Lately, I’ve been having more and more conversations regarding cosmetic surgery. With the rising number of people electing to go under the knife and the increased social acceptance of plastic surgery, I guess it’s only natural that we start to wonder how a certain tweaks here and there could improve our appearance.
Would you ever have cosmetic surgery? If so, what kind (assuming money was no object)?
I admit it: I’ve gone under the knife. I’ve had Asian blepharoplasty (more commonly known as the Asian double eyelid surgery) back in 2000. And I don’t regret it at all.
I’ve always had small eyes – had kids tease me in my younger years, and was very self-conscious of it. It was actually my parents who suggested that I get the surgery. At first, I was too proud and insisted that people should not change themselves just to conform to society’s superficiality. But as I got a bit older, I realized I was just too unhappy about my eyes.
It wasn’t all aesthetics – the lack of a fold forced my eyelashes to point straight down, often poking uncomfortably into my eyes. After some research, I found that blepharoplasty can fix this problem. And I’d finally be able to wear eye makeup without looking like a raccoon by mid-day.
I didn’t go back to Korea over a summer and have it done, as many girls do. We found a nice cosmetic surgeon in Fort Lee, NJ. At our first consultation, he explained the two types of Asian blepharoplasty. With the first type, the doctor makes an incision where the fold should occur and actually extracts fat and tissue. The second type is less evasive – the doctor makes three tiny sutures above each eye to create the fold. This method is reversible, so say, for example, if someone wanted an even larger fold later down the line, it can be done without any major reconstructive work.
The doctor said I was an ideal candidate for the second type because my eyelids are very thin (if the eyelids are not thin, this type does not look natural because the fold looks forced). Plus it cost about half as much as the first method.
The actual surgery lasted less then two hours and I was pleasantly chatting with the nurse the entire time. Swelling lasted less than a week and bruising was very minimal. After two weeks (and a follow-up visit), I was finally able to try makeup on my new eyes.
I loved it.
Here are some “before” pictures:
(Sorry for the crappy pictures….these are
the only old pictures I had in my computer
and I’m too lazy to scan more)
And here are some “after” shots:
(Yeah, I don’t know what I was doing with the ketchup bottle either.
But this was the best picture I could find where you can see the fold clearly.)
(You can’t see it too well here but there’s clearly a
difference between now and then.)
After surgery, most people didn’t even notice. They said I looked less tired and one guy even asked, “Did you lose weight or something?” Only a couple of people noticed right away.
Whenever I tell people that I’ve had the surgery they’re always shocked. “But it looks so natural!” The best part is that when I close my eyes, there is no fold, which is a clear-cut sign that someone had the surgery.
Before going into surgery, I had asked the doctor to make the fold very small as to make it less obvious. “Are you sure?” he asked. He said that most people, once they get used to the fold, end up wanting a larger fold. And I’m starting to think that he was right. Now I want larger eyes!
I think that if having surgery makes someone genuinely happier, they should go ahead and do it. I know I’m happier and much more confident after having done it.
There are some types of surgeries I would never do, such as breast augmentation, because I developed very early and was always self-conscious about my (larger-than-most-Asians) boobs. But I wouldn’t mind a few more tweaks here and there in the future (nothing major).
However, I no longer have the Bank of Mom and Dad supporting me and I would much rather spend my cash on new gadgets. So although I’m not beautiful, I will stay the way I am.