Men Who Have Facial Plastic Surgery Appear to Be More Attractive, Likeable and Trustworthy

Men who have cosmetic surgery on their faces can appear more attractive, likeable, trustworthy, and as if they have better social skills, according to a study.

Research published in the journal JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery involved 24 men. The patients had an average age of 49, and paid for their own cosmetic surgery. The procedures were performed by either one of study the authors: Dr. Michael J. Reilly, an associate professor of otolaryngology at Georgetown's School of Medicine; and Dr. Steven P. Davison, professor of plastic surgery and otolaryngology at Georgetown University.

The procedures featured in the study included upper eyelid lifts, lower eyelids reductions, face-lifts, brow-lifts, neck-lifts, nose reshaping, and chin implants.

Participants consented to their before and after photos being shown to 145 strangers who would review their personality traits. The respondents were aged between 25 and 34 years old, and were asked to rate how attractive, aggressive, extroverted, likeable, risk-seeking, sociable, masculine and trustworthy the men seemed—but didn't know the purpose of the study to avoid bias.

A total of six surveys were created, and pre- and post-op photos of the same patients were not included in the same survey to avoid recall bias, the authors explained.

The results revealed that face surgery overall appeared to make the men more attractive, likeable, more trustworthy and have better social skills.

More specifically, upper eyelid was linked with increased likeability and trustworthiness; lower eyelid surgery made men appear less likely to take risks; while brow lifts made the patients seem more extroverted and inclined towards risks. A face-lift made them appear more likeable and trustworthy, according to the respondents, and a neck-lift more extroverted and masculine. The nose improved their attractiveness. Chin augmentation was the only procedure which didn't result in any statistically significant change in trait perception.

Most procedures didn't increase masculinity ratings, in contrast to a 2015 study by the team on women which found surgery appeared to make them appear more feminine. That work involved 30 females.

Reilly commented in a statement: "The tendency to judge facial appearance is likely rooted in evolution, as studies suggest evaluating a person based on appearance is linked to survival—our animal instinct tells us to avoid those who are ill-willed and we know from previous research that personality traits are drawn from an individual's neutral expressions.

"Taken together, our findings suggest that both men and women undergoing facial cosmetic surgery can experience not only improved perception of attractiveness, but other positive changes in society's perception of their persona," he said.

Afshin Mosahebi, professor of plastic surgery at University College London, who was not involved in the research, told Newsweek the study was a useful look at the public perception of men having facial aesthetic surgery.

However, he said the study was limited because it only featured the clients of two surgeons. And as the participants had to consent to taking part, they may already be quite confident about their outcomes. "How about the ones that weren't that happy with their results?" asked Mosahebi.

It would be interesting for future research to look at the whole body, and use consecutive patients to reduce bias, he said.

Asked whether he is worried the findings will encourage men to seek plastic surgery, Mosahebi said cosmetic surgery should be done in the "right patient and setting with appropriate motivation."

plastic surgery, cosmetic surgery, face lift, stock,
A stock image of a man considering cosmetic surgery. Researchers have looked at how facial surgery can change the perceptions of others. Getty