Elective cosmetic surgery has grown more popular in the last several decades, including procedures specifically targeted at older adults and anti-aging. The aim of this study is to better understand elective cosmetic surgery rationale for older adults. The first part of the study summarizes literature on elective cosmetic surgery for older adults and determines what factors influence the desire for elective cosmetic procedures. From the research databases PubMed, JSTOR, and ScienceDirect, eighteen sources were referenced in the final review. The review found that there are differences in sociocultural views of men and women as they age as well as internal views of aging. The modest number of studies used in the literature review reflect a current gap in current research studying elective cosmetic surgery in older adults. For the second part of the study, data was collected from a 2018 survey designed to better understand aging, body image, and subjective age. The survey was limited to individuals living in the United States aged 40 and above and was deployed through MTurk (Mechanical Turk). A total of 1199 responses were received. Only participants 55 years and above are included for the purpose of this study. Most participants who answered the question for elective cosmetic surgery rationale answered that their primary rationale is to reduce age-related physical markers. For participants identifying as female, nine percent cited self-esteem as their rationale while no male-identifying participants responded similarly. Future research can include questions on internal and external factors older adults feel have the greatest impact on their decision to have elective cosmetic procedures.
- Old Problems Require Modern Solutions: A Survey-Based Study on Aging and Elective Cosmetic Surgery