Live Show And Aesthetic Medicine, A Story Of An Internet Live Show Broadcaster
摘要： The aesthetic medicine industry is still rising at a rocket speed in the past few years. It’s estimated by ABAOGAO the aesthetic medicine industry in China will continue to grow by 25% in the next five years and that in 2017 the market scale will reach one hundred billion.
Many might have always wondered if spending tens of thousands of RMB on plastic surgeries and suffering the pain and risks of the surgeries are really worth it.
From R’s view, it is.
R is an Internet celebrity broker with over 2,000 clients. Since November last year, she started to undergo her transition. Within two short months, she went through aesthetic medicine that covered her waist, belly, thighs, and face. She had been in the operation room with general anesthesia for three times and it had already cost her over ￥120,000.
In fact, R only wanted a liposuction job on her belly in the beginning. “But as my body became slimmer after the liposuction, I have to do my face right? Then I wanted my forehead to look sharper so I did a facial filling,” R told TMTPost, explaining from experience that she wanted her face to look dashing and match her body. “But then, the eyes and nose don’t match the face.”
There are many people that share the same thoughts and experience with R. This rigid demand makes this market popular.
The financing status of the aesthetic medicine in 2016 provided us with a window to see the market potential of this industry. In that year, many aesthetic medicine related apps, including YueMei, MeiLiMei, SoYoung, MDL, and Gmei etc., all announced to have completed a new round of financing, with every one of the financing cases exceeding ten million dollars. This emerging industry has a scale of 850 billion and more investors are flocking in.
The aesthetic medicine draws in investors and consumers’ cash and mass produces beauties that for some, look the same.
This is also shown by the surging live show industry. Live show apps emerged in 2015 and 2016, such as INKE, YIZHIBO, and ME etc., are considered as the plastic concentration.
“It’s hard to say whether the live show sector has in fact contributed to the growth of aesthetic medicine sector. But speaking from my knowledge, most people born in the 90s tend to consider aesthetic medicine a fixed expense after they have gained a regular income,” a live show platform executive told TMTPost.
Live show platforms believe that they can help young people find a career as a live show broadcaster.
R didn’t tell TMTPost how she makes money exactly. But according to R, her look is deeply linked to her income. “You can pretty much tell if a person is from our inner circle judging from the face. Every cent I invested in aesthetic medicine can be earned back through my changed appearance,” she said.
For beauty seekers, the pool of aesthetic medicine platforms makes plastic surgery programs like items on Taobao, easy for consumers to reach. “Now when users open the app and see discount activities for hyaluronic acid and mésothérapie etc., they will start to shop like crazy. Celebrities are even crazier. They tend to have over ten injections for one time. So no matter how many items they buy, they will use them up eventually.”
It’s estimated that the average repurchase rate on aesthetic medicine platforms is around 70% and the average expense of each order is ￥5000-6000.
According to statistics from YUEMEI, the most popular item is hyaluronic acid injection, which accounts for 60% of the total order. Injections and skin-related surgeries are the power drive of the aesthetic medicine industry.
For plastic surgeons, especially for world class masters, aesthetic medicine platforms also bring forth improvements. They need resources to build up their personal image. The operation outcome, the products used in the operation, and the operation environment, and the beauty seeker’s own physical conditions are all crucial factors. And they can find these resources via the aesthetic medicine platforms.
“For example, hyaluronic acid products of different molecular sizes are fitted for different spots. But in public hospitals, we only have domestic ones that are priced at ￥1200 per shot. Products that are priced at over ￥2000, such as Rayland, can’t be found in public hospitals because they are considered as luxury items. We are have embedded wires. Different wires can have completely different outcomes. But some hospitals don’t have the money to get imported ones while only aesthetic medicine platforms have them. So the surgeons naturally turn to these Internet platforms for operation purposes,” R explained.
Some public hospitals also have a good business flow in the aesthetic medicine sector. However, most of the clients are old people looking for ways to slow down their aging progress. “Nowadays, surgeons prefer clients aged between 23 and 25 since they would have great changes even though they might only have a small operation. And you can find these people on the aesthetic medicine platforms.”
The 2016 Aesthetic Medicine Whitepaper Report from GMei shows that the consumer base of aesthetic medicine tends to be younger in age, with consumers less than 25 account for 24% of the total user base, a year-on-year growth of 5%.
A market with immense business potential is also easy to nurture chaos.
“First we have injections. They are easy to conduct. And many institutions let unqualified nurses do the injections. Apart from that, some institutions also trick the consumers about the volume. It’s not uncommon for institutions to use botox volume for one on two consumers. Furthermore, there is no guarantee for the operation environment. There are plenty of studios and private clinics that fail to meet the sanitary condition requirements.”
Secondly, even though some platforms now provide scan tool for users to determine the authenticity of the products, most of the time users still have to rely on themselves to tell if they are real products or not. Aesthetic medicine platforms are in some way an outlet for illegal drugs to flourish and get into circulation.
Zhong Xianlei, vice president of Plastic Surgery Hospital Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, makes it clear that he dislikes aesthetic medicine platforms. He believes that these platforms are only aiming for the money. Up till now the Plastic Surgery Hospital Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences doesn’t allow its medical staff to register on different third-party platforms.
Due to the lack of supervision and regulation, accidents are frequent in the aesthetic medicine sector. Many beauty seekers pay lots of money to become beautiful, risking their health and even their lives. Little do people know that for the lucky ones who have successfully changed their look the main cost is spent on maintaining their mental conditions.
These beauty seekers usually suffer from the great pressure from their friends and relatives, as well as society. “Aesthetic medicine’s biggest cost doesn’t lie in the expense. It’s expensive. But when you finish all the procedures you become a completely different person. No matter how small the operation is, your friends and relatives are naturally against it.”
“Therefore, I think the biggest cost for aesthetic medicine is that when you have finished the process, you have to change a boyfriend or even a husband. Your whole social network will shuffle again.”
Even so, the aesthetic medicine industry is still rising at a rocket speed in the past few years. It’s estimated by ABAOGAO the aesthetic medicine industry in China will continue to grow by 25% in the next five years and that in 2017 the market scale will reach one hundred billion.
From the perspective of market share, major traditional aesthetic medicine institutions have more say in the market as they possess the doctors and reputation. But to cater to young people, aesthetic medicine, commercialization, and Internet live show have forged a combination, bringing new blood and expectations to the industry.
R, as a beauty seeker, believes that adequate aesthetic medicine programs do bring changes to your life quality.
Consumption is a method, a channel. That’s probably the purpose of aesthetic medicine Internet platforms.
R spent around ￥120,000 on the first phase program. “The upcoming program costs ￥80,000, which I have already paid. I am waiting for my body to recover so I can continue the process,” R said. “I don’t care for the money, because I spent 200 grand but I can make 400 grand next year.”
[The article is published and edited with authorization from the author @CaiDi, please note source and hyperlink when reproduce.]
Translated by Garrett Lee (Senior Translator at PAGE TO PAGE), working for TMTpost.