Mark Zuckerberg once said, “If you’re over 30, you’re a slow old man.” Let’s just say that this seems to have stuck in the mind of many men. These days, time moves at light speed, and the quest for the fountain of youth has people hunting for a competitive edge.
Google has invested millions in research on aging and biomedical research. Larry Page has said he wants to live forever and has donated more than $30 million to anti-aging research. Likewise, billionaire tech investor Peter Thiel, who recently appeared at the Republican National Convention looking very tight in the face, has funneled millions into startups that develop anti-aging medicines and therapies.
Men are not immune to the pressure of keeping up their appearance and getting aged out, and thanks to advances in non-invasive cosmetic procedures, there are many options open to them.
“Looking tired or stressed is now less tolerated because quick fixes are easier than ever before,” says New York City cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Paul Jarrod Frank, whose clientele is one-third male. “No longer is it OK for women to be pretty young things who are defying their age alongside older, softer, saggier, graying, and wrinkled men,” says Jamie Sherrill (“Nurse Jamie”), the owner of Beauty Park Medical Spa in Los Angeles and Dubai.
The stigma associated with this maintenance has subsided, and men are now embracing plastic surgery and skincare treatments to help them look younger. Whether it’s a touch of Botox or filler to soften forehead wrinkles or eliminate crow’s feet, ultrasound and lasers for fat removal to reduce love handles that hitting the gym can’t fix, or getting rid of the bags under the eyes via lower-eyelid blepharoplasty surgery, men are getting in on the action. “They aren’t afraid to fix the unwanted problems that are bothering them,” says Dr. Frank. “They want to maximize their time and treatment options with minimal maintenance.”
Key areas of concern for male patients? Looking tired, especially wrinkles around the eyes, is the No. 1 issue for men, according to the experts we spoke with, then the double chin or jowls. Popular procedures and treatments for men include the gateway drug of choice, Botox, and filler; UltraTight, offered at Dr. Frank’s New York City office, which tackles loose, sagging skin on the jawline and neck by incorporating aspects of ultrasound technology and minimally invasive liposuction to tighten and lift (“sharp jawlines are the strongest sign of youth and vitality in a man,” says Dr. Frank); Fraxel lasers to combat sun damage on the forehead; and Infini Microneedling, a non-invasive treatment that combines radiofrequency and microneedling to deliver focused energy to precise depths in the skin to lessen wrinkles, acne scars, and dullness.
San Francisco cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Vic Narurkar finds that most men are creatures of habit. “Once they are comfortable with a given treatment (say, Kybella injections to improve a double chin), they are very loyal,” says Dr. Narurkar. Men are also increasingly paying attention to their skincare regimens at home. Product wise, Dr. Narurkar is partial to Restorsea’s new PRO line. “We have many patients with sensitive skin who cannot tolerate most anti-aging products, in particular those with chemical exfoliants,” he explains. “The active ingredient in Restorsea PRO Intensive Treatment 10X is hydrolyzed salmon roe, which is a natural enzyme that gets released into the water when baby salmon hatch.”
Nurse Jamie uses her trademarked, virtually bruise-free “Baby Drop Filler” technique to help to lift and shape the face. “Men do not want their features to lack masculinity,” says Dr. Frank, who stresses the importance of the right artistic hand. “Men don’t want any visible signs of work that was done and want to look natural and angular,” agrees Sherill, who also sees a lot of demand for a defined jaw line and jowl reduction.
Since a huge majority of the population in the Bay Area is very tech savvy, Dr. Narurkar claims that the cosmetic products, plastic surgery, and dermatological procedures must be supported by evidence—not by hype. “Many men will bring papers I have published as well as other scientific research into the appointment,” says Dr. Narurkar, who focuses only on non-invasive treatments. “We are an anti-Kardashian fad practice.”