Plastic surgery trends in 2021 are still being identified, but a few of the breakaway trends do stand out. Some of the most recent trends were influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic, and despite the unusual challenges of 2020, growth in the plastic surgery field in 2021 points to continued success in 2022.

Is Plastic Surgery Increasing or Decreasing?

Despite the global pandemic, it appears that plastic surgery is still booming. Even during 2020, once plastic surgeons could begin offering procedures again, the number of plastic surgeries performed in the United States managed to reach 86% of the 2,678,302 procedures performed in 2019. And as the ASPS reports, from 2000 to 2020 there was an overall 22% increase of procedures performed.

So even though 2020’s numbers were lower than 2019, we expect that 2021 and 2022 will show continued growth in the popularity of plastic surgery.

Working From Home Increased the Demand for Plastic Surgery

The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS) is the world’s largest association of facial plastic surgeons. In 2020, the AAFPRS conducted a survey of its members examining trends they observed during 2020. 

70% of AAFPRS surgeons saw an increase of appointments during 2020 despite the pandemic. 90% of AAFPRS surgeons reported 10% or more appointments in 2020.

96% of the AAFPRS surgeons surveyed agreed that the increase of plastic surgery appointments was due to the increased flexibility that patients had to schedule and recover from surgery due to the benefits of working from home.

The Zoom Boom and Zoom Dysmorphia

Zoom Dysmorphia is not an actual diagnosis or condition, but it is somewhat related to body dysmorphia or dysmorphia of the face. Essentially, because so many people began spending much more of their time on social media, Zoom, and other video based platforms, more and more people seem to be self conscious about how they look.

According to a study from the International Journal of Women’s Dermatology, 30% of the 7295 study participants reported they intend to invest in their appearance as a coping strategy for returning to in-person interactions after the lockdowns. 

Participants also identified skin discoloration, wrinkles, and acne as concerns for their appearance.

The 2020 AAFPRS report also theorized that the “Zoom Boom” may have been caused due to reduced travel expenses, increased “selfie-awareness,” and the convenience of working from home.

We’re no longer using Zoom like we did during the first few months of the pandemic, and many people are either using hybrid remote/in-person work models, but people can still be worried about their appearance.

We don’t know what 2022 will look like exactly, but it’s likely that cosmetic and aesthetic treatments will continue to be popular choices for adults.

What Was the Most Popular Surgery in 2021?

We don’t have enough data yet to accurately say what was the most popular plastic surgery in 2021. However, in 2020, rhinoplasty, or “nose jobs” were the most popular plastic surgery procedures. For most of the past decade, breast augmentation has been the most popular procedure in plastic surgery, except for the past two years.

In 2019, data from The American Society of Plastic Surgeons shows that 287,085 breast augmentations were performed, while in 2020, only 193, 073 of these procedures were performed. In comparison, surgeons performed 352,555 nose reshaping procedures in 2020, and 362,299 in 2019.

The Most Popular Plastic Surgeries in 2021

Rhinoplasty (Nose Surgery)

The AAFPRS 2020 report found that rhinoplasty was one plastic surgery procedure that surged in popularity. It’s highly possible that because Americans spent more time using social media and video conferencing services in 2020, the number of rhinoplasties performed increased.

Breast Reduction Surgery

Over the past ten years, the popularity of breast reduction surgery has steadily increased. Google Trends reports that search interests for “breast reduction surgery” increased by 24.5% from 2020 to 2021, which is the same percentage increase that Google Trends shows from 2018 to 2019.

Google Trends also reported that other “breast reduction” related keywords saw significant increases from 2020 to 2021. 

Even from 2019 to 2020, despite the pandemic, Google Trends showed that the interest in “breast reduction surgery” search terms increased by 27.7%.

Injectable Dermal Fillers

According to Google Trends, searches and interest for “dermal fillers” spiked in 2021 compared to 2020. 

Since 2010, injectable treatments have grown in popularity, and even though fewer injectable treatments were given during 2020, according to the AAFPRS, it appears that they’ve come back stronger than ever in 2021. And it’s likely that the growth of dermal fillers will continue into 2022.

Breast Implants

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons® 2020 Plastic Surgery Statistics Report found that even though the total number of breast augmentation surgeries performed decreased by 33% in 2020, it was still in the top 5 cosmetic surgical procedures of 2020.

Furthermore, the report showed that 84% of breast augmentation procedures used silicone implants, and 16% of procedures used saline implants.

The report for 2021 is not yet available, but Google Trends shows that overall interest in the topic of “breast implants” has remained relatively the same between 2020 and 2021.

Furthermore, Yahoo Finance shared data from ResearchAndMarket.com’s Global Breast Implant Market 2021-2015 report showing promising growth for the breast implant market in the next few years. Specifically, the estimates show the breast implant market growing globally up to $437.17 million by 2025. 

Liquid Facelifts

With more time to consider different types of plastic surgery, people had time to discover liquid facelifts as a nonsurgical alternative to a full facelift. These treatments are very quick, usually taking no longer than an hour.

Keep in mind though that if you’re considering a liquid facelift, the results will not be as noticeable as a full surgical facelift. 

Additionally, liquid facelifts work best at filling in fine lines and wrinkles using dermal fillers like Juvederm®. 

Plastic Surgery After Weight Loss

Plastic surgery is not a solution for losing weight. That said, if you’ve recently lost a lot of weight or have some stubborn problem areas on your body, plastic surgery can help you reach your goals. 

If you’ve lost a significant amount of weight, you may have excess sagging skin that needs to be tightened up. Body contouring procedures like body lifts can help remove excess skin while also tightening and strengthening the remaining tissues.

Abdominoplasty, or a tummy tuck, is one of many surgical procedures that surgeons anticipate will grow in popularity in 2022 due to weight loss trends. 

Plastic Surgery at The Surgical Clinic, Nashville TN

If you’re considering plastic surgery in 2022, schedule a consultation with one of our board-certified plastic surgeons. Our plastic surgeons specialize in both cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery procedures. They can help you choose the right procedure for you based on your health history and aesthetic goals.

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