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The Lipstick Effect

Melinda Taschetta-Millane July 2009 issue of Skin Inc. magazine
Merge magazine cover

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A recent survey, conducted by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS), addressed how “The Lipstick Effect” theory can parallel current trends in noninvasive cosmetic procedures.

A parallel effect

The Lipstick Effect—derived from a phrase recently re-coined by Leonard Lauder, chairman of Estée Lauder, when he saw a huge jump in lipstick sales after Sept. 11, 2001, in spite of economic uncertainty—is compared in the survey to the 80% of board-certified facial plastic surgeons who reported an increase in noninvasive cosmetic procedures within the past year. This increase was due to consumers looking to delay the effects of aging and to avoid more costly surgeries. The most requested procedures? Botox, 96%; dermal fillers, 93%; and ablative skin resurfacing treatments, 92%.

Despite a repressed economy, both women and men are willing to spend hard-earned money on noninvasive procedures to help them look and feel refreshed, with some even opting for procedures in order to stay competitive in the workforce. “In challenging economic times, clients want value when it comes to investing in their health and the appearance of their face,” says Donn Chatham, MD, president of the AAFPRS. “Value does not mean cheap, it means quality gained for the investment.”

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