Plastic Surgery Blog

Plastic Surgery Predictions for 2015

champagne-bottleTyra Banks made a splash when she published an article in the Wall Street Journal outlining several very specific plastic surgery predictions for the future. Some of her predictions were bizarre (for example, she believes that someday, “Plastic surgery will be as easy and quick as going to the drugstore for Tylenol” and “The features of one’s baby will be as selectable as menu items at a fast-food drive-through window”).

While we don’t agree with everything she said, the article did prompt our Northwestern Plastic Surgery team to start thinking about plastic surgery predictions for the New Year. Here are a few plastic surgery trends and procedures we believe we will see more of in 2015.

Natural-Looking Breast Implants

Breast augmentation is a personalized procedure, and women have different ideas of what looks good. That being said, oversized breast implants have had their moment. More women are opting for moderately sized, teardrop-shaped implants to create natural looking cleavage; some women are even choosing to replace large implants with smaller implants.

Keep in mind that our plastic surgeons respect your unique cosmetic goals, and we will work with you to create a customized treatment plan — whether that includes large implants, small implants or something in between.

Buttock Augmentation

Many people desire a voluptuous, shapely buttock, thanks to the popularity of certain celebrities and other pop culture influences. Plastic surgeons can enhance a naturally small or flat backside either by placing an artificial buttock implant, or by using your own fat from another area of the body. This could be a huge year for big buttocks!

Facial Fat Transfer

Speaking of using fat to enhance an area of the body, fat can also be used to rejuvenate the facial features. Facial fat transfer is a procedure in which donor fat is harvested from an area of the body (like the abdomen or thighs) and transferred to the face to restore volume, fill in wrinkles and lines and improve the overall appearance of the skin. An added benefit of fat transfer is that the shape of the donor fat area looks slimmer after treatment! We believe plastic surgeons will continue to refine facial fat transfer techniques and find new ways to use fat.

Injectables

Non-surgical treatment with facial fillers and injectables is becoming more widespread every year. Last year, the use of Botox and soft tissue fillers rose 3 percent and 13 percent, respectively. Cosmetic companies have responded by manufacturing new products such as Voluma, which is designed to correct age-related loss of fullness in the cheeks. We predict that non-surgical injectable treatment will remain popular, and more products will be developed to address common age-related cosmetic concerns.

Laser Hair Removal

With a busy schedule full of personal and professional obligations, any chance to cut down on time-consuming personal care tasks is welcome. After a few laser hair removal treatment sessions, expect a significant reduction in the time spent shaving, tweezing and waxing unwanted hair. That explains why laser hair removal has attracted so much attention and why it will likely remain a very popular procedure.

Make 2015 the year that you finally address that bothersome feature, or treat the physical effects of aging, gravity or pregnancy. Northwestern Plastic Surgery can help. Contact our team today, either by email or by calling (312) 695-6022, and schedule an informational consultation.

Beauty Resolutions for the New Year

shutterstock_91016318knitscarfgirlDecember is a popular time to reflect on the past year and make resolutions for the upcoming New Year. It’s common for patients of Northwestern Plastic Surgery to make a few health and beauty-related resolutions that they want to incorporate into their lives. If you need a little inspiration for 2015, consider the following ideas.

Pamper Your Skin

As we age, our skincare needs evolve. Reevaluate the products you’re using to cleanse, moisturize and protect your skin and make sure they are targeted to your specific skin condition (e.g., dryness, areas of hyperpigmentation, light wrinkles). If you haven’t done so already, invest in a good cream for the delicate skin around your eyes.

Another skin-related item to consider: Skin cancer is now the most common form of cancer in the country. Early detection is key to successful treatment. Resolve to make 2015 the year you start scheduling regular skin cancer screenings at your dermatologist’s office.

Also, take steps to protect your skin from germs. Go through your makeup bag and toss any products that are too old or have a funky smell. Clean your makeup brushes and throw out old sponges. Sanitize your smartphone with a special cleaning solution or some rubbing alcohol.

Nourish Your Hair

Almost all of us abuse our hair on a daily basis with hot tools like a straightener or curling iron. You don’t have to stop, but try to combat the damage. Get regular trims and deep-conditioning treatments. Try heatless styling on days you don’t have to look so polished — pull hair into a sleek ponytail or twist it into a ballerina bun. Promise yourself you won’t peel or pick at split ends anymore.

Try Something New Each Month

Variety is supposedly the spice of life, so try a monthly beauty challenge to get out of your comfort zone and incorporate some fresh ideas. Wear bold red lips, try some nail decals or pick up a hair extension piece from a beauty supply store. You may stumble upon a trend you really like.

Consider Cosmetic Enhancement

If there’s a feature of your face or body that has always bothered you, our plastic surgery team encourages you to consider cosmetic enhancement. Perhaps your nose has a noticeable bump, or you are self-conscious of lines or wrinkles that have cropped up around your face. Whatever your cosmetic needs may be, we have a solution!

Contact us today to schedule a consultation and explore your treatment options. Email or call us at (312) 695-6022.

Healthy Tips for the Holiday Season

iStock_000010676270XSmallmultipresentsWe are officially in the holiday season, and Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and Christmas are right around the corner! The holidays are traditionally a time to indulge, but many people struggle to maintain healthy diet and exercise habits in the face of so much temptation.

If you are concerned about staying healthy during the holiday season, here are a few tips.

Dietary Considerations

One of the best things about the holidays is the food and drink, but Christmas cookies and eggnog aren’t exactly diet-friendly. The good news is, you can still enjoy your favorite treats without sabotaging your diet goals.

Keeping a food diary is a great way to hold yourself accountable to dietary goals and track caloric intake. Knowing that you must record every bite you take can serve as a deterrent at a buffet table filled with sumptuous treats. You can use a pen and paper journal for your food diary, or take advantage of electronic apps like MyFitnessPal or SparkPeople. Set a calorie goal for each day and try to remain within the constraints.

However, avoid skipping meals in order to “save up” calories for a holiday party or gathering. If you forego lunch, you’re more likely to overeat at dinner. Don’t attend any parties on an empty stomach; instead, eat a protein-filled snack a few hours prior, which will keep your appetite from becoming too voracious.

If you do overindulge, maintain some perspective. One meal won’t set you back too far. Forgive yourself and promise to eat better the next day!

Exercise Ideas

If you’re in a regular routine at the gym, stay motivated by scheduling in your workouts just as you would any other appointment. Nobody has to know that you skipped the cocktail party for a weightlifting session!

If you are too busy to hit the gym, incorporate movement into your day in other ways. For example, dance with your kids to some holiday tunes in the living room. Or, power-walk around the mall as you shop. Chores like vacuuming or mopping are also good for your core. Try to tighten your abdominal muscles as you work around the house.

If you’re pressed for time and simply can’t get in any formal exercise, start making a workout plan for the New Year. Buy a Groupon for a new Pilates or yoga studio, or recruit a workout buddy with similar fitness goals. There are plenty of deals to take advantage of, come January.

Mind Over Matter

The hustle and bustle of the holiday season can be mentally taxing, too. Make sure you’re staying sane and taking some time to re-group. Lower your stress levels by doing something that you enjoy: call an old friend to catch up, sleep in on a Saturday morning or volunteer for your favorite charity. Laughter is also good for reducing stress, so pop in your favorite comedy DVD or browse YouTube on your lunch break for funny videos.

Indulge Yourself with Cosmetic Rejuvenation

If the holiday season has left you feeling exhausted or frumpy, consider some cosmetic rejuvenation in the New Year! Contact Northwestern Plastic Surgery today to inquire about our procedures for the face, body and breasts. Call (312) 695-6022 or sending us an email today.

Unusual Plastic Surgery Procedures

Elf EarAt the end of the month, we’ll celebrate Halloween and all things spooky. In honor of the holiday, we’ve compiled a list of unusual (and even a bit creepy!) procedures that some plastic surgeons around the world offer.

Palm Line Surgery

People who believe in palm reading but aren’t happy with their own lines now have a way to cheat fate. Palm line surgery uses an electric scalpel to create artificial palm lines that promise more money, love and happiness. This trend is more popular in areas of the world like Japan, where news outlets report that women primarily request a stronger “love/marriage” line and men request a more prominent “wealth” line.

“Pokertox”

Pokertox uses Botox and facial filler injections to manipulate the facial appearance of gamblers. The goal is to eliminate a poker player’s “tells,” or expressions that would reveal whether they have a good hand or bad hand. For example: Upon receiving a card he doesn’t like, a poker player may raise his eyebrows; strategic injections of Botox will prevent that from happening.

Ear Cropping

Ear cropping, also known as “elfing,” gives the ears a pointed shape with a pronounced tip by removing tissue. This procedure is favored by members of the cosplay community.

Umbilicoplasty

Umbilicoplasty modifies the appearance of the belly button. It can transform an “outie” belly button to an “innie” by removing part of the protruding skin.

Foot Fillers

High heels have infiltrated the fashion world, and sky-high styles are particularly popular. Although trendy, high heels can wreak havoc on the feet. Some women opt to have dermal fillers injected into the balls of the feet to add a little extra “cushion.”

Dimpleplasty

Born without those adorable indentations? Dimpleplasty creates an artificial dimple by making a small incision on the inside of the mouth, and placing a suture between the muscle and the skin of the cheek. It’s virtually indistinguishable from a natural dimple.

Tongue Splitting

Perhaps the creepiest example on this list, tongue bifurcation is a procedure to split the tongue down the middle to resemble a snake’s forked tongue. Ouch!

Although we don’t offer any of these unusual procedures at Northwestern Plastic Surgery, our plastic surgeons perform a wide range of treatment options to enhance the breasts, sculpt the body and rejuvenate the face. Learn more by calling our practice at (312) 695-6022 or sending us an email today.

Teachers Prep for School Year with Cosmetic Surgery

The end of summer is understandably stressful, as you prep the kids to go back to school. Buying supplies, writing down schedules and coordinating carpools can certainly wear on the nerves. By the time the first day of school rolls around, you are likely feeling tired, rumpled and a bit frazzled.

To make matters worse, imagine this: Your child’s teacher greets you and your child for the first time, looking impossibly relaxed, rejuvenated and ready for the new school year.

You may wonder: How does she manage to look so fresh and youthful?

Well, the secret’s out: She may have treated herself to a cosmetic enhancement procedure over the summer. The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery recently reported on the rise in plastic surgery among educators during the summer months.

Why Teachers Pursue Cosmetic Surgery

Anyone who works in education would agree that it takes a lot of energy to keep up with a classroom for an entire school year. Cosmetic surgery is a great way to treat the facial wrinkles and lines that crop up during a stressful school year.

Also, children are not shy about pointing out perceived flaws in other people, including their teachers. This can make a teacher self-conscious of a feature they don’t particularly care for (for example, a crooked nose or loose skin on the arms). Although kids don’t mean to be malicious, their criticisms may eventually motivate a teacher to pursue surgical correction (for example, rhinoplasty to correct the nose or arm lift to improve the contour of the arms).

Summer Is a Good Time to Undergo Treatment

Summer is a popular time for teachers to undergo surgery. Plastic surgeons say they typically see an influx of teachers coming in for consultations at the beginning of the summer.

There are a few advantages to having cosmetic surgery while school is out of session. Perhaps the biggest benefit is that there is adequate time to recover from treatment. Facial rejuvenation, breast enhancement and body contouring procedures require a substantial recovery period: ideally, two to three weeks. Teachers have about three months off during the summer, during which time they can have the cosmetic procedure of their choice and completely recover before going back to school.

Another benefit to having cosmetic surgery during the summer is that the transformation and results are less dramatic to students and colleagues. Instead of returning to the classroom after a long weekend looking noticeably different, a teacher’s newly refreshed visage or enhanced physique may go unnoticed amidst the hustle and bustle of the school year. There may be less speculation about a teacher “having work done.”

Consider Your Options

Are you a teacher who is tired of the critical stares of your students, or a parent who wants to look more rested and relaxed? Contact Northwestern Plastic Surgery today to learn more about your cosmetic surgery options. You may want to start planning for next year’s treatment, or consider non-surgical facial rejuvenation treatment, which doesn’t require a lengthy recovery period! Call us at (312) 695-6022 or send us an email today to schedule an appointment.

Does Eyelid Surgery Stop the Aging Process?

Eyelid surgery, known as eyelid lift or blepharoplasty, is a commonly requested procedure at Northwestern Plastic Surgery. The procedure rejuvenates the eye area, making the eyes look well-rested, alert and more pleasant.

Many eyelid surgery patients are curious whether eyelid surgery stops the aging process. Our Chicago plastic surgeons are honest with their answer: Eyelid surgery will not stop the aging process. In fact, no surgical procedure will stop the aging process. The area around the eyes will continue to age normally after surgery.

However, eyelid surgery will produce beautiful, long-lasting results. It corrects the visible signs of aging and gives the eyes a youthful, more attractive quality. Protecting the eyes from the sun with the help of sunglasses and hats helps our patients maintain their results for many years to come.

What Eyelid Surgery Accomplishes

Let’s explore the most common goals that eyelid surgery can help you achieve.

Corrects Ptosis

Ptosis is a medical term that describes drooping — in this case, of the upper eyelids. It usually develops as the result of the forces of gravity and the natural aging of the eye’s structures, although there are cases of congenital ptosis. Other causes include stroke and trauma. Ptosis may cause one or both eyelids to cover part of the pupil and interfere with vision. Usually, the tendon of the muscle responsible for lifting the eyelid stretches, causing the lid to fall. Eyelid lift repairs the stretched tendon to correct the drooping eyelid.

Smoothes Under-eye Bags

Factors like genetics and lack of sleep can cause the appearance of “bags” underneath the eyes. Undereye bags give the eyes a tired and sad appearance. Lower eyelid surgery removes or redistributes the excess fat and skin that contributes to under-eye bags. This improves the contour between the lower lash line down to the mid-face.

Create a Crease in the Upper Eyelid

A common characteristic in many patients of Asian descent is the lack of a crease in the upper eyelids (above the lashes). If the patient requests it, eyelid surgery can create the crease for a wider-eyed appearance and a more “Westernized” look. However, this is completely at the personal discretion of the individual patient. Some Asian-American patients seek out this change, whereas others are happy with the physical characteristics of their ethnic identity as-is.

Schedule an Eyelid Surgery Consultation

If you’re interested in learning more about eyelid surgery and how it can revitalize your eye area, please contact Northwestern Plastic Surgery by calling 312-695-6022 or by email.

Summer Beauty Tips

Summer is officially here, and the warmer temperatures and longer days can disrupt your everyday beauty routine. To maintain an effortlessly cool appearance during your busy schedule of pool parties, exotic vacations and outdoor BBQs, try these summer beauty tips.  We’ve also included some helpful product recommendations for your next trip to the beauty supply store.

Hair

Summer is a great time to experiment with no-heat styles. Give your blow dryer and straightener a break, and let hair air-dry and assume its natural texture. A sea salt spray helps create casual beachy waves (beauty gurus love John Masters Organics Sea Salt Spray with Lavender). For post-pool or beach tangles, use a detangler mist like Fekkai Marine Summer Hair Beachcomber Leave-in Conditioner. To counteract the build-up of hair products, use a clarifying shampoo (like Neutrogena’s Anti-Residue Shampoo) once a week.

Makeup

Keep your makeup routine light and simple during the summer. A swipe of waterproof mascara (CoverGirl’s Lash Blast is a popular choice), a colorful lip stain and a bit of gel blush or bronzer creates a polished look for a warm summer day.

For elegant nighttime events, add a colorful eyeliner and complementary shadow; don’t forget to prime the eyes. Urban Decay’s Eyeshadow Primer Potion keeps eye shadow and liner locked in place during balmy nights.

Fragrance

Replace heavy perfumes with a light, fresh body spray. The Body Shop and Bath & Body Works have plenty of options. If you need a little extra sweat protection, swap out your regular antiperspirant with a clinical-strength formula (like Secret Clinical Strength Waterproof of Ban Clinical Roll-On).

Skin

A summertime beauty routine wouldn’t be complete without a proper (faux) tan. Stores like Sephora and Ultra are chock-full of fake tanning products, including sprays, creams and lotions that are much safer than tanning beds or the sun’s harmful rays. Clarins Self Tanning Instant Gel provides an even, natural-looking tan; Jergens Natural Glow Express is a cheaper, yet still effective solution.

Showing off your tan at the beach, pool or park? Make sure you’re protecting your skin from sun exposure with a sunscreen lotion or spray. You can’t go wrong with Banana Boat’s Sport Performance CoolZone Broad Spectrum SPF 30, an ultrafine mist that protects from both UVA and UVB rays.

For some people, the extra oil, heat and sweat of summer contributes to acne flare-ups. If you struggle to maintain a clear complexion, invest in a good glycolic or salicylic acid cleanser and choose oil-free skin products to prevent clogged pores.

Consider Cosmetic Enhancement

If there’s an area of your face, body or breasts that you’d like to enhance or refine, consider a cosmetic enhancement procedure with the cosmetic surgeons at Northwestern Plastic Surgery. We offer a selection of breast enhancement, body sculpting and facial rejuvenation treatment options suited to every patient’s needs. We would be happy to meet with you to discuss your cosmetic goals and recommend a course of treatment.

Contact Our Cosmetic Surgeons

If you’d like more information about the procedures that we offer, please contact Northwestern Plastic Surgery today to schedule an informational consultation. Call 312-695-6022 or send us an email.

Celebrity Moms Who Have Had Plastic Surgery

Ask any mother about the physical changes she’s experienced as a result of pregnancy and nursing, and she will likely describe — in detail! — how her breasts, abdomen, hips and legs have transformed. She may also describe the pressure of losing baby weight and snapping back to her pre-pregnancy body.

Nobody knows this pressure better than Hollywood celebrities, who are challenged by shooting schedules and publicity campaigns to look their best at all times.

The surgeons at Northwestern Plastic Surgery compiled a list of celebrity moms who’ve opted for plastic surgery to help improve their appearance after having children.

Patricia Heaton

In 2002, the then-star of “Everybody Loves Raymond” explained to People magazine her motivation for undergoing breast reduction and tummy tuck. “I had four C-sections and my stomach looked like the map of the world. My breasts were hanging down to here from breastfeeding those babies, and my nipples were like platters. I wanted to fit into the gowns that I finally got to wear,” the now 56-year-old star of “The Middle” said.

Brandi Glanville

The 41-year-old star of “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” and mother of two is not shy about addressing rumors she’s had plastic surgery. In fact, she cleared the air last year on her PodcastOne show, admitting to having a boob job and treatment with Botox and fillers.  “Having grown up modeling, I’m very self-aware of my physical appearance,” Glanville told SHAPE magazine.

In Glanville’s memoir Drinking & Tweeting, she also revealed that she underwent vaginal rejuvenation surgery following her nasty split with actor Eddie Cibrian — and angered Cibrian by charging the surgical fees to his credit card.

Sharon Osbourne

Osbourne has never been coy about her plastic surgery experiences. In her autobiography Unbreakable, the 61-year-old mother of three confessed, “There’s not much I haven’t had tweaked, stretched, peeled, lasered, veneered, enhanced or removed altogether.” Osbourne acknowledged having a leg and arm lift, tummy tuck, breast reduction, facelift, neck lift and vaginal rejuvenation.

Osbourne also made headlines in 2012, when she admitted on her television show “The Talk” that she underwent a double mastectomy after a genome test showed she carried the breast cancer gene. She later opted for reconstructive surgery.

Kris Jenner

The 58-year-old mother of six has not only admitted to having plastic surgery, she even had it documented on her show “Keeping Up with the Kardashians,” when she underwent a facelift prior to daughter Kim’s 2011 wedding.

Jane Fonda

The actress and fitness guru copped to having plastic surgery for the first time in an interview with “Entertainment Tonight.” “I’m writing a book about aging, so I can’t write that book and not say I’ve had plastic surgery. And you know, I just decided it was for me — I don’t want to have bags under my eyes that make me look tired, and so forth and so on,” said the mother of three. The 76-year-old also noted her new hip and a new knee, saying, “I’m going to soon be bionic.”

Nicole Ritchie

The 32-year-old designer, television personality and mother of two is rumored to have had breast augmentation in 2011 to restore shape and fullness to her breasts. A source told US Weekly magazine, “The pregnancies took a toll. She said breastfeeding killed what boobs she did have!”

Ritchie also told People magazine back in 2004 that “[Plastic surgery is] all the rage. To me it isn’t all that different from getting fake tans or teeth whitening. Why grow old gracefully when you have the technology to prevent it?”

Schedule a Mommy Makeover Consultation

If you’re interested in learning more about how mommy makeover can restore your pre-baby body, please contact Northwestern Plastic Surgery by calling 312-695-6022 or sending an email.

Will My Tummy Tuck Leave Scarring?

At Northwestern Plastic Surgery, we want our patients to feel well informed and educated about their treatment and what it entails. We have found that the most satisfied plastic surgery patients are the ones who approach the experience with reasonable and realistic expectations.

If you are considering tummy tuck surgery to sculpt and shape your abdomen, you likely are curious whether the procedure will leave a scar. Perhaps you’ve asked around or looked at before and after photographs on our site, but you’re still unclear.

Because it is a surgical procedure that requires a horizontal incision, tummy tuck will leave scarring. (Mini tummy tuck has a smaller incision and, thus, a shorter scar.) However, tummy tuck incisions are typically placed low enough that scarring can be easily hidden by a bathing suit or underwear line. The scars will be firm and pink for approximately six weeks. They will gradually fade and flatten six months to a year after surgery.

There are things that you can do to minimize your tummy tuck scarring. However, you must accept the likelihood that the scars will never completely disappear.

How Can I Minimize My Scarring?

It’s common for our patients to inquire about things they can do to minimize scarring.

The best thing you can do to reduce your risk of visible scarring is to work with an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon, such as one of the surgeons at Northwestern Plastic Surgery. A qualified plastic surgeon will use incision techniques that lead to less noticeable scarring.

It’s also important to follow all of the advice and instructions provided by your plastic surgeon both before and after your surgery. Although you may not think that certain behaviors could affect your scarring, you would be surprised to learn that some can. Ignoring the advice of your plastic surgeon increases the risk not just of scarring, but of other complications, too.

Another thing you can do to minimize scarring is to avoid exposing your incision to the sun for about a year (as this may cause scarring to darken).

There are products that claim to minimize your scars, such as Arnica Montana and Bromelain. If you’re interested in these products, please ask our plastic surgery team about their safety and efficacy.

Learn More about Tummy Tuck

To learn more about the tummy tuck procedure or scarring, please contact Northwestern Plastic Surgery. Call (312) 695-6022 or send us an email today.

 

 

Common Breast Augmentation Myths

The Northwestern Plastic Surgery team is committed to educating you and informing you about your plastic surgery options. If you are considering breast augmentation, we want you to feel comfortable with your options and prepared when making decisions about your care. There is a lot of misinformation circulating about breast augmentation surgery; our plastic surgeons want to set the record straight by clearing up some common breast augmentation myths.

My breast implants will look fake.

Whether your implants look fake or natural depends on the type and size implant that you select. If you select a moderately sized implant that complements the proportions of your body frame, your breasts should look very natural after surgery. On the other hand, if you have a naturally small frame and select large, round implants, it may be more apparent that you’ve had your breasts surgically altered.

My breast implants will feel fake.

Modern advances in technology have led to the development of implant materials that feel extremely similar to natural breast tissue. Placing them beneath the chest muscle, and taking measures to prevent scar tissue build-up, helps keep implants soft.

I won’t be able to breastfeed with implants.

Most women with breast implants can successfully breastfeed. It is important, however, to mention any plans to breastfeed to our Chicago breast augmentation surgeons during your initial consultation, so they can be aware as they design your surgical plan and recommend the best incision pattern for your procedure.

Implants will improve the look of my saggy breasts.

If your breasts droop significantly and your nipples are at or near the bottom of the breast and point downward, implants will not correct these problems. Our plastic surgeons will recommend adding breast lift to your surgical plan to improve both the size and position of the breasts.

Surgery will be painful.

You will receive anesthesia medications prior to surgery for your comfort, and you shouldn’t feel anything during your procedure. After your surgery, our doctors will prescribe oral medication to help alleviate any post-operative pain or discomfort.

Implants need to be replaced every few years.

Breast implants are long-lasting medical devices that are designed for many years of use. Unless there is a complication with your implants or you do not like their size or shape, your implants do not need to be replaced or removed.

Questions about Breast Augmentation? Call Us!

If you are considering breast augmentation and have questions about the procedure, please contact Northwestern Plastic Surgery by calling (312) 695-6022 or sending us an email.