Which plastic surgery procedures are high up on Americans’ list?

Americans are putting their best face and body forward as annual plastic surgery rates have climbed 3 percent over the last year. Two of the runaway winners: labiaplasty and lip reduction procedures.

Top Cosmetic Surgeries In 2016

New figures from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) showed that labiaplasty, surgery rejuvenating the labia through lifting or injecting fat or filler into the area, rose 39 percent in 2016, covering over 12,000 procedures.

Lip reduction surgeries also increased dramatically with a staggering 283 percent rise from 2015, representing 3,547 operations last year. The procedure emerged much more popular among African Americans and Hispanic women,

Breast augmentation, the leading cosmetic surgical procedure of almost 1.8 million operations performed in 2016, was up 4 percent last year. Second to it is liposuction, also up 6 percent.

Trends pointed to an increased role of one’s fat in filling and sculpting, from harvesting unwanted fat from the tummy via liposuction to injecting it to lift the face, buttocks, and breasts.

“Because the material injected is the patient's own fat the results typically last longer than fillers,” said ASPS President Dr. Debra Johnson in a statement.

Non-surgical procedures also demonstrated steady growth. Last year, there were more than 7 million Botulinum Toxin (brand name Botox) procedures in the United States in hopes of wrinkle reduction. The number was only a little over 780,000 in 2000.

Labia And Lip Matters

For the first time, the survey comprised data on labiaplasty, which the organization started tracking in 2015. For Johnson, it reflects patients’ ongoing relationships with their cosmetic surgeon, where they “feel more comfortable discussing all areas of their body.”

This meant that reducing the inner lips of the vulva, after all, may have become more “normal” in societal depictions.

As for lip reduction, which enjoyed the biggest year-on-year growth, there is hardly any objective definition of what constitutes “normal” lip size. Standards dictate, however, a certain direction.

“The standard of beauty and acceptability in America is a white standard,” said Fordham University professor Christina Greer in a Guardian report.

Dr. Germaine Awad of University of Technology, while agreeing that lip reduction has become so popular due to the push for a white European beauty ideal, saw an irony: a lot of other women are enhancing the size of their lips. ASPS data showed that more than 28,000 lip augmentation procedures were performed last year.

Johnson offered a few tips for those who are considering going under the knife.

  1. Plastic surgery should not replace a healthy diet and exercise, and the best candidates are those who are physically fit and healthy. But surgery can remove loose skin or increase breast volume, which is something working out cannot do.
  2. Pregnancy after a cosmetic makeover can undo the procedures, Johnson reminded. Tummies that have been tightened via surgery, for instance, can stretch out once again.
  3. It can cost a fortune. On average, a woman should serve $10,000 to $20,000 for a so-called mommy makeover.
  4. Recovery can be painful, especially mommy makeovers that pack multiple surgeries at once. Have someone help you 24/7 for at least three days post-surgery.
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