 273% from 1997. With those kinds of statistics it is obvious that enhancing one’s physical appearance is no longer the exclusive domain of women. So what has precipitated this trend? As more men continue to remain longer in the workforce, the pressure to retain a youthful appearance and compete with their younger male counterparts is certainly a factor fueling their interest in cosmetic procedures. At least this was the case for RRB, age 66, a male patient who underwent a facelift.
As to why he decided to do it RRB said, "My loose neck was so annoying. I always felt like I looked old and unkempt before having my facelift. Now that my jaw line is back, I feel good about my appearance." And these procedures are not just limited to older men; younger men are taking a more vested interest in enhancing their appearance and are no longer feeling like it is something they need to do under a veil of secrecy.
In fact JT, a 48-year-old male patient who had male breast reduction admits he wished he would have opted for the surgery even sooner. "I wish I had undergone the surgery earlier in my life since I'd been so self-conscious of my chest since my teens,“ notes JT. “After my wife had cosmetic surgery and did well, I felt comfortable going through with it. I was sore for about a week and wearing that vest for about 3 weeks was worth it. I can finally wear t-shirts and exercise clothes and not be embarrassed." So the question remains; which procedures are men requesting most? Dr. Anthony P. Terrasseshares his insight.
MC: According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, the most common procedures for men in 2014 were liposuction, nose surgery, eyelid surgery, breast reduction for the treatment of Gynecomastia and facelifts. What are the male plastic surgery procedures you see most commonly in your practice?
Dr. Terrasse: The most common procedures that I perform for male patients are blepharoplasty (upper and lower eyelid rejuvenation), rhinoplasty (nasal reshaping), male breast reduction/contouring (gynecomastia correction), liposuction, and Botox and facial filler treatments. Many more men are feeling comfortable with doing whatever they can, be it exercise, diet changes, skin care, surgery, and other procedures to help improve their image. I am seeing ever-increasing numbers of men in my practice who are curious about what is available today. They are particularly interested in short or no-downtime and minimal discomfort treatments, and we have a wide spectrum of options available with procedures that are non-invasive or minimally invasive and with short recovery times.
MC: How different is male breast reduction from typical liposuction? What makes one a good candidate, and what should expect during the procedure and for post-op care?
Dr. Terrasse: In males less than 30 years of age, correction of male breast or chest fullness and irregularities frequently involves some tissue removal by excision through camouflaged incisions to reduce dense breast material, in addition to the use of liposuction to remove the more fatty components of the fullness. Liposuction of the male breast alone may be beneficial in the older male population because their fullness is more likely to be fattier in character. The best candidates for this type of surgery are men whose problem persists despite exercise and proper diet. Surgery can provide a better harmony of the various aspects of their body. Post-operative compression garments to help decrease swelling and improve skin contracture are utilized and a period of restricted activity is usually required.
MC: How is a man’s facelift different from a woman’s facelift- what makes one a good candidate and what should one expect during the procedure and for post-op care?
Dr. Terrasse: In my practice, male facelift procedures frequently focus on improving jaw line and neck contours whereas female facelifts frequently also emphasize a restoring of cheek fullness and volume replacement in the midface while also treating laxity of the skin. Good candidates of both genders are non-smokers of appropriate weight for their height and bone structure and individuals with realistic expectations of the anticipated outcome of the procedure. It is important for patients considering cosmetic surgery to be evaluated for other health issues that might cause problems with healing or bleeding, so it is imperative for the plastic surgeon to obtain an accurate medical history and have thorough pre-operative discussions with the patient about risks, potential complications, as well as benefits of the recommended procedures.
MC: What procedures do men commonly get that would be a surprise to our readers?
Dr. Terrasse: My practice is seeing an increasing number of men in our Erase MediSpa for treatments to improve their skin's appearance-- laser treatments, photofacials, skin peels, fat reduction by CoolSculpting (fat freezing), and wrinkle reducing treatments with Botox, Xeomin, and Dysport and filler injections with products like Juvederm, Voluma, Radiesse, Belotero Balance, Restylane and others. Bottom line: Without a doubt, utilizing the services of board certified plastic surgeons and licensed aestheticians to maintain a fresh, healthy and more youthful appearance is not just for women anymore!