Have you had any work done? If you haven’t yet had cosmetic surgery, you will soon, according to TIME‘s new cover story. In a piece called “Nip. Tuck. Or Else,” writer Joel Stein made some very convincing reasons why cosmetic procedures will soon be as common as makeup – if they’re not already.
We’ve been hearing that plastic surgery is more common than we think for years, but it’s a revelation to see procedure statistics one after another: U.S. doctors performed over 15 million cosmetic procedures last year. Most of those are nonsurgical; doctors perform five times as many nonsurgical procedures as surgeries. Dermatologists delivered 3.6 million rounds of Botox (and its non-brand-name competitors) and 1.7 million shots of Juvederm, Restylane and other wrinkle-fillers. Even brides are now getting plastic surgery just to walk down the aisle.
American spent a whopping $13 billion on procedures last year, most of which went towards surgically invasive procedures like liposuction and breast augmentation. The good news — if there is any — is that increased demand and new procedures on the market that prices are lowering. For example, the relatively new procedure CoolSculpting, a non-invasive procedure that freezes fat from your body, costs around $600 per body part; by way of comparison, in 2013, the national average for liposuction was $2,815 and a tummy tuck was $5,391 [PDF]. It’s not just celebrities and Upper East Siders who are indulging; interestingly, in 2007 the city with most plastic surgeons per capita was Salt Lake City.
But even as the prices lower, Stein pointed out that ‘keeping up with the Jones’ can seem to have no limit at all. “You’re going to get a cosmetic procedure for the same reason you wear makeup: because every other woman is.” Well, are you?