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Plastic Surgery Study: Perception of Beauty Changes with Age

Posted by Cleveland Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery on 2/1/13 11:51 AM

“Magic mirror on the wall; who is the fairest one of all?” 

woman mirrorFew of us are as vain as the evil queen in the Snow White fairy tale, but most of us can identify with her disappointment over her failing beauty. We may accept that our looks will change with age; but if the strength of the cosmetics, skin care and cosmetic surgery industries are any indication, we’re not going down without a fight! 

Looking in the mirror

Age does not have to rob you of your natural beauty, as the ever-growing popularity of cosmetic surgery indicates. However, age does shape how we interpret what we see in the mirror. According to a recent study reported on the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery website, a woman’s age affects how she perceives her facial appearance. Age appears to determine the facial features on which women focus most and the features women would most like to change through cosmetic surgery.

What women see

In “Mirror on the Wall: A Study of Women’s Perception of Facial Features as They Age,” published in Aesthetic Surgery Journal (May, 2012), Turkish researchers found that women focused on the appearance of different facial features at different points in their lives.

  • The nose and skin attracted the most attention when women were in their 20s.
  • In their 30s and 40s, women were concerned about skin condition and the eye area where the development of crows’ feet, drooping lids and under-eye bags can mar facial appearance.
  • By their 50s, women were primarily dissatisfied about the eye area but were also concerned about the jawline.

When looking in the mirror, researchers found that women focused their attention most on the features with which they were most dissatisfied. That dissatisfaction also proved to be a powerful motivator for seeking cosmetic surgery to improve appearance. 

If you are unhappy with your appearance, view our before-and-after patient photo gallery to see how cosmetic surgery can improve your appearance.

Topics: cosmetic surgery, plastic surgery, perception of beauty