The Huffington Post Ron Dicker First Posted: 04/18/12 05:47 PM ET Updated: 04/19/12 03:53 PM ET
Call it the new Reconstruction era. Americans spent $10.4 billion on cosmetic surgery in 2011. That's more than the gross domestic product of nations such as Chad, Liechtenstein and Suriname.
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons said plastic surgery spending is up 3 percent over 2010, powered in part by a 71-percent uptick in chin augmentations.
Americans forked over more than $38 million on chin jobs last year, having one every 25 minutes, according to the society. The procedure costs an average of $1,851, according to NPR.
In a press release, the society stated that the study's findings suggest that people "have more extra money to spend on themselves." But this conclusion is hard to swallow amidst reports that consumers are spending more, despite stagnant paychecks.
The recession caused Americans to cut back on plastic surgery, as total expenditures in 2009 fell 3 percent over the previous year.
The surge in Mentoplasty (that's doctor-ese for chin enhancement, not a candy implant) is relative, however. While Americans got 20,680 chin jobs last year, breast implants were still number one with 307,180 surgeries. The latter will run patients $5,000 to $15,000 a pop, according to yourplasticsurgeryguide.com.