I was on the Surgery.org website, the other day, which is the official Internet presence of the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. While there, I saw some interesting numbers–numbers that gave me great hope regarding Americans’ new, open-minded attitude regarding plastic surgery. The numbers came from a 2009 study entitled “The Consumer Attitudes Survey.” Let’s take a look at some of the numbers and then I’ll explain why I feel so positive about the survey results.
According to the survey, today, 62 percent of American women voice approval of plastic-surgery procedures, while 51 percent of men approve. This is the first time that I can recall when a majority of both genders approve of plastic surgery. The survey also shows that 40 percent of women would at sometime consider cosmetic surgery for themselves, either now or sometime in the future. An admittedly-smaller 18 percent of men say they would consider it (While considerably smaller than the number of women, 18 percent is still a significant number).
When divided by age: 21 percent of Americans 65 and older say they would consider cosmetic surgery at some time; another 21 percent of those from age 55 to 64 say they would; 34 percent of 45 to 54 year olds would consider it; 31 percent of those 35 to 44 would think about it; 37 percent of Americans age 25 to 34 would think about having a procedure done; and 31 percent of the 18 to 24 crowd would.
But the number jumps dramatically when the surveyors asked if people would feel embarrassed about getting plastic surgery. Here, a whopping 73 percent of women said they would feel no embarrassment, and an almost-equal number of men, 69 percent, said they would not be embarrassed.
Another number that is somewhat surprising: 29 percent of whites say they would consider cosmetic surgery, and even though more whites have historically had plastic surgery than non-whites, 31 percent of non-whites say they would consider it.
Now let’s talk about why these numbers encourage me (besides the obvious fact that this is the business I’m in). There was a day when people snickered under their breath when they spoke of someone they knew or saw on TV getting cosmetic surgery. It was as though a person should be embarrassed for trying to look better if she used surgery to do that, even though nobody thinks twice about buying new clothes or getting a new hairstyle to look better. These numbers how that these old closed-minded ways of thinking are disappearing. More people are recognizing that if looking better makes a person enjoy life more, then this is something that should be encouraged, not mocked.