A question of body image part 1: Rates of Plastic Surgery in the UK

The most recent figures and statistics published by BAAPS (British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons) show that people in the UK spend, on average, around £2.3bn on aesthetic plastic surgery procedures each year. The statistics also show us that the demand for plastic surgery is at large and has been increasing over the years.

Data from BAAPS shows that the most popular procedures from 2011-2013 were:
1. Breast Augmentation
2. Blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery)
3. Face/Neck lift
4. Breast reduction
5. Rhinoplasty
6. Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck)
7. Fat transfer
8. Liposuction
9. Otoplasty (ear correction)
10. Brow lifts

In 2011, brow lifts were not amongst the most popular procedures; but with celebrities like Cara Delevinge and Kim Kardashian leading the brow movement it is no wonder brow lifts have made the list in 2013.

Not only this but the following data shows which procedures have gained popularity, amongst both men and women, between the years 2011- 2013. Perhaps it’s Kylie Jenner’s lips which are having an adverse effect on the UK or maybe Renee Zellweger’s brand new face has given the nation some plastic surgery inspo. One thing is for certain- the UK has become a lot more keen on going under the knife. In 2011, a total of 39,070 plastic surgery procedures were carried out in the UK on both men and women. This number dramatically increased in 2013 when a whopping 50,122 plastic surgeries were performed in the UK.

The data below allows you to keep abreast of the change in popularity amongst certain procedures; for example, the tables show that breast augmentation procedures in men has rocketed from 0 in 2011 to 1,037 in 2013! Another popular surgery amongst men in the UK is rhinoplasty surgery, or ‘nose jobs’; in 2011 952 men had nose jobs however in 2013 this amount dropped to just 543. The data shows that, although rates in certain plastic surgery procedures have increased, amongst men, these numbers don’t come close to the amount of procedures had by women.

The number of women having ‘boob jobs’ has been high for years, as the data shows, and it has been increasing over the years. In 2011 breast augmentations were the most popular procedure with 9,843 women undergoing the surgery and this increased by 2013 with 11,123 women going under the knife.

Along with breast augmentations the data from BAAPS shows us that the number of women undergoing face/neck lifts, liposuction, fat transfer and eyelid surgery has increased greatly. It is obvious from the charts bellow that the urge to undergo plastic surgery is most occurring in females although men are clearly also feeling the pressure to go to such lengths for ‘beauty’.

It is possible to blame social media, photo editing and the magazine industry for the rise in men and women going to extreme lengths to achieve beauty. This point has been made by numerous beauty campaigns which have been designed to help men and women embrace their natural selves and feel confident in their own skin. However, if we look at the data visualisations below, it is questionable as to how effective these beauty campaigns are when the rates in plastic surgery in the UK have increased.

Rates of Plastic Surgery in The UK 2011:

(Data Source, BAAPS.ORG.UK)

Rates of Plastic Surgery in The UK 2013:

(Data Source: BAAPS.ORG.UK)