The popularity of cosmetic plastic surgery has increased drastically over the past 10 years. This is mainly due to the fact that the public has grown more accepting of cosmetic surgical procedures as the stigma around cosmetic enhancement has dissipated.
The days when clinics offered a backdoor entrance for discretion feel distant now that celebrities publicly thank clinics for such procedures. Not to mention even popular social media accounts dedicate their pages to acknowledge celebrities’ alleged cosmetic upkeep.
Double eyelid surgery and Blepharoplasty are the most popular cosmetic surgery in Asia and the third most popular amongst Asian Americans.
East Asian Countries are still obsessed with western beauty corrections. For example, South Korea is home to the highest plastic surgery rate per capita.
According to The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) report, cosmetic surgical procedures have increased by 142% and nonsurgical procedures by 743% since 1997.
“Asian American standards follow the Western beauty standards, but even more closely: more contouring, more highlights, bigger, better,” shares Christine. “Whether it’s cheeks or jawline, breasts or butt, everything is highly carved… [The Asian look] is youthful and genteel, kind of fading away as much as possible”, says Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery founder and Bling Empire star Christine Chiu.
Social Media And Trends
Prior to the 1990s, cosmetic surgery was not widely accepted in ethnic populations. Because, in the past, ethnic individuals and communities believed that going through cosmetic surgery was equivalent to sacrificing aspects of their ethnicity, their identity in a sense.
However, now cosmetic surgery is no longer viewed as a sign of self-hatred or rejection of racial identity. In fact, as the procedures become less invasive and social media has reduced their stigma, many ethnic women are looking to “enhance” their natural ethnic beauty, to “refine” their features.
People are now obsessed with the new jawline trend that has arrived, all thanks to TikTok. According to Edward S. Kwak, a New York-based board-certified Facial Plastic Surgeon, there’s a rise in Asian American patients in their 20s and 30s seeking to reduce facial jowls and remove buccal fat beneath their cheekbones to mould their faces into a heart-shaped one just like Bella Hadid.
Kwak says, “In general, beauty trends tend to be highly influenced by the media. These requests [often] propose changes a focal point of the face rather than creating balance and harmony”.
Gabriel Chiu, a Plastic Surgeon in Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery and Bling Empire Star, explains that the reason behind this fascination among Asian Americans for Western beauty, “It really depends on your surroundings and the culture you’re in. On social media, television, and in print, you have images of people you find attractive or look up to. So you see what’s popular; if nine of your friends are doing this thing, you’re going to give it a try for yourself”.
The American Society of Plastic Surgery has further revealed that in 2019, minimally invasive cosmetic procedures grew higher than surgical procedures, while the total number of cosmetic procedures increased for the third year in a row.
Opting for any cosmetic surgery is not an inherently bad thing. However, the same cannot be said for any facial or body adjustment to simply follow a trend and not for the genuine benefit of mental and physical health.
Trends will come and go. They will last only for a few months, no matter how homogenous these filters, copying hollow standards of Western beauty, may appear on Instagram and TikTok.
Although social media has enhanced the desire for “refinements” which can be achieved through lesser invasive procedures, wanting to go through these procedures after trying out a few filters on your phone without any need and reason seems very unreasonable.
Images credits: Google images, Unsplash
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