Thinking about plastic surgery? Study warns against relying on selfies

If a particularly bad selfie has you contemplating plastic surgery, think twice, because a new study says that selfie may not be portraying the true you.

Researchers with the American Society of Plastic Surgeons say selfies distort depictions of ourselves. ASPS Member Surgeon Bardia Amirlak, MD, and colleagues from UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas found that selfies often distort the nose more than any other feature. Noses often appear longer and wider in selfies in comparison to how they appear in traditional photographs.

Dr. Amirlak worries many selfie-takers may consider rhinoplasties based on these distorted images. The team explains that social media and selfies in general have contributed mightily to the spike in popularity of cosmetic plastic surgery in recent years. “There is a noted relationship between the increase in selfie photographs and an increase in rhinoplasty requests, particularly among younger patients,”

Dr. Amirlak√Ę’s team adds. Nose reshaping surgery (rhinoplasty) is probably the most common variety of cosmetic plastic surgery. Estimates show doctors performed over 352,000 rhinoplasties in 2020 alone.