Cosmetic surgery to make the chin look more prominent has soared in popularity in the course of a year, making it the fastest growing trend among men and women, US plastic surgeons said Monday.
Chin implants are particularly popular among those over 40, according to a report by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).
A total of 10,593 men had the operation done in 2011, a 76 percent increase over the prior year, and 10,087 women had the procedure, a 66 percent rise -- for a combined total of 71 percent.
"The chin and jawline are among the first areas to show signs of aging. People are considering chin augmentation as a way to restore their youthful look just like a facelift or eyelid surgery," said ASPS President Malcolm Roth.
"We also know that as more people see themselves on video chat technology, they may notice that their jawline is not as sharp as they want it to be. Chin implants can make a dramatic difference."
Chin implants were more popular than lip augmentation, which grew 49 percent from 2010 to 2011, and cheek implants, which rose 47 percent -- and far more than the old-fashioned facelift, which saw a mere five percent increase.
New York plastic surgeon Darrick Antell, who said his clients have included many appearance-conscious chief executives of companies, said the chin is a symbolic trait to people in power.
"We know that CEOs tend to be tall, attractive, good-looking people. We now know that these people also tend to have a stronger chin," he said.
"As a result, people subconsciously associate a stronger chin with more authority, self-confidence and trustworthiness."
Breast augmentation surgery was the most popular of all among Americans seeking a cosmetic boost in 2011, with 307,000 procedures, up four percent in a year, the plastic surgeons' group said.