8 Plastic Surgeons Predict the Biggest Aesthetic Trends of 2021

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We were all hoping we’d wake up on New Year’s Day and the pandemic would be gone, and our lives could resume some sense of normalcy. While that unfortunately will not be the case, doctor’s offices have created safe environments to allow patients to continue with their scheduled aesthetic procedures as planned, from noninvasive lasers to operating-room surgeries. These are the top treatments we can expect to see more of (or for the first time!) in the new year.

Laser Resurfacing

“Men and women are becoming more sophisticated in their understanding of what can be achieved with their skin-care products and how to shop for the products with the best ingredients for them. Along with that knowledge, we are seeing a greater interest in procedures to improve skin texture and tone. Hybrid fractional laser resurfacing procedures such as Halo are a popular request because they work and the downtime is minimal. There is a greater acceptance in taking care of oneself and feeling better.”
—Chatham, NJ oculoplastic surgeon Baljeet Purewal, MD

Aesthetic Injectables

“The next generation of hyaluronic acid fillers, called Resilient Hyaluronic Acid or RHA, have arrived from Switzerland. Touted as the least-modified filler—most similar to the body’s own hyaluronic acid (HA)—the new product lines treat all dynamic facial wrinkles from the cheeks to the lips with longer-chain HAs for a more natural appearance. Secondly, the coming launch of DAXI, a new neurotoxin that purportedly will last for six months, will be a game changer for patients seeking smoother skin and reduced wrinkles with fewer trips to their certified injector.”
—Kirkland, WA facial plastic surgeon Daniel J. Liebertz, MD

“I expect fillers and neurotoxins to continue being the most popular treatments. However, I think masks will be part of our life through next year. As such, everyone is more closely scrutinizing their eyes, and I believe treatments for eyelid and brow rejuvenation will continue trending up next year.” 
—New York facial plastic surgeon Edward S. Kwak, MD

“Clearly botulinum toxin and HA fillers will not be going away and will continue to hold the top spots. Nonablative lasers and chemical peels are also popular; however, these procedures are also becoming more popular in my office, and I anticipate we will see growth in them in 2021:
1. Upper lid blepharoplasty: This procedure can safely be performed as a standalone in the office for patients presenting with uncomplicated excess skin on their upper eyelids. 
2. Lower lid pinch excision with a chemical peel: This is the removal of a small amount of skin just below the lash line, which helps smooth the skin. This is great for patients who don’t have significant excess fat pads and have limited excess skin.”
3. Single-site fat grafting to the cheeks, lips and/or chin, which may be more cost effective compared to HA injections.”
—San Jose, CA plastic surgeon Kirk A. Churukian, MD

“This year, with all uncertainty related to the global pandemic and shutdowns, more than ever our patients are looking for longer-lasting, elegant and low-maintenance facial contouring options. While HA filler contouring often creates amazing, instant results, the need for regular and repeat administration makes it a much less-attractive option, especially in today’s climate. Sculptra Aesthetic facial contouring allows for the patient’s own collagen to create incredibly long-lasting, glamorous yet natural-looking contours that refine and enhance their individual appearance, and I think we will be seeing it used more for this in 2021. Moreover, our own collagen is what keeps us looking younger and rejuvenated longer, thus making Sculptra Aesthetic facial contouring a perfect addition to preventive aging protocols.” 
—New York oculoplastic surgeon Irene Gladstein, MD

“Without a doubt, nonsurgical eyelid lifts and nonsurgical rhinoplasties using appropriate fillers will be more and more popular in the next year, simply because plastic surgeons are getting better and better with their techniques. The effects are amazing and can even beat results by surgical intervention. Moreover, there is almost no pain and almost no recovery time needed.
In the nose, I inject a high G-prime hyaluronic acid gel filler. Because the tip shape is not altered (only propped up from the base), my patients love it for its authentic, original shape that they are familiar with for their whole life. In this year alone, despite the pandemic and lockdown, I have done at least 1,000 of this kind of nose job—we also trademarked the technique as TipLyft. Although it works best for Asian nose tips, it does work well for all other races, including African American, Hispanic, Arabic and Caucasian. This technique was presented in the ASPS annual conference this year and should be published sometime next year.”
—Arcadia, CA plastic surgeon Arthur Y. Yu, MD

Combination Treatments

“I see more people combining surgery with nonsurgical treatments to create more comprehensive facial rejuvenation, and this will be even more popular in years to come. Tremendous advances have been made in the last decade, improving skin-care and nonsurgical treatments of the face and neck. These treatments include better, longer-lasting fillers; neurotoxins such as Botox; lasers; and radio-frequency devices. Fat grafting is now a common addition to facial rejuvenation surgery, restoring areas of loss due to aging, and can also be a highly effective complement to body-contouring surgery—the use of a person’s own fat to improve fullness in areas where fat is lacking.” —Houston plastic surgeon Christopher Patronella, MD

Minimally Invasive Facelifts

“Minimally invasive facelifts will continue to trend in 2021. ‘Filler fatigue’ is a real thing, and at a certain point, noninvasive solutions to facial aging begin to distort the face. In the quest to provide patients with a greater result than the common ‘superficial facelift,’ I developed a new technique, the Minimal Access Deep Plane Extended faceliftthat lifts the deep structures of the face so that the face appears smooth and not tight under the skin. Using hidden incisions made possible by endoscopic technology, my female patients are able to wear their hair back in ponytails, and my male patients are free to wear short haircuts or shave their heads because of hair loss.”
—New York facial plastic surgeon Andrew Jacono, MD

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