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Zoom, COVID, and Plastic Surgery

/ Dr. Aric Aghayan

During the pandemic, millions of Americans have telecommuted and avoided socializing in large groups. Many news outlets have reported about the demise of restaurants, bars, and clothing stores. 

But plastic surgery is different. Having extra time at home has led to a boom in cosmetic procedures, mainly dermal fillers and Botox. 

In addition to facial procedures, other popular choices during COVID have been Coolsculpting and chemical peels. 

Even before lockdowns were lifted in 2020 in most of the US, interest surged in plastic surgery as more people were isolated and working from home. A June 2020 survey by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) found that 49% of 1,000 consumers surveyed who hadn’t gone under the knife were open to procedures in the near future. 

Another study by ASPS found that 65% of plastic surgeons in the US had seen a rise in remote consultations since the pandemic started. 

What’s Causing The Surge? 

Many plastic surgeons report that there isn’t one reason for the increase, but these are probably factors: 

  • More time at home
  • Less social interaction
  • Face masks
  • Zoom video calls

One dermatologist in New York City says there is a Zoom Effect in the United States. This refers to people suddenly noticing their facial lines, wrinkles, double chins, and eye bags while doing Zoom meetings. 

Many patients also seem to be looking for new ways to get out of the house and pass the time. After all, many regular social activities – outings to restaurants, bars, for instance – have been curtailed or even closed. 

Patients who telecommute can have cosmetic procedures and stay at home to recover. Many don’t have to go to social events as much to still work at home and recover from their surgeries. Doing cosmetic surgeries also lets them break up the monotony of Zoom calls and child care. 

For many, one of the most significant barriers to having many cosmetic procedures is the discoloration and bruising that occur during, for example, a facelift. Other patients have opted for surgeries that require significant downtime, such as Portland liposuction, Portland tummy tucks, and Portland breast augmentation. When people can recover without missing work, it’s more likely they’ll opt to go under the knife. 

Also, people who work from home don’t usually have to worry about how they look to coworkers, so many procedures aren’t as daunting as a few years ago. It seems that almost endless Zoom meetings, for many people, have made them cast a more critical eye on how they look to the world. 

Some Plastic Surgeons Turn Down Some Patient Requests

Not all of the requests for cosmetic surgeries are good ideas, some plastic surgeons say. Patients who spend hours per day on Zoom may become overly critical of themselves and have unrealistic expectations. Given how many people work at home, being too self-critical is understandable, but physicians sometimes need to the point that out. 

For example, a plastic surgeon in Los Angeles has done well during COVID, but many patients wanted to have their cosmetic procedures done at home. Few surgeons will do that, given legal concerns and the health and safety of their employees. 

But other procedure requests, as long as they were reasonable and realistic, boomed in popularity. Some patients called in wanting procedures they had considered for years, such as breast implant removals or eyelid lifts. 

Facial Procedure Requests Take Off During Public Masking

It’s probably not surprising that many people have focused on their eyes when most people are wearing masks in public. Under-eye fillers have gotten more popular. This could be because people want to feel more confident, which many plastic surgeons are happy to see. 

But if the most visible parts of faces today are the eyes and forehead because of public masking, it’s also thanks to this policy that more people want to have work on their nose and lips. After all, when you have a mask on, no one can see the work done because of swelling and bruising. Patients may have delayed some facial procedures because they didn’t want people to know they had work done. 

Will The Zoom Boom Continue? 

The pandemic is still ongoing, but at least ⅓ of the US has gotten vaccinated as of April 2021. Will the increased interest in cosmetic procedures continue? Many in the industry say yes. 

Social distancing and face masks are continuing even after people get their COVID shots. Also, patients are comfortable with remote medical appointments and working via Zoom. There could be a larger focus on telemedicine in initial plastic health consultations. 

Some patients report that the doctor seems to pay better attention to them when talking on video conference, so they may be more likely to schedule procedures. And with the COVID pandemic, more people want to look and feel good about themselves, and that’s something that probably will continue indefinitely., 

Request a Plastic Surgery Consultation 

Have you been thinking about having plastic surgery during the COVID-19 era? Dr. Aric Aghayan is proud to serve Portland area patients at his practice, Après Plastic Surgery. He will meet with you for your Portland cosmetic procedure consultation today. He’ll go over the options, your goals, and more to determine if you’re an ideal candidate for a plastic surgery procedure. 

You won’t regret your decision! 


Zoom Calls and Plastic Surgery Procedures. (October 2020). Accessed at https://fortune.com/2020/10/03/zoom-calls-plastic-surgery-cosmetic-procedures-botox-fillers/

Plastic Surgery Boom During Quarantine. (2020). Accessed at https://www.elle.com/beauty/makeup-skin-care/a35759379/plastic-surgery-boom-during-quarantine/

Will The Plastic Surgery Trend Last After The Pandemic? (n.d.). Accessed at https://www.plasticsurgery.org/news/blog/will-the-plastic-surgery-boom-last-after-the-pandemic

Plastic Surgery Popularity During Coronavirus Booms. (January 2020). Accessed at https://www.foxbusiness.com/lifestyle/plastic-surgery-popularity-coronavirus-pandemic-zoom-boom

Embrace Your Evolution

Enjoy the pinnacle of cosmetic surgery expertise with board-certified Portland Plastic Surgeon Dr. Aric Aghayan at Après Plastic Surgery. With a legacy of over 1600 successful body contouring procedures, Dr. Aghayan stands as the foremost specialist in advanced body contouring technology and treatment options. Take the next big step on your beauty journey by scheduling a comprehensive plastic surgery consultation with Dr. Aghayan today.

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