London: One in three women would be willing to have cosmetic surgery, a new report reveals.
The proportion of women who consider this kind of surgery has doubled in the past two years, according to research carried out by Key Note, the market analysts.
It predicted that the UK market for cosmetic surgery will grow to £1.8bn a year by 2011, which is 12 times more than in 1998 when the business was worth £144.1m.
It estimates that the value of cosmetic surgery to the British economy will grow by 131% over the next four years.
The analysis reveals that cosmetic surgery has become an increasingly acceptable lifestyle decision to a growing range of people in the UK despite concerns about the risks.
Advances in technology, increasing competition and the introduction of fixed-price and loan schemes have made it an accessible option, not just for celebrities but for people on average incomes.
Nip/Tuck, the hit television series which features two plastic surgeon partners, has also helped to heighten awareness.
Plastic surgery is only available on the NHS for those with a clear functional or psychological need, but even this can be subject to budget restrictions and funding cuts.
Nevertheless, around a third of adult women said they were “favourably disposed” to the idea of having work done to improve what nature gave them, according to Key Note.
The most popular operation was a breast lift: 12% of women would opt for that first, followed by 8% who would be happy to have breast implants.
The report said: “It was found that younger consumers were more open and positive about cosmetic surgery than the older groups.
“Easier access to borrowing has meant that consumers from (all) social grades can see cosmetic surgery as a realisable investment.”
Although the number of people happy to consider cosmetic surgery is growing, there is still a hard core against the whole idea, while the survey also showed that just 11% of men would go under the knife.