All around the world, the demand for cosmetic treatments and cosmetic surgery spikes sharply during the Christmas season and in the months leading up to summer, when people are getting their beach bodies in shape. In Australia, these two holidays are compounded into one, making it the busiest time of year for Australian cosmetic surgeons and physicians. 

So what cosmetic procedures will be popular this summer?

In the US market, a trendsetter in this sphere, mummy makeovers, the Vampire facelift, fat-reduction procedures such as Cellulaze and CoolSculpting were the hottest trends during the summer of 2012. Curves—both butts and breasts—and skin treatments were in great demand as well. Duck lips and other overdone looks were no longer considered hot. You can expect a similar trend in Australia this summer.

The Cosmetic Physicians Society of Australia (CPSA) confirms the trend with a recent press release. They anticipate an increase in non-surgical cosmetic treatments this holiday season, explaining that as the weather warms up Aussies warm to cosmetic procedures and treatments.

Says CPSA Board Member, Dr Susan Austin: “The lead up to summer is always the busiest time of year for our members. We find that patients seek cosmetic treatments going into the warmer months, as they want to look refreshed and ready for the holidays. The vast majority of those who have had treatments come back because they loved the results first time round and want to maintain their refreshed appearance.”

Australian facial plastic surgeon Dr George Marcells agrees, commenting that during the Christmas period people want quick and easy fixes that make them look good at parties. According to Marcells, anti-wrinkle injections to help the appearance of frown lines and crow’s feet, soft tissue fillers, nose re-shaping (both surgical and non-surgical), facelifts, breast implants and liposuction have been very popular Christmas-time procedures in past years.

“Christmas is a common time for people to have surgery,” says Marcells. “We are always busy at this time of the year. People like to have a bit of time off and come back in the New Year looking refreshed. It makes them look like they’ve been away for the holidays and come back relaxed. The new trend is to look natural and refreshed without showing a lot of evidence of surgery.”

A recent CPSA survey conducted in collaboration with Costhetics.com.au found that 99.5 per cent of survey participants who had undergone a non-surgical cosmetic treatment in the past stated that they would do so again. More than three quarters were likely to tell a friend about their cosmetic procedures.

According to the survey, wrinkle muscle relaxation treatments, dermal filler treatments, laser/IPL treatments for hair removal, scar and broken capillaries, microdermabrasion and chemical peels were the most popular non-surgical cosmetic procedures.

The survey participants, who were 96.7 per cent female, stated that they typically spent between $1,000 and $5,000 on their non-surgical cosmetic treatments. An astounding quarter of the respondents had undergone surgical procedures on which they spent between $5,000 and $20,000. A further 55 percent indicated they were considering them.

What procedures will be popular in Australia this holiday season? “We will eventually find out what is hot and what is not, half way through the season,” says Louisa McKay of Costhetics.com.au cosmetic medicine website.

According to McKay, regardless of the choices they make, consumers need to be careful about safety. “Seeking qualified and experienced surgeons and cosmetic physicians is one way to reduce risks and ensure better outcomes,” she says.

The warning is timely and appropriate. According to the CPSA survey results earlier this year, only three out of five people having non-surgical treatments confirmed their doctor’s credentials before the treatment. One in five said that they had not checked. The rest—another one in five—said they had not used a doctor for the procedure.

“Every procedure carries its own risks,” says McKay. “Many consumers forget this, especially with non-surgical procedures. While most people experience few problems, skin type, general health, genetic disposition, medical conditions and any meds or supplements you take may put you at risk. You need to discuss all these issues with your doctor. According to our current legal framework, anyone—even practitioners without credentials—can perform some of these services, so you can really land in hot water if you fail to do your homework beforehand. If you employ someone without the expertise or experience to provide the very best outcomes, you take an unnecessary risk.

“The mission of Costhetics.com.au is to help consumers understand cosmetic procedures and their multiple options, including potential risks and complications, before making cosmetic medicine choices. We caution consumers to always use accredited service providers and believe that a well-informed consumer is a safe consumer. Costhetics is honoured to play a positive role in this consumer education process.”

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