Hi, I'm Kristin. Like basically everybody, I've had a very complicated relationship with my facial features for the majority of my life.
And yeah, I've always wondered what I might look like with a more classically beautiful face...except that beauty is SUPER subjective.
Not everyone finds every face attractive and that's OK!
So I thought, why not make this a little more interesting and see how different plastic surgeons would change my face in order to bring it to a well-known and well-defined beauty standard...that of a professional fashion model?
Surely all the surgeons should agree on what a fashion model should look like, right?
Then, we photoshopped a photo of me to reflect the three different sets of changes, and we compared them:
Also, before we dive into this, here is a quick and important series of Things You Should Know:
1. This is obviously just a thought experiment.
2. I do not actually want to be turned into a fashion model.
3. All three plastic surgeons said that if a patient were to really come to them and ask for their face to be turned into that of a fashion model's, they would have very significant concerns; you can't just receive a Gigi Hadid face like it's a breath mint at the end of dinner.
Thank you for your kind attention! Now, let's get to it.
Surgeon #1 was Dr. Amron, and most of what he wanted to do was noninvasive, which is pretty surprising, because I had been bracing myself for basically a fire sale of my face.
He had sort of a "tasting menu" approach to all this: Instead of patients coming to him and asking for something specific that they might want, he instead prefers to volunteer what he thinks the patient needs. So I suppose it's probably good that it was less invasive, as I'm sure no one wants to hear a doctor blurt out that they need new eye sockets or something.
Here are all the changes Dr. Amron suggested (this was the least surgically intensive set of changes of the three doctors, but it ain't nothing):
Here's my face after being photoshopped with Dr. Amron's changes (slide left to see the before and after):
And here are his changes from the side (slide left to see the before and after):
Next, I visited Dr. Li, who said the key to having a fashion model's face was to give your face an "upside egg" shape with prominent cheekbones and a sharp jawline:
Here are all the changes Dr. Li suggested (she had the second-most surgically invasive approach of the three surgeons):
Here's my face photoshopped with Dr. Li's changes (slide left to see the before and after):
And here are the changes from the side (slide left to see the before and after):
The last surgeon I visited was Dr. Lee, and to carry out his fashion model vision, he wanted to do a lot of things I honestly didn't even realize plastic surgeons did.
Here are all the changes Dr. Lee recommended – this was the most surgically invasive approach of all three:
Here's my face photoshopped to Dr. Lee's specifications (slide left to see the before and after):
And here's Dr. Lee's recommendations from the side (slide left to see the before and after):
So, when you compare all three of my new faces from the front, sure enough, they're all slightly different.
But you can REALLY see the differences from the side:
To be honest, I am not super surprised they are all different:
I know that facial symmetry is technically just math, but if I have learned anything during my four years at BuzzFeed, it's that no one agrees on anything ever when it comes to all things regarding women. Everyone has tastes and preferences, even when you're working within a really tight standard.
But what I didn't anticipate was that I would have a completely different opinion than all three.
Full disclosure: I was very afraid that when I started this, that I would see a face that I would like much better than my own. That the ~winning face~ would just haunt the crap out of me until I threw down how ever much money it cost in order to get it. But it didn't happen.
To be clear, plastic surgery is an important science, and no one should be judged for getting it. There are many people for whom plastic surgery means having a fuller, happier life, and we should let people be happy!
But I grew up never seeing a face like mine represented anywhere in the TV or movies or media I watched. So why not have my face there now?