Often regarded as one of the most handsome men in Hollywood (and even the world), Zac Efron was/still is considered the ultimate American heartthrob. But where many of the headlines about him would dissect his glass-cutting high cheekbones, it all took quite a turn back in 2021 when Zac’s face sent the internet into a meltdown.
Dubbed “jaw-gate,” cries of “plastic surgery” were heard on both social media and many tabloids. Without any context on what had actually happened, some rather tasteless comments were made that included calling him a “botched Ken doll” or “handsome Squidward,” among many other things.
But even as Zac explained the dramatic transformation in his look (that didn’t involve plastic surgery), many were still left unconvinced. So, what really happened there with the alleged Zac Efron’s plastic surgery? Let’s find out!
Who Is Zac Efron?
Born on October 18, 1987, Zachary David Alexander Efron or as you might know him “Zac Efron,” is an American actor who rose to fame following his role as Troy Bolton in the film High School Musical (HSM). Efron got his “big break” fairly early on in his career, considering he’d only started acting in 2002, whereas HSM came out in 2006.
He’d started appearing in episodes of different shows such as Firefly, The Guardian, and ER and even did a few films until he got a main role as Cameron Bale in Summerland in 2004. However, High School Musical was an entirely different beast as the film became a cult classic for all its different elements, including the music, teen romance, and powerful performances by the cast.
But it wasn’t exactly the only thing Zac wanted to be remembered for. As reported in Men’s Journal, Zac said, “I was, like, 17. And I said, ‘Guys, you know this is not at all what I want to do?’” In any case, his subsequent roles in the franchise and films like 17 Again made him kind of like a teen idol.
Since then, his “heartthrob” status only got more and more solidified (the man won an award for the best shirtless performance!), and he was a part of several other successful films such as Neighbours, The Greatest Showman, We Are Your Friends, and The Iron Claw. He’s currently working on two projects – A Family Affair and Ricky Stanicky – both of which are reported to be released in 2024.
Did Zac Efron Have Plastic Surgery?
Zac Efron has dismissed the rumours of getting any cosmetic work done on his face. Still, it’s widely believed that the actor went under the knife.
According to the actor, his masseter muscles – one of the key muscles used for chewing, present at the sides of the face – had grown following an injury and made his jaw look that way. But it was alleged that the changes in his jaw were instead the result of either implants or fillers.
Some even believe that Zac may have sustained an injury to his face but had followed it with reconstructive cosmetic work to improve his overall appearance after the incident. However, it’s pure speculation.
Why Does Zac Efron’s Face Look Different?
The story of what had actually happened to Zac’s face was told by the actor himself in a 2022 interview with Men’s Health. “Running through his house in socks,” the star “slipped, smacking his chin against the granite corner of a fountain.” And after he gained consciousness, “his chin bone was hanging off his face.”
The interviewer also noted that Zac’s jaw looked much the same i.e. before the pictures of it blew up on the internet in 2021 after Bill Nye’s Earth Day! The Musical’s promo video.
According to Zac, after the injury, “the muscles on the inside of his face and jaw had to compensate”. “The masseters just grew,” to the point that “they just got really, really big”.
However, what many noted was that in the 2022 interview with Entertainment Tonight, Zac confirmed that the injury had happened back in 2013 and so it left many people confused about how Zac’s face transformed so dramatically and all of a sudden in 2021.
Some also wondered how the jaw size could be affected by an injury to the chin, while others still questioned how the changes to the jaw could be so symmetrical following an injury (in that it affected both sides of his face, seemingly, equally).
There were other, even more serious allegations in the mix as well, such as the use of certain hormonal drugs to enhance his physique. While Efron admitted to taking diuretics, Lasix, to achieve his Baywatch physique (the film was released in 2017), in the Men’s Health interview, he also said, “I don’t know if that’s really attainable”. He also said, “…I don’t need to do that. I much prefer to have an extra, you know, 2 to 3 percent body fat”.
What Plastic Surgeries Did Zac Efron Undergo?
It’s been speculated that Zac Efron has had the following procedures:
One of the changes that have been noted by some in Zac’s appearance is his nose. However, it was well before the whole 2021 internet fiasco. It’s been said that Zac might’ve had a rhinoplasty to mainly reduce the size of the tip of his nose as it had a degree of bulbosity before.
In 2012, when he was around 25 years old, the tip of his nose looked a bit rounder than it does now, which might suggest the possibility of a tip plasty.
Implants were one of the most talked about things with regard to the We Are Friends star’s alleged surgery. In particular, it was suspected that Zac Efron’s plastic surgery had been done in the chin and jaw to make it look wider and far more prominent than it really was. It’s also believed that following 2021, he had his implants replaced by smaller ones so that his overall face didn’t look as puffy.
While implant replacement was given as one explanation for why Zac’s face appeared relatively less swollen, others believe it was because the actor didn’t really get implants but had dermal fillers instead.
Dermal fillers are not permanent. They can volumise the particular area to which they’re injected for anywhere from 6 months to 2 years. While they can be dissolved early on, they can also go away on their own, and as that happens, you might notice the changes in your face reversing.
But in addition to the jaw, chin and cheeks, Zac’s lips also got quite a lot of attention because it was believed that he had fillers there as well. Unlike before, the border of his upper lip seemed less defined and almost blended with the skin above, which further fuelled these speculations.
Botox was also thrown in the mix of all the treatments that Zac was/is believed to have had. One of the main reasons why many thought this was the case was that Zac’s eyebrows seemed a bit lifted.
Botox injections work by relaxing muscles, and Botox brow lift is a non-surgical procedure that helps with the frown lines between the brows and wrinkles on the forehead. It also raises the eyebrows a little – at least temporarily because Botox can last for around 6 months.
However, in Zac’s case, it seems unlikely that he had a Botox brow lift because, in the very video for Earth Day’s promo, you could see lines forming on Zac’s forehead. The position of his eyebrows also looked much the same, but they might’ve looked higher up because of the overall “puffiness” of his face.
Inarguably, way too much has been said about Zac’s face. There are many, many laypeople and plastic surgeons’ analyses of Zac Efron’s face you can find online. At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that even though he’s a public figure, Zac doesn’t really owe an explanation for what he does or doesn’t do to his body.
Whether you choose to get plastic surgery or not, it’s a very personal decision that’s only for you. And if you have decided on it, make sure to do your research to find a board-certified, qualified and experienced surgeon who can give you the best possible results.