The Guy’s Guide to Cosmetic Treatments

April 2023

In 2019, roughly 10% of those seeking non-surgical aesthetic procedures were males.  There is also a robust interest in male cosmetics in the millennial generation, which will only increase as they continue to age. Until recently, the rate-limiting factor was probably lack of education, but now, even males are becoming more and more educated about cosmetics. From our Mentor, OH practice, we recently spoke with Dr. Gregory Delost and Medical Aesthetics Provider, Amanda Holesko, MSN, FNP-C to learn more about cosmetic treatment options for men. 

What motivates men to try cosmetics? 

“Everyone tells me that I look tired.” One study found that men appear about one-third year older than their age, compared to females who were found to be about half a year younger. However, men typically do not pursue cosmetics to try to look younger and chase the fountain of youth. Rather, men are just happy to look their age, looking refreshed after a good night of sleep. 

What are the top areas that men are concerned about? 

The top three areas that men are most concerned about are the hairline, jawline, and eyes. Specifically, men tend to care more about crow’s feet, tear troughs, double chin, and forehead lines. Compare that to women who are more concerned about cheeks, nasolabial folds, and lips. 

Men tend to have a square facial shape with a prominent brow compared to females who tend to have more of a heart or triangular shape. These traditional anatomical differences can help explain why men are concerned about their eyes, hairline, and jawline whereas females are more motivated to treat their midface to maintain the heart shape.  

How is the initial consultation different for men? 

Men are less likely to ask questions and they also hate surprises, so it is really important to spend the extra time to create realistic expectations and foster trust and comfort.  

What about the hair? 

Hair loss continues to be the number one cosmetic concern for the aging male. After underlying medical conditions that can cause hair loss are ruled out, there are many treatment options including topical and oral medications, supplements, Keravive exfoliation treatments, and platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections that can improve the hairline. 

What is “Brotox”? 

We like to think of Brotox as a customized protocol of using neuromodulators (like Botox) to treat wrinkles for men. It is important to explain that neuromodulates only treat the “dynamic” wrinkles that occur with movement of the muscles of facial expression and not the “static” wrinkles present at rest.  

As men start to slowly age in their early thirties, a good time to start prophylactically would be the late twenties before the static wrinkles start to form.  

It is important to find a provider who is educated on the anatomical differences between men and women. It should be understood that men often require higher dose of neuromodulators and different injection patterns compared to females. Injection pattern matters because it could be the difference in creating an arched eyebrow, which is desirable in women versus a flatter, more desirable eyebrow in men. Finally, men should understand that the treatment typically lasts 3-4 months. 

How do I get a chiseled jawline? 

Aging is a multifactorial process that is seen in various different areas of the fat. Due to a decrease in skin elasticity, fat pad redistribution, and bone resorption we begin to lose the definition in our facial features. Specifically to the jawline, the mandibular angle changes due to sagging skin and loss of bone density in that area. Treatment options include dermal filler (such as Juvederm Volux or Restylane Lyft) to create jawline definition, injectable fat dissolving agents (such as Kybella) to get rid of that stubborn double chin, and cryotherapy (such as CoolSculpting) to freeze away jowls. 

Aren’t dermal fillers just for women? 

No! Dermal fillers when used in a gender appropriate fashion can be quite effective in treating areas that men hope to fix. Brotox is helpful with forehead and crows feet lines, but the additional of dermal fillers to places such as the tear troughs can be the final touch needed to combat the ‘tired look’. Placing filler into a male chin can give a stronger, square jawline to define the transition from chin to neck.  

What are cosmeceuticals and are men really open to using them? 

Cosmeceuticals are topical products that have bioactive ingredients, such as antioxidants, sunscreens, and other anti-aging molecules, that have both cosmetic and therapeutic effects.  Studies show that men are open to using them and it turns out that they may need them more than women. 

Earlier, we learned that men typically age worse than women. This may be due to the observation that men are more likely to smoke and less likely to wear sunscreen. Another recent study suggested that men may have a decreased antioxidant capacity.  Even scarier, a more recent study indicated that men have a worse prognosis when diagnosed with melanoma compared to females. 

Cosmeceuticals which can contain sunscreens and antioxidants like Vitamin C can be helpful to address these concerns. If a man isn’t willing to wear sunscreen, he is setting the treatment plan up for failure and I would be hesitant in recommending additional cosmetic treatments that could waste his money. 

While we can treat and correct concern areas such as forehead lines and lack of jawline definition – these in office treatments should be viewed as the ‘work out’ and the cosmeceutical use at home can be viewed as the ‘diet’. You will not have your best results if you are only focusing on one or the other.   

What can men do below the head and neck? 

CoolSculpting has emerged as a popular and effective treatment to target the stubborn fat that won’t go away with healthy diet and exercise in relatively fit patients, involving the neck, abdomen, flank (‘love handles’), and back. The treatment works by cryolipolysis, which is the freezing of body fat to break down fat cells, resulting in a reduction of body fat without damage to other tissues. The procedure is well-tolerated as it is quick, non-invasive, relatively painless, and there is no down time. After you have completed your series (at least 2 sessions), the results seen are permanent – meaning the fat in the areas treated will not return.  

At Optima, we have the CoolSculpting Elite machine – which uses the most recent, up to date technology and has the capability to treat two areas at one time, cutting overall treatment time in half. 

What deters men from cosmetics? 

Cost is probably the biggest factor for both men and women. However, men specifically are afraid of potential side effects and not looking natural. Most of the fears can be dispelled with extra time spent educating during the initial consultation.  

Request an appointment to schedule your consultation with one of our highly trained and specialized medical aesthetic providers to learn more and develop your custom treatment plan.  Choose from experts like Dr. Gregory Delost or Amanda Holesko, MSN, FNP-C, both of whom serve the Greater Cleveland area, and take the first step towards exceptional care by booking your appointment today.