According to one report, Americans spent more than $8.7 billion on aesthetic plastic surgery in the first six months of 2021 alone. Are you thinking about going under the knife yourself this year?
If so, it’s important to know what to expect, and how to budget for this procedure. While cosmetic surgery can improve your confidence and even correct certain medical conditions, it isn’t inexpensive.
Today, we’re sharing a few factors that play into your cosmetic surgery cost and all of the details you need to know.
Cosmetic vs. Reconstructive Surgery
There are many different types of plastic surgery. The two main categories are cosmetic and reconstructive. If your surgery is purely cosmetic, meaning there isn’t any type of underlying health condition behind it, then your insurance company may not cover it.
However, your policy may provide some degree of coverage for reconstructive surgery. This is performed to help patients restore their appearance following an injury or accident. The same applies to any type of cosmetic surgery designed to improve your quality of life or help you perform a routine bodily function.
If you have any questions about your coverage, you can ask your insurance agent to clarify what’s covered and what isn’t.
The Degree of Invasiveness
In the surgical realm, invasiveness refers to the complexity and intricacy of a procedure. Within each category of cosmetic surgery, you’ll find procedures that are both highly invasive and only minimally so.
For instance, you may pursue a basic rhinoplasty, wherein your surgeon only minorly reshapes the cartridge and skin around your nose. Or, you may require a more invasive approach that involves correcting a deviated septum, which involves a more thorough reconstruction of the bone, tissue, and cartilage.
A more invasive cosmetic surgery procedure will cost more. It requires more time from the surgical team, as well as a more extensive post-op process.
The Type of Procedure
It stands to reason that a minor eye lift will be less expensive than a full-reconstruction facelift. Likewise, lip implants will cost less than liposuction.
When browsing your cosmetic surgery options, consider precisely what you need. Are there any procedures that are absolutely necessary? Or, can you cut one out to save money?
If you’re on the fence about one, talk to your physician. They can suggest which areas to prioritize, and which to consider down the road. If you need cosmetic surgery following an accident, these reconstructive procedures are more important than purely aesthetic ones.
The Materials Used
In most cases, your surgeon will be the one who makes the final decisions on what type of material is used in your cosmetic surgery. However, there may be areas in which you can exercise a little autonomy.
For instance, your surgeon may give you the opportunity to choose between silicone breast implants or saline ones. Instead of automatically choosing the least expensive one to meet your savings goal, take the time to learn more about each type of material.
While silicone implants are usually more expensive than saline, they aren’t necessarily the right choice for you. In many cases, the cost variation is minimal and it’s more important to go with the safer and more viable material.
The Plastic Surgeon’s Background and Experience
All surgeons have to have a valid medical license to perform plastic surgery. Beyond that, most choose to become certified through the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery (ABCS).
As you consider your local options, look for a surgeon who has completed the required academic and professional training required to excel in their field. While there are some ways to lower your cosmetic surgery costs, this shouldn’t be one of them.
You don’t want to cut corners and choose a physician who isn’t forthcoming about their skills and expertise. Stick with the best to ensure your personal health and safety.
Your Geographic Location
Another factor to consider is where you live! There are certain big cities, such as Los Angeles, where cosmetic surgeons can command a sky-high price for their services simply because they’re in such high demand. They’re used to helping celebrities achieve their best looks, so they set exorbitant fees that cater to those who can afford them.
On the other hand, you may be able to find an equally-competent surgeon who charges much less if you’re willing to drive about an hour outside of the city. When demand isn’t as high, you’ll usually find that prices are more competitive.
In addition to surgeon fees, keep in mind that you’ll also pay a fee when you visit the surgical facility. Again, geographic location can affect those numbers.
You can expect to pay a surcharge for certain “extra” services that aren’t always included with cosmetic surgery. For instance, if you have to go under anesthesia, there will be a separate charge tacked on for that.
The same goes for any type of materials that your surgeon sends home with you to aid in your recovery, such as tape and bandages. They may also prescribe you pain medications to help you recover quickly, and you’ll need to pay to have those filled. If you need to attend follow-up visits to assess your condition, expect to pay for those, too.
Understand Your Total Cosmetic Surgery Cost
There isn’t a universal price list for every type of cosmetic surgery procedure. Rather, the price you’ll pay hinges on a few different factors, from your geographic location to the type of surgery you receive.
By crunching these numbers beforehand, you can avoid unnecessary sticker shock when it’s time to open your wallet. Once you have an accurate cosmetic surgery cost, you can move forward toward your big day with confidence.
Looking for more ways to stay informed and look your best? Check out our Beauty guides for all of our helpful advice!