The ideal female buttock size consists of a waist-to-hip ratio between 0.69 and 0.71, according to an online survey of international plastic surgeons and the general public.
Of the 1,032 respondents from over 40 countries, 39% selected 0.7 as their ideal ratio.
Inspiration to perform the study, which appears in the journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, stems from a lack of evidence-based guidelines and the large variation of technique and outcomes in body contouring surgery.
“Our goal was to enhance a more uniform understanding and approach towards buttock surgery,” says lead author Paul Heidekrueger, M.D., a plastic surgeon at the Academic Teaching Hospital Bogenhausen of the Technical University Munich in Germany.
“The results are quite interesting and might underline existing theories, which have yet to be proven statistically significant,” Dr. Heidekrueger tells The Aesthetic Channel.
For example, surgeons in Latin America preferred the largest buttock size. “This is in accordance with the current phenomenon of the ‘Brazilian buttock,’” Dr. Heidekrueger says.
The weather is a second factor that seems to play a major role in influencing why certain procedures and body shapes are more popular in one region compared with another.
“In countries with warmer weather, such as in Latin America, people tend to wear less clothing year-round, which might lead to more body consciousness and increased demand for aesthetic procedures,” Dr. Heidekrueger. “Therefore, individual preferences and aesthetic perception depend not only on the individual’s cultural and ethnic background, but also on geographic factors.”
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The study illustrates that intercultural and ethnic differences, in addition to the ethnic and geographic background of surgeons and the general public, play major roles in aesthetic perception.
“Particularly in the field of plastic and reconstructive surgery, globalization suggests more and more unified surgical goals,” Dr. Heidekrueger says.
Although the study found a 0.7 waist-to-hip ratio to be the most attractive for a female buttock size, the authors urge plastic surgeons to consider all compounding factors when defining surgical goals with their patients, “which will ultimately aid in achieving optimal aesthetic outcomes, satisfying both surgeon and patient alike,” Dr. Heidekrueger says.
Given the recent evolution of techniques like liposuction and fat grafting in plastic surgery, “achieving desired outcomes has become more and more feasible,” Dr. Heidekrueger says. “This makes exact knowledge of the desired outcome and detailed preoperative discussions with the patients ever more important.”