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New Survey Reveals How 2020 Altered the Aesthetic Landscape Forever

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AEDIT, a technology-driven platform that simplifies and safeguards the search for aesthetic solutions and qualified providers, has announced the results of its inaugural consumer trends survey of 1,000 men and women, ages 18 and older. 

Findings indicate that Millennials and Gen Z now account for the largest age group interested in aesthetic procedures. The pandemic has not slowed down this demographic’s interest in pursuing self-confidence and self-expression through beauty. The rise of video conferencing for work and widespread communication as well as rapid advances in beauty technology have helped to strengthen demand for aesthetic treatments and procedures over the past year. 

Video Conferencing 

Never before have men and women been so bombarded with footage of themselves on video. With the advent of daily Zoom meetings, Google Hangouts, and FaceTimes, people who are not used to viewing themselves on screen were suddenly thrust into their very own spotlight. This led to nitpicking their appearances. AEDIT’s survey found that those interested in non-surgical and surgical treatments participate in video conferencing meetings significantly more often than those who do not. In fact, 39 percent of respondents who use video conferencing weekly reported interest in non-surgical aesthetic treatments while 37 percent reported interest in surgical treatments. 

A full 29 percent of Millennials agree that using video conferencing makes them more interested in getting aesthetic treatments. The biggest areas of concern for those who engage in regular video conferences are their teeth (39 percent), weight (33 percent), stomach/midsection (28 percent), under eye bags/pouches (23 percent), and hair thinning/loss (16 percent).

Despite spending significantly more time at home in 2020, demand for treatments remained high with 23 percent of respondents stating that they are more interested in aesthetic treatments now that they can recover at home during the pandemic.

The Dawn of A Digital Age of Aesthetics 

AEDIT founder, CEO and facial plastic surgeon William A. Kennedy III, M.D., says he believes technology is revolutionizing the beauty industry. “It places more emphasis on personalized experiences, giving consumers the opportunity to be more in control of their beauty decisions, whether that be virtually trying on lipstick before purchasing, or in our case, trying on a cosmetic procedure before booking a consultation,” he says.

Much like our social and work lives, many of those consultations are now virtual. AEDIT’s survey reveals that the pandemic has decreased interest in visiting doctors’ offices and has increased interest in telemedicine by more than 20 percent.

Moreover, 44 percent of survey respondents wish there was a way to see exactly how surgery would affect their face before taking the leap. This desire is even greater for younger women, with 50 percent of Millennials and Gen Z and 51 percent of women showing keen interest in the ability to predict the outcome of aesthetic procedures.

Owning It is In. So, is Good Skin.

Millennials have long been influencing beauty trends as the first generation who came of age during the digital revolution. However, Baby Boomers tend to eclipse them when it comes to seeking out a tweak, lift, or poke in the search to remain naturally ageless.

A shift is happening. The AEDIT survey showed that Millennials and Gen Z have significantly more interest in non-surgical and surgical treatments than men and women age 35 and up and are more likely to already have seen a doctor or had a surgical treatment than their Gen X and Boomer peers. Millennials, and now Gen Z, largely embrace aesthetic edits with open arms and zero apologies, with 40 percent stating that they do not feel ashamed or embarrassed about getting aesthetic treatments. 

The survey supports this, showing that more than 40 percent of respondents still want to feel confident in their looks during the pandemic. This population is specifically interested in aesthetic treatments to look naturally more attractive. It follows that the survey also uncovered a jump in participants using facial skincare products during the pandemic, despite a decrease in using cosmetics in 2020.

Looking Ahead

AEDIT board member and Beverly Hills facial plastic surgeon Andrew Frankel, M.D., predicts, “There might be a lull in elective surgery once the pandemic is cleared and life returns to normal, because people will likely not want to be home recuperating at that point. They will long to be out enjoying themselves. As such, promoting injectables and non-surgical procedures will be fruitful right as the world opens up again and people wish to look their best upon re-entry.”

About The Author

Julie is the co-founder of Well Defined and a longtime influencer and advocate in the wellness world. Along with her work at Well Defined, she is an executive recruiter and marketing specialist for Hutchinson Consulting. She is also a consultant and content strategist for numerous wellness brands. She is the former editor-in-chief and publisher of American Spa and was named a 2019 Folio Top Woman in Media in the Industry Trailblazers category and a 2018 winner of ISPA’s Innovate Award. She is also a seasoned journalist, specializing in spa, travel, health, fitness, wellness, sustainability, and beauty. She has been published in Departures,, E! Online,, Insider’s Guide to Spas, Luxury Travel Advisor, Marin Magazine, Ocean Home, Smart Meetings, Spa Asia, and Travel Agent.