While cosmetic surgery and plastic surgery sound similar, since they both use surgery to modify and improve areas of the body, this is where the similarities end.

What is Cosmetic Surgery?

What is Plastic Surgery?


With a large number of aesthetic procedures available, it can often be difficult to know which techniques and treatments are considered cosmetic surgery and which refer to plastic surgery. The two approaches are very different medically speaking, as well as regarding patients’ ultimate goals, so we aim to clarify their difference below.

What is Cosmetic Surgery?

Simply put, cosmetic surgery is elective and focuses on enhancing the patient’s appearance. Every procedure or technique is entirely focused on improving aesthetic appeal, proportion and symmetry, and the surgeries themselves are performed by doctors from different medical fields, including plastic surgery. Usually, cosmetic surgery is not covered by the NHS and patients seeking it will have to opt for a private clinic.

Our surgical treatments focus on the cosmetic approach. We have a wide range of procedures available, so it will be able to find what you’re looking for with us. In addition, we also use the latest advanced surgical techniques and post-operative care, so you know you’re in good hands.

Why Choose Cosmetic Surgery?

You don’t need to have a medical condition to qualify for this type of surgery, although the two may overlap – for example, you may want to treat loose skin after dramatic weight loss.

As long as you are in the right mental state and are a candidate for the cosmetic treatment you wish to undergo (in regard to physical health), you’ll find a surgeon happy to help. After all, most people who choose cosmetic surgery do so to improve an area of the body they’re not happy with.

Anti-ageing procedures are also typical, such as facelifts, which are designed to improve the appearance of wrinkles and saggy skin. Other popular cosmetic treatments include rhinoplasty, tummy tuck and breast augmentation. While it’s mostly women who choose cosmetic surgery, cosmetic treatments for men are on the rise.

What are the Benefits of Cosmetic Surgery?

Although this surgical approach is considered optional in medicine, there is no denying the link between cosmetic treatments and body confidence, since they offer significant psychological benefits.

For example, if you’re not satisfied with an area of your body – or have felt embarrassed or ashamed about something – cosmetic surgery can improve its aesthetics and help you to feel better about yourself.

Cosmetic surgery also offers physical benefits, since it helps the body to return to its original state. After childbirth, for instance, many women report changes to their breasts and stomach area, so surgery can help to improve these areas.

What is Plastic Surgery?

When it comes to plastic surgery, this approach focuses on repairing skin and tissue defects, be it due to birth issues, diseases, accidents or trauma. Because plastic surgery refers to the correction of areas of the body that lack normal functional or appearance, this type of surgery is considered reconstructive and a necessity, as opposed to cosmetic procedures, which are seen as optional.

Many plastic surgeons opt to complete additional training and become qualified in cosmetic surgery as well.

While appearance isn’t the most important thing with this approach, since plastic surgery aims to correct damage, surgeons tend to take aesthetics into consideration whenever possible.

Who Would Choose Plastic Surgery?

Usually, people who undergo plastic surgery suffer from congenital defects or were involved in accidents which have damaged their skin or tissues. This can range from skin grafts to cleft palate repairs. This type of surgery can be done during initial treatments or in additional procedures with the goal of improving the area in question.

As an example, breast reconstruction after mastectomy falls under the category of ‘plastic surgery’, since it’s a reconstructive procedure. This should only be performed by a qualified plastic surgeon.

Breast lifts, on the other hands, are considered to be cosmetic in nature, so they can be performed by either a plastic or a cosmetic surgeon.

Other examples of plastic surgery include hand repair surgery, breast reduction due to chronic back and neck pain and scar revision surgery.

What are the Benefits of Plastic Surgery?

There are many advantages to undergoing plastic surgery, including physical and psychological. In regard to physical benefits, patients will see their skin or tissue restored and healed in a way that ensures a natural result, both in terms of appearance and aesthetics. As for the psychological impact of plastic surgery, patients’ tend to get a self-esteem and confidence boost, so this type of surgery can offer incredible emotional benefits.

Looking for cosmetic surgery in Guernsey or cosmetic surgery in Jersey? We provide advanced surgical procedures performed by award-winning cosmetic surgery partners with many years of experience and knowledge. Don’t hesitate to contact the Aesthetic Skin Clinic to learn more about how we can help.