Cosmetic Trends for 2016: The Year of the Neck


By Scott Bridge

Accurately predicting cosmetic surgery trends can sometimes be accomplished simply by keeping tabs on a handful of celebrities. Kim Kardashian famously “broke the Internet” in late 2014 with her eye-popping butt-centered photos. The result? In 2015, everyone seemed to want a bigger booty.

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So what’s in store for 2016? It might not be showing up in the tabloids yet, but plastic surgeons expect necks to command a lot of attention in the coming year. Surgeons responding to a survey conducted by RealSelf, a popular online forum where people interested in cosmetic procedures ask specialists for advice, say both women and men are interested in getting sleeker necks and more prominent chins.

“An overwhelming 68% of doctors say they expect to have more patients requesting work done on the chin or neck in 2016,” RealSelf reports in an article about its survey. “That’s doctors across all three specialties: plastic surgery, facial plastic surgery, and dermatology.”

The increased cosmetic interest in the neck dovetails with another trend that’s expected to gain momentum in 2016: the popularity of minimally invasive procedures. Advancing technology is giving cosmetic specialists the tools to treat a range of concerns without surgery, and 2 of the breakthrough non-surgical treatments that emerged in 2015 focused on reducing the appearance of a double chin.

The first, KYBELLA®, is an injectable treatment that generated quite a bit of media buzz with the FDA’s approval in the spring. The injectable solution breaks down fat cell walls. Later in the year, the company that makes a fat-reducing system for the body, CoolSculpting®, announced that its CoolMini™ applicator was cleared by the FDA to target the area below the chin. CoolMini is a non-invasive treatment that essentially freezes fat cells to destroy them without any injections or incisions.

New, non-surgical procedures are also driving another trend that doctors expect to pick up steam in the coming year: vaginal rejuvenation.

Labiaplasty, a surgical procedure to tighten and improve the aesthetic appearance of the vagina, was already gaining popularity. But non-surgical treatments such as FemiLift™, MonaLisa Touch® and, most recently, ThermiVa®, are using the same tissue tightening energy technology previously used for anti-aging procedures to rejuvenate the vaginal area.

RealSelf calls this the “internal mommy makeover,” comparing it with the combination of procedures that lift and tighten the breasts and stomach.

You can also expect Brazilian butt lifts to remain one of the top procedures in 2016, but bigger isn’t necessarily better when it comes to breast augmentation. Based on the plastic surgeons’ response to the RealSelf survey, “the popularity of bigger breast implants is waning.”

“When asked how breast ideals have changed this year,” RealSelf says, “plastic surgeons were twice as likely to select, ‘More women want smaller breast implants’ over ‘More women want bigger breast implants.'”

That may be true, but getting the results you want from breast enhancement involves more than just breast implant size, according to breast augmentation specialists at Westchester County’s Cosmetic Surgery Associates.

“Although the question of size is mainly a matter of personal preference, it’s important to consider your natural anatomy and proportions when choosing a size,” says the practice’s website. “Most women want results that look natural, so it’s important to select a size that complements your curves.”

The preference for smaller breast implants that the surgeons cite is also expected to fuel a continuing interest in fat transfer breast augmentation — using a patient’s own fat to increase the size of her breasts. In fact, this same technique is used for the Brazilian butt lift, and fat grafting is now used by most plastic surgeons as part of facelift surgery, according to a study published in July 2015 by Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery®.

It appears that the idea of taking fat from a part of the body where it’s unwanted and using it to enhance another area of the body is a trend that will never go out of style.

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