More men than ever before are booking spa appointments, buying skin care products and “manscaping.” Now, experts say there’s been a surge in the number of men between 40 and 70 years old who are making their way into the dermatologist’s office for cosmetic treatments, too.
In fact, men underwent more than one million non-surgical treatments such as Botox, photo rejuvenation and fat reduction in 2014, a report from the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery found. Plus, the number of cosmetic treatments for men increased 273 percent since 1997.
According to Dr. Ellen Marmur, a board-certified dermatologist based in New York City, out of more than 17,000 of her patients, the top ten who spend the most are men who have regular cosmetics treatments.
When undergoing cosmetic procedures, some women don’t want their husbands to know and some are worried about what others will think or about looking unnatural. For men, the worry seems to be more about side effects— and less about what their wives think.
“Their wives are psyched— half the time it’s their wives who sent them in,” Marmur, who is also an associate clinical professor in the department of dermatology and the department of genetics and genomic research at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, said.
A stronger jawline and job security
Just as many women search for the eternal fountain of youth, a large group of men who opt for cosmetic treatments are executives who see it as a necessity to keep their edge.
“Men do things to look better because they’re competing in a younger job market,” said Dr. Doris Day, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City and author of “Forget the Facelift: Turn Back the Clock with Dr. Day’s Revolutionary Four-Step Program for Ageless Skin.”
Fathers of the brides are another group interested in enhancing their looks, spurred on by their wives and the cost built into the wedding budget.
What’s more, because there are many new minimally or non-invasive treatments that don’t leave scars, it’s a more attractive option for men, Day said.
Botox and fillers and rejuvenation, oh my!
Typically, a woman may have several appointments to make subtle treatments. Men, however, usually get treatments less frequently, but accomplish more each time. Marmur calls it the “executive approach,” fillers, a skin tightening treatment and Botox once a year. Then every six months, Botox again; women typically come back every three to four months when it wears off.
“The aesthetics of rejuvenation is very different for men than for women,” Day said.
Instead of a completely wrinkle-free look, treatments can tighten and give a lift so men will look masculine. Fillers can square off the jaw line, build out the chin and reduce the jowls.
“That gives them a much stronger, powerful, confident look,” she said.
Treatments for sun damage, brown spots and fat reduction in the torso and chin are also popular, as are those that help healthy, but gaunt, men look good.
“We can re-balance and give them back volume in a very masculine, healthy, natural and handsome way without making them look ‘done,’” Day said.
What you should know
If you’re thinking about having a cosmetic treatment, here are some things to consider.
• Talk to your doctor about any medications and supplements you’re taking, especially aspirin, fish oil and vitamin E, which can lead to bruising.
• Be sure to ask about the side effects and risks of any treatment. Find a trained and qualified aesthetic dermatologist. If you don’t feel comfortable with him or her, get a second opinion.
• Don’t drink more than a half glass of alcohol the night before, to prevent bleeding.
• Build in time for numbing creams or Valium to wear off. Be prepared to take a few days off from work because even non-invasive cosmetic treatments can require some downtime.
Julie Revelant is a health journalist and a consultant who provides content marketing and copywriting services for the healthcare industry. She's also a mom of two. Learn more about Julie at revelantwriting.com.