Zoomoplasty: What is it and Why is it On the Rise?

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, more people than ever before are working remotely, handling their professional duties from the comfort of their home computer. In other words, as a society, we’re all seeing less and less of each other, often spending large chunks of the workday in relative solitude. As such, it may be a little surprising to learn that the demand for cosmetic surgery has actually risen significantly during these strange months of quarantine.

Recently, our own Dr. Ashley Chandler appeared on a local Charlotte news affiliate to discuss this surprising trend… and, to explain the concept that cosmetic surgeons are calling “Zoomoplasty.” Here’s a brief recap of Dr. Chandler’s comments.

Cosmetic Surgery on the Rise

Dr. Chandler confirms that, since most workplaces have gone virtual, plastic surgeons across the country have been booked up. “It was almost shocking,” she says of the sudden uptick in cosmetic surgery requests. “This year was really busy because I think of COVID keeping us all inside.”

Of course, plastic surgery was on the rise even before the pandemic hit. According to the American Society for Plastic Surgeons, the number of procedures has slowly been increasing over the past few years.

Still, the trend was really thrown into overdrive when stay-at-home orders were lifted. Part of this has to do with catching up from procedures that were postponed due to the initial shutdown order; but, as Dr. Chandler notes, there are a number of other factors drawing new patients in.

One of those factors? A lot of folks simply don’t have anywhere to be right now. “A lot more people during COVID are doing facelifts because they don’t have to be in public,” Dr. Chandler explains. “That’s one of those surgeries where you have to stay out of public for a couple of weeks, but that’s not really an issue with COVID. A lot of stuff is covered by the mask, too.”

What is Zoomoplasty?

These practical considerations partly explain why the demand for cosmetic surgery is rising… but there are also some important psychological factors. In particular, many of us spend a lot of time staring at ourselves on virtual calls, including Zoom meetings. Spending so much time on these virtual meeting platforms can cause a person to become overly critical of their own face; so, to respond, more and more individuals are showing an interest in changing their faces via cosmetic surgery. This is the phenomenon that cosmetic surgeons have christened “Zoomoplasty.”

Most of the time, Dr. Chandler explains, you can go through most of the day without having to look at your own face. “But now, we’re being forced to look at our face many times each day, for hour-long meetings. We all have that area we’re worried about, and now we’re just staring at it constantly.”

Zoomoplasty: Exploring the Options

The American Society for Plastic Surgeons notes that, in over 50 percent of cosmetic surgery practices across the country, Botox injections were the most commonly sought form of treatment during the stay-at-home order. “People are very into their Botox right now,” confirms Dr. Chandler. She agrees that, here at Charlotte Plastic Surgery, we’re getting a lot of requests for Botox and other facial procedures.

Dr. Chandler goes on to say that these procedures are largely focused on a few common imperfections that are brought out by all the time spent logged on to Zoom calls. An example is what she calls the “FaceTime Neck,” which refers to extra flab hanging down from the neck, which may be particularly notable when seen from the angle of a FaceTime call. There are plenty of other areas where patients are forced to confront facial imperfections, whether that means a double chin, fine lines around the eyes, etc.

Ironically enough, cosmetic surgery consultations increasingly take place over Zoom calls; indeed, that’s one way in which Charlotte Plastic Surgery strives to put the physical safety of patients and providers first. Dr. Chandler says Zoom consultations have made it easy for patients to show us exactly what it is they don’t like about their facial appearance.

Another important Zoomoplasty trend: A majority of the patients we’ve seen have specifically highlighted issues with the upper half of their faces. Dr. Chandler says many patients have noticed extra skin pressed up against their mask, or even hanging over their mask, which warranted further displeasure with their overall appearance.

“We’ve definitely seen an uptick in eyelid stuff, which usually, in the summer, we don’t see,” comments Dr. Chandler.

Paying for Zoomoplasty

One additional point worth noting is that Zoomoplasty’s rise in popularity coincides with a season of economic uncertainty, including fairly high levels of unemployment. This raises the question: How can so many people afford to pay for cosmetic procedures?

One explanation is that so many other businesses are closed down; people aren’t spending as much money going to the movies, or spending as much time in bars, so they have extra cash to put toward cosmetic procedures.

Additionally, many individuals had to scrap summer vacation plans due to COVID travel restrictions. That’s another source of cash that a lot of our patients have decided to put toward cosmetic procedures.

Learn More About Zoomoplasty

If your virtual meetings and FaceTime calls have caused some displeasure with your appearance, we welcome you to reach out to us to learn about possible solutions. Our team offers a range of facial procedures, from Botox injections to eyelid lifts, that can help you look and feel like your best self.

The first step is reaching out to Charlotte Plastic Surgery to set up a virtual consultation. We’ll discuss the different options and answer any questions you may have about getting a cosmetic procedure. Contact us to set up an appointment whenever you’re ready.