‘Prejuvenation’ is emerging as a key trend - Hamilton Fraser


Why ‘prejuvenation’ is emerging as a key trend for the next generation of aesthetic patients 

Prejuvenation, a proactive approach to preventative rather than corrective treatments, has been identified as one of the latest aesthetic trends as we see the new tweakments-conscious generation stepping forward to claim their place in the market. 

In our annual survey, prejuvenation was cited as a top trend by 58.2% of respondents, while Galderma’s NEXT report selected “proactive beauty” as one of six key future drivers of the industry. 

“Proactive beauty: Addressing ageing before it is apparent has become paramount. The rise of ‘prejuvenation’ treatments, which focus on prevention rather than cure, reflects today’s zeitgeist. For aesthetics, this means an increased shift toward early intervention.” – Galderma NEXT Report 

Similarly, at the Anti-Aging Medicine World Congress (AMWC)  press conference, prevention was highlighted as a “key factor to ageing well”. 

Dr Thierry Besins, plastic surgeon and AMWC scientific director, commented that “maintaining youthful skin (replenished, smooth, luminous complexion etc) using medical techniques and beauty treatments started sufficiently early to preserve the skin’s capital and slow the ageing process” was one of the keys to preventative aesthetics. 

The trend is particularly popular with younger patients in their 20s and 30s who are looking for preventative and beautifying treatments such as light laser therapies, skincare, and chemical peels. It may also include injectables like botulinum toxin and dermal fillers but spans older demographics, too, as 50 becomes the new 30.

"Prejuvenation treatments are a great alternative to cosmetic surgery and give your patients a choice of various skincare regimes combined with non-surgical treatments ranging from botulinum toxin and dermal fillers to radiofrequency and microneedle therapy to prevent signs of ageing. Having a wide range of options available to your patients will assist with a more personalised approach to individual patient needs and a more tailor-made treatment plan." – Ella Vranjkovic, Cosmetic Lead at Hamilton Fraser


What’s driving the prejuvenation trend? 

According to the NEXT report, “Consumers are becoming preoccupied with holding the markers of age at bay” and are “invested in preparing for a future where they can prolong their youthful appearance for as long as possible, rather than how their DNA and external factors dictate.” 

This is supported by the fact that 43% of UK adults now view non-surgical procedures as a regular part of their beauty grooming routines, according to Mintel’s research on attitudes towards cosmetic procedures in the UK

It has become ‘the new normal’ for us to think ahead about how aesthetics can hold off the signs of ageing. Releasing its annual statistics in February 2024, The American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery claimed “Gen Z has entered the chat”, writing:

“From the ‘Sephora Tween’ phenomenon to TikTok’s wildly popular ‘Get Ready with Me’ videos, Gen Z (now ages 11-26) is coming into their own purchasing power and prioritising aesthetics. This year’s survey supports this, showing that 77% of AAFPRS members believe there will be a greater emphasis on earlier maintenance and prevention starting in the twenties and thirties to forestall signs of ageing.”

“This generation is growing up with a greater awareness of what is possible when it comes to aesthetic treatments thanks to the normalisation online. Rapid advances in non-invasive treatments and technologies allow younger patients entry into aesthetics with very little pain and downtime, making it more attractive to a larger patient pool.” -
Dr Sherard A. Tatum, President of the AAFPRS.

Key behaviours underpinning the prejuvenation trend 

A number of key consumer behaviours have been identified as driving the prejuvenation trend. These include:

·  Skincare and at-home prevention

·  The end of “anti-ageing”

·  Increased accessibility of minimally invasive treatments

·  Collagen-stimulating treatments and supplements

·  A move towards longevity, health and wellness


1.  Skincare and at-home prevention

The younger generation is embracing the preventative power of skincare with consumers also turning to at-home devices to achieve glowing skin. 

Terms such as “glass skin”, a Korean beauty term that has now caught on globally, are trending among the younger generation. Demand for “glass skin products” has skyrocketed by 202% in the past five years, according to new findings from beauty and wellness marketplace Fresha. The hashtag #glassskin, which refers to a clear, dewy and reflective appearance, is also trending on social media and has accumulated 3.9 billion views on TikTok worldwide. 

The research also revealed that online searches for ‘glowy skin’ have exploded by 178% globally. At the same time, TikTok has seen 9,000 posts and 61 million views from users in the UK with the hashtag #cleangirl, which is going viral for its emphasis on a natural beauty look.

Prescription-strength products for at-home use, including tretinoin, are also cited as being on the rise. 

These at-home solutions can be used standalone or as an adjunct to in-clinic aesthetic treatments to help maintain results. 


2. The end of the era of “anti-ageing” 

The NEXT report also highlighted ‘Cancelling age’ as another key trend, showing “the evolving desire to not be defined by our age is increasing a demand to preserve and enhance beauty, rather than solely reverse ageing” and linking to the concept of prejuvenation.

Nearly 72% of women globally said that they want to focus on looking healthy rather than young. 

“Consumers are expecting longer, healthier lives – with the faces to match”, the report says, adding that they are “cancelling expectations of what certain ages should ‘look like,’ as they employ aesthetics to express their ageless attitude. The vital attitude shift is towards preservation.” 

Central to this is a shift in language away from reversal-focused “anti-ageing” and towards preservation-focused terminology such as “pro-ageing”, “age management”, and “agelessness.”


3. The rise in availability of minimally invasive treatments 

Consumers from all age demographics are looking to less invasive treatments, as an extension of their skincare routines and instead of cosmetic surgery. This has been made possible by increased accessibility and awareness of aesthetic treatments via social media and the development of new treatments and technologies that offer more natural results and lower downtime.

 “This lo-fi approach is the first of what will become a suite of treatment strategies that employ a ‘light touch’ to get ahead in ageing”, says the NEXT report. 

The AAFPRS data points to this, too, with 83% of the total number of procedures performed in 2023 being minimally invasive. Of minimally invasive procedures, the three most common treatments were neurotoxins, fillers, and topical treatments (micro-needling and chemical peels). 

Our own survey matched this with toxins and fillers coming out on top when it comes to the most popular treatments, with 79.7% of respondents naming botulinum toxin as a treatment they offered and 76.1% saying they performed dermal fillers.

4. Collagen is king

As the beauty-conscious grasp the role that collagen plays in skin ageing, with more becoming aware that people lose collagen from the age of 20, the market for products and treatments promising to increase its production is on the rise.

As such, collagen is experiencing significant growth in healthcare, cosmetics, and food and drink products, according to the Pause Live trends report, with the global collagen industry predicted to grow to an enormous $7.2 billion in 2030 from $1.8 billion in 2019.

Collagen functions as the body's scaffold, holding cells together, imparting strength and support, and making the skin and tissues robust, flexible, and resilient. Collagen is crucial in maintaining the skin's natural strength and elasticity, but its levels naturally diminish as we age, declining by approximately one per cent annually from our 20s.

The future looks poised to embrace the use of collagen biostimulators in conjunction with other aesthetic injectables and ‘collagen banking’ plans – an approach to proactively maintain and boost collagen earlier. In a nod to this, social media coverage of biostimulators grew eight-fold between 2010 and 2020, according to McKinsey research.


5. Longevity, health and wellness 

The aesthetic industry is increasingly recognising the importance of a holistic approach that integrates treatments with lifestyle and wellness advice. This approach considers the whole person – their health, lifestyle, and overall wellbeing – and seeks to provide treatments that enhance not just physical appearance but also the overall quality of life. This paradigm shift reflects a deeper understanding of beauty as a component of overall health and wellness.

“I suspect there’s going to be a move away from what we see now as individual, isolated treatments, and a move towards a holistic approach with wellness and a combination of devices and products and injectables, combining that with mental health and wellbeing.”- Dr Priyanka Chadha, Director of Acquisition Aesthetics

The NEXT report states, “Tomorrow’s consumer will enter the aesthetics market in the footsteps of a generation fully on board with aesthetics sitting alongside skincare.”

“As proactive beauty becomes established, we will likely see multi-modal treatment plans combining several aesthetic interventions with skincare, nutrition, as well as long-term health and wellness, to make prolonging youthful appearance a reality.” 


Treating under 18s in aesthetics 

It’s important to remember that when we speak about prejuvenation for younger patients, we are talking about those over 18. 

TikTok has seen a worrying new trend for children as young as 10 using prescription-strength skincare including retinoids. Speaking to The Guardian, Dr Anjali Mahto, a consultant dermatologist at Self London, said she was seeing the trend more frequently in her clinics.

“Most have been heavily influenced by social media (TikTok in particular) and influencers who are showing their in-depth routines. There is often an unhealthy focus on anti-ageing, too, despite their young age. 

“I do have concerns about them using ingredients like vitamin C, vitamin A (retinoids) and exfoliating acids like AHAs and BHAs. They’re not necessary on young skin, and I think the psychological aspect of starting an ‘anti-ageing’ routine this young is detrimental. Unfortunately I am seeing more teens in my clinic who are obsessed with ageing. It’s concerning, and it’s undoubtedly been fuelled by social media.”

In September 2021, new legislation in the form of The Botulinum Toxin and Cosmetic Fillers (Children) Act came into effect, banning anyone under the age of 18 from accessing either procedure.

The Act also requires a doctor, registered medical practitioner, or health professional to administer injections when there is a medical need in young people. 

In May 2022, a ban on adverts for cosmetic procedures targeting under-18s also came into effect, making it illegal to advertise procedures designed to change a person’s physical appearance – including breast augmentation or reduction, ‘tummy tucks’, eyelid surgery, nose reshaping and facelifts. The ban also included dermal fillers, teeth-whitening products and chemical peels.


What the future holds for the prejuvenation trend 

This shift in momentum towards preventative, proactive treatments is likely to see an increase in demand for aesthetic interventions as a more diverse age range of patients steps forward to manage the ageing process. While this is positive for the industry, it's important to navigate this demand safely and ethically by making sure age-appropriate treatments are delivered and to counteract social media advice given by non-professionals with evidence-backed professional advice to make sure younger patients are taking preventative action safely. 

You can read more about the 2024 trends we have predicted in our article on Emerging aesthetic trends and technologies in 2024.

At Hamilton Fraser, we offer more than just insurance. For more advice and information, contact Hamilton Fraser on 0800 63 43 881 or get a quote today.

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