Clinics are reporting an increase in bookings for bigger lips, fewer wrinkles, and brighter eyes — and clinicians say it’s all down to the Zoom effect.
Aging is inevitable, but the effects are that more and more women and men are trying to reverse it with injectables or more permanent solutions, including surgery.
Lilya Windleburn, administrator of Nelson Appearance Medicine, said business “exploded” after the first lockdown.
“It’s the Zoom phenomenon, people are looking at each other a lot more.”
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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 as the pandemic had communities in lockdown.
Windleburn said seeing your imperfections reflected on you on screen, combined with money that could no longer be spent on vacation, has seen many opt 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.
Area clinics are reporting a boom in bookings for temporary facial adjustments.
Liz Woodward, owner of Cosmetic Clinic Richmond, has trained clinicians in the use of Botox for 10 years.
She said young people, between the ages of 20 and 30, mostly get their lips plumped while those in their 30s and 40s are ready to “dab” in Botox and fillers.
Those over 40 were more reluctant to face the needle, but the slowing down of the aging process saw them “bite the bullet and do it”, she said.
And while it was mostly women, Woodward said men also got in on the act.
“A few guys have younger-looking girlfriends or partners and feel self-conscious about it.”
At the other end of the spectrum, some men preferred their partner to age naturally. This led to some partners sneaking into the clinic and paying cash to avoid detection.
Fillers and Botox are not permanent solutions. Botox requires refills every few months to maintain the effect while the refills can last up to 18 months.
Woodward said injectables have become part of the beauty routine, like a regular haircut or wax.
You didn’t need to go back, she said, but “you’ll probably like the result and have to maintain it.”
For some, injectables are not enough.
Nelson Plastic Surgery director Fiona Wilson said the number of clients had doubled since the lockdown for those wanting surgery, including the removal of excess skin around the eyes and neck lifts.
She said the demand for surgery has certainly increased due to the Zoom effect.
“Looking in the mirror, they get used to it, but looking in another format, they see the aging process quite clearly.
Stuff reporter Audrey Malone experiences first-hand what it’s like to receive Botox/Dysport injections to eliminate facial wrinkles. (Video first published on January 1, 2019)
Many women have chosen to treat themselves after years of spending money on their families, she said.
“As women, 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 is bothering you and you have the ability to fix it, then why not you.”
She said when it came to keeping you looking young naturally, “choose your parents wisely.”
“The way your skin ages is due to genetic processes. Everyone can see their mother in the mirror.