It’s a well-known fact that Koreans have beautiful features. Who could resist those narrow eyes and olive skin? If you thought ethnicity could not be changed, guess again. These days, all it takes is a lift or injection to become the ethnicity you’ve always dreamed of. While many simply admire the facial features of Koreans, some are going under the knife to resemble them.

Cultural Influence

25 year-old Brazilian exchange student Xiahn, formerly named Max, did just that when he underwent 10 plastic surgery procedures to appear Korean. Korea is the plastic surgery capital of the world, with one out of five women getting some sort of plastic surgery procedure, so it’s no mystery from where the idea for this drastic transformation originated. He might have felt pressured into it, considering everywhere you look, there is a billboard advertising a plastic surgeon. Parents are even forcing their kids to get plastic surgery.

The Procedure

Plastic surgery in Korea is so extreme that citizens are getting plastic surgery to look like Westerners. Xiahn’s goal was the exact opposite. He had been living in Korea for quite some time and was very interested in Korean culture. After watching Korean soap operas and listening to K-Pop, he decided it was time to make the transition. The procedure consisted of 10 surgeries on his eyes alone, since Asian eyes are their most distinct facial feature. When the surgery was finished, people could not tell that he was Brazilian.

Pleasing Results

Xiahn is not ashamed of his ethnicity nor does he deny being Brazilian after the surgery. He claims there are plenty of mixed Brazilians and if anything, his new eyes make him look exotic. Xiahn is still proud to be Brazilian and will probably be admired in the plastic surgery scene. The $3,000 he spent on this procedure is similar to the expense of a used car or a vacation. As if eye surgery wasn’t enough, he also changed his eye and hair color, as well as his name.

Korean Plastic Surgery

In Korea, plastic surgery is commonly viewed simply as a way to make yourself prettier, similar to makeup. Asian women get their jaws shaped and their eyes enlarged to look Caucasian. Common surgeries in Korea include double eyelid surgery and mole removal. The makeover doesn’t stop there—some even go to tanning salons and get their hair relaxed into a different texture. This trend is seen all over the globe—people getting plastic surgery to acquire physical attributes that they were not born with.

Society plays a big part in this; the media displays what they deem ‘’beautiful’’ in magazines and commercials. However, Koreans do have some attractive features, such as straight hair and chestnut colored eyes. It certainly may be cheaper to accept your looks the way they are, but sometimes change is much needed in order obtain confidence and boost self-esteem. If this Korean plastic surgery trend travels on to the West, the plastic surgery industry is bound to flourish.

Image Source: YouTube/dramaxpr0ducti0ns

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Dr. Jeffrey Spiegel

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Dr. Onir L. Spiegel

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Dr. Jacob Tower

A board-certified specialist in facial plastic surgery, Dr. Jacob Tower brings a thoughtful approach and an artistic eye to New England’s premier plastic surgery practice, The Spiegel Center in Newton, Massachusetts. In addition to being an in-demand surgeon, Dr. Tower is an assistant professor at the Boston University School of Medicine, a sought-after lecturer, and an expert in facial plastic surgery.

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