Many things have been blamed on Brexit, from shrinking chocolate bars to the rise in the price of beloved food products such as Marmite and Walker’s Crisps, but the latest industry to be hit by the public referendum to leave the EU, is the cosmetic surgery business.
The British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS), the UK’s leading cosmetic plastic surgery association, of which I’m a Member, has released its annual figures, and, after a ten-year growth pattern, we’ve seen a significant drop in those undergoing cosmetic surgery procedures.
Every year, BAAPS collects data from its members, which consist of most of consultant plastic surgeons undertaking cosmetic surgery in private practice, and they found that after a record-breaking 2015, there was an almost 40% drop in cosmetic surgery ops.
Commonly known as the ‘lipstick effect’, there is a well-considered theory that when economic crisis looms consumers will choose more inexpensive pick-me-ups such as lipstick, over costly luxury goods. It seems that in the period of uncertainty we saw in 2016 and continue to face, patients are more likely to opt for Botox over a facelift.
If we look closer at the figures, the procedures that saw the biggest drop were facial rejuvenation ops such as the facelift or neck lift, that sagged by 53% overall, and the brow lift that saw a staggering 71% droop from the previous year.
The plastic surgery procedures that stayed strong, seemed to be the ones that had a less effective and obvious non-surgical alternative. This includes rhinoplasty, which went down by just 14%, and the abdominoplasty or tummy tuck that only dropped by 6% overall.
Against this, my own figures for surgical procedures for that same period have remained steady, somewhat bucking the national trend. I attribute this to having a long established personally ‘hands-on’ surgical practice which is primarily concerned with providing a calm and supportive patient experience and a good outcome rather than being overtly commercial or mercenary in approach.
Don’t put price over safety
While procedures such as Botox and dermal fillers are deemed ‘non-surgical’ or ‘non-invasive’, patients can still experience a whole host of serious complications and be left with a less than pleasing result. Choose a reputable, experienced practitioner and don’t be swayed by offers or discounts at the price of safety.