Blog — Notes of a Plastic Surgeon

Welcome to my blog. I am a plastic surgeon in Seattle and have been in private practice since 1991. I've seen more than a few interesting faces and cases through my years spent in the exam room, the operating room and the emergency room. And I have an opinion on just about everything relating to plastic surgery (and a lot of unrelated stuff). If you like my blog, let me know. Thanks for reading! Lisa

Category: For Men Only

Male Plastic Surgery – Easy Does It!

December 1st, 2014 — 4:48pm

Seattle Plastic Surgeon dials it down a few notches for dudes.

blog male plastic surgery.

The Dude is a good example of a man who just keeps getting better with age.

I’ve been doing quite a few cases on men lately.  Almost all of my male facial plastic surgery patients are eager to tell me what they don’t want.  Names like Mickey Rourke, Bruce Jenner, Kenny Rogers and Burt Reynolds come up frequently.   All of these men have obviously had “a little work” done over the years and I don’t think I would be going out on a limb to say they they have had “a little too much work” done.

The procedures we do to rejuvenate the face are for the most part feminizing.  We raise the brow, we trim the eyelids, we lift the face, we smooth the skin.  And when these procedures are done on men in the same way they are done on women, the result can be, well, a bit disturbing.  A really ruggedly handsome middle aged or older guy can end up looking not quite the way a guy of any age should look.

When I operate on men’s faces, I dial it down a notch or two.  I don’t want that brow to high or those eyelids too trim or that jawline too tight.  And neither do my male patients.

Thanks for reading.  Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder

For Men Only, Male Plastic Surgery, My Plastic Surgery Philosophy

Botox for Excess Sweating

May 23rd, 2014 — 10:56am

Seattle Plastic Surgeon and her male patients go through a lot of Botox this time of year.

This time of year Seattle men put away the flannel and fleece and Gortex and some of them make appointments for Botox injections to their armpits.   Excess underarm sweating is fairly easy to conceal in heavy winter clothing but not so easy to conceal once the temperature gets above 65 or so.

Botox injection for excess underarm sweating is one of the most common procedures I do on men.   At first, all of my underarm Botox patients were women but now the word is out to men.  And it’s not just the metrosexuals and hipsters who come in.  It’s guys from every walk of life.

Botox is a miracle treatment for excess sweating but it does have its downsides.  It’s really expensive for me to purchase and I have to pass that expense along to my patients.  Underarm Botox injection is done with 100 units of Botox and costs, gasp, $1500.  And it is an injection which means needles (although they are teeny, tiny needles).  The injection is moderately uncomfortable.  And the real bummer is that Botox does not last forever.  It usually lasts at least 6 months and I have some patients who get relief for a whole year.

For permanent relief, I offer axillary sweat gland excision which involves an outpatient operation in which the sweat glands are scraped away from under the axillary skin using a couple of small incisions and a special curette.  See this page on my website for more information.

Soooo, if you are tired of being Sweaty Eddie, come on in for a consultation and we can discuss your options.

Thanks for reading and Keep Cool and Carry On.  Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder

Botox, For Men Only

Gynecomastia patient shows what surgery and exercise can do.

April 4th, 2014 — 10:14am

Seattle gynecomastia patient shows what can happen once a guy is comfortable going to the gym.  It’s a beautiful thing.

Top photo shows a guy embarrassed to take off his shirt.  Bottom photo shows a guy who feels and looks great after gynecomastia surgery and working out.

Top: Before surgery and some serious gym time. Bottom: After surgery and some serious gym time.

I find it very gratifying to help patients achieve their personal best through plastic surgery.  And I find it super gratifying when plastic surgery really helps a patient make a commitment to better self care.

This patient is a middle-aged guy who felt embarrassed about his pudgy chest.  He has a mild case of gynecomastia but a serious case of self consciousness.  I performed a  gynecomastia reduction on him.  I used my standard technique in this type of gynecomastia.  I removed the excess fat from his chest with power assisted tumescence liposuction and excised the little bit of excess glandular tissue though an incision under his nipple.  This technique leaves teen tiny scars that are almost imperceptible.  I am always careful to preserve a disc of breast tissue under the nipple.  This keeps the nipple from caving in.

He was well-enough healed at about 3 weeks to start  going to the gym for some weight training and before long, he was feeling really, really good about his chest.   Not all of my patients get this inspired but I sure love it when they do.  They provide me with some really, really nice before and after photos!

Thanks for reading!  Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder

For Men Only, Gynecomastia, Liposuction, Male Plastic Surgery, Stuff I love

Marijuana and gynecomastia. Is there a link?

March 6th, 2014 — 1:13pm

Seattle Plastic Surgeon riffs on the possible link between gynecomastia and marijuana use.

blog pothead

“Gyneco what? Oh, well. Pass the Doritos.”

Okay, full disclosure here.  This is just my theory.  It is based on nothing more than urban myth from my high school days and wishful thinking.

The yearly procedural statistics published by the American society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) recently came out and one of the procedures with a significant increase in frequency was the correction of gynecomastia otherwise know as male breast reduction.   This procedure was up 11% between 2012 and 2013.  This got me wondering about an urban myth from my high school days that marijuana use causes gynecomastia.  A little research online did not come up anything really convincing but there are studies that show regular toking decreases testosterone levels in men.

If, in fact, regular marijuana use does cause gynecomastia, I better look into getting some more operating room time.  Seattle was the epicenter for recreational marijuana legalization and in the very near future anyone over 21 will be able to walk into a “Green Boutique” and make a purchase.  Seattle is already the home to about a bajillion medical marijuana shops and from the fragrance I smell when I’m walking in downtown Seattle, there are a lot of people carrying one of those “green cards” in their wallets.  And soon, they won’t even need one for a purchase.

I am really, really hoping that the gynecomastia/marijuana connection is real.  I really like doing gynecomastia surgery and I’ve been telling my seventeen-year-old twin sons about the connection for several years.  I don’t want it to turn out to be just another “dumb thing Mom says to scare us.”

Thanks for reading!  Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder

Breast Contouring, Breast Reduction, For Men Only, General Health

Male journalist takes on Redbook’s Web Site. IMO male journalist wins.

October 7th, 2013 — 1:42pm

Seattle Plastic Surgeon shares Wall Street Journal Article from Saturday, Oct. 5, 1013:

Words Assured to Tick Off Any Man by Joe Queenan

Redbook’s website has just published a list of things you should never say to a man. Why not? Because they will make him go ballistic. The list includes such incendiary remarks as: “Your tummy is so cute,” “Do whatever you want,” “Do you think I actually believe you?” “You’re just like your dad” and the real, Katy-bar-the-door, no quarter-asked-and-none-given haymaker in this epic inter-gender brouhaha, “I really don’t respect you.”

[image] Illustraction by Nishant Choksi

Redbook, for whatever reason, is feeding impressionable young women totally false information about the male psyche. No man I know would go ballistic just because a woman said, “Your tummy is so cute.” Nor would he lose it if she said, “Well, you are a bit on the chubby side.” Or even “My, aren’t you the chunky little butterball!”

Men don’t care about their “tummies.” Never have. Never will. If they did, alcohol would have gone out of style a long time ago. Weenies might care about their tummies. Or hipsters. But not actual men. Besides, men do not refer to their flabby stomachs as “tummies.” They call them “beer guts.” At least Redbook could try to get the lingo right.

A deeper question is where this dubious material comes from. Who says “Your tummy is so cute” to a boyfriend, a partner, a spouse? Not any woman I’ve ever heard of. Did anyone actually poll men about this stuff? Or women?

The rest of the list is no better. Men don’t care if their partners do not believe them. They kind of expect it. Men also don’t care if you tell them to go ahead and do whatever they want. This is what men do anyway. It is also what women do. It is what everyone on the planet does.

Similarly, few men would object to being likened to their fathers. To most men, that’s actually the highest praise imaginable, unless your dad is named Joseph Stalin or Timur the Tartar. No, with the obvious exception of the confrontational “I really don’t respect you,” none of these remarks is even vaguely discombobulating.

And even if a man took exception to being told that he was not “respected,” he would not automatically go ballistic. He would write it off as an ill-advised comment uttered in the heat of battle. He would figure that it was par for the interpersonal course.

The list contained in Redbook is inane, misleading and stupid. It’s like those lists: “174 Things That Drive Women Wild in Bed,” or “Seven Things You Should Never Say to a Bisexual Pyromaniac.” The lists are compiled by amateur sociologists, office cut-ups, puckish ne’er-do-wells and editorial interns who are trying to get their assignments wrapped up before they go back to high school.

This is not to deny that there are phrases that will make men go ballistic. Oh no, there are lots of those. Here are just a few things you should never say to a man with whom you are having any kind of serious relationship.

“I spent all the money. All of it. On Josh Groban tickets.” “I was thinking of gaining 130 pounds. I’m feeling gaunt.” “No, you cannot invite Macho Man and Bennie the Blade over to our 35th anniversary party.” “You know the $5,000 from your Christmas bonus that you thought I was investing in safe, short-term bonds? I took a flier on a penny stock issued by a boiler room in Boca Raton. The company makes pocket-size defibrillators.” “Your mother could give Medusa a run for her money.” “You know the kid you thought was your firstborn son? Wrong!”

And finally: “I told the four guys from the Bronx that you are no longer interested in paying the vig. I did OK, right?”


Thanks for reading!  And if you don’t subscribe to the Wall Street Journal, you should.  It has some of the best journalism out there and it’s not just about money and business.  Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder

For Men Only, Highly Recommended Reading, Male Plastic Surgery, Stuff I love

For middle aged dudes with mustaches – looking younger almost instantly.

January 13th, 2012 — 12:12am
Mustache dye job seen by Seattle Plastic Surgeon

No surgery, no pain, and the cost of a few lattes.

Anyone for immediate gratification?  Seattle Plastic Surgeon discovers youth in a bottle for middle aged dudes with mustaches. 

Okay, check this out.

This is a gentleman who came in for a scar revision on his forehead.  When he came in for his post-surgical photos, I was stunned with how much younger he looked.  It took looking at his pre surgical-photos for me to put a finger on what was different.

It was his mustache.  He had dyed it with the help of his girlfriend and honestly, I think it took a good ten years off of him.

I wish I could have attributed his youthful visage to my fabulous surgical skills but could not.  It was his resourceful and clever lady friend and the patient’s openness to this little over the counter tweek.  Good for both of them.

My husband sports nothing but a 5:00 shadow but if he ever grows out his salt and pepper stubble, I know what I will be recommending!

Thanks for reading!  Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder.


Aging Issues, For Men Only, Non-invasive, Now That's Cool

Male brow and eyelid surgery – easy does it!

November 30th, 2011 — 11:16pm
Seattle Plastic Surgeon does male plastic surgery
The masculine brow is low and the lids are full. Just ask James Dean.

Seattle Plastic Surgeon blogs about male facial plastic surgery.

Recently I have done facial plastic surgery on a few dudes and that has gotten me thinking about the difference between male and female plastic surgery. 

With guys undergoing facial surgery, especially around the eyes, less is more.   When one thinks of bad male plastic surgery outcomes, it is often because the area around the eyes was overdone and thus feminized.  That’s not the look most dudes are looking for.

The masculine male brow is low and either horizontal or with just a little itty bitty arch laterally.  And the eyelids are full with a little bit of redundant skin on the upper lids.  The lower lids should also be full but not bulging, with a smooth transition to the cheek.  I often do not remove fat in the lower lids in men, but rather drape it over the lower rim of the eye socket to smooth this area out without making it look hollow. 

I think that operating on guys can be a little tricky because they are more likely to overdue it after surgery and that can result in bleeding, bruising and swelling.  So I always read them the riot act and make sure their family or friends know that hopping on the kite-board or racing off to play Ultimate Frizbee  is not okay until I say so.  

Hey dudes, I’m bossy because I care.  Thanks for reading, Dr. Lisa Lynn Sowder

Facial Rejuvenation, For Men Only, Male Plastic Surgery

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