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Most Common Cosmetic Procedures

If you’re thinking about plastic surgery, you’re not alone. From tummy tucks and breast implants to surgical facelifts and fat transfers, millions of plastic surgical procedures occur in the United States each year.

Minimally invasive cosmetic procedures like thread lifts, microdermabrasion, and Botox® and dermal filler injections are even more common. And while there’s considerable geographic variability in their popularity, we’re fortunate to have detailed national data from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

So let’s take a look at the most popular procedures for cosmetic medicine patients in the United States. 

Common Cosmetic Procedures in the United States

In 2020, the five most common minimally invasive cosmetic procedures were:

  • Botulinum toxin A injections (Botox): Providers performed about 4.4 million Botox injections in 2020. With minimal side effects, dependable results, and quick recovery time, Botox continues to outpace other minimally invasive procedures.
  • Soft tissue filler injections: These include a whole family of related procedures, from “standard” work like lip augmentation and wrinkle reduction to specialized procedures like liquid nose jobs and Sculptra butt lifts. Hyaluronic acid fillers are the most popular, with others serving more specific niches. All told, about 3.4 million filler procedures took place in 2020.
  • Laser skin resurfacing: This increasingly popular procedure helps remove excess skin and restore a youthful appearance to visible areas of the body, especially the face and hands. The procedure count approached the 1 million mark in 2020.
  • Chemical peels: This is another skin resurfacing treatment that’s nearly as popular — about 930,000 procedures in 2020.
  • Intense pulsed light (IPL) treatment: IPL treatment overtook laser skin removal in 2020, with about 830,000 procedures performed.

These weren’t the only cosmetic procedures performed in the U.S. in 2020, of course. Other popular cosmetic treatments include:

  • Threading cosmetic procedures, including barbed thread lifts and cat eye lifts
  • Injection lipolysis (Kybella®) to remove excessive fat from specific parts of the body
  • Other noninvasive body contouring procedures, such as Coolsculpting®
  • Microdermabrasion
  • Laser tattoo removal
  • Sclerotherapy

Popular Plastic Surgery Procedures in the U.S.

In 2020, the most common plastic surgery procedures in the U.S. were:

  • Rhinoplasty: More popularly known as a nose job, rhinoplasty remains the most popular plastic surgery. Surgeons performed about 350,000 in 2020.
  • Eyelid surgery: Eyelid augmentation and repair is the second most popular cosmetic surgical procedure in the U.S. as of 2020, with about 325,000 performed.
  • Surgical facelift: This covers a range of related procedures designed to restore that “lifted,” youthful look to the cheeks and eyes. Surgeons performed about 235,000 in 2020.
  • Liposuction: Liposuction is an increasingly sophisticated fat removal procedure that complements healthy lifestyle changes for patients looking to lose weight and regain tone. Surgeons performed about 210,000 in 2020.
  • Breast augmentation: Breast augmentation (implants and fat transfer) rounds out the top five, with just under 200,000 procedures in 2020.

Other popular invasive cosmetic procedures include:

  • Implant removals, particularly breast and lip
  • Surgeries to remove excess skin and fat
  • Nonelective cosmetic surgeries, such as tumor removal (by far the most popular of all), laceration repair, and maxillofacial surgery