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Can Butt Enhancement Fix My Flat Man-Ass?

A white man goes in search of a badonkadonk.

For at least the last decade, each and every year has been heralded by a consensus of media outlets as The Year Of the Butt. Indeed, the appellation has been so degraded by continual use that it's become virtually meaningless. All I can say for sure at this point is that 2016 has been the year of my butt.  

It began 12 months ago when I finally acknowledged the grim reality that, seen from behind, my legs appeared to quietly fade into my lower back.  A concerted effort to right this sorry state of affairs in the gym started to bear surprisingly good results at the exact same moment that I began dating a woman who not only vocalized her love for my burgeoning cheeks, but found it difficult to stop from nuzzling her beautiful face betwixt them at every available opportunity.



The rounder and tauter (relatively speaking) my bottom became, the more she lavished it with affection and the more care I put into maintaining its newfound heft, doubling down on my depilatory regimen. So powerful was this positive feedback loop that I even splashed $600 on a Japanese-style bidet system in order for it to be in a state of constant readiness for her adoring kisses. So you can imagine that my interest was piqued when I heard about a non-invasive treatment that promises to give my buns a further aesthetic boost.

My Wellness Solutions, a holistic health center with locations in both the Bronx and Harlem, offers a butt-lifting treatment that, according to their website, uses suction to help with mobilizing the fat cells to the desired area while lifting and plumping the buttocks. It seemed like a perfect treatment for someone like me. Someone who: cares about the appearance of his bottom; balks at the thought of injecting it with fillers or having implants put in; wants to spend less than $100.

When I check in for my scheduled appointment, the receptionist and technician are sporting the sort of embarrassed smiles that suggest I'm the first man to go in for the treatment. As the technician, Veronica, leads me into a small room containing what looks like a massage table and a space-age vacuum cleaner, I ask her if that is indeed the case.

"We've had guys come in for our butt facial before," she says, referring to a combination of a micro scrub and radio frequency—a technique used to heat tissue and stimulate subdermal collagen production to "refresh, smooth and tighten" buttock skin. "But the lifting for a guy...this is definitely a first for me."  

Cosmetic procedures have traditionally been marketed toward women, but there's been something of a shift towards equilibrium in recent times. In 2015, the American Academy of Aesthetic Surgery reported that male cosmetic procedures had increased 43 percent over the past five years. The reasons for why that is are as numerous at the plethora of treatments and procedures now offered, but I suspect that it boils down to a diminishing level of stigma around men undergoing a cosmetic intervention.

And even if that stigma still exists, it's obviated by cosmetic enhancements becoming so sophisticated that they're devilishly hard to detect, any subtle improvement easily explained away by claims of cutting out gluten, hitting the gym more often, getting plenty of rest etc.

I shoot Veronica an apologetic look. She hands me a sealed package that contains some paper underwear and leaves the room so that I can change into them. When she returns she hoicks the paper panties up into a wedgie before taking profile and square "before" shots of my butt. She then explains the three-step procedure in detail. First, she'll massage my glutes with an orange-derived oil to increase blood flow. Then she'll attach a large suction cup to either buttock and let it vacuum up my flesh for 20 minutes. Lastly, she will apply radiofrequency to tighten the skin.

At her invitation, I lie face down on the heated table while Veronica gets to kneading my left cheek with oil. Not only is the massage very enjoyable, it's already having a plumping effect that is clearly discernible when compared with the non-massaged right one. Once she's got me symmetrically plumped with massage, Veronica goes about affixing the suction cups to my rear end.  

"Now, there is probably going to be some redness after this but don't worry," she says. "It'll go away after 20 minutes or so."

When I told her about the treatment, my girlfriend's main concern was that my butt would become a mess of burst capillary veins, but I am assured that any permanent discoloration or bruising is highly unlikely.

Veronica clicks on the machine and I enjoy the novel feeling of my glutes being sucked away from my body—until suddenly I don't. In fact, I'm very concerned that the two largest muscles in my body are about to be ripped from the bones they're attached to.   

"Is it supposed to feel like this?" I yell over the hum of the machine then let out an anguished: "Aaarrrrgh!"

Veronica immediately turns it off.

"Too much?" she asks. "Was it more than you can handle? Everyone's different. I can put it on a lower setting."

Veronica then restarts the machine and the amount of suction is much more tolerable, pleasant even. I look over my shoulder to see that my rosy red cheeks are now completely filling the inside of the clear cantaloupe-sized cups. She exits the room, leaving me to spend the better part of the next 20 minutes contemplating the sequence of events and decisions that has led me here.  

She returns, shuts off the machine, removes the cups, and gets to work with the radio frequency that, at times, feels like I'm having my ass pan-seared.

"How's it look back there?" I say as she finishes up.

"Good," she says in a sort of muted way. "Definite improvement but I have to say that one side has responded more than the other."

"Wait, so I've got one giant ass cheek now?" I say, alarmed.

"Well we all have one side that's bigger," she says, walking back her previous statement. "But yes, one cheek is slightly bigger now."

I hop off the table and Veronica takes a few after pictures, She quickly cobbles a collage together on her phone so I can see the difference—and there is one, though I can clearly see the asymmetry she's talking about.

Image: Ellen Hart

I get dressed and am expecting to struggle to get my jeans up and over my apparently asymmetrically-plumped rear end, but they slip on just the same as they did this morning. I then learn that the results would be more pronounced had I sucked it up and white-knuckled it through the procedure with the machine on its initial setting.

"So this machine goes up to ten," she explains. "It was too much for you at six so I brought it down to two. Of course, the higher the setting, the greater the effect."

Had I known this going in, I might have gritted my teeth and held on for dear life. Before I leave, Veronica also explains that having several treatments is likely to result in a more pronounced and long-lasting result.  

I walk along 125th Street, and remove my jacket to see if my slightly pumped up rear draws eyeballs. It doesn't. What's more, my bun-loving girlfriend isn't sure that she can discern a difference when I get home and assume the position.  

Did the treatment work for me? Yes, albeit only on one cheek for several minutes. Those unimpressive results are partly my fault for being a wuss. That said, the pump I get from doing squats at the gym is both more pronounced and longer-lasting so, for the time being at least, I'll stick with what I've been doing.