By Tonya Johnson
When a man faces a boardroom of executives and looks like the oldest person in the room, he might seek some cosmetic assistance to look younger within this type of employment environment.
“Men are requesting many of the same procedures woman traditionally have in order to maintain their youthful looks, as well as maintain their shape,” says David A. Sieber, MD, of Sieber Plastic Surgery in San Francisco. “I think men are realizing that there’s no need to look older when there’s so many easy things that can be done to turn back the clock a little bit.”
The United States Department of Labor predicts that baby boomers will remain in the workplace long after they’ve qualified to collect their Social Security retirement benefits. Plastic surgeons would be wise to cater to this group, which some in the specialty say includes men with an increasing interest in looking younger at work.
Sieber, a board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon with specialized fellowship training in cosmetic surgery, focuses on cosmetic and reconstructive surgery of the face, breast, and body.
In Sieber’s opinion, the popularity of plastic surgery and injectables in social media has also contributed to the uptick in men who walk through this practice’s doors. It helps make something that used to be taboo more acceptable for both women and men. Female patients still visit his office at a higher rate, but Sieber treats about 30 to 40 men a month. He sees an increased interest in plastic surgery from males from their late 20s and early 30s through 70 years in age.
The 2018 statistics reported by the American Society of Plastic Surgery Professionals are similar to what Sieber has experienced in his own practice:
The three most common invasive procedures in men were liposuction, gynecomastia surgery, and blepharoplasty. The top three non-surgical procedures were neurotoxins, fillers, and non-surgical fat reduction. These mirror the top three non-surgical procedures seen in women.
Liposuction is number-one among both men and women. “It’s one of those procedures where you can dramatically impact how people look within a single procedure,” Sieber explains. “CoolSculpting and EMSCULPT are prevalent non-surgical treatments, but you need to keep doing those procedures over and over to get good results. With surgery, it’s one and done.”
The uptick in male cosmetic surgery procedures varies around the country, but in Silicon Valley, where Sieber Plastic Surgery is located, men in the tech industry who are starting to look and feel older have to compete with the younger men at work.
Blepharoplasty surgery is work that people tend to request early on “because having excess skin on the upper eyelids is really one of the first things that ages the face. We start to lose volume in our face, as we age,” he says.
Many patients who Sieber treats are frequently in in-person meetings or videoconferences and they don’t like how they look on camera. They want to do what they can to look refreshed and rejuvenated.
The best way to expand your business in male procedures, Sieber says, is by marketing through social media. Using free apps like Instagram has allowed him to showcase his work. “Men, just like any other patient, like to see photos of people they can relate to,” Sieber says.
On his website, he dedicates a page to men. “It was important for me to have that separate section because men are constantly looking for information, just like women are. Having a page that distinguishes the narrow differences between men and women is a good starting point to get them in the door. The procedures themselves are often similar to what I do in women, but the men deserve to have a safe place to gather more information on procedures too!”
Because men still make up less than 15% of the people coming in for aesthetic procedures, Sieber has not yet updated his waiting room area, but he thinks that is a great idea to attract potential patients. “There are people out there catering specifically to men,” Sieber says, citing W. Grant Stevens, MD, FACS, who manages “Marina Manland,” complete with leather couches and sports on the television.
Tonya Johnson is associate editor of Plastic Surgery Practice.