FOREVER YOUNG: COSMETIC ENHANCEMENTS FOR BABY BOOMERS | by
The first wave of Baby Boomers turned 66 in 2012, and according to the AARP they’re reinventing what it means to grow older. In fact, Rod Stewart’s “Forever Young” might just be the Boomer’s theme song. A recent Pew Research study reported that Boomers, on average, feel 15 years younger than their chronological age. “Boomers are healthier, fitter, living longer, and working more years than any previous generation, and they want their outer appearance to match how their feeling inside,” says Dr. Jeremy Williams, a cosmetic surgeon and owner of Park Meadows Cosmetic Surgery in Lone Tree.
Having confronted strong cultural changes from the Vietnam War to the Disco Era to the Internet Age, Boomers aren’t afraid to reinvent themselves. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), Boomers make up 35 percent of plastic surgery patients. One reason: Once the secret of the rich and famous, cosmetic surgeries and nonsurgical procedures are now nearly as accessible as the nearest makeup counter. “We have better techniques that are faster, less expensive and less invasive than in the past,” Williams says. From facelifts to breast augmentations to Botox and other injectibles, today’s cosmetic procedures are as varied as Boomers themselves.
The tried-and-true facelift can remove years from your face, especially when combined with neck lift. But facelifts have come a long way, baby. “Today’s facelift is a natural refinement of your facial features not the tightened or unnatural appearance of generations ago,” says Williams, who performs surgeries at Sky Ridge Medical Center. “A good facelift should look like you haven’t had anything done.” For the biggest bang for your buck in facial surgery, Williams recommends eyelid surgery, which can open up the eyes and remove under-eye bags and puffiness. Along with facelifts, eyelid surgeries topped the list of the most popular cosmetic facial surgeries among Boomers last year, according to the ASPS. But the newest trend in facial surgeries may be the mini-facelift. Also known as the weekend lift, this procedure is custom-made for the generation who values their time and spearheaded the success of drive-through services. Unlike a traditional facelift, which focuses on the entire face, a mini-facelift takes only one to two hours and addresses specific areas that are beginning to show signs of aging. “You can come in on a Friday and be back at work in less than a week without any telltale signs you’ve had anything done,” says Dr. Jeffrey Raval owner of Raval Facial Aesthetics, a Cherry Creek North practice that performs mini-facelifts, along with other surgical and non-surgical procedures for the face.
Post-menopausal hormonal changes, gravity, and weight gain, as well as pregnancy and breastfeeding, contribute to breast changes that can be corrected with breast augmentation surgery. “Many Boomer-age women will complain their breasts aren’t what they once were before having children,” Williams says. But not every midlife woman has a desire to look like a Penthouse model. No problem. Along with adding size, breast implants can be used by cosmetic surgeons to improve the shape and volume, providing a youthful shape that is more flattering in clothing. A breast lift, which can reduce sagging that may occur after midlife, is another popular procedure. “The goal of a breast lift is to put things back where they were when a woman was younger,” Williams says. The results can last a long time. “Many women have a breast lift and never need another breast operation again,” Williams notes.
Botox and filler injections, such as Restylane and Juvederm, can turn back the clock without any need to go under the knife. These nonsurgical age-erasing injections are quick, relatively inexpensive, and don’t require any recovery time. Doctors go right to the wrinkles or other skin imperfection and fill them in. Poof. Wrinkle gone in mere minutes. “The injectibles have probably changed cosmetic surgery more than anything else in the past generation,” Williams says. Injectibles are the most frequent procedures requested by Boomer patients at Park Meadows Cosmetic Surgery, he adds. Botox treatments typically last three to six months, while fillers last from six to nine months, compared to 10 years for a facelift before a touchup is needed. Lasers and chemical peels are other nonsurgical options. “They can remove fine wrinkles, tighten the skin and remove sunspots,” Williams say. The best news: The latest nonsurgical techniques can make you look more youthful without depleting your bank account. “Surgeries once defined the plastic surgery industry,” Raval says. “But now we have many more options to offer patients in just about every price range.”
HOW TO CHOOSE A DOCTOR
Just as location, location, location are the buzzwords in real estate, the keys to choosing a good cosmetic surgeon are experience, experience, experience. It’s important to look for a doctor who is board-certified, but not just any board certification. For plastic surgery, your doctor should be certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgeons. Choose a surgeon who specializes in the kind of procedure you’re planning and has performed them for many years. “An experienced doctor will have performed at least 50 procedures just like the one you’re having done,” Raval says. Ask to see before and after photos. That will serve two purposes. It will show you the results of the doctor’s work, but it will also allow you to see that doctor’s idea of good facial aesthetics. “Every cosmetic surgeon has a different idea of what a good facelift looks like, for example,” Williams says. You should also be able to sit down and have a lengthy conversation with the doctor during the consultation and ask questions about your expectations and what your recovery will be like. Finally, have realistic expectations about what your cosmetic procedure can accomplish. Cosmetic surgery, injectibles and skin treatments improve your appearance at one point in time, but you may not walk out of the office looking like Scarlett Johansson. “We can’t stop the clock entirely,” Williams says. “But we can reset it.”
Leave a Comment
Please be respectful while leaving comments. All comments are subject to removal by the moderator.