SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — A trend taking social media by storm is the practice of “bone smashing,” in which someone uses a blunt object, like a hammer, to break their facial bones thinking they will grow back more pronounced.
“Obviously, I wouldn’t recommend that as a treatment. I’m trying to understand what the logic quote, unquote logic is,” said Dr. Timothy Minton, a double-board certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon at Savannah Facial Plastic Surgery.
This is part of a wider philosophy of looksmaxxing, the practice of pursuing a more attractive look, whether through surgery or at-home work, which includes skin care, diet, sleep and grooming.
Quick beauty practices tend to attract women but this particular trend targets men with less pronounced features.
“It’s hard to even comment on something so ridiculous. I would never use TikTok as an authority for pseudo-medical treatments,” said Dr. Minton.
Minton says that microfractures are hard to produce, but if a fracture is made, it could cause severe consequences.
The fracturing of the jaw bone, Minton says, can lead to displacement and difficulty eating.
“There’s a lot of nerve endings in the face, so injuries like that could cause it could be obviously excruciatingly painful,” said Minton.
“Once you fracture a bone it’s never as strong as it was originally, so you can have weakness, in the bones and things like that,” he added.
“I would say if there is an instant result, it would be a swelling phenomenon.”
Women have been the main adopters of the body positivity movement, but the conversation about male body image hasn’t received the same amount of attention.
A study in the National Library of Medicine found that 69% of young men were dissatisfied with their bodies and 90% were dissatisfied with their muscularity.
“I think that’s a real problem with social media and media in general, is that we see these perfectly airbrushed photos of celebrities and pseudo-celebrities,” said Minton.
Can you maximize your facial features?
There is no tried and true research that facial exercises result in pronounced features, but facial exercises are known to strengthen jaw muscles like the fish face and chin-up facial exercises.
Cosmetic procedures include microneedling, fillers and laser treatments, while surgical options include fat grafting and cheek implants.
“A lot of times there’s a deeper issue trying to heal something like that,” said Minton. “Seeking treatments doesn’t always take care of it, so you gotta figure out what the underlying insecurity is.”