A new survey by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons has revealed that has been a rise in cosmetic procedures as the pandemic eases.

The society polled member surgeons across the country and found many Americans are investing in cosmetic procedures, despite the uncertain economy.

Three quarters of plastic surgeons said they were in more demand now than before the pandemic and nearly 30 per cent said their business had at least doubled.

"With COVID, we prepared for the worst. But when we were able to reopen our office, we were pleasantly surprised with the incredible surge of demand for our cosmetic services, both surgical and noninvasive," said Bob Basu, MD, a board-certified plastic surgeon in Houston and board vice president of finance of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. 

"Now that the worst is hopefully behind us and people are traveling again and getting back to normal life, I initially thought that we would see some of that demand drop off, and that's not been the case. We're actually still seeing very high demand."

Basu says there are a variety of reasons behind the increased demand. For many patients, COVID shutdowns and the ability to work from home gave them the time they needed to heal, without disrupting their normal busy routine. Others say the money saved on things like travel and dining out during the pandemic allowed them to invest in themselves.

"COVID changed everything. No one was traveling, vacations got cancelled. So, I think a lot of families and patients had a lot more disposable income. And so, they found that this is the right time for them to do a cosmetic plastic surgery procedure," Basu said.

The survey also found women between the ages of 31 and 45 were by far the most likely to request popular procedures such as breast augmentationsliposuction and tummy tucks. Basu says millennials are not only savvy about their options, but are also more open about their choice to seek plastic surgery than older generations.

"Millennials are very sophisticated in terms of getting the information they want. They share their experiences with other people through social media platforms or other methods. And so, these procedures are no longer taboo – they're actually relatable and accessible," Basu said. 

"Because of this open sharing, patients also come in well-versed about the procedures of interest. And so it really allows us to have a really productive discussion about their options."

The survey, called the Inaugural ASPS Insights and Trends Report: Cosmetic Surgery 2022, found over 40 per cent of plastic surgeons are reporting longer wait times between consultation and surgery than before the pandemic, so experts encourage anyone considering a cosmetic procedure to plan ahead as much as possible.

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