We’re all familiar with the Roaring 20’s – a time of Prohibition, bob haircuts, the Charleston, talkies, and more. As we enter 2020, I imagine it’ll be a Roaring 20’s of its own! Here are my Top 10 Plastic Surgery predictions for the decade. Check back with me in 2030 to see if they panned out!
More Office Procedures, Less Surgery
Dermal fillers, injectables, and better non invasive technology that can more effectively tighten skin will continue to improve in the coming decade, and will definitely make facial surgery (mainly facelifts and necklifts) less common. We are already seeing this in overall aesthetic statistics, with a booming market in fillers, threads, and various technological options – especially the use of PRP, RF microneedling, “better” lasers that have less downtime, and more.
More Procedures at an Earlier Age
If postponing aging meant beginning regular aesthetic procedures in your 20’s, would you do it? We see this with millenials getting “Baby Botox,” younger patients in Asia getting Botox placed in a microdroplet technique in small quantities, and the use of fat grafting in the face and body to fill in wrinkles and also achieve a rejuvenating effect. I predict that this trend will continue.
Liposuction and body contouring will continue to be done on thinner, younger, and healthier patients to maintain visible abs and rejuvenate bodies after weight loss, pregnancy, and with aging skin laxity.
More Effective Procedures
Better skin quality is already possible today, but certain procedures – non invasive skin tightening, better body contouring results that can be maintained, and several others – have been hard or impossible to achieve. I can’t tell you how many devices and technologies have ultimately been very disappointing over the past 20 years to tighten skin without surgery!
I think the upcoming decade will (finally) see some technology that can actually tighten and reshape skin without surgery, or at least less skin excision.
More Confusion about Plastic Surgeons
Consumers are confused today about what a board certified Plastic Surgeon is, and it will only get worse! Myself and my colleagues have definitely tried to make things more clear over time, but marketing by non Plastic Surgeons will continue.
In a nutshell, I did tons of training to become a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon, recognized by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. I have spent years doing surgical training in general surgery, reconstructive surgery, surgery on children and adults, surgery on men and women, aesthetic and cosmetic surgery, and more! Most non board certified doctors call themselves something OTHER than a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon, and these other terms don’t have the same length and depth of surgical training and expertise.
More Confusion about Procedures
Even without any fancy marketing terms, it can be confusing to patients (and even to Plastic Surgeons) what the best options are for an overall holistic and aesthetic result. My facelift and necklift patients may need procedures done on their eyes, forehead, lips, and more to achieve the best overall aesthetic look. My breast augmentation patients now ask for fat removal of the excess fat in their underarm area for an improved aesthetic.
With an increase in procedures and technology, it’s up to Plastic Surgeons to figure out the best options for our patients and to be able to personalize each treatment and effectively communicate this to our patients.
AI is overhyped, but it’s definitely helping humans already. If you watch Netflix or listen to Spotify, then the next movie or song you listen to is recommended by your past media habits, with AI helping to “predict” what you may like.
In Plastic Surgery, I predict that AI will “help” consumers and patients figure out what their best aesthetic ideal will be for their face, body, breasts, and more. Whether it’s a reconstructive or aesthetic procedure, patients AND Plastic Surgeons will rely on AI driven software to give a more informed option.
More Rock Star Plastic Surgeons and Influencers
With social media, the ability of individual Plastic Surgeons to break out and become “Insta-Famous” will only increase. There are about 5,000 active Plastic Surgeons in the USA, so what makes one more visible and popular than another?
Hint: it’s not always skill or the best aesthetic results. It can be organic, where some Plastic Surgeons are more media savvy than others, but it can also be due to a better attitude towards marketing, a willingness to engage with people online, and the consistency to do so every day. You no longer need a television show to gather an audience. Social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Youtube, and more will allow any Plastic Surgeon to educate and engage patients.
More Internet Education, For Good and Bad
We will have more patient education videos and online forums as the internet grows, both for good and bad. As always, I think it’s always better to have more information and facts, not fewer. However, I think the problem is that it’s hard for consumers to discern between what’s true and reliable information, and what isn’t.
As an example, I’m probably intelligent enough to become an accountant. However, I am not that interested in finance, I don’t have a passion for spreadsheets, and I don’t have the education to take a CPA exam. So, with any accounting decisions I make, I usually defer to the expertise and judgement of my accountant.
I feel the same way about Plastic Surgery. It still requires someone who has had multiple years of education, surgical training, and years of experience to help consumers and patients make the BEST decisions for the optimal aesthetic results.
Increased Demand for Plastic Surgery
With more selfies, more societal acceptance of Plastic Surgery, and more awareness that celebrities actually don’t look that wonderful without a couple of tweaks, there will be more demand for aesthetic procedures. More non invasive technology options, more options to achieve the look you want, and increasing access will result in more patients undergoing aesthetic procedures.
This prediction also extends to reconstructive surgery. Most women who need breast reconstruction after breast cancer choose NOT to get any reconstructive procedure, despite the fact it’s covered under health insurance. It’s always the individual patient’s choice, but with better aesthetic options and quicker recovery time, I predict more patients will get breast reconstruction and other reconstructive procedures.
More “Natural” Plastic Surgery with Fewer Medical Devices and Implants
I believe that your fat is a magical substance that can change body and breast shape, fill in facial wrinkles, and even rejuvenate skin if we can use your own stem cells. Fat is a natural substance, and (unfortunately) most of us have plenty of fat! Fat can be used for reconstructive and aesthetic procedures for filling in soft tissue defects, rejuvenating wrinkles, and more.
In the Roaring 20’s, I predict more “natural” products and fewer “artificial” products. I totally understand that what I do is, for the most part, artificial interventions. I can also argue that I am restoring your face and body to a more “natural” state, since I’m fighting Father Time!
I hope you enjoyed my predictions for the next 10 years! Do you have any predictions of your own? Feel free to leave them below!