Why Are More Men Seeking Medical Aesthetics Treatments?
Learn what’s closing the gender gap in Medical Aesthetics patients.
Aesthetic trends for men have become increasingly refined and sophisticated: in the past few years, popular influencers have mainstreamed the idea of sharing grooming and skincare tips.
This trend toward a more nuanced idea of male aesthetics has also shown up in the realm of Medical Aesthetics, where the growing popularity of neuromodulators, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) for hair loss, skin care, and body contouring indicate that men are trying to achieve new aesthetic goals for themselves. What are some of these treatments, and how can aesthetics providers help male patients?
Defining popular Medical Aesthetics treatments among men.
- Men made up 10% of the neuromodulator market in 2018, jumping to 15% in 2021.1
- 33% of men are open to using skincare and cosmetic products, and 63% of these men are ages 18-34.2
- 1.3 million cosmetic procedures were performed on men in 2018, representing a 29% increase since 2000.3
Neurotoxins are typically given as injections that relax muscles beneath the skin and temporarily improve moderate to severe frown lines between the eyebrows in adults.4 There are innovative treatments for hair loss that inject the patient’s own processed blood into the scalp to encourage new hair growth.5 This procedure has been described as being “at its infancy” in terms of efficacy.
Skincare regimens involve regimens of cleansing, moisturizing, exfoliating, and using lotions such as sunscreen to avoid harmful UV rays.6
Meanwhile, jawline and body contouring are typically minimally invasive procedures that use applications of heat or freezing cold on specific parts of the body to shrink or destroy fat cells without harming other types of cells.7
How male body contouring can sometimes lead to facial treatments.
In the experience of South Florida-based Janet Allenby, DO, her male patients tend to be interested in body contouring treatments. “There’s probably about 50% men in body contouring, while there’s probably 90% women in facial aesthetics in my office,” she explains.
At Dr. Allenby’s practice, men tend to be more concerned about the appearance of their body, while women tend to concentrate on their face. However, whether they’re primarily focused on their body or their face, patients tend to be motivated to choose additional procedures after they’ve had a successful treatment with Dr. Allenby. Some of her male body contouring patients will opt for facial procedures. “Body contouring overall is a little more expensive. When you’re giving them a treatment that has a lot of value body-wise, they will then trust you to also perform a facial treatment.”
Male aesthetic trends are entering mainstream mass media channels.
Defining these procedures may be relatively straightforward, but seeing them openly featured in popular magazines and culture is groundbreaking. Snapchat® launched a dedicated channel that showcases nothing but male aesthetic trends and tips for how to achieve their aesthetic goals. Similarly, Esquire magazine offers grooming tips via its Snapchat® channel.
According to David Yi, author and founder of an online publication that regularly features articles written about masculinity through a beauty lens, “I think the most exciting developments are these traditional macho grooming brands finally opening up and not taking themselves so seriously. For the longest time, these men’s brands were tiptoeing on the outskirts of masculinity so they wouldn’t offend their hypermasculine clientele. But it’s now interesting how men are more confident than ever to express themselves.”8
Gen Z is helping to redefine male aesthetic trends.
Part of the greater popularity of male aesthetic trends comes from Gen Z’s exploration and acceptance of gender-fluidity. Members of Gen Z are defined as individuals born between 1997 and 2012, and in a 2016 study over one-third of Gen Z respondents agreed that gender does not define a person as much as it used to.9 Gender-fluidity has transformed attitudes about appearance, leading to greater demands among Gen Z men for skincare and high-performance personal care products.10
Many of these so-called “skintellectuals” prefer not to be boxed in by outdated norms of gender roles. Two-fifths of UK male Gen Z’s said they would be more inclined to adopt body and facial care routines if the marketing was gender-neutral.10 This shift toward a less hypermasculine notion of gender and the role of cosmetic products, especially in the realm of marketing, is causing the cosmetic industry to take another look at how it portrays men.
The presence of men in aesthetic campaigns can help fuel interest in aesthetic procedures.
Gender-fluidity and the redefinition of rigid masculine gender norms are transforming the aesthetics industry as a whole. In 2018, over half of all fragrance launches were gender-neutral,10 while major fashion brands have included several male influencers within its traditionally all-female campaigns.
Having men as brand ambassadors for well-known brands not only changes conventional aesthetics narratives, these ambassadors also help place an increased focus on skin care for men, which can translate into an uptick in Medical Aesthetics procedures.
While there’s no definitive way to say what the future holds for male aesthetic procedures, it’s likely that men will continue to increase their share of the Medical Aesthetics market.
https://www.asds.net/skin-experts/skin-treatments/neuromodulators. Accessed August 18, 2022
https://www.healthline.com/health/prp-for-hair-loss. Accessed August 18, 2022
https://www.healthline.com/health/beauty-skin-care. Accessed August 18, 2022
https://www.healthline.com/health/body-contouring. Accessed August 18, 2022
https://app.stylus.com/retail-brand-comms/next-gen-beauty-marketing. Accessed August 30, 2022
https://www.wundermanthompson.com/insight/gen-z-goes-beyond-gender-binaries-in-new-innovation-group-data. Accessed October 17, 2022
https://app.stylus.com/beauty/the-skintellectual-man. Accessed October 17, 2022