K-pop is slowly but surely making its way to merge with Western culture and arts. BTS, BLACKPINK, Psy, and many other Korean music artists are now making their name in pop culture. But aside from that, South Korea is also known for one thing: plastic surgery. You may be in Gangnam gu, Seoul, Busan, or any urbanised district or city in South Korea. If you are, you can see through photos and videos how westernised the culture has become. However, their innate uniqueness still emanates. There is no denying the impact of Korean influence when it comes to beauty standards. Why are they favoured? Let’s learn about how this hype looks like – the Korean plastic surgery – before and after every procedure.
Cosmetic Plastic Surgery
Not long ago, many Caucasians were the only ones who appreciated the power of cosmetic surgery when it comes to improving one’s looks and confidence. They are on every magazine cover, straight noses, big boobs, wide, doe-eyed beauties. Countries like the USA, Mexico, and Germany led the cosmetic enhancement hypes. The public demand to undergo elective surgeries to improve their physical appearance is a global phenomenon. It is not limited to countries of particular size or wealth or standing in the international community. Undeniably, the desire to look good gradually influenced many other nations to turn to cosmetic surgery in order to enhance or improve how their natural body looks.
Korean Beauty Standards
One of the most in-demand countries that offer plastic surgery to the Asian market is South Korea. Here, contouring, anti-aging beauty standards are imposed. A physically beautiful woman should have a slim, petite figure, pale to fair flawless skin, a small face with a v-shaped jaw, straight eyebrows, and large, open eyes. We cannot say that this is the complete opposite of how Koreans typically look. However, the way we see it, Korean beauty standards really emanate when you look at their TV shows, movies, and documentaries.
The transformation that you can see in Korean plastic surgery really astounds people, especially if you see the before and after comparison. Their surgical techniques look superb because if you failed to see how a person looks before the surgery, you would really think that their final look is their real, natural physical features. Korea has made its mark in cosmetic surgery, that in 2015, a global survey by the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons placed South Korea in the top ten of countries that had the highest rate of cosmetic surgery procedures.
Top plastic surgery procedures in South Korea
You may ask, why are South Koreans so hooked up in cosmetic surgery? The truth is, it is the immense societal pressure to look physically good and appealing that pushes them to resort to aesthetic improvements. People would say that many Korean ladies in their teens would ask their parents to pay for their cosmetic surgery at the early age of 15 to 18. Truth is, studies from last year concluded that at least 20 percent of young Korean girls have undergone cosmetic surgery. This finding is significantly above the average rate in other countries like the US and UK. Here are some of the most popular cosmetic plastic surgery procedures in South Korea.
Rhinoplasty (Nose job surgery)
Having pert noses became typically associated with Asian beauty. But because of Western entertainment, having a straight and emphasised nose became a trend. This makes Korean rhinoplasty become so popular, not just to their citizens, but also to other Asian countries. What Korean plastic surgeons do is to make the improvement proportioned to the face of the patient. This will make the enhancement look natural.
Blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery)
Squinted eyes, sad-looking eyes, and sleep eyes – some of the descriptive, if not offensive, terms used to picture out Asian eyes. It goes to show why blepharoplasty or double eyelid surgery is the most popular procedure in Korea. This cosmetic procedure removes excess fat to achieve the ideal double eyelid in both men and women.
This is different from ptosis correction, as it deals with the skin around the eyes and not the eyes themselves. Ptosis correction repairs a muscle in the eye that makes them look droopy. Though elevating the eyelid can somehow help in ptosis correction, it is not the main corrective procedure. Getting double eyelid surgery makes your eyes pop, removes the puffiness caused by excess fat, opens your eye frame, making your face look lively and appealing. The popularity of this procedure isn’t just contained in Korea, as nearly 15 percent of all plastic surgery procedures in the world are double eyelid surgeries.
Skin Whitening or Bleaching
Many people would think that the terms skin lightening and whitening can have interchanging meanings. However, they are different in the way they lighten the skin tone of the body. When we say skin lightening, it removes dark spots to blend into the natural hue or tone of your skin. Skin whitening or bleaching, on the other hand, changes the patient’s overall complexion. This is very evident with Asian men and women who want to achieve pink, fairer skin tones.
Jaw Reduction Surgery/Chin Augmentation
As part of cosmetic facial surgery, contouring the face can never be successful if you have wide jaws and puffy cheeks. By doing jaw or chin reduction surgeries, the face gets the contouring it needs, slimming the chin, and creating the much sought-after ‘V-Line’. The procedure for this surgery includes shaving off part of the mandible to create a slimmer jawline. This makes the face look slim, well-contoured and proportioned.
Another surgical procedure that can complement contouring your jaw is performing surgery on the forehead. Some Koreans have flat foreheads that make their face look long and blunt. Inserting an implant on the forehead can make the face look well-proportioned and youthful. some even complement this surgical procedure with a hair transplant treatment to hide balding spots and receding hairlines.
Cosmetic Dental Treatment
Malocclusion does not discriminate any race, gender, or age. Many people check with their dentists to see what orthodontic or restorative dental procedure they should have in order to correct their teeth alignment, bite, color, and look. However, there are also people who would rather have cosmetic treatments like veneers and caps and crowns in order to address the aesthetic issue of the teeth. Though this does not necessarily address the functional problem of your teeth, it can definitely make your smile look better.
Just like women all over the world, physical beauty standards include having fuller bosoms that accentuate a slim, hourglass silhouette. Women choose to undergo breast augmentation, also called a boob job, due to a variety of factors, such as becoming more attractive and having a ‘fuller’ body, giving them more confidence. Depending on the type of breast augmentation, an implant, fat, or a combination of the two are used to give the patient their desired breast size.
Though Korean plastic surgery continues to gain popularity and reputation as one of the best in the world, it is still important for us to weigh in on the pros and cons of saying yes to medical tourism. Do they have the same safety standards as in Australia? In case of complications, will the solution be safe and accessible?
South Korea’s Plastic Surgery Boom: A Quest To Be ‘Above Normal’.
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Why More Men in South Korea Are Getting Plastic Surgery Than Ever Before.
Side Effects and Precautions of Skin Bleaching.