Historically men are seen to be masculine and strong. So the idea of men having cosmetic surgery doesn't fit comfortably with societies ideas of masculinity. However men are becoming increasingly used to the idea of having a procedure in order to improve their looks.
The visual idea of a man has always been represented with images of masculinity displaying strength ruggedness and a sense of security. Conventional beauty routines have always been seen as the domain of women which is why surgery is closely linked with female consumerism. However in modern society men are increasingly becoming the target audience for beauty products ranging from moisturisers to products to hide wrinkles.
There has also been a rise in beauty facilities specialised for men such as Truefitt & Hill in London. Truefitt & Hill specialises in 'grooming me for greatness' and many more salons of this nature are emerging. Men are now seen as strong consumers of the beauty industry and this has had a clear effect on men and the industry. Advertising has also had an impact on men and beauty. Many male celebrities such as David Beckham, Sean Combs and Matthew McConaughey have been used to promote male beauty products and have encouraged the image of a man who looks after his physical self. It has become important for men to look good not just through their clothes but also through their skin, hair, smell and body shape. This has had an influence in the growth of the male market.
Cosmetic surgery has always been seen as a way for women to enhance their bodies. The popular image has been for women to have their breasts enlarged, stomachs made smaller and lips inflated. However as the image of beauty enhancing services has changed so has the audience that it reaches. Now there are many different reasons that individuals choose to have procedures and it is no longer just aligned to women. The cosmetic market is committed to understanding men's wants and needs and how they can best be met.
The world of beauty for men is vast and making money. There are a variety of procedures available to men such as rhinoplasty (nose surgery), abdominal surgery and penis enlargement. According to The Harley Medical Group website the most popular procedures for men are nose reshaping, male chest reduction, liposuction, face and neck lift and ear reshaping.
There is still an uncomfortable feeling around men and beauty enhancing services and it is not something that many men feel they can speak freely about. However ideas are changing and it is becoming more acceptable for men to be honest about wanting to look good and not being ashamed of having a procedure to aid the process. Many celebrity men such as Micky Rourke, Bruce Jenner and David Gest have had visible surgery. Obviously just like female cosmetic surgery there have been examples of very bad male surgery such as Michael Jackson. As more men in the public eye are seen to openly have cosmetic surgery it could influence how many men in the future discuss their decisions regarding cosmetic surgery.
Overall it is clear that there has been a change in attitude surrounding men and cosmetic surgery. Although men are still closely linked with masculinity are also closely linked to beauty and presentation. As the relationship between men and appearance strengthens so does the acceptability of men having beauty enhancing services.
In the future there may be a situation where men are equal consumers of beauty products and they will be able to be freely open up about their cosmetic surgery choices.
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