Zhao is among a growing number of Chinese men using surgical and non-surgical procedures to change their physical appearance to boost their self-confidence or give them an edge.
In 2018, the market for aesthetic medicine in China was worth more than 495 billion yuan, with males accounting for around 15 percent of customers, according to a report by cosmetic surgery social networking app Gengmei, whose name means “more beautiful” in Chinese.
“Around 20 percent of my patients are men. Some want to remove acne and look better in wedding pictures, while others troubled by baldness hope to look younger through hair transplants,” says Zhang Hui, a dermatologist with a Beijing-based private cosmetic hospital.
Fan also warned the public of the negative impact of live streaming celebrities who promote the misconception that being pretty trumps all else.
“Whether to have cosmetic procedures is a personal choice, but people should not develop an addiction to it,” Fan says. “After all, a rich and beautiful inner world is far more important than a pretty face.”