In 9th place in the international ranking – led by the United States, Brazil and South Korea – for the number of cosmetic surgeries, is Italy. According to a survey by the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (Isaps), the world’s biggest association of plastic surgeons, 418,760 treatments and surgeries were carried out in Italy in 2015, equating to 1.9% of the total. One of the most significant trends in this sector is the increase in the number of men in the medical studios of plastic surgeons: almost a million and a half of all surgeries carried out concerned men, accounting for 15.3% of the total (compared to 13.7% the year before).
Botox and fillers are the most popular
Which treatments are those in greatest demand by the “stronger sex”? Botox and hyaluronic acid filler, to smooth/fill out wrinkles and reshape cheekbones. Also popular among men, is medical peeling, to mitigate the signs of time, reducing the thickness of the skin. The most innovative treatments include Dermamelan, which effectively solves the problem of brown marks on the skin.
It consists of a combination of five depigmenting agents: cogic, phytic and ascorbic acid/vitamin C, retinol and factor K. The protocol is carried out in two phases, the first in the medical studio and the second at home.
Identikit of men’s skin
The treatments described above are all ideal for men’s skin, which is about 16% thicker than women’s skin and therefore better protected, resistant, less sensitive, firmer and suppler. This is due to the higher number of cellular layers within the horny layer and the fact that the derma contains more collagen. The hair system is obvious much more developed, due to the presence of the beard, and the sebaceous glands are bigger and greater in number too, with secretion levels almost twice those found in women, diminishing to a lesser extent as the years go by. Result? Men almost always have greasy or combination skin, with blackheads and acne. On the other hand, the supporting fibres, collagen and elastin, degenerate faster in men than in women. And wrinkles become deeper and more visible. This is due particularly to the aggressive elements to which men’s skin is exposed: sharp changes in temperature, smog, severe cold and, most importantly, shaving. Whether manual or electric, shaving gradually breaks down the hydrolipid film, exercising a strongly abrasive action, which causes reddening, chapped skin and irritation.
Scalpel for him
If Botox and hyaluronic fillers are the cosmetic medical treatments in greatest demand among men, the most popular surgeries are undoubtedly blepharoplasty, followed by the reshaping of the chin and abdomen. The first operation involves the rejuvenation of the eye area in the most natural way possible, eliminating excess fat and skin that cause the eyelids to droop and the formation of unsightly bags under the eyes. After cutting into the fold of the upper eyelid and/or under the lower lash line, the plastic surgeon removes the excess fat and skin, closing the incision with tiny stitches. Performed by expert hands, the operation gives excellent results. There is only one quite common problem: “round eye”, lacking expression and naturalness, due to the drooping of the lower lid following the removal of the skin. This can now be prevented with canthopexy, a technique which (matched to the blepharoplasty) which consists in tightening the lateral eye ligaments and repositioning the orbicular muscle higher up.
Double chin elimination
A heavy profile – with a double chin due to the accumulation of fatty tissue in the neck caused by being overweight and incorrect posture – “disturbs” men. In this case, the specialist proceeds with localised liposuction, carried out in day surgery under local anaesthetic, with slight sedation if necessary. The surgeon makes an incision of about 2 mm under the chin, sucks out the excess fatty tissue with a micro-cannula joined to a mechanical vacuum, sometimes with the aid of other specific equipment (ultrasound, vibrations, water jets) to better dissolve the fat.
In this way, he recreates the angle between the neck and the jaw, remodelling the cheek line. If the skin has lost elasticity and firmness, reabsorbable traction threads made of polydioxanone are ideal, inserted using very fine, painless needs, recreating a sort of net under the derma. Each thread measures about 3 cm and about 10 threads are required for each area treated. The result is visible immediately and lasts up to six months.
A slimmer profile
The most popular liposculpture in men is carried out on the abdomen. Aim: to eliminate unsightly “love handles” from the abdomen and hips. For this type of operation, the fat must be deposited subcutaneously and not deep down, as is often the case in men. In this case, liposculpture is useless. The operation is carried out in day-, under local anaesthetic, with sedation if necessary. The duration lasts from 30 minutes to about 2 hours depending on the areas to be treated. The surgeon infiltrates a vasoconstricting saline solution into the fatty deposits through a fine needle (to completely eliminate bleeding) along with local anaesthetic. He then eliminates the excess fat with a vacuum connected to a cannula with a diameter of about 2 millimetres. For about a month after the operation, the patient must wear a special compressive girdle to favour the speedy recovery of the tissues.