Ok, there’s way more to know about cosmetic surgery than that. Admittedly, when I told people I was interviewing a cosmetic surgeon who specialized in procedures for men, that was the FIRST question EVERYONE asked me. The most important question should be – do you age gracefully or do you try to stave off the ravages of time via a scalpel?
For many in the gay community, face and body are everything. We try to get with what we find physically attractive. We are visually-oriented beings. The thought of looking older or out of shape is akin to death for some guys. The gym is church for many a homosexual, and medicine cabinets are crammed with moisturizers, creams, and tanning solutions in a supreme effort to remain looking as youthful as possible.
But time is inevitable. Unless you’re Madonna and sleep in some sort of sci-fi chamber, you will age. Crow’s feet happen. Things can start to sag a little on you. Do you shrug and go on enjoying your life and realize this happens to everyone, or do you find some way to head time off at the pass? Would you ever consider plastic surgery.
Men are FLYING to cosmetic surgeons to get everything from their eyes done to butt implants to Botox injections to smooth out their wrinkles. And a large number of those men are gay. I spoke with Dr. J. Howell Tiller of South Beach Cosmetic Surgery for Men in Miami, Florida. He’s gay, and many of his patients are. He filled us in on who gets cosmetic surgery, why, and answers the most important question – can I get my cock enlarged?
Check out our interview with Dr. Tiller after the JUMP:
– J. Harvey
p.s. Can I state for the record that Dr. Tiller is openly gay and kind of a Anderson Cooper, silver fox daddy guy? Will flattery get me lipo, Dr. Tiller? I didn’t ask him that because I have morals. And Dewitt said it would be gauche.
What makes a good candidate for plastic surgery? What makes a (for lack of a better word) “bad” candidate for plastic surgery?
A “good” candidate is one with a favorable credit report, I suppose – Ha! [Ed. note – We like him already. #TeamGetMoneyBitch] I think a “good” candidate is one who comes in for a first visit who has already done their homework: searched the Internet for info, consulted with their personal physician for referral to a Board-certified plastic surgeon and one who has specific ideas about the changes they wish to achieve. Of course, a “good” candidate is one who is in general good health regardless of age. Conversely, a “bad” candidate is one who comes in and wants me to tell them what they should have done, one who doesn’t have at least a modest conception of what makes a man look good, and one who is not in good health. Most of the men that I see for the first time are “good” candidates but I spend a lot of time with them refining the information they may have received from other sources and reviewing at length with them what procedure/s might be best to achieve their individual goals. And, of course, some men I have to counsel them to reconsider have g anything done and for any variety of reasons: poor health, perhaps, or unattainable goals or some other reason.
Your specialize in plastic surgery for men. Can you speculate as to what percentage of your patients are gay men?
I’ve been performing cosmetic surgery for over 30 years (I know, I know, that’s longer than you and most of your readers have even been alive!!) and over those years my focus has become limited to male cosmetic surgery because mens’ aims, and the surgical techniques, and even the manner in which they are treated from the office decor, to the front desk personnel, to the surgical recovery itself are simply different for men than for women. In this regard there is little to no difference between gay men and straight men. Gay men, however, are more body conscious and also, of course, much more attuned to what makes a man’s body look good. Because of this difference, I suppose, then most of my patients are gay. I would say that about 80% are gay and 20% straight. And being gay myself may make many men, both gay and straight, comfortable with my aesthetic judgment about what makes a man look good. And, in that same vein, a lot of gay men are more comfortable with a gay surgeon – and there ain’t many of us…..
This is broad, but what do you think brings gay men in particular to decide they need a procedure?
That is a broad question in the sense that, simply, gay men have innumerable, individual, and sometimes even unknowable reasons for seeking plastic surgery. Of course, it can be fair to say that gay men seek cosmetic surgery because they want to look better. And, in my experience it takes a great deal of self-confidence for a man to seek surgery in order to improve his appearance.
What is the most popular procedure that you provide?
The most popular procedure as a whole in my practice is body implants: pecs, biceps, triceps, deltoids, abs, buttocks, quads, and calfs. Most of these I developed myself and largely at the insistence of men who wanted the procedure performed, I have to say. Of course, “implants” is a broad area but as a singular surgical technique then “implants” is a good answer. This is a very popular area for men of all ages, really. I’ve been doing these procedures for more than 25 years and they have been becoming increasingly popular over the past ten years or so. However, body contouring/muscle implants for men, even as common as they are in my practice, are still very uncommon and even unknown to the public at large. So that when someone sees a man with large, well-defined muscles the first thought is not “That guy has implants” rather it is “Wow, that guy is well-built.”
If someone wanted plastic surgery, but was fearful of the pain and an extended recovery – what would you tell them?
I would worry about any man who didn’t worry about the pain and recovery required for surgery. Fortunately, pain can be managed very well with medications and with proper instructions and is usually pretty short-lived as is the actual surgical recovery. I handle the concerns of prospective surgical patients by educating each patient and his partner/family as to what to expect and by be available pretty much 24/7 to the patient during his recovery period. This often involves house-calls the first several days following surgery.
If someone wanted to start “small,” what procedure would you recommend?
I educate men on good skin care to prevent early signs of aging. But other “small” procedures can be exceedingly beneficial to men. These procedures include Botox, skin lesion removal, and fillers. Botox: Facial wrinkles are caused by the action of the muscles that lay beneath and attached to the skin. If these muscles are weakened or even paralyzed then the overlying wrinkles are softened or may even disappear. Botox paralyzed these wrinkle-causing muscles and works just amazingly. I love the stuff. With younger men it works great; older men may just need a more aggressive approach for a better result. Skin lesions: It always surprises me by how many men walk around with, frankly, ugly moles or other skin lesions on their face or arms or backs or….well, wherever, even the scrotum (ball sac…duh). Very often, these can be removed very easily and very inexpensively and can simply positively change the appearance and self-confidence of the man! Fillers: There are many, many fillers, some man-made, some “natural” and are used for many purposes. Fillers can fill early wrinkling, can improve the appearance of lips and cheeks and other area and all with a minimum of discomfort but, unfortunately, for many of the fillers not a minimum of cost. I love fat for a filler. It’s relatively inexpensive and works great in a variety of situations for which a man desires improvement.
If there was any advice you could give to someone who wants a procedure before they pursue it, what would it be?
In my experience, men come in for their first visit having down a lot of research on their own. Many are referred to me by their primary care physician or by other plastic surgeons. My colleagues are often quite knowledgeable about procedures and can give good initial advice. The Internet, of course, is a good source of information about particular procedures. Friends who have had procedures similar to the ones that a person is considering can offer good first-hand experience advice. But in the end, it is the plastic surgeon who is the one responsible for evaluating the patient and giving advice about a procedure and for educating the man about the what may be best for him to achieve his particular aims and to discuss the alternatives, the recovery and the risks involved. The last advice I give to prospective patient is three-fold: think about all that we had discussed during the visit and if he has any questions then call me or my office. Secondly, I always recommend getting a second or even third opinion to make certain that the person is getting the right procedure, at the right time, with the right surgeon. And, thirdly, make certain that you feel comfortable with the surgeon and his office so if you have any questions or concerns following the procedure you will know that your concerns will be addressed promptly and personally.
Can Botox become addictive? When do you know enough is enough? Or is it ever enough?
Botox is a wonderful product and can be very useful for men who have modest facial wrinkling. Because Botox treatments are relatively easy and very effective then many physicians other than plastic surgeons are performing the treatments. I think this is largely a good development but many patients receive Botox who really have gotten to the point where they need a more aggressive approach to their problem such as facelift or fat transfer, etc. That’s when they should be referred to a plastic surgeon. Botox “addiction”? Well, I don’t find that to be a particular problem, no.
I know you can’t name them – but have you had any famous clients?
Yes, I have and no, I won’t, just as you guessed. [Ed. note – Well, it’s not like I wasn’t gonna try…]
Have YOU had plastic surgery and if so – what procedure and did it change your perspective at all being on the other side of the scalpel?
Have I had any plastic surgery?? Why, what do you think I need done?? Don’t answer that….. Admittedly, no, I have not had any procedures done other than I have cut a few skin lesions off of myself. But as I expressed earlier, I do like Botox and I use that on myself whenever I have a little left over from treating other patients. I am anticipating something to do with some loose skin under my neck that bugs me like heck but that’s not anytime soon.
What would you say to critics of plastic surgery, people who believe we should all age gracefully and let the genetic chips fall where they may?
I say nothing – ha! But it’s true. To each their own. I’ve committed my life to this surgical specialty because I know the amazingly beneficial effects cosmetic surgery can have for an individual. And I want to make certain that those men who do desire to have such procedures that they find and work with surgeons like myself who train hard, work hard, and take the specialty seriously. Cosmetic surgery may be frivolous but it is serious and gay men should work with surgeons who understand and take seriously their concerns.
And finally…it’s Manhunt, so someone’s going to ask this if I don’t, is there any sort of procedure for enlarging one’s penis?
In the past (some 22-25 years ago) I performed a large number of penile enlargements using a variety of techniques. Over several years of following the results, however, I became dissatisfied with the effectiveness of the procedures. Not that the procedures were harmful but predictable and adequate results could not be assured with any confidence. So I stopped performing them. However, I do continue to follow potentially beneficial techniques but I remain unimpressed with results from surgical penile enhancements. Instead, I recommend men who are interested to use penile pumps – they work.
Penile pump, check! That’s going RIGHT ON THE LIST. Anyway, big thanks to Dr. Tiller for talking with us about this fascinating subject. For further info, you can check out his practice’s website (South Beach Cosmetic Surgery For Men) here.