Why you’ll be getting cosmetic procedures even if you may not really want to.

Times Weekly published a sterling article last week on why we should get a nip & tuck, even if we don’t think we need to. And here’s why:

“You’re going to have to do it. And not all that long from now. Probably not a full-on, general-anesthesia bone shaving or muscle slicing. But almost definitely some injections into your face. Very likely a session of fat melting in some areas and then possibly moving it to some other parts that could use plumping. Not because you hate yourself, fear aging or are vain. You’re going to get a cosmetic procedure for the same reason you wear makeup: because every other woman is.

No, it’s not fair that–in 2015, with a woman leading the race for the Democratic nomination for President–in addition to dieting, coloring your hair, applying makeup and working out, you now have to let some doctor push syringes in your cheeks just to look presentable. It’s not fair that you have to put your surgery on your credit card just so the other moms on the playground don’t overestimate your age. It’s not fair that you may risk your life going under general anesthesia just to keep up.

Then again, maybe it’s not fair that some women are born straight-nosed and full-breasted. That some people don’t have trouble staying thin. That workers with above-average looks will make $230,000 more over their lifetime than people who are in the aesthetic bottom seventh, as a study by University of Texas economics professor Daniel Hamermesh found. Maybe it doesn’t feel fair that a man is writing about this, even if more and more males are starting to feel the same kind of pressure that women have dealt with for decades.

Having work done lost nearly all of its shame years ago. A few months before she died, Joan Rivers told me about a dinner party she went to in 1973, not long after her first face-lift. Always eager to be an entertaining guest, Rivers shared her experience with Janet Leigh and the other actors gathered at Roddy McDowall’s Los Angeles home. “They asked, ‘What’s it like?’” she recalled. “They had such scars running up the back of their heads. It was like the B&O Railroad. ‘What’s it like?’ I wanted to say, ‘You don’t remember?’”

For nearly five decades after, Rivers was ridiculed as vain and tacky for her cosmetic surgeries. But about six years ago, people stopped mocking and started asking Rivers for advice. She wrote a book to answer them, Men Are Stupid … And They Like Big Boobs: A Woman’s Guide to Beauty Through Plastic Surgery. Women, she found, had become as open about their Botox, fillers and mommy makeovers as she had always been. Not having work done is now the new shame.

This shift happened partly because doctors got more nuanced and stopped making patients look like tigers with bolt-on breasts. Partly because so many procedures don’t involve surgery at all. Partly because procedures got a bit cheaper and doctors created payment plans. Partly because reality shows demystified the process… Partly because, due to social media and phone cameras, everyone is always on the red carpet. And partly because our culture has become so much more narcissistic that we now regularly celebrate doing something for ourselves as if it’s a moral imperative…

But it’s the cheaper, nonsurgical procedures that have become commonplace. U.S. doctors perform more than five times as many nonsurgical procedures as surgeries, delivering 3.6 million rounds of Botox (and other non-name-brand injectable neuromodulators), along with 1.7 million shots of Juvederm, Restylane and similar fillers…

Celebrity magazines and websites commend “good work” with the neofeminist language of taking care of yourself–it’s upkeep like yoga, cold-pressed juices and mani-pedis. But a face that’s a bit too tight, boobs a bit too big, lips a bit too plump–“bad work”–and you’re cast as sad, vain, phony…

Acceptability eventually comes to nearly all forms of vanity. In 19th century America, makeup was often sold under the counter because it was considered a tool of prostitution. In the 1930s, when hair dyeing was new, women got their color done in the basements of beauty parlors so no one would see them and continued to do so for decades after; now 75% of women dye their hair. And 15 years ago, getting your teeth whitened made you a tool; now dentists throw in free whitener in the goodie bag along with the floss and a toothbrush. It’s actually difficult to find a toothpaste that doesn’t include whitening.

Since Botox was introduced as a cosmetic product in 2002, most of the advances have come in dermatology–many from Harvard University’s professor of dermatology R. Rox Anderson, who helped invent and refine ways to use lasers to remove hair, tattoos and wrinkles, as well as the hugely popular CoolSculpting, which painlessly freezes body fat from a machine placed on the skin, causing the fat to disintegrate and come out with your urine. Dermatologists also use fillers, which replace the skin’s hyaluronic acid (instead of its collagen, the old method), to replace lost volume. In November 2013, Juvederm introduced Voluma, a filler for cheeks that can last two years, provides more lift and has a reversible antidote in case a patient changes her mind or a doctor goes too far…

These kinds of procedures are even starting to get normalized for guys. More than three times as many men are getting “Brotox” than in 2000.”

Kudos for an article well-written and aptly put. Why feel ashamed of doing something good for ourselves, to better ourselves?? Is it too vain to get your hair nicely styled at the hairdressing salon? Is it superficial to polish your nails prettily? Indeed it was considered vain… at about a century ago. Nowadays? Nope. There’s no reason to be shy about it at all. It’s now the new norm. 😉


About Tiffiny Yang 楊靜婷

Beauty Guru 美容医師 Beauty Queen & Model
This entry was posted in Aesthetic Procedures, c'est la vie~ and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Why you’ll be getting cosmetic procedures even if you may not really want to.

  1. c says:

    doctor you feel like santa claus to me because I’ve never met a more down-to-earth & generous & sincere doctor like you ;D thank you for always making me beautiful!

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