Behind the Mega-Rise of Chin Makeovers

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Behind the Mega-Rise of Chin Makeovers featured image
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As with many other cosmetic procedures across the board, New York facial plastic surgeon Konstantin Vasyukevich, MD says chin enhancements are on the rise.

While the Aesthetic Society has pegged the cosmetic procedure as having a steady year-over-year uptick, he says, of late, it’s younger patients, in particular, who are requesting chin enhancements in larger numbers than ever before. 

“Typically, there are more men than women that request chin enhancement procedures, but there is good reason for this gender discrepancy,” he explains. “The chin is one of the major defining features of a male face, which means its importance in enhancing the appearance of the face cannot be overstated.”

“If I had to draw a comparison, I would say that a well-defined chin for a male face is what beautifully contoured lips are for a female face.”

While the chin hits an area that’s hidden by a mask during this current COVID-era state of affairs, Dr. Vasyukevich says he’s observed two opposing trends that have affected patients’ decisions. “One, is patients saying, ‘Why get something done now when we cover the face with the mask and barely go out?’ This group of patients tend to postpone their procedures for a later date. Another subset of patients say, ‘Since my face is covered by a mask, now is the best time because recovery time is no longer a factor. Nobody will notice.’ These two lines of thought explain the current trend towards the increase in more definitive, longer-lasting procedures as opposed to short-term cosmetic enhancement.”

Besides the varying categories of patients interested in chin aesthetics, Encino, CA plastic surgeon George Sanders, MD says the actual chin can be changed in many ways.

“If it’s a question of too much wrinkling, Botox can be injected into the muscle overlying the bone. The chin can also be brought forward if it’s under-projecting or brought back if it’s overly-projecting. You can also be shortened on the front view or lengthened,” he explains, adding that shortening it or “bringing it back” generally requires the services of an oral surgeon since the bone is usually treated.

“On the other hand, one can make it longer or bring it forward with a chin implant or with fillers. Fillers are temporary and chin implants are permanent. Implants are inserted through the inside of the mouth or through a small incision on the undersurface of the chin. Just as some people prefer to rent and others prefer to buy, some prefer fillers and some prefer implants.”

Sometimes, Dr. Sanders says, a chin that is overly long and tends to hang from the profile view can be corrected by taking out some of the soft tissue underneath by means of an incision under the chin. “You can also camouflage a long chin by tightening up the skin beneath.”

“Theoretically, this would be a great time to have chin surgery because we are all wearing masks,” he concludes.

To that end, Nashville plastic surgeon Daniel A. Hatef, MD, says he has “definitely seen a lot more patients interested in chin augmentation” of late—and a good 50 percent of patients couple the treatment. 

“I inject at least half of my lip filler patients with some filler in the chin, to keep a balance within the relationship between the chin projection and lip projection,” he says. “If a patient has isolated, moderate microgenia, filler and/or a chin implant can be wonderful, but if the patient has a dentofacial deformity, they are wasting their time trying to achieve optimal appearance with volume at the chin alone. They need a workup for possible orthognathic surgery.”

Something else Dr. Hatef says he’s been seeing more frequently in his office: Patients who come in looking to correct an unfavorable chin implant result (that they got elsewhere). “This is often because the patient needed jaw surgery, because the implant is too large or placed incorrectly, or because the patient has a long chin to begin with, and the chin implant made their chin look longer and masculinized.”

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