Aesthetic Medical Trends for 2021

The medical news for 2020 has obviously been dominated by things other than aesthetic medicine, as nearly all elective medical procedures have taken a back seat to COVID-19 for much of the year. However, this is not expected to lessen the public’s demand for aesthetic medical services as we emerge from the quarantines and shutdowns. 

Time moves forward, however, and beauty is always a priority. With that in mind, here are some of the up and coming trends we can expect to see in aesthetic medicine in 2021 and beyond.

The business side


In recent years, a trend has emerged of staff rapidly moving from clinic to clinic without fully learning the job or honing their skills as well as they might have stayed in one place. 

In the end, it’s the client that suffers from this situation. When staff moves around frequently, they’re less likely to establish themselves deeply with clients or become really proficient at delivering treatments.

However, the pandemic has brought with it significant economic pressures, resulting in the closure of many aesthetic clinics. This, in turn, means there’s a larger pool of talent for clinics that do make it through the pandemic-related economic downturn. 

With more qualified applicants looking for work as the result of COVID economic pressures, clinics that are able to move forward will have an easier time finding and hiring highly qualified staff.


With the economic changes brought about by the pandemic, medical aesthetic clinics will need to be more creative in finding ways to help patients pay for procedures.

 According to Dr. Bruce Katz, Medical Director of the world’s original medi spa, New York’s JUVA Skin and Laser Center, it’s going to become more important in the near future to offer patients financing schemes.

“We have CareCredit, so patients can pay for a procedure and have a year to pay for it, without interest,” he says. “If people think that your treatments are important to them, we need to help people afford it.”

Others predict the advent of a pay-as-you-go model. Some patients, they predict, will remain comfortable with saving money by paying in advance. Others, however, will show more caution as they work to build back from economic downturns. 

Treatment trends

Preventative injectables

The anti-aging benefits of preventative injections of a variety of neuromodulators in early life mean that the trend for the next year and beyond will be increased proactive use of injectables such as Botox®, Dysport®, Jeuveau®, and Xeomin® on patients in their 20s and 30s. 

These injections earlier in adulthood can resolve minor aesthetic issues, ultimately meaning a patient who may otherwise have wanted more intensive plastic surgery later in life, will no longer feel the need for it.  

Inclusive treatments for all skin tones

Though it’s been a long time coming, hair care, skincare, and makeup are finally taking the steps to embrace all skin types and all skin tones. 

Not only that, but clinical treatments are also embracing a diversity of skin tones, more accurately reflecting the diversity of beauty and society. 

The trend for brands and treatment developers in 2021 will be to ensure advertising, imagery, and clinical trials are inclusive of the full range of skin tone diversity that we see in the human race. 

And this is only the beginning: expect to see the entire industry calling for more inclusivity in 2021.

Enhancement, not alteration

More than ever, patients these days are looking not for major alterations in appearance, but for more subtle enhancements instead. 

Laser treatments can tackle pigmentation, inflamed skin, and red veins while boosting brightness and collagen for more natural, balanced, younger-looking skin. With newer lasers, excess recovery time is also eliminated.

Super spas

In 2021 and beyond, spas will no longer be simply the domain of cucumber facials and relaxing massages. Up and coming spas will offer not just the expected pampering services, but will also increasingly add aesthetics services to the menu. Why settle for that facial when you can go for a nice chemical peel instead (while still enjoying that massage)?

The bounce back

Despite the difficulties 2020 has presented, the overall outlook for the aesthetic medicine industry is certainly not all doom and gloom.

According to a report by Markets and Markets, the medical aesthetics market is projected to grow by $5B in the next five years, climbing from $9.4B in 2020 to approximately $15.9B in 2025. Another study from the Aesthetic Medicine And Cosmetic Surgery Market states that “The global Aesthetic Medicine And Cosmetic Surgery market is anticipated to rise at a considerable rate… between 2020 and 2026.”

Says Dr. Stephen Mulholland, owner of SpaMedica in Toronto, “A lot of physicians are saying that demand will change forever and that people will stay away from excisional procedures in future. I’ve been through 9/11 and SARS,” he continues, “and can see that people always go back to beauty! Everything will go back to the way it was before – it’s human nature.”

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