“Well, did she or didn’t she?” We always want to know. When we haven’t seen a celebrity in a while, we inevitably scrutinize the latest photo for evidence of “work” being done. Why? Because juicy gossip is timeless.
As plastic surgery becomes more popular than ever, you might say it has become more discreet than ever, too. In other words, where we could once look at a person and immediately tell that plastic surgery was responsible for their dramatically different appearance, now it’s much more nuanced.
It’s harder to tell these days because results look more natural, and there are far fewer mishaps. Even in the case of breast augmentation, the Marietta surgeons at Plastic Surgery Center of the South emphasize their goal of a “very natural yet feminine look” and advise patients on how natural a certain placement will look. And on their before-and-after photo gallery, you’ll find case after case of patients who simply wanted breasts that were proportional to their body frames.
The goal, then, is much subtler than it used to be. Now the right result is not the caricatured Kardashian variety. It’s the one with the least evidence of any surgical intervention whatsoever.
That doesn’t make it any less fun to talk about, though. And men aren’t exempt from the chatter, either. Beside the rumors about Renée Zellweger and Jennifer Aniston, there’s speculation swirling online about everyone from Bill Clinton to Billy Bob Thornton.
Knowing full well that it’s always going to be a conversation topic, a lot of past plastic surgery patients have decided to steer that conversation themselves. On Real Housewives of Atlanta, Cynthia Bailey happily shared her experience with her fellow cast-mates in a pretty brazen way. She took them along for a visit to “Dr. Curves” when she was considering updating her breast implants after 10 years. The consultation turned into a “breast party,” in Cynthia’s words: Everyone wanted to see what breast implants feel like, and she was forthcoming enough to let them do it on TV.
Our curiosity might begin with the patients, but it certainly doesn’t end there. We want to know what it’s like for the surgeons, too. The fictionalized world of Nip/Tuck gave us our first (pretend) look, and real-life counterparts have since emerged on TLC and Lifetime, such as Botched and Skin Tight. Three local surgeons were featured on Atlanta Plastic, which ran for 2 seasons on Lifetime (no word on a third season yet).
Like The Biggest Loser or even The Bachelor, here’s what it all comes down to: We’re always hungry for transformation stories.
And even beyond the graphic live shots of post-bariatric surgery, tummy tucks, and Brazilian butt lifts, these shows give us the best kind: a glimpse into ordinary people’s motivations for doing something extraordinary. We get the backstory of patients who lost hundreds of pounds after battling weight issues for years, and patients who have always yearned for self-confidence but never had it.