More men than ever are seeking out Botox injections treatment to help them reach their skincare goals. In fact, The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery recently reported a significant uptick in statistics across the board.
According to the study, botulinum toxin injections are now the number one non-surgical procedure American men seek out when they visit medical spas and plastic surgery clinics. Men are also choosing hyaluronic acid treatments (chemical peels), non-surgical fat reduction (Kybella), hair removal, and Photorejuvenation (IPL) at higher rates than ever before.
But let’s focus on Botox. What’s driving the rise of “Brotox,” and what makes injectable treatments so suitable for men?
To highlight just how much things have changed, we need to compare modern statistics with statistics from just 20 years ago. According to People Magazine and ASAPS, approximately 400,000 men sought out Botox injections in 2014, a rate 337 times higher than in 2000, when around 1,200 men sought out the same procedure.
Men are also seeking out dermal fillers more often. ASAPS reports that dermal filler use has skyrocketed by nearly 86 percent, with 90,000 men opting to plump, lift, and smooth in 2014 alone.
WHO’S GETTING BOTOX?
Here’s another surprising fact: it isn’t just older men who are seeking out Botox injections and dermal fillers. In fact, the vast majority of men who seek out this and other non-surgical medical aesthetics are between 35 and 65 years of age. This article indicates that most are white-collar business professionals working in business, law, fashion, or art (including celebrities) with higher incomes.
Botox isn’t just for the rich and famous; in fact, it’s also becoming an affordable non-surgical option for men across nearly every race and social status level. In fact, University of California School of Medicine professor Dr. Seth Matarasso reports that he’s virtually unable to pin down a specific demographic.
“There is no demographic and to me that speaks volumes ― the fact that it’s crossing every racial, every sexual, every social demographic,” he explains, carefully reminding professionals and readers not to make assumptions or pigeonhole men.
Part of the attraction and lack of demographic specifics may also be related to Botox’s lower risk profile and greater affordability compared to surgery. With the average cost of a single session sitting at just $300 to $1000 (depending on the patient) it’s easier on the pocketbook and requires less time away from work.
WHY MEN SEEK OUT BROTOX
ASAPS also highlighted a major difference in why men seek Botox. It turns out men use injectables to achieve very different goals. Women use Botox to reduce the signs of aging, look younger, or restore their smooth, youthful appearance. Men, on the other hand, see injectables as a way to improve their appearance directly, not necessarily to eliminate signs of aging like fine lines and wrinkles.
Surprisingly, the same report also indicated that men often seek out Botox and other injectable treatments to become more competitive in the workforce. In a world that values youthfulness, looking the part can be just as compelling as actually being youthful.
Moreover, putting effort into your appearance, including the face you present to the world, tells your colleagues and partners that you’re willing to work hard and put in effort to be the very best version of you.
In fact, Dr. Daniel C. Mills, President of ASAPS, believes workplace competition may very well be the number one driving factor behind the rise of Brotox. “They’re simply having more procedures done because they want to maintain the competitiveness in an increasingly ageist workplace,” he says. Dr. Terry Dubrow, who stars on the hit plastic-surgery-gone-wrong show “Botched,” agreed, saying that looking better enables men to “stay in the market and compete.”
INCREASED ADVERTISING AND TARGETING
But is it all about men making changes to how they approach appearance? Probably not. Other reports show that plastic surgeons and medical spas have drastically stepped up advertising to men, introducing Botox in a way that seems more masculine and justifiable than in previous years. These advertisers have taken a traditionally feminine advertising space and totally reconfigured it to present Botox in a way that men find more palatable, more acceptable, and less riddled with stigma.
Simple changes, like medical spas expanding their galleries to include images of both men and women, can have a big impact on men who may be on the fence. Some spas are going above and beyond, creating “man cave” locations filled with the things men love most: big-screen TVs, plenty of leather, sports, and masculine artwork. The goal is to make men feel more comfortable in the medical aesthetics space, without feeling like they’re heading off to a feminine salon instead.
REDUCING THE STIGMA
Of course, all of these changes relate back to one solid point: up until now, men who showed significant care for their appearance were often labeled as soft, weak, or worse. For decades, the only acceptable way for men to show self-care was through bodybuilding or muscle gain; plastic surgery and injectables were “band aid fixes” that didn’t require as much hard work and effort, and thus, were deemed lazy or silly.
In the medical aesthetics industry, we know that this stigma comes from little more than socially-constructed ideas of what men should care about. It’s okay for men to care about how they look, seek out injectables, or even have plastic surgery if they aren’t satisfied with how they look, regardless of what anyone else says.
For men who are attempting to bridge the gap between the traditional “tough guy” image and their desire to look their best later into life, injectables can be a tempting treatment option because results are so subtle. Properly delivered Botox treatments can adjust, define, and improve in ways that don’t make it look like they’ve had obvious work, which can be preferable in a world where men may face unwarranted judgment for caring about their appearance.
In most cases, no one need ever know you’ve had work except for you, your spouse, and your treatment provider. A good medical spa will keep your secret, even if they’re overwhelmingly proud of their work.
As men become more comfortable with the idea of caring about their appearance enough to seek out injectables, we expect statistics for “Brotox” sessions to rise. In fact, we encourage all Americans – male or female – to look and feel their very best.
If you’re not satisfied with your appearance, know that it’s okay. You aren’t alone, and there is absolutely no shame in making changes that make you happier, more confident, and more vibrant, even if you’re the very definition of a “manly man.”