The cosmetic surgery and aesthetic medicine industry are always evolving. With safer, more effective techniques being continuously explored, coupled with changing consumer trends; the most popular treatments are always changing. Every year, The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) conducts an audit to examine the changing industry. Consequently, this can help to determine what future trends will be.
What does the BAAPS Report 2019 Tell Us?
Once a fast-growing market, the cosmetic surgery industry is now stabilising. This highlights that consumers are trusting and accepting of the industry. It also shows that cosmetic surgery can be a good option to get the aesthetic results that customers wish for. In 2018, more than 28,000 procedures took place. In comparison to the year before, this number reflects just a 0.1% increase, indicating a buoyant but stable marketplace.
The fact that over 28,000 treatments took place in 2018, a year which highlighted a struggling high street, suggests that clients are looking for treatments with a proven track record, such as surgery, as opposed to claims that beauty products make about their “surgery-like” results.
With the popularity of cosmetic surgery remaining consistent, it is perhaps thanks to the openness around the industry. Public figures, friends and family are no longer ashamed of having surgery or feel the need to keep it a secret. Many people talk about surgery openly. Furthermore, they are willing to highlight the areas where they have had aesthetic enhancements.
It is important to note that while cosmetic surgery is stabilising, injectable treatments such as Botox and dermal fillers continue to rise.
The most popular treatments
Women account for 92% of the cosmetic procedures in the BAAPS Report 2019.
The most popular treatments for women remain consistent with the year before. The three top treatments are;
- Breast augmentation
- Breast Reduction
- Blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery).
For men, there was a decline of 4.7% across the whole industry. The reason for this may be the rise of injectable and non-surgical treatments. Men may prefer to be subtly tweaked rather than look noticeably changed by surgery. Similarly, men may prefer a shorter treatment and recovery time that non-surgical treatments can provide.
That said, the top three most popular cosmetic surgery treatments for men in 2018 are;
- Otoplasty (ear correction)
- Blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery).
The growth of liposuction
For both male and females, liposuction continued to be a popular choice. The latest BAAPS report found a significant increase of 9%. While the treatment rose by 12% for women alone. Several factors may be fuelling the growth of liposuction as a treatment of choice. At Hans Place, we have certainly noticed an increase in requests for our popular VASER liposuction treatments which offer a minimally invasive yet effective form of body sculpting.
However, perhaps the main reason for this growth in liposuction is coupled with the trend of focusing on health and fitness. While people may be able to lose weight and maintain a fit and active lifestyle, they may struggle with stubborn fat in certain areas of the body which they are unable to shift through diet and exercise alone.
People should feel good from a healthy lifestyle, and it could be that these small areas of stubborn fat are limiting their self-confidence, esteem and happiness.
Non-surgical vs surgical
Another significant trend from the BAAPS Report 2019 is the continuing growth of non-surgical aesthetic treatments such as Botox and dermal fillers. The 4.7% drop in male cosmetic surgery indicates that non-surgical treatments may be more enticing to people who would rather have subtle enhancements.
In fact, brow lift surgery has dropped by 4% for men and 15% for women which could show that effective results can be achieved from injectables. Botox and dermal fillers offer beautifying and restoring benefits which make injectables the ideal choice for people who want a subtle enhancement without the risk and recovery time of surgery.
However, it is important to note that while Botox and dermal fillers can improve the appearance of the face, they are not that effective for tightening loose skin. With this in mind, people who are currently using Botox and fillers may wish to use minor surgery such as Renuvion as well.
Consequently, non-surgical treatments should not be considered as an alternative to surgery, as they can both achieve different results. Instead, the results of the audit indicate that people may be putting off surgery for longer while injectables offer an immediate solution.
The future trends of the cosmetic industry
From the BAAPS report 2019, there are some clear trends that we expect to see in the coming years.
For a start, with the increased demand for injectables and the limited regulations surrounding the markets mean that there is an increased risk from consumers who receive injectable treatments from less reputable businesses. It is important to remember that injectables are still a medical product and should be treated as such. In the coming years, we expect to see regulations in this sector tightening up.
We hope to see laws passed to ensure only qualified medical practitioners can offer treatments such as dermal fillers and Botox to ensure the industry is controlled and safe while limiting the risk for clients.
The fitness trend
Another future trend is the focus of surgery for fitness. Athleisure is a dominant trend at the moment and surgery, alongside a healthy diet with plenty of exercise, can be an effective way for clients to see changes in their body. We already note that liposuction has increased by 9% in 2018. However, abdominoplasty was also up 5% for women and up 18% for men in the latest BAAPS audit.
With more people focused on being fit and active, we can expect to see more tailored cosmetic surgery options to suit the client’s lifestyle. For example, we envisage that there will be a higher demand for muscle sculpting techniques such as VASER Hi-Def and Mid-Def, which can help to sculpt fat around the muscles for a more toned appearance.
The cosmetic surgery industry is always developing, and the focus is always to reduce the risk, improve patient safety and reduce recovery times. Already, surgeons offer many treatments as a day case, allowing patients to walk-in/walk-out. We expect future surgery trends and tools to be even less invasive so that patients can get back to their daily lives as quickly and as safely as possible.