For a gal who never grows old, Cinderella sees her share of cosmetic procedures and treatments branded with her name.
We understand the appeal for marketing folks. The name “Cinderella” calls to mind an image of a beautiful, young woman, sweet and delicate in every way. Not only that, the character’s fairy godmother changed her into a princess in an instant. Who wouldn’t want that?
But what exactly IS a Cinderella cosmetic procedure?
Cinderella’s First Cosmetic Surgery
The first procedure we noticed using the name Cinderella had more to do with the famed glass slipper than with an overnight transformation. Also known as “the foot facelift,” Cinderella foot procedures offered one or more of the following options: bone shaving, toe reduction, Botox injections, tendon adjustments and fat injections. Goals patients talk about include smaller or larger feet, looking better in sandals, wearing higher heels more comfortably and so on.
When patients have truly deformed feet or painful bunions, we recommend they see a podiatrist. Though there are exceptions, many board certified plastic surgeons will not operate on feet for purely cosmetic reasons (though some do fat injections). Why? Feet are critically important to a normal, functional life, and it doesn’t take much to damage nerves, bone and other tissues permanently. While plastic surgeons generally understand patient motivations related to looking and feeling their best, this is one opportunity many of us bypass.
A Face for a Princess
Today, procedures with “Cinderella” branding seem to suggest to a prospective patent that she can look younger in an hour. Reported by the Mirror, a UK publication, the Cinderella Facelift uses threads, Botox and fillers. Since this cosmetic surgery just appeared on the market a couple of months ago we can’t comment specifically, but we can point out that threads are nothing new. And, using threads as a way to lift facial tissues has always been controversial (witness the Contour Thread Lift, long gone by the wayside).
Indeed, while the Mirror article showed a nice outcome for the patient featured in the February article, the one comment attached described another woman with disappointing results. In our view, this procedure could very simply be “the return of the threads” – with the associated cons as well as pros – plus the addition of non-invasive treatments that work well temporarily.
What’s a Cinderella Fan to Do?
These two procedures aren’t the only cosmetic treatments available to budding princesses. You can find peels, masques, facials, laser treatments and other options with the Cinderella name. And, just as in the Cinderella Facelift, some cosmetic clinics and even plastic surgeons bundle techniques and products already available into a Cinderella Treatment or declare their approach to rejuvenation has a Cinderella Effect.
We would not go so far as to say that the further “out there” a name is the more skeptical patients should be, but sometimes it seems that way. One of the first clever names of note in the industry was the Brazilian Butt Lift, implying that your post-surgical derrière would look at home on the beach in Ipanema. Today you can have a Vampire Facelift and more than one procedure named after Venus, not to mention all the treatments available whose names include words like “cool,” “bella,” “smooth” and “smart.”
What do these names really say about a procedure or the results? Not much. Unlike old standby, straightforward terms like “breast reduction,” cosmetic surgery branding today is all about encouraging patients to say “I want that.” If you find yourself saying this about a procedure that catches your ear, work on understanding thoroughly what it entails and what it might do (or not) for you.
Our basic advice to New York City cosmetic surgery patients remains as it always has been:
- Think carefully about why you are considering a cosmetic procedure. Do your reasons make sense? Do they relate to gaining confidence, eliminating an issue (like a nose hump) that troubles you or helping match your looks to the way you feel? Or are you hoping to save a marriage or get a better job—outcomes that may not be reasonable?
- Would you be having cosmetic surgery just for you? Not because someone else you know has had a procedure, and not because another person suggests you should?
- Will you be happy with realistic results? In other words, will you consider surgery a success if you look much better, but perhaps not “perfect?”
As cosmetic surgery in New York and around the world becomes ever more competitive, it’s up to you to be increasingly wise about the decisions you make. If we can help, fill out our short contact form and we’ll be in touch.
Photo by Jennie Park, available via Creative Commons