Clinics are reporting a rise in bookings for bigger lips, fewer wrinkles and brighter eyes – and clinicians say it’s all down to the Zoom effect.
Ageing is inevitable, but the effects are seeing more woman and men attempt to turn back the clock with injectables or more permanent solutions including surgery.
Nelson Appearance Medicine administrator Lilya Windleburn said business “went through the roof” after the first lockdown.
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According to Statista, an online data portal, Zoom Video Communications had 10 million daily meeting participants worldwide at the end of 2019.
By April 2020, the number had skyrocketed to 300 million as the online video format allowed businesses, customers and friends to meet virtually while the pandemic had communities in lockdown.
Windleburn said seeing your imperfections reflected back at you on screen, combined with money that could no longer be spent on holidays, had seen many opting for facial injectables.
Botox and dermal fillers were the most popular procedure at her clinic, she said, followed by PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) injections, made popular by Kim Kardashian.
Clinics across the region are reporting a boom in bookings for temporary facial tweaks.
Cosmetic Clinic Richmond owner Liz Woodward has trained clinicians in the use of Botox for 10 years.
She said younger people, between 20 and 30, were mainly getting their lips plumped while the 30 to 40-year-olds were ready to “dabble” in Botox and fillers.
The over 40s were more reluctant to face the needle but slowing the ageing process saw them “bite the bullet and do it”, she said.
And while it was mostly women, Woodward said men were also getting into the act.
“A few guys have got youthful-looking girlfriends or partners and feeling self-conscious about that.”
At the other end of the spectrum, some men preferred their partners to age naturally. That led to some partners sneaking into the clinic and paying cash to avoid being found out.
Fillers and Botox aren’t permanent fixes. Botox requires top-ups every few months to maintain the effect while fillers can last up to 18 months.
Woodward said injectables were becoming part of the beauty routine, similar to getting a regular haircut or wax.
You didn’t have to keep going back, she said, but “most likely you will love the result and will have to maintain it”.
For some, injectables aren’t enough.
Nelson Plastic Surgery director Fiona Wilson said customer numbers had doubled since lockdown for those seeking surgery including removing excess skin around the eyes and neck lifts.
She said demand for surgery had certainly increased due to the Zoom effect.
“Looking in the mirror they get used to it but looking in another format, they see the ageing process quite clearly.
Stuff journalist Audrey Malone experiences first hand what it is like to get Botox/Dysport injections for removing face wrinkles. (Video first published on 1 January 2019)
A lot of women were opting to treat themselves after years of spending money on their family, she said.
“As woman, we don’t spend a lot of money on ourselves but as we get older, we decide it’s time for me now.
“If something annoys you, and you’ve got the ability to get it fixed, then why don’t you.”
She said when it came to keeping a youthful look naturally, “choose your parents wisely”.
“How your skin’s going to age is through genetic processes. Everyone can see their mother in the mirror.”