While people have been taking photos of themselves since cameras were invented,
the term “selfie,” as we know it today, really took off just
a few years ago.
TIME magazine even included selfie on its list,
"Top 10 Buzzwords of 2012."
Clearly, there is no shortage of selfies shared online today, just check
your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram feeds. At the same time, selfies
can come with a downside for people who are already hypercritical about
According to Key-Whitman Eye Center
President and Chief Surgeon Jeffrey Whitman, M.D., “There’s greater sensitivity about ‘how I look’
today. Many people have become much more critical of themselves and at
an earlier age. Thanks to selfies, people may analyze how others may be
looking at them, and on a more regular basis.”
And it isn’t just selfies alone at the center of this phenomena.
“If you’re active on social media sites, and even dating sites like
Match.com, you end up seeing pictures of yourself all the time. I’ve even
heard some people say they look at themselves more on social media than
they do in the mirror. That may not be true for everyone, but I think
it’s certainly an issue of our times,” Dr. Whitman says.
So what can you do if your selfies are getting you down?
Improve your selfies NOW, with 3 quick tips:
1. Position the camera at a flattering angle. Hold the camera above your head and point downward instead of below your
chin to take off pounds and avoid double chin syndrome.
2. Adjust lighting and filters. Practice taking shots with different levels of light. Most camera apps
and Instagram also come with an array of filters to adjust brightness,
colors and tones, along with an array of special affects.
3. Use a selfie stick. Photos taken up close can exaggerate facial imperfections. By moving the
camera a few feet away, you end up with a more realistic and balanced
depiction of your face.
As Dr.Whitman explains, “You can take an unflattering picture of
the most beautiful model in the world by taking it too close and from
underneath the chin. The same holds true with selfies, where people snap
photos at bad angles and too close up. On the other hand, people may notice
issues about their appearance that can be fixed or improved upon.”
Improve your selfies LATER with this unexpected tip:
Consider a cosmetic procedure or plastic surgery.
anti-aging cosmetic injections or surgery may sound extreme to some,
a recent study by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery revealed a 6 to 10 percent increase in requests for rhinoplasty, hair
transplants and eyelid surgery.
The surgeons also attributed a portion of this increase (13 percent of
patients) to people wanting to look better in selfies. In addition, one
in three of the surgeons surveyed also agreed patients are more aware
of how they look due to time spent on social media.
Want to enhance your eyes or eyelids? An oculoplastic specialist is the
According to Dr. Whitman, “One of the
benefits of choosing an oculoplastic surgeon or an ophthalmologist who specializes in surgery around the eyes and eyelids
is they know how to do surgery around the eyes and eyelids
safely. When surgery is done around the eyes improperly, you can experience chronic
problems, such eyes that don’t close all the way, poor symmetry
and dry eye issues.”
Not only are oculoplastic surgeons trained in the cosmetic aspects of plastic
surgery, they are also trained in areas other surgeons don’t perform.
The skin around the eye is different than the face, it’s thinner
and more sensitive, so it’s important to turn to a surgeon who specializes
in that area.
“Oculoplastic surgeons undergo extensive training to diagnose and
treat tumors in and near the eye, orbital fractures, problems related
to trauma and congenital problems that cause droopy or baggy eyelids.
It’s not easy to do, and it really is artwork,” says Dr. Whitman.
The two most common cosmetic procedures Key-Whitman oculoplastic surgeons
perform today are to correct baggy and droopy eyelids. Many people looking
at cosmetic eye surgery also want to treat the wrinkles around the eye
and forehead. Those are easy to take care of with Botox and fillers.
Give careful thought to WHY you want cosmetic eye and eyelid surgery
“Patients have to decide, do they want to look like someone else,
correct a defect and/or enhance their appearance? If you do want to look
like someone else, counseling prior to surgery is especially important.
I’ve found people are very rarely happy when they get surgery for
that reason,” cautions Dr. Whitman.
On the other hand, if you have a defect from an old scar or droopy eyelids
or bags that run in the family, a surgical procedure may be a good option
for you. Says Dr. Whitman, “Our oculoplastic surgeons can help improve
your appearance. And by that I mean who you
really look like and how your friends know you to look.”
Any type of surgery comes with risks and the decision to proceed should
be taken seriously, especially when you’re quite young. “It’s
the responsibility of the eye doctor and the patient’s family (especially
when minors are involved), to discuss whether there is a good reason to
do the surgery, both psychologically and physically,
You need to be old enough to make that decision as well. For example, if
it’s a cosmetic procedure, and the patient is 14 years old, the
teen, parents and surgeon need to have a longer conversation about expectations
and risks. If it is a congenital issue with the eyes or eyelids that can
be fixed, than by all means do it,” Dr. Whitman says.
Weigh the pros and cons of eye and eyelid surgery
“Of any area of the body, the risk of infection is lowest in the
facial skin, eyelids, etc., because it is so vascular. People have lots
of blood vessels in the face. That’s why skin grafts, lid grafts
and other procedures in those areas heal so well,” says Dr. Whitman.
For this same reason, hemorrhaging and bruising are not uncommon. As Dr.
Whitman explains, “Because there are so many blood vessels, there
typically is quite a bit of bruising following surgery around the eyes,
so people have to
be prepared following eye or eyelid surgery.
They are going to have bruising lasting 3 to 4 weeks. Green-based make
up and vitamin E creams are helpful during healing time.”
If you’ve had previous surgery on your eyes, it could affect the
outcome of a second surgery, too. “People who have had previous
surgery need to be honest with their surgeon about past surgeries. There
may not be enough tissue to actually get the correction you want, and
you could get a disappointing or problematic outcome,” Dr. Whitman says.
Cost may be a consideration, but insurance covers many eye and eyelid surgery
Some droopy eyelid problems, also known as
ptosis, are also covered by insurance, because the upper eyelids are so droopy they interfere with the patient’s
If there is enough bagginess in the lower lids weighing them down, the
weight can actually pull the eyelid away from the eyeball, which can cause
dry eye problems. Insurance often covers this condition, known as ectropion, as well.
Not sure whether eye or eyelid surgery is worth it, just to take a better selfie?
Get the facts about oculoplastic surgery before you make a decision. An experienced oculoplastic surgeon can help
you weigh your options and advise you about the benefits and risks associated
with cosmetic procedures and plastic surgery.
Photo Source: Dollar Photo Club