Getting plastic surgery to look like your SnapChat selfie may strike us as somewhat odd. In part, that’s because we’re just not used to this newfangled technology (you can tell we aren’t as young as we used to be). Is this really so odd, to be inspired by a random selfie with a filter? Maybe. We’re going to take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of that particular SnapChat-fueled approach.
Is Getting Plastic Surgery to Look Like Your SnapChat Selfie a Good Idea?
It’s one thing to be inspired by your social media accounts, but it’s another when you’re getting plastic surgery to look like your SnapChat selfie. For those of you who aren’t very familiar with SnapChat (that is, for the older people reading this), the social media app offers users a robust set of templates and overlays which alter the appearance of the captured image.
These filters, as they’re called, are immensely popular. You can give yourself a couple of bunny ears. Or you can make your eyes enormous. Or you can give yourself a cute little button nose. These filters are designed to significantly alter the appearance of the human face.
The problem arises when some people end up appreciated their filtered faces more than their real faces. To be fair, that’s not all that unusual–makeup has been doing the same thing for ages. But the filters available on SnapChat create proportions so exaggerated that surgeons have to spend a significant amount of time bringing their potential patients back down to reality. Getting plastic surgery to look like your SnapChat selfie isn’t necessarily advised–or even possible. Let’s talk about why.
Proportions of the Face
When it comes to SnapChat filters, there’s no end to just how much your proportions can be altered. SnapChat uses common anchor points and the contrast of your skin to composite anything and everything over your face.
Reality is not so easily manipulated. The proportions of your face are relatively fixed. Even in cases where plastic surgery is used to, say, drastically change the nose, those changes are relatively modest in the grand scheme of things. The reason these tiny changes appear profound is because the human brain is very, very good at detecting changes to faces.
That’s why making drastic changes to the face would be unwise even if it were possible. The human brain is incredibly good at picking up on and amplifying those changes. That’s why a plastic surgeon will sometimes suggest more modest alternatives instead.
Types of Facial Plastic Surgery
Young people, especially, use SnapChat and other social media filters as a kind of shorthand. It’s a way of saying, “I look good with these changes, so this is what I want to look like.” Making these types of aesthetic changes in younger patients is relatively rare. With the exception of rhinoplasty or lip augmentation, most facial plastic surgery patients tend to be on the older side.
That’s because a fair chunk of facial plastic surgery procedures are aimed at addressing the signs of aging that crop up over time. Essentially, whether it’s a facelift, a brow lift, or a blepharoplasty, these procedures are designed to get rid of wrinkles.
And that’s true whether you’re getting a facelift in Houston or a brow lift in Montana. So, facial plastic surgery procedures generally break down like this:
- Aesthetic facial plastic surgery procedures are designed to help patients change something about their look that is unrelated to aging. For example, this would include rhinoplasty, otoplasty, or lip augmentation.
- Rejuvenating facial plastic surgery procedures are those which try to make the patient look more youthful, removing or treating lines, wrinkles, and excess skin. This would be procedures such as facelift, blepharoplasty, and brow lift or neck lift.
Social Media and Facial Plastic Surgery
Patients looking to SnapChat filters to inform their plastic surgery decisions might seem a little extreme (would we bat an eye if they were seeking out the services of a hand surgeon for Carpal Tunnel Surgery?). But the truth of the matter is that it’s nether uncommon nor unreasonable. Social media is the way of the future (well, the present really–who knows what the future will bring). And that means we have to get used to it.
People often see themselves through the lenses of selfies and filters instead of mirrors. That’s okay. That’s the changing world. It’s incumbent on patients and surgeons to find the best way, within that context, to discuss their plastic surgery goals and outcomes. Because here’s the thing: social media isn’t going anywhere.
And that means that patients interested in getting plastic surgery to look like your SnapChat selfie is going to become ever more common. Patients will continue to be inspired by their own selfies and SnapChats. Good surgeons will adapt, and consultations with patients will inevitably do the same. Getting plastic surgery to look like your SnapChat selfie may be the trending new thing, but there’s no reason to think it’s not here to stay.