Popularity of non-surgical cosmetic procedures soars as demand for cosmetic surgery falls

Posted: 30/04/2015


In 2014, the demand for cosmetic surgery decreased for the first time in 10 years. Key Note has published a market report confirming that the number of procedures fell by 3.6% to 726,633 in total. The company calculates its figures from a variety of sources including the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (BAAPS) which represents more than 200 cosmetic surgeons.

Although most people consider cosmetic procedures to be surgical treatments such as breast augmentation, rhinoplasty and liposuction, the vast majority of cosmetic procedures are non-surgical. Non-surgical procedures such as botox or electrolysis can be performed outside a hospital environment and are therefore increasingly being undertaken in beauty salons, hairdressers or mobile therapists.

The table below shows the figures for different types of procedure and clearly shows the popularity of non-surgical cosmetic procedures which are consistently more than ten times more numerous than the most popular surgical procedures:

Type of procedure             2010     2011   2012    2013       2014
Non-surgical 479,091 561,069 590,532 635,281 620,077
Face (surgical) 45,677 46,961 51,020 53,860 52,606
Breast (surgical) 37,258 40,361 40,510 43,316 36,610
Body (surgical) 19,839 21,320 20,148 21,072 17,340

Key Note confirmed that the non-medical surgery market in the UK “was unaffected by the global economic downturn” and “continued to expand during the recession.” Although the rate of growth took “a sudden downturn” last year, non-surgical procedures continue to significantly out-strip those involving surgery. Key Note found that non-surgical procedures now account for 85% of the market and are expected to become even more popular, increasing by 27%, as the growing population opts for less invasive surgery.

Non-surgical cosmetic procedures tend to be less expensive than the surgical equivalent and are viewed by many as having fewer associated risks and quicker results. That said, as with any type of procedure, there are potential risks and complications and the Penningtons Manches cosmetic surgery claims team is seeing an increase in the number of enquiries about injuries resulting from non-surgical procedures performed at beauty salons.

Sarah Gubbins, associate in London, confirmed: ‘We have investigated a number of claims against beauty salons for negligent treatment which has resulted in burns, scarring or discoloration of the skin. Our clients often require further procedures, including surgery, to correct the damage that has been caused. Unfortunately, as more and more beauticians and other practitioners enter this increasing market, we are seeing more mistakes being made, often by inexperienced practitioners or those who prioritise the quantity of patients over the quality of the treatment provided.”

If you have suffered injuries as a result of a non-surgical cosmetic procedure, please contact us for a free, no obligation discussion.


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