Almost 70 percent of consumers are considering a cosmetic treatment, and more than half would prefer to pay more up front to lower their annual skin care costs, according to the 2018 American Society for Dermatologic Surgery (ASDS) Consumer Survey on Cosmetic Dermatologic Procedures.

So just what are the top concerns? Ranking first for the sixth year in a row is excess fat on any part of the body at 86 percent. Skin discoloration is an increasing concern and tied for the second spot this year reinforcing the need for ongoing sun protection education. In addition, more than 70 percent are bothered by excess fat under the chin / neck and skin, lines and wrinkles around the eyes and skin texture and / or discoloration. Other areas of concern receiving more than 60 percent of consumers’ votes are wrinkles in the mid-face, in the forehead area, between the eyebrows, neck and check and overall sagging facial skin.

The survey also uncovered the reasons why people are turning to cosmetic procedures. Holding the top three spots for six consecutive years are the desires to:

1.    “Feel more confident.”

2.     “Feel more attractive.”

3.    “Look as young as I feel or better for my age.”

The top five treatments and the percentage of consumers considering to achieve these desired results, include:

•    Ultrasound, laser, light and radiofrequency treatments for smoothing wrinkles or tightening skin, 57 percent

•    Body sculpting, 57 percent

•    Microdermabrasion, 51 percent

•    Laser hair removal, 48 percent

•    Injectable wrinkle-relaxing injections, 47 percent

Patients who have had treatments were asked to rate their satisfaction. Six treatment categories achieved satisfaction ratings of 90 percent or better, including injectable wrinkle-relaxers and fillers; laser and light treatments for tone and scars; body sculpting; vein treatments; laser tattoo removal; and chemical peels.

Skin Care Matters

New to the survey this year were questions regarding consumers’ skin care product choices. The majority of consumers are spending up to $100 per month on skin care products including cleansers, serums, masks, sunscreens and creams. More than half of consumers would prefer to pay more up front to lower their skin care costs annually

ASDS Members Lead the Pack

For the sixth year in a row, dermatologists ranked as the first of 14 factors influencing consumers’ decision to have a cosmetic procedure. Consumers also rated dermatologists as the physician of choice in five of 10 treatment categories. These included injectable wrinkle-relaxers; vein treatments; laser / light therapy for skin redness, tone and scars; soft-tissue fillers; and laser hair removal. In addition, of those 14 factors, dermatologists were the top influencer for consumers’ skin care product purchases.

Of the 11 factors influencing the selection of a practitioner, choices aligning to physician expertise continue to receive top ratings. The specialty in which the physician is board-certified, referral from a physician and the level of the physician’s licensure ranked as leading influencing factors.

The dermatologist of choice for cosmetic procedures is an ASDS member dermatologist for three consecutive years. In two survey questions, ASDS members led all 10 cosmetic treatment categories. The majority of respondents to the first question – answered by patients whose cosmetic treatments were performed by dermatologists – indicated their dermatologist of choice is a member of ASDS. In the second question, the majority of prospective patients in all treatment categories said they would consider an ASDS member for their procedure.

“Patients continue to trust ASDS member dermatologists to offer advanced treatment options and top-tier quality care,” says ASDS President Lisa Donofrio, MD. “ASDS members are board-certified dermatologists that possess the training and artistic acumen to help patients look and feel their best.”

About the ASDS survey

Date were obtained through a blind online survey conducted from May 1 to June 20 through the web-based Survata service. The survey received 3,525 responses.