While Yelp reports seeing a trend towards beauty treatments reflective of a more natural look, Vice reports on The Unstoppable Rise of “The Instagram Face” at the opposite end of the trend continuum. Instagram has birthed a new beauty aesthetic and a wave of cheap nonsurgical interventions with celebrities like Kylie Jenner, Iggy Azalea, Farrah Abraham, and other influencers all embodying the new beauty ideal.
Vice defines the “Instagram Face” as a look characterized by thick, arched eyebrows; full cheeks; eyes weighed down with enormous false eyelashes; and a large pout. All achieved with injectable filler, contouring, and add-ons like false eyelashes.
Essex salon owner Cheree Leon has been offering the Kylie Jenner package for two years: “A lot of young girls are very self-conscious about their faces. They believe, you know, that they’re not pretty,” she tells Vice. “Everyone wants to look like the Kardashians. It’s very, very current. It’s a look that’s massive at the minute. Everyone wants big lips, everyone wants a big bum—it’s the look these girls are seeing on Instagram, and this is what they want to look like.” Using filler, Cheree creates the Kardashian transformation: “You can change someone’s face just from putting filler in it. You can give them that sharp, defined look.”
As fillers have become affordable, it’s become part of monthly beauty maintenance for many like 24-year-old Devon-based personal assistant Rebecca, who recently spent £350 on a Kylie Jenner package, “I’ve always taken care of myself and looked after myself. I just see it as, you know how I get my hair done at the end of the month? I see it as that. I don’t see it as being a big thing, because it is so affordable now.”
Injectables are big business according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Since 2000, there has been an 819% increase in Botox sales, with 1.4 million of last year’s Botox recipients being under the age of 40 in 2017. The popularity of temporary HA filler has soared 85 percent since 2012.
A new wave of beauty bars like Every/Body and Alchemy43 are making injectables as easy as a blowout, with interior designs as Instagrammable as the faces they are injecting. Gone are the days of hushed whispers—we are in the era of selfies and sharing cosmetic procedures on social media. Social influence, a form of prevention, fear of commitment, convenience, and price are the millennial drivers of this cosmetic evolution.
Photo: Amin Rokhide via Unsplash