AEDIT Survey Reveals How 2020 Altered The Aesthetic Landscape Forever

Video conferencing, beauty tech, natural skin, and millennials are making waves in our latest consumer survey.
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Written by AEDIT Staff
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AEDIT Survey Reveals How 2020 Altered The Aesthetic Landscape ForeverDrazen Zigic/Shutterstock

If you are a regular AEDIT user, you are familiar with our mission to simplify and safeguard the search for aesthetic solutions and qualified providers through innovative, user-first technology. Today, we are excited to announce the results of our inaugural consumer trends survey. 2020 brought unprecedented changes to the entire world. Now, we’re exploring how the year changed the aesthetic landscape and consumer behavior as priorities shifted.

Findings indicate that millennials and gen Z now account for the largest age group interested in aesthetic procedures. The COVID-19 pandemic has not slowed down this demographic’s interest in pursuing self-confidence and self-expression through beauty. The rise of video conferencing for work and widespread communication, as well as rapid advances in beauty technology, have helped to strengthen demand for aesthetic treatments and procedures over the past year.

AEDIT polled 1,000 men and women ages 18 and over to unearth the biggest beauty trends of 2020 and how the unprecedented year altered our aesthetic proclivities — possibly forever.


The Zoom Effect

Never before have we been so bombarded with seeing ourselves on video. With the advent of daily Zoom meetings, Google Hangouts, and FaceTimes, people who are not used to viewing themselves on screen were suddenly thrust into their very own spotlight. This led to nitpicking their appearances. AEDIT’s survey found that those interested in non-surgical and surgical treatments participate in video conferencing meetings significantly more often than those who do not. In fact, 39 percent of respondents who use video conferencing weekly reported interest in non-surgical aesthetic treatments, while 37 percent reported interest in surgical treatments.

A full 29 percent of millennials agree that using video conferencing makes them more interested in getting aesthetic treatments. The biggest areas of concern for those who engage in regular video conferences are their teeth (39 percent), weight (33 percent), stomach/midsection (28 percent), under eye bags/pouches (23 percent), and hair thinning/loss (16 percent).

Despite spending significantly more time at home in 2020, demand for treatments remained high with 23 percent of respondents stating that they are more interested in aesthetic treatments now that they can recover at home during the pandemic.

The Dawn of a Digital Age of Aesthetics

“Technology is revolutionizing the beauty industry. It places more emphasis on personalized experiences, giving consumers the opportunity to be in more control of their beauty decisions, whether that be virtually trying on lipstick before purchasing or, in our case, trying on a cosmetic procedure before booking a consultation,” shares Willian A. Kennedy III, MD, a double board certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon and founder of AEDIT.

Much like our social and work lives, many of those consultations are moving virtual. The AEDIT survey reveals that the pandemic has decreased interest in going into doctors’ offices and has increased interest in telemedicine by over 20 percent.

Moreover, 44 percent of survey respondents wish there was a way to see exactly how surgery would affect their face before taking the leap. This desire is even greater for younger women, with 50 percent of millennials and gen Z and 51 percent of women showing keen intrigue in the ability to predict the outcome of aesthetic procedures.

As a way to address this desire, AEDIT created a platform that offers medically approved, easy-to-understand information and a 3D aesthetic simulator — The AEDITOR — that allows users to virtually ‘try on’ cosmetic procedures and visualize realistic results right from the palm of their hand. The iOS app is the most accurate facial morphing technology available outside a professional medical setting.

While AEDITOR was not specifically asked about in the survey, 55 percent of adults (including 62 percent of women and 67 percent of millennials and gen Z) indicated that they would be interested in an app or website that would allow them to see how surgery or aesthetic procedures affect their face/looks in a medically accurate way.

Owning It Is In — So Is Good Skin

Millennials have long been influencing beauty trends as the first generation who came of age during the digital revolution. However, baby boomers tend to eclipse them when it comes to seeking out a tweak, lift, or poke in the search to remain naturally ageless.

A shift is happening. The AEDIT survey showed that millennials and gen Z have significantly more interest in non-surgical and surgical treatments than men and women age 35 and up — and they are more likely to already have seen a doctor or had a surgical treatment than their gen X and boomer peers. Millennials and, now, gen Z, largely embrace aesthetic edits with open arms and zero apologies. 40 percent stated they do not feel ashamed or embarrassed of getting aesthetic treatments.

The survey supports this, showing that over 40 percent of respondents still want to feel confident in their looks during the pandemic. This population is specifically interested in aesthetic treatments to look naturally more attractive. It’s not surprising then that the survey also uncovered a jump in participants using facial skincare products during the pandemic, despite a decrease in using cosmetics in 2020.

“At AEDIT, we believe true beauty is unearthed by those who choose to be uniquely themselves rather than conform to a standard,” Dr. Kennedy notes. “We strive to inspire a movement that will empower everyone to be bold and challenge the preconceived notions of beauty by living by their own aesthetic.”

Looking Ahead

AEDIT Beauty Board member and Beverly Hills-based double board certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon Andrew Frankel, MD, predicts, “2021 will begin as 2020 has been for the past three months. There might be a lull in elective surgery once the pandemic is cleared and life returns to normal because people will likely not want to be home recuperating at that point — they will long to be out enjoying themselves. As such, promoting injectables and non-surgical procedures will be fruitful right as the world opens up again and people wish to look their best upon reentry.”

AEDIT and third-party ACUPOLL Precision Research conducted an online survey in December 2020 of a nationally-representative population of 1,000 male (n = 539) and female (n = 460) respondents 18 years of age and older.

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