The question is rather at what age can you start and is there an age at which you must stop?
It all depends on the nature of the procedure (aesthetic surgery and medicine or reconstructive surgery), as well as the psychological maturity of the patient. So, when is aesthetic surgery a good idea for a child, teenager, or adult?
Plastic surgery for children
Parents often ask from what age a child or teenager can undergo plastic or aesthetic surgery and this may seem surprising. So, what are the reasons that push these parents to ask this question? It is often because the surgery is reconstructive rather than aesthetic. Plastic surgery can be used to correct birth defects such as limb malformations (supernumerary fingers or toes), a cleft lip and palate, or giant nevi (rare but very unsightly malformation, undetectable prenatally), which can sometimes be very bothersome or even disabling.
It could also be a malformation following an accident, or even a disease for which there are valid reasons to consider aesthetic surgery.
Some operations are traditionally recognised as childhood procedures such as surgery for prominent ears (otoplasty). The latter is very common and possible from the age of 7 years under two conditions: a clear request on the part of the child and severe difficulties with integration at school.
Aesthetic surgery for teenagers
Trickier, aesthetic surgery in teenagers requires the consent of the parents and a genuine dialogue needs to be established between all those involved: patient, parents, and surgeon; they must be on the same wavelength and adhere to the project.
Additionally, as with any aesthetic procedure, a certain psychological maturity is essential. However, teenagers are generally capable of explaining clearly what bothers them and their requests are often justified (aside from psychological problems and behavioural disorders such as body dysmorphic disorder), which is why it is necessary to take the requests of a teenager seriously; they often correspond to real suffering and angst. The request must be heard for suitable solutions to be found. Furthermore, a procedure is not always recommended.
In any case, whatever the aesthetic surgery considered, we rarely operate before the age of 17 because physical maturity (in other words puberty) is not yet complete and organs are still growing: nose, silhouette, or breasts (tuberous, sagging breasts, little or not developed, hypertrophy).
The risks linked to an aesthetic surgery procedure are no worse in minors. It may even have some advantages, particularly concerning liposuction, as the young skin is very elastic and tonic.
Aesthetic surgery in adults: when to take the plunge?
It all depends on the nature of the procedure: is it aesthetic surgery or medicine, in other words without a scalpel (or non-invasive) and carried out in a medical practice?
Indeed, for aesthetic medicine procedures, any surgeon will tell you that it is better to start as soon as the first so-called "negative" signs appear such as the wrinkle between the eyebrows giving you a severe look, the bitterness folds around the mouth, a tired appearance, and dull skin. Early correction with the right treatments of the first signs of aging, at around 30 years, particularly targeting wrinkles and fine lines, pigmentation spots, and sagging skin – in other words, the quality of the skin – helps prevent and slow facial aging. Yes, prevention of facial aging is worth it!
Which non-invasive aesthetic treatments can be considered? There are gentle peels or mesotherapy that boost radiance and glow. Injections enable a more targeted treatment of wrinkles: Botox (botulinum toxin) in the forehead to smooth the area and refresh the eyes or hyaluronic acid for drooping corners of the lips or nasolabial folds. The art is in always preserving the harmony of the face, the expressions, and the charm.
As for aesthetic surgery, the best thing is to find out as much information as possible about the procedure and to make an appointment with a qualified surgeon to openly discuss the project, and even get a second opinion.
For women, there are two main age groups: the end of adolescence, when a young woman decides to change what she dislikes to best begin her life as a woman, and the start of maturity, when the woman wishes to correct the marks left by any pregnancies and serenely begin the next chapter of her life.
Although some surgical procedures are usually for mature patients only, it is above all the quality of the skin that will determine if the project will be beneficial or not. For example, for lifts, the skin of some women aged 45 is looser than other women aged 60; it is not age that dictates the procedure.
In any case, no procedure – with or without surgery – is trivial, and it is necessary to think about it carefully beforehand. The choice of surgeon is, therefore, essential.
Is there an age limit for aesthetic surgery?
From a physiological perspective, there is no age limit for undergoing aesthetic surgery or an aesthetic medicine procedure.
Today, far from excessive demands (which are quite rare), men and women over 50, 60, or 70 above all wish to maintain a positive, open face and age well rather than look younger at all costs. A serious, skilled surgeon concerned with obtaining a natural result in tune with the personality and morphology of the patient will be able to advise you on the aesthetic surgery or medicine options available to you and will say no to a procedure that is just one too many.