Many people feel that facial plastic surgery is just what they need to make others see them as more attractive, but a new study has found that this is probably not the case. It also doesn’t help to make people look younger.
For the study, researchers asked 50 participants to guess the ages of 49 patients before they had plastic surgery. Then they were asked again after the facial plastic surgery procedures were complete. Then, the participants were asked to give the patient a number between one and 10 based on how attractive participants found the patients.
What the researchers discovered was astounding: plastic surgery did help to make people look a few years younger to other people; it did not make the participants feel that the patients were any more attractive.
According to Dr. Joshua Zimm, who is an attending surgeon with Lenox Hill Hospital and the Manhattan Eye, Ear and Throat Institute of North Shore LIJ Health System in NYC, it’s crucial to tell patients that they will look less tired and more energetic. While there is some research that shows patients will look a bit younger, it shouldn’t be promised. He also says that he cannot say that patients will appear more attractive. He is also the lead author of the study.
The 2012 Plastic Surgery Statistics Report, done by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons has said that eyelid surgery is the third most popular surgical cosmetic procedure, and facelifts are the fifth most common choice for plastic surgery. An estimated 204,000 people chose to have their eyelids lifted in 2012, which was a four percent climb from 2011.
The number of face-lifts climbed six percent from 2011, with an estimated 126,000 people choosing this type of procedure to tighten the facial skin.
Those that were participants in the study had a neck lift, facelift, upper or lower eyelid lifts and in some cases brow lift. The procedures were done at a Toronto based private practice between the years of 2006 and 2010. The ages of the participants ranged from 42 to 73.
Photos for review were taken before the surgery took place and then again at a six month follow up appointment post procedure. Patients did not wear makeup, have additional cosmetic procedures such as laser skin resurfacing or Botox, or wear any jewelry before photographing them.
While Zimm did admit that the study had some limitations, such as the fact that guessing age and rating attractiveness of a certain person might have caused a “subconscious attractiveness bias,” which could have slanted the results. He has said that he would like to repeat the study with a larger group of participants with an exclusive focus on attractiveness to see if the results might change.