Beauty business: Q&A with The Aesthetic Guide founder Michael Moretti

Non-surgical treatments such as injectables are on the rise in the aesthetic industry, with cosmetic surgery representing less than 20 percent of the total number of procedures performed in the U.S. each year.

Michael Moretti is founder of The Aesthetic Guide, a leading trade publication for the aesthetic industry. He also created the annual Aesthetic Show, which brought some top practitioners and physicians to Las Vegas in June. We asked Moretti some questions about where the industry and public opinion are headed.

In the 18 years since you founded the Guide, what observations have you made about the evolution of the industry and the public’s perception?

Aesthetic medicine has changed dramatically and grown exponentially. Procedures are continually becoming more accessible, more affordable, and the public has embraced these changes wholeheartedly. At the beginning, aesthetic medicine was a luxury, considered to be only for the upper class in wealthy areas of the nation. Now, our events are attended by practitioners from every market around the nation who offer their services to everyone in their communities.

Regarding cosmetic surgery, would you say American culture appears to be more accepting, or has the proliferation of venues (especially online) for criticism/commentary made it worse in some ways?

Absolutely more accepting. In fact, the growing criticism, usually towards bad work, points to the fact that our standards for what are acceptable outcomes have risen.

I saw that the Guide has Asian and European iterations and wondered what you can share about the way aesthetics and attitudes toward beautification methods change depending where you are in the world.

Aesthetic Medicine in Asia and Europe is different than in the U.S. Specifically in Europe, they have outpaced America in technology. Much of what we consider new here in the states has been over there for years already.

What are some of the latest treatments and procedures making news?

Stem cell treatments are ever on the rise. In fact, aesthetic medicine has paved the way for adipose stem cell research and technology, which is now being used for all types of medical treatments. Non-invasive body contouring and longer lasting injectables continue to dominate news and trends within the industry.

How much better are outcomes today than they were even in the 20th century?

Improvements in surgical techniques and new technologies have given the industry the essential tools it needs to provide amazing, natural looking results with minimal downtime. It used to be a patient would go in for highly expensive and invasive surgery that required lengthy recovery times away from work and life. While there is still a place for invasive surgical interventions, they are less and less prevalent.

Some patients experience medical complications or have psychological trauma due to being unprepared for change or having unrealistic expectations. How does the industry address these issues, in your experience?

As with any type of medicine there can be risks; aesthetic medicine is no different here. It’s the patient’s responsibility to make educated choices when it comes to selecting the right doctor and it’s both the patient’s and doctor’s responsibility to make sure expectations are realistic and achievable. Unfortunately, as in every medical discipline, there are patients who will go to any length to find a doctor who will say ‘yes’ to them and their unrealistic expectations, and there are doctors out there who will say ‘yes’ when they shouldn’t. One of the main aspects of THE Aesthetic Show is to address these issues. We offer training from the most respected doctors in the industry as well as certification in the latest techniques. We host seminars on everything from properly addressing patient expectations to the best ways of using new technologies. We offer educational tools to all practitioners in the industry to help create higher standards of care for doctors and patients alike.

Do you have any overarching thoughts about the concept of beauty and its infinite manifestations in the human form?

Looking and feeling your best has been an aspect of human nature since the beginning of time.


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