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Social Media + Photo-Editing Apps Tied to Higher Interest in Cosmetic Procedures

Increases seen in social media use and cosmetic consultations during the COVID-19 pandemic

By Lori Solomon (HealthDay News) | March 25, 2024

MONDAY, March 25, 2024 (HealthDay News) -- Time spent on social media and use of photo-editing applications contribute to the desire to undergo a cosmetic procedure, according to a study recently published in the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology.

Iman F. Khan, M.D., M.P.H., from Boston University, and colleagues surveyed 175 adults visiting an outpatient dermatology clinic about social media usage, perceptions of cosmetic procedures, and desire to have a cosmetic procedure.

The researchers found that factors significantly resulting in differences in desire to have a cosmetic procedure included using photo-editing applications, following celebrities and influencers on social media, and following social media accounts showing cosmetic results. During the pandemic, there was a statistically significant change seen in the number of participants who followed social media accounts showing results of cosmetic procedures (pre-COVID, 31.9 percent; post-COVID, 50.6 percent); who thought about having a cosmetic procedure done (pre-COVID, 63.8 percent; post-COVID, 86.4 percent); who discussed cosmetic procedures with a physician, dermatologist, or other professional (pre-COVID, 43.6 percent; post-COVID, 67.9 percent); and who believed that a cosmetic procedure would help their self-esteem (pre-COVID, 47.9 percent; post-COVID, 77.8 percent).

"We advise that cosmetic practitioners discuss social media and video platform usage with their patients to understand their desire for a cosmetic procedure as well as their anticipated results," the authors write.

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