A decade ago a trip to the plastic surgeon, for a nip here and a tuck there, was almost exclusively only taken by women, but more and more men are following suit, signing up for cosmetic augmentation to look better and boost their confidence.

They are not hiding the fact either, with a recent survey done by the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery showing that since 1997 there has been a 121% increase in surgical and non-surgical cosmetic procedures done on men in the US.

The taboo against cosmetic procedures for men is also lifting here in Australia, with surgeons around the nation saying we are gradually catching up with the US in that area.

According to Sydney Plastic Surgeon, Dr Steve Merten, Aussie blokes opting for plastic surgery now make up about 20 per cent of patients and this figure is set to continue rising.

A combination of medical, technological, economic and societal factors, including ageing populations, is contributing to the increase.

For men over the age of 50 getting a good night’s sleep or having a holiday often aren’t enough to get rid of the crows feet or bags under the eyes so they are resorting to cosmetic options to freshen their appearance.

But young men too are presenting at clinics for cosmetic procedures prompted by multiple factors, such as celebrities like David Beckham, Brad Pitt, and Zac Efron making it cool to be a modern, metrosexual man who cares about his appearance.

Added to that, men of all ages are aware that increasing numbers of women are more attracted to a man who likes to take care of himself physically.

On the technical front, advances in anaesthetic and surgical techniques, have made many procedures available on an outpatient basis and reducing recovery times which allows men to get back to work more quickly.

So what procedures are men having?

“Man Boob” Jobs

In Australia, “subcutaneous mastectomy” or “male breast reduction” surgery, a procedure to remove excess breast tissue and fat, to correct man boobs, or “moobs” as they are also known, is the fastest growing cosmetic operation for men, according to plastic surgeon Dr Steve Merten.

Male breast reduction is done to correct a condition known as gyneacomastia that results in excess breast tissue and fatty deposits developing around the chest during puberty. These usually disappear with age however, for some, they remain into adulthood often causing embarrassment.

Excess weight or weight loss and ageing can also cause the male chest to look large and saggy.

According to Dr Merten, the increase in male breast reduction is a result of greater awareness and acceptance of cosmetic surgery and coverage of celebrities and politicians with “moobs”.

Nose jobs

Also called a rhinoplasty, the nose job was one of the first cosmetic procedures to become widely accepted among men and continues to be one of the most popular procedures.

Cosmetic eyelid surgery

Eyelid surgery or blepharoplasty to remove eye bags and/or lift the eye is another popular procedure for men wishing to appear younger than their years.

Sagging eyelids resulting in premature ageing can be from the stresses of everyday life, too much sun, smoking and even some hereditary factors.

Tummy Tucks, Liposuction and Body Contouring

Major body contouring operations, including tummy tucks (“abdominoplasty”), body lifts, and liposuction, are being chosen by more and more Australian men in their 20s, 30s and 40s. The need for these operations has dramatically increased over the last decade, alongside and due to more men undoing weight-loss “bariatric” surgery.

Tummy tucks (abdominoplasty) remove excess skin and fat from the front of the abdomen, and tightens the abdominal muscles, given a sleeker, more toned and stronger abdomen.

A body lift, which is most often done after major weight loss resulting in loose skin, tightens up the skin around the abdomen, thighs and buttocks.

Men are requesting liposuction most commonly for the stomach and to remove “love handles”, but also for around the neck and chin area. Liposuction is often done as part of other body contouring procedures.

Chin implants

Men wanting that chiselled, masculine look are more often opting for chin implants.

This procedure can make the chin larger or for men with a “weak chin”, improve the shape resulting in proportionate and balanced features.


The facelift is also getting more popular with US men asking for about nine per cent of the facelifts in that country.

Non-surgical procedures

The number of men requesting non-surgical treatments, such as fillers, botox and skin peels to improve their facial appearance, is also rising.

Dr Steve Merten says men mostly want a subtle change and to look refreshed – not a dramatic overhaul.

For more information about these or any other plastic surgery procedure, please contact our office:

Pure Aesthetics
02 9199 7448