Male Rhinoplasty

One of the revolutions in plastic surgery in the modern era has got to be the reduction in the stigma associated with “going under the knife”.    People are feeling more empowered than ever to achieve the appearance that best suits them, and the well-established safety and effectiveness of the techniques offered by qualified board-certified physicians has allowed this practice to flourish.  With respect to rhinoplasty, the added issue of nasal breathing often leads patients to seek rhinoplasty to achieve a better-breathing and better-looking nose.

As more and more patients seek quality plastic surgery, men have naturally joined into the fold.  Male rhinoplasty patients are making up an increasing percentage of the plastic surgery population.  But is male rhinoplasty the same thing as female rhinoplasty?  Obviously, the answer is no.  Here we will take a deeper dive into some of these differences.

Male rhinoplasty has some unique characteristics.  Probably the most fundamental of these differences  is that the so-called aesthetic “ideals” differ somewhat from women.  For example, in a male rhinoplasty the tip of the nose should usually have less rotation or less “turned up” appearance.  Men in general prefer their rotation, which refers to the angle between the upper lip and the nose on profile view, to be closer to 90 degrees, while women typically prefer a larger angle, or closer to 100 degrees.  This is an important although sometimes subtle difference, and certainly varies widely between individuals, but nonetheless is a distinctive feature between female and male rhinoplasty.

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Male rhinoplasty also typically favors a longer nose with more projection.  Men in general can aesthetically tolerate, and often prefer, a larger nose.  These characteristics can be associated with a more masculine profile, and are more appropriate in taller or larger individuals, who are typically male. In fact, understanding these characteristics is a key component of masculinizing (or feminizing) a nose in patients who undergo facial transgender surgery.

Establishing these parameters – rotation, length, and projection – are key objectives of each and every rhinoplasty operation, so it is critical to take these differences into consideration when planning for a male rhinoplasty.  This is very important to discuss with your surgeon beforehand so you can get a sense or how he or she treats the aesthetics of their male rhinoplasty patients.  As is my usual recommendation, you and your surgeon need to be on the same page aesthetically. 

Beyond these general differences, male rhinoplasty is also very culture and ethnicity dependent.  Certain groups value particular features or have differing views on masculine appearance.  For example, I have seen some patients that desire changes to their nose, but with preservation of their dorsal hump, which helps them continue to identify with their family or heritage.  Make sure your surgeon is aware of and sympathetic to your unique situation. 

It is exciting to see men feeling confident and empowered enough to undergo rhinoplasty, and I see no reason why the trend toward more male rhinoplasty will decrease in the future.  If you are considering male rhinoplasty, remember to seek a consultation with a board-certified facial plastic surgeon!

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