Women have always been branded the fairer sex. Civilisation typifies them as the kind given to primping, but now men want in on the action too. On a scale unseen since Baroque times, men have come to embrace their vanity, exhausting means to prettify themselves without feeling emasculated.
Spurred on by public role models—including dolls and other inanimate objects—and an overarching desire to please society, men are fast becoming patrons of cosmetic surgery clinics.
Hirsute and hairless
More to the point, cosmetic surgeons are increasingly attending to men who want to fit the profile of a ‘hipster.’ Men, usually in their late 20s, are splurging as much as $8,000 for transplants that turn them facially hirsute.
On the other end of the spectrum, Justin Jedlica is continuing his infamous pursuit of hairless perfection: being a human Ken doll. Jedlica may not be a hipster artist but he has likened his aspiration to an "artform"; quitting would be “like asking Picasso not to paint." If recent reports were to be believed, the literally doll-faced chap has undergone his 145th plastic surgery and is endorsing a range of muscle implants that he has tried himself.
A similar story plays out in China, where a man named Zhang Yidong is undergoing surgery to look like communism icon Lei Feng.
Meanwhile, Bruce Jenner has become the object of online derision for his countenance of late, the result of years of trying to rectify a failed rhinoplasty and facelift.
“They’ve compared me to Michael Jackson,” the former Olympian and reality TV star told KUWTK.
Why all the effort
Even though men get a pass for, among others, the ability to date younger women, they are still not impervious to society’s ageism. The employment market has always skewed young, and the shortest-term way to compete with new blood is a few nips and tucks here and there. All too often, a little surgical intervention is all that stands between two steps on the corporate ladder.
For men of a certain age, a simple neck lift can be a career saver. This procedure improves the tautness of the chin by tightening muscles and removing fatty tissues.
Another infusion of vitality that is gaining traction among men is blepharoplasty, which eliminates eye-bags and expands eyelid creases. In fact, ASAPS ranks blepharoplasty as the third most common cosmetic procedure for men, just behind liposuction and rhinoplasty.
Indeed, liposuction is the ultimate surgical solution for men. Ravaged by time and unhealthy diets, men typically contend with beer guts as they grow older. In liposuction, cosmetic surgeons suck away fat from the abdomen—and thereby push any underlying muscle to the forefront.
Male models and average Joes who just want to be in the dating pool are key demographics of liposuction specialists. As for those with less conspicuous muscles, cosmetic surgeons can easily offer pectoral and gluteal implants.
Rounding out ASAPS’ top four procedures for men is gynescomastia, which removes fatty tissue around the breasts. This operation is a favourite among bodybuilders because it improves the definition of pectoral muscles.
At one point, everybody seems to have forgotten that peacocks are more ostentatious than peahens. Today more people are now at peace with the notion that men also like to feel good about themselves through beautification.
Men won’t be willing to talk about their plastic surgeries openly any time sooner than women. Nevertheless, gender roles are in a state of upheaval. Soon, male cosmetic surgery won’t be seen as an affront to masculinity at all.