Practice Makes Perfect

Posted By American Med Spa Association, Thursday, October 27, 2016

Doctor I want a nice nose, I want it turned up and narrowed just a little, but not too much. I want it to look cute, natural, like this photo on my phone but I am sure you know what I want…You are the expert…Just make it perfect.”
Have you heard this before? Or better yet, how often have you heard it? Is perfection becoming increasingly expected? And if so, why? Is it unique to aesthetic patients, or is it just a symptom of a society that is becoming accustomed to nothing less than the ideal?
I am in my fifteenth year of practice and I believe expectations for perfection are on the rise. During consultations, patients often request their favorite movie star’s nose, guaranteed outcomes and, for the first time ever, refunds if ideals are not met. My inkling is that this entitlement has been sparked by an over-served Gen X, and an over-nursed Millennial generation. Both generations seem unable to temper primal urges to create a virtually ideal moment at the swipe of the finger with their mobile phone and app-loaded camera. Photos that don’t match the ideal can be immediately deleted until the right one is achieved. And if just shy of perfection, the chosen one can be morphed, filtered and contrasted until the perfect trophy of shadows, proportions and angles is realized. Just like that, a story is created and is ready for uploading to the social media façade of choice. Such an ability to quickly evaluate, manipulate and achieve the perfect version of “me” and my life perhaps contributes to an empowered consumer who has a deified right to always be pleased.
But are we partly responsible for our patients’ inflated expectations? Are we promoting a false idealism with over promising videos, Instagram, Snap Chat stories and social media chatter?