Is There Value To Cosmetic Enhancements When Job Hunting?

Posted by • March 16th, 2011 |

Resume writers, career counselors and recruiters — all of these service providers offer valuable support in a job quest. But what about a plastic surgeon? Is it worth the investment to consider cosmetic procedures to enhance your odds of getting a job?

It’s of utmost importance to prepare for the job hunt with smart research on companies and education on industry trends. However, some people’s confidence in interview situations can be heightened by enhancements to their physical appearance.

If you’re considering cosmetic procedures to boost your marketability, here are five common appearance hang-ups that can impact the first impression you make and tips from online cosmetic treatment community on how to put your best face forward:

Smile Your Way to a Job: Your smile is the first thing an interviewer sees. If you’re uncomfortable with less than perfect teeth, it can affect your confidence and ability to make a great impression, says Tom Seery, founder of One way to put your best face forward is a professional teeth whitening procedure that typically costs under $400*.

Clear Skin for a Clear Future: For those just starting out in a career and pursuing entry-level positions, a face free of acne could project maturity. Those who struggle with their skin and are tired of masking spots with makeup can consider Accutane, an oral acne treatment administered by dermatologists. More importantly, it can swiftly transport an acne sufferer from feeling like a teen with a breakout to a confident professional.

 Erasing Age: Age discrimination is illegal; however, it doesn’t stop prospective employers from sizing you up at a glance and passing judgment. For those returning to the workplace, a bit of filler that smoothes out the years could help focus an interview away from guesses as to your age, and more on what you can bring to the team. Take years off your face – and your age – by considering injectable fillers such as Restylane, which can be used to enhance lips, and remove unwanted lines and wrinkles.

The Eyes Have It: In an interview situation, it’s important to make good eye contact to establish honesty. While glasses make a person appear smart, eye corrective surgery like LASIK takes away the glare of glasses while correcting eyesight. Of the patients on RealSelf who underwent this procedure, 83% said it was Worth It. At an average cost of $3,200*, this is a pricier investment in a career search, but also brings benefits beyond the job search. If you are a fitness or sports professional, this is a surgery that will definitely change your life.

 The Nose Knows: If you’re in an appearance-based line of work, such as politics, broadcasting, customer service or sales, do the advantages of plastic surgery outweigh the investment?  If it has a bump, or it’s been broken, or you simply can’t breathe well, it could boost your confidence to get a nose job. Consider that 73% of the people who reviewed this procedure on RealSelf said it was Worth It. Then consider the accompanying price tag — $6,100*. Of course, if your surgery is medically necessary, you can always pursue insurance reimbursement.

Before undertaking any cosmetic treatment, it’s wise to consult with a board-certified medical professional to discuss risks, outcomes, costs and other relevant concerns for job seekers, such as bruising, scarring and how long the recovery process might take.

Woman Has 10 Plastic Surgeries, Is Promoted to CEO

K. Mathews on 22 Dec 2011 at 11:00amCEO 10 plastic surgery

Will cosmetic enhancements help advance your career? That’s the experience of one 55-year-old woman who had 10 plastic surgeries, which not only overhauled her look, but her professional trajectory as well. In an anonymous interview with O Magazine, she credits her physical changes in elevating her from a mere employee to a full-fledged CEO.

You might not expect someone to be taken more seriously following a boob job (amongst other procedures), but this woman says looking great got her attention from executives who suddenly wanted to include her in exciting new projects. Consequently, she considers the time and money put into the surgeries an investment toward greater overall success and makes no apologies for her approach.

“I’m the same person I was before the surgeries,” the CEO, who asked to remain anonymous, says. “But now I looked like a bombshell in addition to being really good at my work, and it definitely opened up more opportunities. That’s when I began to think of the surgeries as an asset and an investment.”

It’s something that RealSelf posters are considering as well. When Dallas2550 rejoined the workforce at 59, she had a Lifestyle Lift and now “would not have changed that decision for anything.” Another reader makes the case that insurance should cover her Botox treatments since her deep wrinkles “affect [her] ability get good paying jobs,” though the doctors warn that’s a lost cause.

Job website Glassdoor has some tips, surgically and otherwise, on how to improve your appearance to land a better job. If this all strikes you as a bit sexist, rest assured that men are going under the knife to boost their careers, too.

Plastic pioneers: How war has driven surgery

By Helen Briggs Health editor, BBC News website


 Dr Andrew Bamji, former curator of the Gillies Archives, talks about the work of the pioneering surgeon
A curator removes the lid from a brown box in the archives of a museum at the Royal College of Surgeons.

Inside, wrapped carefully in tissue paper, is the cast of a man’s face.

The soldier was one of thousands who received devastating facial injuries during World War I.

Where once his nose would have been there is only a strange indentation, like a thumb pushed into dough.

The cast was made to help a medical team, led by plastic surgeon pioneer Sir Harold Gillies, work out how to repair the man’s face.

“They were all terribly young… and then history comes and throws everything up in the air and you land broken”

As Dr Andrew Bamji, a medical doctor and former curator of the Gillies archive explains, the war led surgeons to attempt ground-breaking procedures, which paved the way for modern plastic surgery.

“When you are trying to devise techniques for things that have never been done before, you have to experiment, and you experiment in different ways,” he says.

“You try different techniques, but by pulling everyone together into the same place, everyone has the opportunity to learn.”

Dr Harold Gillies set up a multi-disciplinary team of surgeons, nurses and artists at what was then the Queen’s Hospital in Sidcup, south-east London.

The artists took casts of the men’s faces and recorded their injuries in meticulous detail as portraits, before the days of colour photography.

Sir Harold Gillies (far left) and other surgical staff Sir Harold Gillies (far left) developed new medical techniques to reconstruct the faces of WWI soldiers

The team worked together to try to repair the devastating injuries of war, using grafted flaps of skin and transplanted rib bones.

One of the sculptors who worked alongside surgeons at the Queen’s Hospital, taking casts of the men’s faces, was Kathleen Scott, wife of Antarctic explorer Captain Robert Scott.

Almost a century later, her granddaughter, Louisa Young, has written a novel based around the work at Queen’s, now Queen Mary’s Hospital, Sidcup.

“She was a sculptor and she was working with the surgeons by making casts of the wounded and scarred faces for the rebuilding,” explains the novelist.

Young’s protagonist, Riley Purefoy, is fictional, but he is inspired by one of the portraits made by Sir Henry Tonks of some of the wounded soldiers.

Tonks trained as a surgeon but chose to follow a career as an artist. He encouraged students to combine anatomical study with an appreciation of what he called the “poetry” of drawing.

Book of plastic surgery A page from Plastic Surgery of the Face by Harold Gillies

While in some ways his paintings are medical records, they also capture something very human; a glimpse of the horror that many war veterans hid from the world.

Louisa Young says memoirs written by a matron at the Queen’s Hospital provided further ideas for the story.

“She reported this anecdote about a young man who, having suffered a horrible facial injury, rejected his girlfriend.

“He told her he had fallen in love with someone else. And that was very interesting – whether he was being honourable and gentlemanly or whether he was being arrogant and presumptuous – and what she might think about that, and how they might proceed in that situation.

“And they were all terribly young – the way you are living your life and have hardly had a chance to start your life and then history comes and throws everything up in the air and you land broken – and then what?”

Now, the Gillies collection is being catalogued and restored to go on display at the Hunterian Museum within the Royal College of Surgeons in central London.

The archives gathered during the war include medical case notes, paintings, plastic casts, surgical instruments and teaching aids.

They are powerful testimony to the advances made by modern surgeons in the past 100 years.

As Louisa Young explains: “Now we’re terribly good at fixing things up. Modern maxillofacial surgery is stupendous. It’s astounding what they can do.”

Plastic Surgery: This Year’s Hot Christmas Gift?

 PHOTO: Tina Franklin receives Botox injections at the office of Dr. Tenley Lawton, a plastic surgeon in Newport Beach, Calif.
ABC News
Tina Franklin receives Botox injections at the office of Dr. Tenley Lawton, a plastic surgeon in Newport Beach, Calif.

Tina Franklin and Nicole Tuzzolino are each other’s best friends and sisters, so each always knows what the other wants for Christmas.

“Clothes and accessories,” Tuzzolino, of Ladera Ranch, Calif., said of what she usually gives her older sister, Franklin.

“Maybe some old pictures of us growing up,” Franklin, from Costa Mesa, Calif., said of what she typically gives her younger sister.

But this year, even Tuzzolino, 33, was surprised by what was at the top of her 41-year-old sister’s Christmas wish list: Botox.

“To be honest, I think she’s a little crazy,” Tuzzolino told “Good Morning America.” “I don’t think she needs it, but I know that she’s been wanting it, and it makes her happy.”

Franklin, the owner of a Southern California bridal makeup company, says she needed a pick-me-up after recently breaking up with her long-term boyfriend, and Botox was the perfect answer.

“I’m getting Botox done around on the crow’s feet around my eyes,” she said. “That’s what I notice the most, between the brows, and then on the forehead.”

Franklin is putting her face in the hands of Newport Beach, Calif., plastic surgeon Dr. Tenley Lawton, who says she is staying increasingly busy this year as women in the Orange County area she serves ask for, and receive, plastic surgery as Christmas gifts.

“For a simple injectable, it could be as low as a few hundred dollars,” Lawton told “GMA” of the price range for the types of plastic surgery requests she sees over the holidays.

“If we’re talking about a full mommy makeover, which could include a tummy tuck and a breast lift or a breast augmentation, it could be anywhere between $7,000 and $15,000,” she said.

There were 11.5 million cosmetic procedures performed on women in North America in 2010, up 81 percent from 10 years ago, according to figures compiled by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons for its 2010 Plastic Surgery Statistics report.

All told, Americans spent $10.1 billion on cosmetic procedures last year alone, according to the report.

“I’m very open-minded about that [plastic surgery],” Franklin said. “Living in Orange County, which is the mecca of plastic surgery, you definitely want to do procedures, including Botox, to soften, but not freeze.”

“You still want to look like yourself,” she said of the goal of the Botox procedure, which Lawton says can last about 120 days, on her Christmas list.

Cynthia Holvey is another Orange County woman who, like Franklin, asked for, and has already received, a few cosmetic treatments this Christmas.

Thanks to her boyfriend, Gavin Greely, Holvey received two treatments from Lawton.

“I could have asked for shoes or clothes, but I just really wanted to get some injectable youth,” the 49-year-old jewelry designer said.

Holvey’s crow’s feet around her eyes were injected with Botox, and her cheeks were made slightly plumper with Juvederm, an acidic wrinkle-filler.

“She really, really wanted it and I figured, ‘Why not?'” said Greely, 48, who paid the $850 fee for the two treatments.

“I mean, I love her for the way she looks, so, if it’s going to make her feel better,” he said. “And, you have to remember, I didn’t bring it up. She brought it up.”

For Holvey, asking Greely to gift her the cosmetic treatments for Christmas, instead of another special occasion during the year, was a strategic move.

“I figured I could get the most out of Christmas,” she said.

She also said the gift of cosmetic treatments from Greely this year is a big improvement from his gifts of Christmas past.

“Last year he gave me a bottle of perfume,” she told “GMA.” “This is a hundred times better. I think it’s romantic.”

Is Breast Reduction After Weight Loss Surgery Best?

Small study finds obese women tend to be unhappy with appearance if they get breast surgery first

FRIDAY, Sept. 2 (HealthDay News) — Having weight loss surgery before breast reduction surgery is best for severely obese women who have both procedures, according to a small new study.

While there are some benefits to having breast reduction surgery first — including reduced pain and increased ability to exercise — women may be disappointed with the appearance of their breasts after they lose large amounts of weight, Dr. Jeffrey Gusenoff and colleagues at the University of Rochester Medical Center said in a journal news release.

The investigators looked at patient satisfaction and other outcomes among 29 severely obese women (average body mass index, or BMI, of about 54) who lost more than 50 pounds. BMI is a measurement that takes into account height and weight, and a BMI over 30 is considered obese.

All but one of the women in the study had weight loss (bariatric) surgery, according to the report published in the September issue of the journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. Fifteen of the women had breast reduction surgery before their weight loss.

Of the women who had breast reduction surgery first, 86 percent thought their breasts looked worse after massive weight loss. About half said they planned to have further surgery to improve the appearance of their breasts and others said they would have further breast surgery if it was covered by insurance.

The study also found that 71 percent of the women who did not have breast surgery before bariatric surgery said their breasts looked worse after bariatric surgery. Half of them planned to have breast reduction surgery and others said they also would if they could afford it.

“These options must be weighed and individualized treatment plans made for obese patients seeking breast reduction prior to weight loss,” the researchers concluded in a journal news release.

Irish firemen and cosmetic surgery

Men's HealthThe next time you happen to put the chimney on fire and your sister, mother – or worse, girlfriend or wife – admires the chiselled, sooty, smoky handsomeness of the fireman who rides to the rescue, you can snicker away to yourself in the knowledge that the object of their admiration is probably not real.

That’s because a growing number of Irishmen are booking themselves in for a spot of work on their nose, chin, pecs, abs or possibly even nether regions – and firemen are among those who are most enthusiastic about someone cosmetic work.

The Sunday Independent reports that “well-known personalities, fitness trainers and firemen” are some of those to have booked themselves into the Cosmedico Clinic in Co Wicklow.

Well-known personalities and fitness trainers we would expect – vanity is a given there, right? – but the presence of Irish damsel-in-distress-saving boyos on the list is something that raised our eyebrows.

Cosmedico conducts about 30 facelifts a month, with almost half of those now carried out on men.

Managing Director Ailish Kelly told the paper, “Facelifts are becoming more and more popular with men. We have a 40/60 split with men and women having facelifts. A lot of these men are separated men who are back on the scene or men who have lost their jobs. That is probably linking in with the climate we are in, in that they just want to look better.

“They are in competition with younger, better-looking guys and they don’t want to look old, and they don’t want to look tired … [The number of Irish men attending the clinic] has definitely doubled over the past year. Even since June of this year, the increase in males has been huge.”

Aesthetic Surgery: Portraitist Jonathan Yeo on His New Plastic Surgery Paintings

Courtesy the artist
Detail of Jonathan Yeo’s “Capsulotomy and Implant Exchange Symmetrisation,” 2011
by Coline Milliard, ARTINFO UK
Published: December 19, 2011
Jonathan Yeo’s sitters may include Dennis Hopper, Nicole Kidman, and David Cameron — and he might be currently working on portraits of Sienna Miller and Kevin Spacey — but the artist has always been up for unsettling his polished image of society painter. In 2007, he produced a portrait of George Bush collaged together from clipping from porn mags. The U.S. Republican party called it “extremely distasteful,” but it was an instant hit — and similar portraits of Tiger WoodsParis Hilton, and (infamously) Sarah Palin shortly followed.Yeo’s newly open exhibition at London’s Lazarides Gallery reveals yet another radically different aspect of the painter’s multifarious practice. For “You’re Only Young Twice,” Yeo has turned to cosmetic surgery for subject matter. The show features images of bodies mapped out for the scalpal, before-and-after mammary augmentation diptychs, and unconscious patients on operation tables. Speaking to ARTINFO UK recently, the artist explained the background of the new series.

How did you go from portraits to plastic surgery? It seems to be quite a jump.

It some ways it is, but it’s also kind of logical. I’ve always been interested in faces and bodies. Your job as a portraitist is to read faces and try to work out what they are communicating. Recently this has become much harder — the way people adjust their faces through cosmetic surgery is changing the way you instinctively interpret them. The work has gone from painting an individual, and making it about that person, to using portraiture as a subject to tell a contemporary narrative. We are dabbling in something that is complex and that we maybe haven’t understood the complete implications of. In one sense, my work hasn’t changed at all, in that I’m still painting faces and bodies. But in another sense, it changed a lot because it’s gone from being a personal thing to being a conceptual thing.

Unlike most of your portraits, these are people we wouldn’t recognize.

That’s right. As I have often dealt with celebrity in general, or celebrities in particular in the past, I was very keen to avoid using anyone who might be easily identified. I wanted this project to be more generic. And I didn’t want people to dismiss the paintings as being attention-seeking, whether because the person was well-known, or because the subject matter was too gruesome and explicit. I did go and look at some surgery, but in the end I wanted to avoid shock tactics. The subtlety of it is what I’m interested in.

A few surgeons allowed you in their practices. How did they first react to your idea?

It was complicated, and this is partly why this project has taken such a long time. I had the idea for it about three or four years ago. The problem was to convince surgeons to come on board. It first came out of a conversation with a friend of mine, a surgeon called Martin Kelly, but he died less than a year after we started talking about it. He was very young — it’s very tragic. The thing stalled for a while. Then I was lucky that three other surgeons understood what I was trying to do and were helpful. Through the original stuff I got via Martin, and through them, looking at their archive of material, talking to them, exploring what areas were interesting, and what areas I thought could have their stories told best through painting, I worked out what I wanted to do.

So you worked mainly from photographs?

Exactly. Once the thing was on the way, I also managed to get permission from a couple of people to go and see the actual operation being done, so I worked partly from my own photos as well — but I haven’t got to the stage yet of setting up an easel in an operation theatre.

The media coverage of these things  is very judgemental: it’s right, it’s wrong. Usually it’s slightly finger-wagging, “people shouldn’t be doing that, that’s cheating” kind of stuff — or the other extreme, with people completely sold on the idea, “what could be better than looking 10 years younger.” I was trying to avoid either point of view. This debate is a bit irrelevant really. The phenomenon is not going to go away now. So we might as well look beyond that and examine the consequences of it being around and developing very fast.

The surgeons are all very pleased about the way it turned out, but I didn’t talk to any of the patients directly. I was trying to keep that distance. It’s very different from what I do when I paint a person. Here I wanted to depersonalize the process. The narrative wasn’t restricted to that person. Each of the pictures was making a point about either a type of surgery, or a type of mentality behind it.

How do you think this experience is affecting, or has affected, the way you paint more straightforward portraits? Do you look at people slightly differently now?

It may be too early to say. I certainly found that going to watch a facelift as it actually happens was very exciting from the point of view of informing this body of works. But actually it’s probably more useful from the point of view of learning about how faces work. I spent years looking at the surface of people’s faces, and making assumptions and guesses about how things move and why, and where the muscles are and that kind of thing. To actually see all these little muscles pulled in different directions and see how the faces are constructed was a privilege really. Leonardo had to dig people up, or at least steal bodies to do it. To be invited and watch it on a living person was amazing. It makes me even more excited about the movement of faces, and communication of expression.

At the same time, I’m not in a particular rush to go back to doing those more traditional pictures. I’ve got Sienna [Miller] that I want to finish, and one or two other interesting ones, but I’m definitely seeing the current project as a exploration in several stages, and all I’ve done is the first stage of it. There are so many aspects of it that interest me, and not least the variations of it around the world, the different techniques of surgery, and the different things people want done. In the far East, where surgery is a much more taboo subject, one of the thing that happen is that they go to Korea and have their eyes made slightly more Western-looking. In the Middle East they often have their noses done. One of the dangers of cosmetic surgery and how easy it’s becoming is that we all start to take on a homogenized look, and iron out our racial variations as well as our individual idiosyncrasies, which would be a big shame.

Ask the Plastic Surgeon: Can Eyelid Surgery Really Make You Look 20 Years Younger?

Dr. Anita Mandal, M.D.
Individual results vary. No promise or guarantee implied.
After. Individual results vary. No promise or guarantee implied.
Question: I am 58 and plan to have eyelid surgery for my puffy eyelids. I was wondering how long the results will last? Also, how many years younger can I expect to look?

Answer: The truth is that eyelid surgery, also known as blepharoplasty, is relatively permanent. Once the protruding fat bags and excess skin are removed, they do not grow back. With that being said, surgery does not halt the aging process. Your eyelids begin to age right after surgery. Over time, new fat bags will develop and your skin will continue to sag.

At what stage eyelid surgery should be done again depends on the pace at which you age and when the aging begins to bother you. This process may take 5 years, 20 years or even longer. Each patient is unique and ages differently. What’s important to remember is that if an eyelid lift takes 10 years off your face, then 20 years after surgery, you can still expect to look 10 years younger than had you not undergone surgery. In other words, the youthful effect of surgery is maintained over the years.

While it is not uncommon for blepharoplasty to make you look 5 to 15 years younger, the exact numbers of years varies with the individual. A thorough consultation with a qualified plastic surgeon will enable an accurate assessment on the degree of youthfulness that can be achieved. It is crucial, of course, to have realistic expectations. Sometimes, additional procedures are recommended to give facial balance and enhance the results of blepharoplasty. These procedures may include Botox, chemical peels, laser, forehead lift, injectable fillers or a facelift.

Dr. Anita Mandal is a double board-certified Facial Plastic Surgeon. Her practice of 14 years is specialized to cosmetic procedures of the head, face and neck with both surgical as well as non-surgical treatments. Her expertise includes facial rejuvenation, hair restoration, rhinoplasty and corrective cosmetic surgery. She is on the medical staff at Jupiter Medical Center in Jupiter, Fla. Her Palm Beach Gardens office houses two state-of-the-art surgical suites to assure patient safety, comfort and privacy.

Jane Fonda: Why I chose plastic surgery


By Lisa Flam contributor
updated 12/5/2011 2:12:43 PM ET 2011-12-05T19:12:43

It was catching a glimpse of herself and wondering who that face belonged to that led a startled Jane Fonda to reverse her stand against having plastic surgery.

“I thought, ‘Oh my God, it’s me,’” the Emmy and Oscar winning Fonda told TODAY’s Matt Lauer. “I feel so great and so rested and I look so different and I just decided — and I’m not proud of it — I decided I wanted to look more like how I feel.”

The actress and ’80s fitness guru told Lauer she didn’t feel pressure to maintain a certain look. “I just decided I wanted to buy myself some time and look more like how I feel,” said Fonda, who had work on her chin, neck and under the eyes.

The thrice-married Fonda, 73, says she’s feeling great, is happy, confident and in a relationship, all with a new book and two fitness DVDs for baby boomers, her first since 1995.

Exercise and aging
While researching her book, “Prime Time: Love, Health, Sex, Fitness, Friendship, Spirit — Making the Most of all of Your Life,” Fonda said what she learned about the role exercise plays in aging “just blew me away.”

“It’s important to exercise when you’re younger,” she said. “But it’s like the number one ingredient for successful aging. It makes a difference for all aspects of your life and your body.”

Fonda acknowledges she can’t do everything she once could, and blames genetics for problems that led to a knee and hip replacement.

“I just realized nobody’s doing videos for people like me, who can’t do what they used to do or maybe people who never exercised in their lives,” Fonda told Lauer. “It’s never too late.”

The DVDs aren’t as much about looking thin as they are about keeping in shape to help keep up with daily living, Fonda said.

“It’s less about trying to look a certain way as being able to get up and down out of a chair, carry your grandkids, look over your shoulder when backing down a driveway,” Fonda told TODAY. “You want to stay as independent as you can.”

Fonda, who suffered from bulimia, says it’s possible for people to overcome a food addiction.

“I think it was just a matter of deciding that I was either going to live or die. I went for the light. I went for living,” she said, looking back at her life.

And though she struggled with low self esteem, it hasn’t consumed her entire life.

“It took me awhile to sort of move back into myself and become an embodied person,” she said. “It didn’t happen until I passed 60. The message of my life is it’s never too late.

“I’m happier now than I was before,” Fonda said. “That’s not exactly what I expected at 73.”

And after marriages to Roger Vadim, Tom Hayden and Ted Turner, Fonda has learned a thing or two about love, like not being afraid to “show up” in a relationship or to be “really intimate.”

“That has nothing to do with sex,” Fonda said. “It means being able to be fully present in a relationship. And sometimes you need a little mileage under the belt to get there. And I feel I’ve gotten there. I feel really good.”

‘The Doctors’ Features Labia Reduction Surgery

An episode of CBS’s “The Doctors” airing today focuses on a 23-year-old woman undergoing labiaplasty – yep, plastic surgery on the female genitals.

“I feel like I’m deformed down there,” said Shannon, a nursing student whose last name was not revealed on the show, describing her “constant discomfort throughout the day.”

The inner labia are like lips that cover the clitoris and vaginal opening. But some women say their long labia cause physical pain and psychological anguish.

“It was a factor in my previous breakup,” said Shannon. “I’m self conscious. I don’t really want to have sex – I try to avoid it, so it’s kind of a big strain on a relationship.”

Dr. Jennifer Berman, a Beverly Hills urologist who also appeared on the show, recommended labia reduction surgery to correct Shannon’s “anatomical abnormality.”

“It’s not just a cosmetic thing,” she said. “This is something that you need done, for sure.”

Dr. Grant Stevens, founder of Marina Plastic Surgery in Marina del Rey, Calif., performed the procedure. He said many women come in wanting labia reduction, but few actually need it.

“If I hear the word pain or chafing or tenderness, it’s an entirely different consult than if I get the ‘I’m embarrassed, I think it looks funny.’ But ‘I’m embarrassed’ doesn’t automatically disqualify somebody.”

Stevens said he removed a stretch of skin the length of a middle finger from Shannon’s labia.

“No one would be cruel enough to suggest a woman should live like that,” he said.

Labia reduction is one part of vaginal rejuvenation – a panel of procedures aimed at making the sculpting and refining a women’s most private parts.

“Your vagina can be a beautiful declaration of your taste and style rather than an impediment or humiliation,” reads the Marina Plastic Surgery website.

Other rejuvenation procedures include labia augmentation and vaginal tightening.

Labia reduction was just one segment on today’s one-hour episode of “The Doctors” called “Gross Anatomy,” which also featured bulging veins, boils and psoriasis.

“Let’s be real,” said Dr. Travis Stork, who hosts the show. “Looks do matter, whether it’s your face your hair or even down there.”

But some gynecologists call plastic surgery for the vagina misguided and risky.

“For every single thing that’s normal about a woman’s body there’s a man trying to change it,” said Dr. Hilda Hutcherson, an obstetrician and gynecologist at NewYork – Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center. “The last frontier was the vagina.”

Labia reduction surgery removes sections of skin rich in blood vessels.

“They’re taking this beautiful, fluffy vulva and making it look like newborn baby’s,” said Hutcherson. “They’ve taken every part of a woman’s body and convinced us it’s somehow abnormal.”

Hutcherson said labia come in all shapes and sizes.

“I think women should have options, but I think it’s up to doctors to educate them about what’s normal,” she said.

Labia reduction can cause bleeding and infections. And scar tissue can make the skin less stretchy, causing pain and discomfort during sex.

But Stevens said he only operates on women for whom the benefits outweigh the risks.

“There are risks and complications associated with all surgery,” he said. “If I’m not convinced there’s a functional defect or such an abnormality that the emotional aspect is compelling, I say no.”

Indeed some patients – like moms with prolapsed vaginas after childbirth – benefit medically from the surgery, according to Dr. Erin Tracy, an obstetrician and gynecologist at Massachusetts General Hospital.

“But most of the patients I have coming in asking about this are teenagers that look entirely normal,” said Tracy. “The majority of them, after some probing, seem to have some underlying body dysmorphic disorder or problems in their relationship that make them think they’re abnormal.”

For Shannon, who said she would avoid wearing bathing suits because of her labia, reduction surgery provided a self-esteem boost.

“I’m so excited,” she said after the procedure. “I saw the results, they look amazing. … I couldn’t be more happy.”

via ‘The Doctors’ Features Labia Reduction Surgery.

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