Dimples, those charming indentations in the cheeks that appear when we smile, have captivated hearts for centuries. Across cultures, they’ve been associated with youth, beauty, and even good luck. 

But what if you weren’t born with these cute cheek charms? 

Enter dimple creation, a cosmetic surgery procedure that creates permanent dimples. With a reported rise in the popularity of dimple surgery, understanding the psychology behind this procedure becomes intriguing.

Dimples — Current v/s Forecast

Dimples are actually quite rare and only a minority have them. According to Allure magazine, 20-30% of adults are lucky enough to have them naturally. And even these coveted dimples can become less noticeable with age as facial fat diminishes.

The allure of dimples is translating into a booming market. In 2022, the global market for dimple creation surpassed a staggering $302 million, and experts predict further growth exceeding $100 million by 2030. 

On TikTok alone, videos showcasing the effects of cheek-fat compression devices (#dimplemakers if you’re interested) have over 60 million views. This is despite warnings from medical professionals about potential permanent nerve damage. 

So where exactly does this yearning for dimples stem from?

Cultural Perceptions of Beauty

Across the world, dimples hold a unique charm in the world of beauty. Studies have shown that people of all genders tend to find faces with dimples more attractive. 

This fascination transcends cultures; like in China where dimples are seen as a symbol of good fortune and prosperity. Similarly, in Korea, V-line surgery (facial contouring) often incorporates dimple creation to achieve a youthful and cute appearance.

The Desire for Enhancement

Fueled by a desire to look good and boost self-confidence, cosmetic surgery continues to see an upward trend. The desire to improve appearance through cosmetic surgery shows no signs of slowing down. The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) reports a remarkable 5% increase in cosmetic procedures in 2023 compared to 2022. 

The boost in self-confidence is a significant motivator. Dimple creation falls under this umbrella. Individuals might seek this procedure to enhance their smile, feel more confident, or achieve a specific look inspired by a celebrity.

A Personal Journey: Understanding Individual Motivations

While cultural perceptions and societal influences play a role, the decision to undergo dimple creation ultimately stems from personal reasons. The International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ISAPS) reported a growing trend in 2022 among the younger demographic: minimally-invasive cosmetic procedures.

Understanding individual stories can shed further light on the psychology behind dimple creation. Athena, a 30-year-old dental treatment coordinator from Sacramento, exemplifies this. “Growing up, I always wanted to look like my mom and brother, who both have beautiful dimples,” she shares. 

Athena’s “before” photos reveal smooth, flawless skin and a youthful appearance. However, in “after” photos where she smiles, a touch of child-like innocence radiates from her face, thanks to the addition of dimples. She underwent dimple creation surgery in 2021, fulfilling a long-held desire to share this facial feature with her family.

According to Shah Aesthetic Surgery, this trend is not limited to women alone and is desired by the other sex as well.

Johnny is a Los Angeles chef in his 30’s. He grew up surrounded by dimples – his mother, sister, and brother all have two each. This became a source of comfort and charm in his childhood memories. He recalls fondly stroking his mother’s dimples as a child, finding them endearing.

As he grew older, his single dimple garnered attention, with women often commenting on its cuteness. However, this newfound focus also triggered a slight self-consciousness about having just one. When a friend mentioned dimple creation surgery, Johnny’s interest was piqued. He saw it as an opportunity to connect with his family on a deeper level, a way to share a physical characteristic that held such positive associations for him.


1. What are the types of dimple surgery?

The two main types — sutured and anchored. Sutured dimples use a minimally invasive technique where stitches are placed within the facial muscles to create a lasting dimple. The latter method involves a small incision to create a pocket in the cheek. A tiny piece of suture material is then anchored to both the underlying muscle and the connective tissue (fascia) to achieve a more defined dimple.

2. What is the recovery time for dimple creation surgery?

Dimple creation surgery is typically an outpatient procedure with minimal downtime. The dimple site shows some swelling and bruising for a few days in most patients. Sutures used in sutured dimple creation generally dissolve on their own within a week or two. Avoid any physical activity for some time after surgery.

3. What are my non-surgical alternatives to dimple creation?

One option is makeup contouring, a technique that cleverly creates the illusion of dimples. Tiny piercings with specialized jewelry can be used to create a temporary dimple effect. However, this carries its own set of risks like infection and scarring. Some exercises claim to strengthen specific facial muscles to create a temporary dimple. However, the effectiveness of these exercises is not well-supported by scientific evidence.

While some individuals find dimple creation surgery to be a confidence booster, others may experience disappointment or regret if the results don’t meet their expectations.

Dimples, those delightful indentations in the cheeks, hold a powerful allure. Cultural perceptions, media influences, and a desire for personal enhancement all contribute to the rise of dimple creation surgery. 

However, this procedure shouldn’t be taken lightly. Consulting with a qualified professional and carefully considering the potential risks and rewards are crucial steps before making a decision. Ultimately, the choice to pursue dimple creation is a personal one, driven by a desire to look and feel a certain way.