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5 Most Popular Cosmetic Surgeries In Australia

Rachel Horan

Rachel Horan

July 7, 20215 minute read
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The cosmetic surgery industry in Australia is a billion dollar industry. As a result, Australia ranks in the top ten countries worldwide for the most money spent on cosmetic procedures. From eyelid surgery to a breast augmentation, there are an abundance of procedures that can involve going under the knife to alter your physical appearance.

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    While it is still somewhat taboo, cosmetic surgery is becoming increasingly popular, particularly amongst people aged 40 to 45 years old.


    An interesting fact!

    According to the Victorian Cosmetic Institute, there were 202,642 cosmetic procedures completed in Australia in 2018. In addition, there were a total of 102,404 cosmetic surgical procedures.

    In this article, we’ll discuss the five most popular cosmetic surgeries in Australia, expected costs, the pros and cons of cosmetic surgery, and more.

    What is cosmetic surgery?

    Cosmetic surgery is the process of changing the appearance of a technically “healthy” part of the body. Meaning, it is more so done for appearance, rather than a true medical necessity.

    Cosmetic surgery is a type of plastic surgery. Plastic surgery is the surgical speciality of restoring, reconstructing, or altering the human body. The other type of plastic surgery is reconstructive surgery, which is done to restore the normal appearance and function of a malformed body part.

    Cosmetic surgery can be performed by a plastic surgeon or by a cosmetic surgeon. Plastic surgeons can complete both cosmetic and reconstructive procedures, whereas cosmetic surgeons only perform cosmetic surgeries.

    Which cosmetic surgeries are most popular?

    Worldwide, the most popular cosmetic procedures are: breast augmentation, liposuction, eyelid surgery, abdominoplasty, and rhinoplasty. Surprisingly, the top five most popular cosmetic surgeries in Australia are slightly different: (1) breast augmentation, (2) eyelid surgery, (3) liposuction, (4) abdominoplasty, and (5) breast reduction.

    Breast augmentation

    A breast augmentation can be either a cosmetic procedure or a reconstructive surgery, depending on the individual circumstances. It involves implants being inserted underneath the breasts to enlarge them. A breast augmentation can be used to:

    • Enlarge small breasts;
    • Restore breast volume after weight loss or pregnancy and breastfeeding;
    • Reconstruct a breast after mastectomy or injury.

    In Australia, breast augmentations are the most common procedure, accounting for 21.5% of all cosmetic surgeries. Costs that will be associated with the procedure can include:

    • Surgeon’s fee;
    • Hospital or surgical facility costs;
    • Anaesthesia fees;
    • Prescriptions for medication;
    • Post-surgical garments;
    • Medical tests.

    Since it is what is known as an ‘elective surgery’, meaning that it is not a life saving procedure, it will typically be more expensive.

    Eyelid surgery

    Eyelid surgery, also known as a blepharoplasty, involves correcting defects, deformities, and disfigurations of the eyelids, as well as aesthetically modifying the eye region of the face. Some of the reasons people might consider having a blepharoplasty is if they have:

    • Baggy or droopy upper eyelids;
    • Excess skin of the upper eyelids that interferes with your peripheral vision;
    • Excess skin on the lower eyelids;
    • Bags under your eyes.

    Again, eyelid surgery can be cosmetic or reconstructive, depending on whether it’s medically required to restore impaired vision or for enhanced physical appearance. Eyelid surgery accounts for 11.2% of cosmetic surgeries in Australia, and can cost anywhere from $2,500 to $8,000 (depending on the type of surgery required).


    Liposuction, sometimes referred to as ‘lipo’, is a fat-removal procedure (not a weight-loss method) that changes the shape of certain areas of the body by removing excess fat. Most commonly, people get liposuction for their thighs, buttocks, abdomen, arms, neck, and under the chin. Since it is a cosmetic procedure, rather than reconstructive, it will not be covered by Medicare and is typically not covered by insurance.

    According to Health Direct, the best candidates for liposuction are people of a normal weight that have firm, elastic skin but pockets of excess fat in certain areas.

    Liposuction surgeries account for 9.6% of cosmetic surgeries in Australia. Some of the costs involved include:

    • Surgeon’s fees;
    • Anaesthetist’s fees;
    • Clinic or hospital fees;
    • Medication, dressings, and support garments.


    An abdominoplasty or a “tummy tuck” is a procedure used to make the abdomen thinner and more firm. In most cases, an abdominoplasty will:

    • Restore weakened or separated muscles;
    • Help alleviate pain;
    • Improve bladder function;
    • Reduce itching and skin infections from excess skin;
    • Create a firmer and smoother profile by changing the shape and tone of the abdomen.

    Slightly less popular than liposuction, 9.3% of all cosmetic surgeries were abdominoplasties. In Australia, a tummy tuck can cost anywhere from $9,000 to $29,000 depending on the surgeon’s fees, anaethetist’s fees, and hospital costs.

    Breast reduction

    A breast reduction, also called a reduction mammoplasty, is the plastic surgical procedure that reduces the size of large breasts. It aims to achieve a breast size that is in proportion with the rest of the body, and can be performed to relieve discomforts of large breasts.

    Breast reduction surgery accounts for a total of 7.4% of cosmetic surgeries in Australia. Costs associated with a breast reduction include:

    • Surgeon fees;
    • Hospital or surgical facility costs;
    • Anaesthesia fees;
    • Medications;
    • Post-surgery garments;
    • Medical testing.

    Important note!

    In most cases, breast reduction surgery is considered a ‘reconstructive procedure’ and might be covered by private health insurance, when it’s performed to relieve medical symptoms. However, pre-certification is required for reimbursement or coverage.

    Pros and cons of cosmetic surgery

    When considering cosmetic surgery, it’s important to weigh up all of the advantages and disadvantages of the procedure. It can be a pretty big decision to make permanent changes to your body. Here is a snapshot of the potential pros and cons of cosmetic surgery.


    • You’re most likely changing something you didn’t particularly like about yourself. When this happens, you could have an enhanced appearance, which is more in line with your desires.
    • By changing the thing you disliked about your appearance, you might feel more confident and happy in your life.
    • There are certain stigmas that plastic surgery is “extremely painful”. While it is not without pain, it’s highly manageable.
    • The results are permanent (in most cases).
    • It’s easily accessible.


    • It’s expensive, especially if you don’t have private health insurance or Medicare coverage.
    • It won’t always meet your expectations.
    • There are always risks when having surgery, and mistakes are a possibility.
    • You’ll need time to recover. After all, it is surgery.
    • It might take time to adjust to your new appearance.


    It’s always best to consult with your GP or a health professional to find out what your options are and any risks associated with a cosmetic surgery procedure.

    Copyright © www.jacarandafinance.com.au Jacaranda Finance Pty Ltd ® ABN 53 162 078 195 Australian Credit Licence 456 404, Pawnbroking License Number 4221738. The information on this web-page is general information and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Information provided on this website is general in nature and does not constitute financial advice.

    Rachel Horan
    Rachel Horan

    Written by Rachel Horan

    Rachel Horan is a Content Writer for Jacaranda Finance. Rachel has previously produced content for Brisbane City Council, Black & White Cabs, and Clubs Queensland. She has a Bachelor of Mass Communication with Distinction from the Queensland University of Technology.

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