When millions of people suddenly needed to work from home during the COVID-19 pandemic, Zoom meetings became the norm. As a result, many Americans conducted Zoom meetings every day to keep up with their co-workers and employees and used it to keep on top of work projects.
However, the convenience of Zoom meetings meant that workers stared at their faces for hours per day, giving them the ability to notice flaws. From crow’s feet to bags under the eyes to forehead wrinkles, many saw what they looked like to others and wanted plastic surgery.
By mid-2020, when elective procedures were authorized again, many Americans began to schedule plastic surgery.
Please continue reading to learn more about how Zoom changed aesthetics during the pandemic:
‘Do I Really Look Like That?’
Early in the lockdowns, many people realized that the cameras on smartphones and computers aren’t made to enhance our appearance or give the best angles to highlight our faces.
These cameras provide a ‘fishbowl’ perspective and make a face more prominent, overemphasizing certain features.
A 2018 study confirmed that the nose might look up to 30% larger in pictures taken a foot away than a customary photo distance of five feet.
But this distortion doesn’t just apply to the nose; Zoom tends to emphasize our facial imperfections on a larger scale. For example, small computers may be placed on a table or lap, which makes us gaze downward, making the skin on the neck and face fall forward. This can cause the skin to collect in folds around the mouth and below the chin.
One plastic surgeon reports that Zoom can make almost any facial feature look worse, but the neck can look worse. Any extra fat and skin under the chin and on the jaw get especially highlighted on Zoom.
Further, the lighting in the standard room is from above and not straight ahead, which can emphasize circles and bags under the eyes. This is why many Zoom users have gone to their plastic surgeons complaining of looking tired all the time.
According to Dr. Raja Mohan, a Dallas plastic surgeon, the Zoom effect has led to a boom in facelifts in his practice. “Facial aging is apparent because of the effects of lights and shadows. Whether you’re 40 or 60, what people see on video conferencing are the crevices and borders on the face that takes away that youthful look.”
A facelift can reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles, making you look a decade younger or more.
Popular Procedures During The Zoom Boom
Plastic surgery has gotten a boost during the pandemic. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) reports that eyelid surgery, facelifts, and rhinoplasty have seen the most significant increase.
In nonsurgical procedures, Botox, dermal fillers, and laser resurfacing have seen the most significant spike.
Many patients like Botox after seeing themselves for hours on Zoom because it relaxes upper face lines, including that spot between the eyebrows. Botox is also effective on the forehead and smile lines around the eyes.
Fillers help fill in areas of the face that have lost volume with age, such as around the mouth, lips, and cheeks. For example, aging tends to reduce fullness in the cheeks as well as lip softness. But fillers can increase volume in these areas, which can make you look years younger.
Also popular with fillers is to improve the jaw angle to offer a more sculpted appearance on the jawline. Fillers can even make minor improvements in the nose, such as fill in dents and other imperfections.
There also has been an increased interest in body contouring, including liposuction and CoolSculpting. These procedures offer practical ways to sculpt the body and eliminate stubborn fat pockets that don’t respond to diet and exercise.
Will The Zoom Boom Last?
Many in plastic surgery wonder if the greater interest in the field will last once COVID-19 is fully brought to heel. This is hard to predict, but some say these aesthetic trends will continue indefinitely.
First, there will likely be permanent changes in how many companies operate. During the pandemic, businesses saw higher productivity and lower overhead costs by allowing more workers to do their jobs remotely.
Many companies will probably continue with their remote work model, which will lead to more workers using Zoom for their work. The more people who use Zoom, the more likely it is that they’ll notice things they want to change in their faces.
Also, as more people used Zoom for work during the pandemic, many came to enjoy talking to people online. So, they’ll probably continue to use Zoom on a personal level.
Second, the millennial generation is getting older, with some approaching 40. Because of Gen Z, millennials know they are no longer the youngest adult generation. Many are looking at 40 in a world where so much living is made online. Even if everything were to go back like before the pandemic, social media is here to stay.
While plastic surgery may eventually lose some of its current steam, Zoom’s effect on aesthetic plastic surgery will likely continue.
*Photos by Magnet.me