Summary: One of the procedures that doesn’t get talked about quite as much as others is called gynecomastia surgery. You might know it by another name: male breast reduction surgery. This procedure is designed to help male patients eliminate male breast tissue and get a more masculine overall look. What’s surprising about this is that male breast reduction surgery seems to be growing in popularity and is now being considered among the “trendy” procedures of the new year. I don’t think any of us saw that coming.

male breast reduction in 2016

The Trending Procedures for the New Year

We’re used to hearing about the hottest plastic surgery trends, and the start of 2016 is no different. Whether it’s breast augmentation or Brazilian Butt Lifts, the new years seems to be little different from last year, which saw these procedures on the rise. However, one thing that seems to be rising in a surprising way is the popularity of male breast reduction in 2016. I’ll be the first to admit, this caught me a little off-guard. Male breast reduction has always been a popular procedure, but it’s never one I thought would ever be “trending.”

The numbers, however, don’t seem to lie. According to one article, male breast reduction procedures have grown by 35% since the year 2000, and they grew 5% over last year. However you slice it, that is a significant growth. There are, of course, a couple of reasons for that, and one of the most significant is the general rise in male plastic surgery options overall. Whether you’re looking for liposuction for men or Botox for men, you certainly have options out there. And those options are becoming ever more tailored to male physiology—or at least, the masculine ideal.

What is Gynecomastia?

Male breast reduction surgery is essentially an answer to gynecomastia. Not many people have heard of gynecomastia, so it’s natural to wonder just what it is. Simply put, gynecomastia is the development of male breast tissue, sometimes colloquially known as “man boobs.” This tissue can develop for a number of reasons, including:

  • Issues related to weight gain
  • Issues related to weight loss (excess skin can take on the appearance of male breast tissue)
  • Genetic factors
  • Gynecomastia is actually somewhat common in former athletes

There are other factors at work, too, including your typical diet and exercise routines. In any case, the reason for your gynecomastia development will generally dictate the types of options you have for eliminating gynecomastia. For example, if your gynecomastia is relatively mild and the breast tissue is mostly fat, you may be able to see significant results by using a procedure called Coolsculpting (it’s usually marketed as a fat loss procedure, but it can be applied to gynecomastia patients). However, in the vast majority of cases, surgery is the most effective way to deal with male breast tissue.

Gynecomastia surgery is usually performed on an outpatient basis and can take a few weeks of recovery time. But the results are almost universally praised.

Why is Male Breast Reduction in 2016 More Popular Than Ever?

There are many reasons why male breast reduction in 2016 may be more popular than it used to be. As mentioned above, the general acceptance of male plastic surgery more broadly is gaining steam. It’s more acceptable for a man to get plastic surgery today than it was twenty years ago, partly because of changes in the way we think about gender and partly because of the added pressure on men to remain looking youthful and fit (it’s worth noting that this pressure is still not nearly equivalent to the pressure women feel—but that’s another article altogether). The greater the pressure, the more men are going to seek out plastic surgery.

Gynecomastia surgery, in particularly, is seen as a quasi-medical procedure. Even the way we talk about it, referring to it by it’s medical name rather than a highly marketed concept (such as Tummy Tuck) adds a certain amount of gravity that, I think, makes it a more palatable concept for men who have, traditionally, been told to avoid the appearance of vanity. But another reason why male breast reduction might be so popular is because it’s incredibly effective. And male breast tissue—whatever causes it—is known to be quite resistant to diet and exercise.

Getting the Body You Want—No Matter the Gender

Whether the patient is male or female, the role of plastic surgery is the same: help the patient get the body he or she wants. This is certainly true with gynecomastia surgery. The patient is after a more masculine look. Male breast tissue can make that difficult, meaning patients are unable to wear certain clothes or do certain things (going to the beach or going swimming, for example).

No matter how popular it is, one of the great things that male breast reduction surgery does is help patients feel more comfortable in their own skin. That male breast reduction surgery is able to do that for so many patients is certainly a fantastic thing!