Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery Boom in Australia During the COVID Crisis

world wide surgery boom

The COVID crisis has an unexpected surprise – a Boom in Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery

A Worldwide Cosmetic Surgery Boom

The COVID crisis has caused an unexpected cosmetic surgery boom in Australia and around the world. Surgeons in Australia, Estonia, UK and USA have reported a boom in enquiries and surgery.

Public lockdown and working from home are providing an unexpected bonus for people interested in having cosmetic surgery. Now they have both the time and financial ability to be able to have the surgery they have been thinking about.

Many people have waited years for the perfect time to have surgery. Patients with business and family commitments have the money but find it harder to take time off for surgery. For others, life priorities like family holidays and events have, in the past, consumed their discretionary spend. Many patients now have time to recover after surgery, and money to spend on surgery instead of a holiday.

Dr Craig Rubinstein speaking about the Cosmetic Surgery Boom on Channel 7 News Melbourne.

The lockdown has led to an unlikely boom in the number of Australians keen to have cosmetic surgery. It’s been suggested the increasing use of video calls could be to blame.

Share With Friends Posted by Facebook on Friday, December 5, 2014


Non-Surgical treatments like Injectables and Laser Facial Rejuvenation – Resurfacing with Fraxel have been very popular. Cosmetic Smile Dentistry is also in demand. Some patients have decided to do more than just a quick fix during the lockdown and hence the boom in plastic surgery.


Worldwide Cosmetic Surgery Boom

world wide surgery boom

Online statistics show the cosmetic surgery boom is worldwide

  • Google Trends shows an upswing in searches for cosmetic surgery keywords – injectables, breast augmentation and nose job.
  • Plastic surgeon website visitation is up according to Semrush – Coco Ruby Plastic Surgery website visitation has doubled since before the crisis.
  • The number of surgery enquiries have also doubled since last year and are up 40% from just before the crisis.

Plastic and Cosmetic Surgeries that are being requested during COVID

All cosmetic and rejuvenation plastic surgeries have had strong demand around Australia and the World recently.

Particularly facial surgery and combined surgical procedures with longer recovery downtimes.

  1. NOSE – Nose Job / Rhinoplasty / Septoplasty Surgery and Non-Surgical Rhinoplasty
  2. EYES – Eyelid Lifts for droopy eyelids
  3. FACES – Facelifts, Neck lifts, Chin Augmentation, Double Chin Removal
  4. BREAST/TUMMY – Breast and Tummy Surgery
  5. LIPOSUCTION AND BRAZILIAN BUTT LIFT – More cosmetic surgeon than a plastic surgeon
  6. POST WEIGHT LOSS SURGERIES – Excess Skin Removal – Post Massive Weight Loss

These are NOT just Cosmetic Surgeries like Breast Augmentation or non-surgical Injectables, this is Medicare-rebateable reconstructive surgery. Like Breast Reduction after pregnancy or Bodylift after massive weight loss. Medicare rebates for surgical functional repairs like Nose Breathing issues and drooping eyelids that obscure vision are also in demand.

Why are so many patients wanting surgery during the COVID Crisis?

The main reasons patients delay surgery is having the money and the time – being able to arrange leave from work. Many now have the time and money to do something they have been putting off for years.

Some patients report having waited 10 years to organise their Surgery.

5 reasons for the Cosmetic Surgery Boom – Why is there a boom on cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery?

recover at home after cosmetic surgery

The reasons for the cosmetic and reconstructive surgery boom are a combination of factors including:

  1. Patients that were on lists at the start of the crisis in April and May had their surgery postponed when elective surgery was cancelled
  2. Patients can more easily rest and recover at home and are able to work from home
  3. Some patients can’t go overseas for medical tourism – they must have surgery locally
  4. The rise of zoom Meetings and spending hours looking at yourself on a big screen has created ‘Zoom Face Envy’. Bad lighting, poor camera angles and no makeup have made some facial imperfections more obvious.
  5. Patients are spending money on Surgery instead of Holidays – they can’t go overseas or interstate

In a digitally transforming world, many older Australians want to feel younger and more confident in the new normal. It’s a repeat of the selfie trend that caused cosmetic surgery to boom 5-10 years ago. Now it’s the COVID Lockdown Surgery Boom. Many older patients feel that now is a good time to have rejuvenation or enhancement surgery done to improve their employment prospects.

NOTE – Some people have speculated that the surgery boom is related to the $10k Super drawdown, but this is less likely as there is overseas surgery boom as well.

A limited supply of surgical hospital theatre lists during Co-Vid crisis

surgery theatre Melbourne hospitals

Due to COVID and a shortage of PPE – Hospital theatre Lists have been in short supply allocated to medically necessary surgery. Some Victorian Hospitals have stopped cosmetic surgery altogether, but it is on a case by case basis depending on the hospital and surgical category.

During the Corona crisis lockdown stages, Hospitals have been allocating theatre lists based on Category of Surgery.

What Category is your procedure?  Surgery Patient Categories – Category 1, 2 and 3

When a patient is assessed by a surgeon as requiring elective surgery, they are categorised as urgent based on 3 categories.

  • Category 1: treatment required within 30 days, semi-urgent
  • Category 2: treatment required within 90 days or non-urgent
  • Category 3: treatment required within 12 months.

Many Surgeons and Administrators disagree over the exact category classifications of urgency.

Other Online Media Reports about the Cosmetic Surgery Boom around the World

Further Reading about Plastic & Cosmetic Surgery


How long is the cosmetic surgery boom expected to last?

Most plastic surgeons see a surge in demand post Winter every year – usually, the busy surgery season is from September to early January. The COVID Crisis cosmetic surgery boom is expected to last until January depending on the spread of the Virus and availability of hospital operating theatres and PPE. The only thing that is slowing down the boom is the supply of hospital lists and some mothers having to do homeschooling.

Patients interested in surgery in early 2022 should contact their favourite Plastic Surgeon as soon as possible.


Last updated: 13/05/2022
Author profile image
David Staughton
David Staughton is the Business Manager of Coco Ruby Plastic Surgery

Coco Ruby’s Specialist Plastic and ENT Surgeons

With a wealth of experience and training, our Specialist Plastic Surgeons are dedicated to best practice patient care and education, customising Breast Enlargement Surgery for each and every patient to best meet their needs and desired surgical outcomes.

coco ruby specialist plastic surgeons 

What to do next?

Our Patient Liaison Team can assist with any questions you may have when considering a procedure. You can send in an enquiry form below or call our Melbourne Clinic between 9 am – 5 pm Monday to Friday.

Phone 1300 264 811, Email us: or Book a FREE 15-minute Phone Chat with our Patient Liaison Manager or a Virtual Consultation with a Surgeon.

Disclaimer: Results depend on individual patient circumstances and can vary significantly. Results may also be impacted by a variety of factors including your lifestyle, weight, nutritional intake and overall health. Consult your Specialist Plastic Surgeon for details. This information is general in nature and is not intended to be medical advice nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Surgery risks and complications will be covered in detail during a consultation with your Surgeon.