90% of men under 50 worried about effect of cost-of-living stress on appearance

Published 24th Jan 2024 by Eve Oxberry

Nine out of 10 men aged under 50 are worried about the effect that cost-of-living-related stress is having on their appearance, according to new stats.

The impact of stress on skin quality was named the second biggest area of concern, with only weight gain beating it.

The research, conducted by independent survey company OnePoll on behalf of SafeAP, an app founded by two NHS doctors to help people find qualified cosmetic practitioners, surveyed 1,000 UK males aged 18-50, breaking the results down by age and region. 

Across all age groups, 30% of men worried "a lot" about the impact, with 41% at least "somewhat" concerned; only 10% were "not at all" worried. 

The age group most affected by stress-related image concerns is men between 18 to 24 years old, with 40% of these young men saying they worry "a lot" about it. 

Even among the least worried age group (46-50), nearly one in five (19%) had substantial concerns. 

The biggest body issues for men

The top five concerns were:

  1. weight/fitness (40%)
  2. skin quality (25%)
  3. appearance of teeth (23%)
  4. = eyebags (19%) and hair loss (19%)

Other areas included muscle tone and wrinkles.

Check out our guide to the best laser and IPL treatments for men.

A previous study by SafeAP showed that while more than half of women cite fear of complications as a factor preventing them from seeking procedures such as wrinkle-relaxing or filler injections and non-surgical liposuction, only just over a third of men (36%) claim to have this concern.

Only 27% feel put off by horror stories they might see in the media. This has prompted the team behind SafeAP to warn that men could be particularly vulnerable to predatory marketing tactics – especially as the same research showed that more than twice the number of men (21%) as women (9%) admit to having already had a negative experience with a cosmetic procedure.

Maxillofacial surgeon Sieuming Ng who, along with Dr. Subha Punj, launched the SafeAP app, said: “It is evident that the physical impact of the cost-of-living crisis is prompting significant worries, and the survey responses paint a vivid picture of some of the surprising fears men are having.

"What's particularly worrying is the potential for a rise in the uptake of unsafe non-surgical aesthetic treatments, prompted by cost-cutting measures.

“We’ve already seen this happen across a wide range of aesthetic procedures, with people having to live with physical and emotional consequences of cheap treatments for many years to come."

Read more stats on the rise of men's aesthetics and beauty treatments here.

Eve Oxberry

Eve Oxberry

Published 24th Jan 2024

Eve Oxberry is head of editorial for Professional Beauty and Aesthetic Medicine magazines and editor on PB. She oversees the company's print, web and social media content and writes reviews, news, features and more.

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