All Articles Tagged "plastic surgery"

If You Had The Money, Would You Ditch The Gym For Liposuction?

November 3rd, 2015 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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It doesn’t matter if you were one of those people who played sports growing up or someone who has been a couch potato for a majority of your existence–working out sucks for everyone. Or at least, it blows in the beginning. The beginning, as in, that time when you’re trying to motivate yourself to get your life together after realizing your favorite pants no longer fit. That time when the new year begins, and you decide to use that as inspiration to get it right and tight (before heading back to the couch in March). That time when you realize your bikini body is not looking the way you had hoped and decide to do one of those 30-day squat challenges people post on social media in the hopes that at least your booty can be perky.

Knowing how much it sucks, and how much time and energy it takes to drop the pounds, if you could, would you avoid the gym altogether and just get the fat sucked right out from under you? I’m talking liposuction.

Love and Hip Hop LA‘s Teairra Mari decided to do just that recently. The “Feel Good” singer started her career as a tiny little thing when she was working with Jay Z and was signed to Roc-A-Fella. But by the time she joined Love and Hip Hop LA, she put on a little weight. It was nothing major, and nothing people really noticed–until it was brought up by a co-star who blamed an out-of-breath and out-of-tune performance by Mari on her being out of shape. He said such hurtful things as “Her stomach was all over the place,” and “You gotta get in the gym and work out.”

From that man with a bad body’s mouth, it all just sounded like hate. But by Season 2, Mari gained even more weight and could no longer hide it. And it was also apparent that she had allowed that weight to mess with her confidence. Plus, those jabs from her co-stars (including Princess Love calling her a “hippo” and saying that Ray J doesn’t want her “fat a–“) and folks on social media about her size probably didn’t help.

So she announced on a recent episode that she was thinking about getting some plastic surgery done to slim down. And in a bonus clip, we saw her explaining why. She wanted that immediate snapback. She also wanted that immediate happiness, as she shared with a friend:

“I told you before; I’ve just been feeling a little insecure about the weight gain. I don’t feel like myself. This weight feels like a barrier.”

She continued, “It’s been a wall in my life. I just don’t want to be this big.”

And on last night’s episode, she went through with her liposuction. The fat was sucked out from her stomach, and based on the bandages she displayed during her recovery process, she may also have had some taken out from underneath her chin. And while she wasn’t happy about the soreness, Mari seemed happy to have a little bit of extra weight off of her body and off of her shoulders.

I’m not here to bash Mari and hammer down the obvious, which is that with a few months of healthy eating and consistent time in the gym, she could have dropped some of that weight without putting her life at risk. Seriously, that’s not why I’m writing this. Rather, I’m just worried about the fact that before getting surgery, Mari never actually confronted how and why she wound up gaining so much weight in the first place.

And truly, that is what is important, especially when you’re not an individual who has battled with weight problems years upon years. If you don’t figure out what led you down a path of consistent unhealthy eating, while you can always head to the plastic surgeon, you could easily gain that weight back after surgery.

I recently lost about 40 pounds. To do that, I had to figure out what piece of the puzzle I was missing during my past attempts to lose weight. I started gaining a lot of weight near the end of college and afterward because I was getting lazy, and I was stressed. So instead of cooking something, I was making late-night stops to Burger King while studying for finals. Instead of staying to work out, I was getting tacos with shredded beef with my meal plan after my shift at the rec center. I was picking up gyros and fries after a shift folding panties at Victoria’s Secret. I was snacking while working on my stories late at night after working my full-time job all day. I was treating my body like whatever because my mind was all over the place. I didn’t care about looking fit because I wasn’t happy with the state of my existence. And during those years, I wasn’t happy with the state of my existence because I wasn’t fulfilled. Plus, you know, a sista didn’t really have the time to be a gym rat. So I ate until I felt good.

And the reality is that Teairra Mari has had a lot to emotionally eat about. Her music career, which she worked hard for, never really took off. Her relationship with Ray J, despite the decade she claims that they were together, was never a rewarding one. He didn’t even openly acknowledge her as his companion during their time together. And after thinking they were going to reunite at the end of Season 1, he expressed his dysfunctional devotion to Princess Love. And then there’s the legal trouble for reportedly fighting an Uber driver. Mari was inevitably charged with battery and theft, and could face possible jail time. There are also the mean folks who have openly stated that they think she’s “fat” online. And, of course, Mari lives in L.A. A place where image is everything, and if you don’t look the way you want or need to in order to find happiness and success, you can pay someone to get you there. Hence, Mari stating that she wanted to unveil her post-lipo body on the runway of a fashion show. She wanted to show other people how good she looks and how happy she finally is.

She’s a grown woman and can spend her dollars and cents as she pleases. But she was also always a beautiful woman who didn’t look like someone whose weight was spiraling out of control. Until there’s a grasp on how she ended up with the weight that she considered a barrier to her prosperity, there’s a scary chance that she could fall back into that hole–and fill it with food all over again.

“This Lady Shouldn’t Be Dead.” Donda West’s Plastic Surgeon Tries To Clear His Name

September 14th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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donda west's doctor

Source: Inside Edition


Many of us remember the shock and even second-hand sadness we felt for Kanye West when we learned his mother, Donda West, had passed away. Later, we would learn that she died after having a series of plastic surgery procedures.

Immediately, everyone held her physician Dr. Jan Adams at fault. But now, he’s coming out once again trying to clear his name.

He initially tried to speak to Larry King, shortly after Donda passed but received a call from Kanye West’s lawyers telling him not to do so. He ended up walking off set in the middle of the interview.

And earlier this year he spoke to the New York Daily News about her death and who he believes is responsible.

Now, in a sit down with “Inside Edition,” he’s ready to tell his version of the story

Adams says after the surgery he wanted to care for Donda to be monitored in a medical facility. But she insisted that her nephew, Stephen Scoggins, a nurse with a PhD in public health, be left in charge of her aftercare.

Adams claims that the day after surgery Scoggins left Donda to attend a baby shower and that’s when she choked to death.

“This lady shouldn’t be dead. All you had to do was sit her up and every nurse on the planet knows that.”

Scoggins, Kanye’s cousin, denies all allegations that he’s responsible for his aunt’s death and a nurse’s board dismissed the case against him.

Adams believes he’s been set up as the fall guy in the whole situation. Again, he said that Kanye should step forward and tell the truth.

“Kanye West can end this by telling the truth. The doctor had nothing to do with his mom’s death. The truth, when you bury it, it just grows bigger.”

Who will ever know what really happened in this situation. Either way, we can all agree that after that much extensive surgery she should have been monitored at a medical facility. Particularly when the doctor who performed the procedures suggested it.

Still, while I sympathize with Dr. Adams losing his practice and his reputations, there’s something slimy about the way he’s going after Kanye specifically.

I doubt Kanye will ever respond to him, acting this way in front of the television cameras.

You can check out clips from the upcoming interview in the video below.


15 Surprising Facts About Breast Implants

August 31st, 2015 - By Julia Austin
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Getting breast implants seems as commonplace as getting a manicure these days, but breast augmentation has a long and complicated history— one that’s still in progress. Here are 15 surprising facts about breast implants.








Things Men Should Know About Sex After A Breast Augmentation

August 17th, 2015 - By Julia Austin
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Source: Shutterstock

Source: Shutterstock

If your girlfriend or wife is about to get breast implants, you feel like she is bringing you home a new toy (or toys)! But you need to know how to play with them carefully. Here are some things men need to know about sex after a breast augmentation.


15 Hidden Risks Of Plastic Surgery

June 12th, 2015 - By Julia Austin
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Image Source:

Image Source:

When you really, really want something, it’s tempting to overlook the risks. You do it with your dating life (you know a guy isn’t good for you, but he is so hot), you do it with your jobs (you know your boss is a nut, but the pay is satisfying) and you might even do it with something as life changing as plastic surgery. But you can’t overlook the risks of this ever-growing trend. If you are considering altering something about yourself, here are 15 hidden risks of plastic surgery you need to know beforehand.

Is Cosmetic Surgery On The Rise Among Black Women?

June 3rd, 2015 - By Nneka Samuel
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We’ve all heard the horrific “pumping party” tales of women looking to get a little plump in the rump.  They’re often led by unlicensed non-professionals who inject silicone, Krazy Glue, and even cement into bodies that are forever altered.  Some women lose limbs as a result of this deplorable and illegal practice. Others, their lives. Just this week we told you about the Maryland woman who died after getting an illegal butt lift procedure done in a basement in Queens.

This is an extreme example, but it helps to exemplify the stigma long associated with cosmetic surgery in the Black community.  Not only is it perceived as dangerous (even in the hands of reputable doctors, no cosmetic surgery is 100% safe), but it is also seen as something a lot of Black women and women of color in general just don’t do.  That could explain, in small part, the underground pumping party phenomenon.

Whether it be rhinoplasty, breast implants or face-lifts, cosmetic surgery has been thought to be an impossible quest for perfection. A desire to reverse the aging process, and a quick fix confidence booster to remedy a perceived flaw.  Depending on the kind of procedure, there’s also the assumption that if you’re a Black woman going under the knife, you’re trying to erase the physical signs of your race and are therefore adhering to Eurocentric standards of beauty. These standards ignore or condemn our features, but laud them on white skin.  A little nip here and a little tuck there, especially on the face, is thought to result in an unnatural, stiff look that renders people unrecognizable. Botox and skin bleaching form separate categories of hate and shade altogether, and that’s no pun intended.

In an attempt to demystify all of these assumptions and taboos, Dr. Nia Banks, an African-American board certified plastic surgeon and owner of Beaux Arts Institute of Plastic Surgery in Lanham, Maryland, spoke to Roland Martin in a 2014 NewsOne Now interview.  According to Dr. Banks, “Most people get plastic surgery because they’re trying to get back something they already had.  They’re not trying to look like somebody else, they’re not trying to never age.”  The most common surgeries her office performs are liposuctions, tummy tucks, and breast lifts.  These are often done to repair dramatic changes incurred during pregnancy.  So while we’re used to seeing surgeries that have gone too far, the healthy way to use plastic surgery, Dr. Banks asserts, is as a means to enhance, not to be completely transformed.

“Most women don’t want a radical change,” Dr. Banks continues.  “That’s a red flag…Most women who get plastic surgery actually have a very strong self-esteem, looking to change something very specific.  If someone comes in and says, ‘I want to look like so and so,’ that’s usually a red flag, because that’s not achievable.”

But red flags don’t keep all doctors from operating on people who have had one too many procedures done. Like the late Michael Jackson, who was clearly addicted to cosmetic surgery, or Lil Kim, who could very well suffer from body dysmorphic disorder.  It’s that willingness to operate on patients, no matter the psychological cost, which helps to keep the plastic surgery taboo alive.

But it seems that things are starting to change. In fact, many celebrities have spoken openly about the work they’ve had done, including NeNe Leakes, Porsha Williams, Wendy Williams, and Kelly Rowland.  And the numbers prove it as well. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, cosmetic surgery is up six-fold since 1997. The biggest spike in plastic surgery in 2014 was butt augmentation, up a whopping 86% from the year before.  Even labiaplasty – Yep, they do that too – rose by 49%.  Here are some more staggering statistics: 15.1 million Americans had cosmetic procedures done in 2013 alone.  From 2005 to 2013, cosmetic surgeries done on African Americans increased by 56%.  And with the popularity of reality shows like Botched, Dr. 90210, and The Swan over the years, it’s easy to see why cosmetic surgery has become more commonplace, less secretive, and less taboo, both in the U.S. as a whole and particularly in the Black community.

So while the stigma is waning, the pressures that women face in our youth-driven, beauty-obsessed society are still very real. Some businesses even offer “mommy makeover” packages that promise to lift and tuck women in all the right places.

Ultimately, there are a myriad reasons why women choose to get cosmetic surgery.  Should you decide to undergo a procedure, do your research and make sure that you approach it from a sound and mentally stable place. And seek out a doctor who has worked with Black skin, as ours is more prone to keloids and scarring.  While there are more questions than answers when it comes to the psychological effects of cosmetic surgery, one thing is certain: there are no easy fixes.

Tiffany “New York” Pollard To Appear On “Botched”

April 14th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: Faye Sadou / WENN

Source: Faye Sadou / WENN

When I think about Tiffany “New York” Pollard, I always think remember the thin, stringy-weaved, cut out, blue dress wearing reality show contestant who mooned Flavor Flav when he sent her home after bringing her back on the show for the second time.

“You brought me back here to open up the same muthf**kin wound Flav?”

But when Tiffany came back for her own show, “I Love New York,” she looked a little bit different. She had fuller hair, she’d put on a bit of weight and her boobs were bigger, a lot bigger. If you were like me, you were so distracted by her words and actions, you might not have noticed the breasts.

But in a new episode of E!’s “Botched,” she explains that they’ve caused her quite a few problems. In a teaser for the show, New York explains why she had the girls done and why she wants them fixed now.

Why she wanted them: 

I grew up in upstate New York, being the granddaughter of a minister. Life was very sheltered for me. Just pretty much church, school and home. I just never felt like I fully fit in. So I found my escape watching television and saying ‘Bitch, one day you will be somebody.

One day I was watching Geraldo Rivera and I saw Dolly Parton walk out on stage. And when I saw that White chick come out on the screen with her blonde hair, her tiny waist and her big tits, I said that’s going to be me one day.”

Why she needs them fixed now

My breasts are jacked up. The sagging, the extra skin. My breasts are unhappy…It’s like one tit is in Africa and the other one is in Europe.

From the looks of things, she’s in desperate need. Which is why plastic surgeons Terry Dubrow and Paul Nassif will not only work to correct New York’s breasts, they’ll also be working to fix her deviated septum.

Watch New York explain the extent of her problems in the video below.

New York’s episode of “Botched” will air tonight at 9/8c on E!

Did You Know? Celebrity Men Who Admit To Having Plastic Surgery

March 5th, 2015 - By Meg Butler
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Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Women aren’t the only ones who get a nip and a tuck. These celebrity men who admit to having plastic surgery say they’re not ashamed to say they’ve had some work done.

“I’m Just Aiming To Be The Best”: Man Spends $250K To Look Like A Ken Doll

February 4th, 2015 - By Kimberly Gedeon
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If you thought that Justin Jedlica, a man who spent $100k and endured 100 surgeries to look like Barbie’s boy toy, was just a unique case — you’re wrong! There’s a new man in town to steal his spotlight: Meet Rodrigo Alves.

Alves, a Brazilian-born Londoner, spent a whopping $250k to rearrange his face to match Ken’s good looks, The Huffington Post reports. The 31-year-old flight attendant flew to Colombia to get the six-in-one surgery, which included eye enlargement and a procedure to snip his mouth to make his smile bigger. Though he admits that it was a lengthy process, this won’t be his last under-the-knife experience:

“It is long-term maintenance. Once you start, it is difficult to stop. Naturally, I’m a perfectionist. It’s like a snowball effect and I’m not going to stop. It doesn’t define the man that I am – I’m much more than silicone and cosmetic surgery – but once you get started it’s difficult to stop,” he told the Daily Mail.

Alves said that he understands that he’s far from being flawless, but he aims to be close to it:

“I’m pretty aware that I’m far from perfection,” he said. “I’m not deluded, and I know that I’m not the most good-looking guy. I’m just aiming to be the best that I can possibly be.” Adding: “I really believe that everything that I’ve done to myself is an investment … It is who I am.”

The air steward appeared on the UK Channel 4 series Bodyshockers, where he sought therapy to treat his with plastic surgery:

“I haven’t yet found an answer to my addiction. It’s just so difficult to control. The fact I nearly died has made me think twice, but on the third time I always think: ‘Just go for it,” he said, according to SWNS.

Last January he traveled to Brazil where a doctor injected a gel into his arms to make them look buff. The injection, however, left him paralyzed. Doctors even suggested amputating his limbs if the bacteria had spread into his heart. If that had happened, he would have been dead. Luckily for him, he recovered.

Diagnosed with body dysmorphia, Alves added:  “I can’t say I won’t have any more surgery, because I probably will.”

Alves has been going under the knife since 2004.

The Perfect Pout: My Plastic Surgery Gone Wrong

January 22nd, 2015 - By Rich
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My fascination with lips began around 10-years-old when I met Rachael at summer camp. Rachael had beautiful skin the color of cinnamon and the plumpest, prettiest top lip I had ever seen. Until then, lips were only noticed if they seemed too big for a person’s face, and usually that meant the person was getting  teased.

“Damn, Troy, you got some BIG lips!”

But Rachael came along and changed everything. I would find myself just staring at her lips while she talked. Sometimes I even made excuses to have a conversation with her. Dumb shit like, “Hey Rachael, do you like meatloaf?” I convinced myself that if I had Rachael’s top lip, I’d be the most beautiful girl in the world.

Fast-forward some 15 years later when I was modeling and met a drag queen working at the makeup counter of Patricia Field in New York. She had beautiful lips, too, that I suspected weren’t real, and after a few visits to the store and some girly-girl conversation, I walked away with the name and number of her lip “doctor.”

It almost seemed too good to be true–for just $100, I could permanently get the lips of my dreams. Honestly, the permanent part concerned me a bit, but not enough to keep me from taking the train to West 150-something Street in Harlem to see the woman who was plumping lips out of her apartment.

A plain-looking black woman who resembled my aunt greeted me at the door. She wasn’t at all the type of person I expected to be injecting queens for a living. Silly, but on some level I thought I’d be getting a real doctor.

Nonetheless, I told her what I wanted and felt pretty confident that she could deliver. In less than 20 minutes, she had injected my top lip with an unknown solution she pulled off of a tray — there was a silent understanding that questions were not allowed. She never even offered her name — and I was ready to go.

Her only instruction was to lay low for a few days because my lip was going to blow up two to three times its normal size. OK, how bad could that be? I stood in front of my best friend’s mirror in horror while my top lip stared back at me like Daffy Duck. The woman said my lip would swell but this was surreal. It was like something out of a big creature movie and my lips were the star. If it didn’t go down, I’d be f*cked. After all, I had a modeling career to think of and jacked up lips would not fit well into the equation.

My bestie tried to put on a brave face, but she was freaked, too. She kept urging me to call the doctor (correction: the woman), but I didn’t want to. This lady was not the type of person that I wanted to bug with silly questions. It would be a last resort.

After a day and a half of looking like Daffy with no sign of letting up, I phoned her. She reiterated that it was normal and that it would go down in a few more days. Thank God my work was freelance and I didn’t have a regular job to go to, because this required total seclusion. After about a week, I started resembling a normal human being and was able to assess my lip. OK, not bad, but there wasn’t much difference.

A few months later, I was back at the woman’s apartment. She was warmer this time and even sold me a novel she had written about a nurse who was stealing supplies from a doctor’s office to perform surgery out of her apartment. Hmm.

My lip blew up again, went back down, and all was gravy once more. Except that it still could be a little bigger. Just a pinch. But this time, instead of running back Uptown, I discovered that if I blew air out of my mouth really fast and hard my lips would bang together and my top lip would pout a little. So I did this and did it until IT happened. I remember the exact moment as if it were yesterday. I was on my way to meet my bestie for drinks when I decided to do my air-blowing trick to give myself a little added boost. When I stopped something had shifted and there was a lump on one side. Wait a minute. That wasn’t supposed to happen! So I started blowing again, hoping that it would move back, but no such luck. At that point, I just set into prayer mode. If there was a God, he was going to return my lip to normal. When that didn’t happen, I called the woman first thing in the morning. About 10 seconds into my story, she hung up the phone and that was that. Come on, what did I expect? But man, I needed to fix this like yesterday, so I borrowed some money and went legit.

This time, I went to a plastic surgeon on the Upper East Side that I found in the phone book (this was before the Internet). The nurse greeted me looking like she was 110 years old, even though it was clear she lived under the knife. Granny was creepy. So I talked to the doctor, a 50- or 60-something-year-old man, who assured me that I came to the right place, that he could fix it with no problem. After a few injections of a solution that he said would take away whatever that woman put in, because the truth was no one knew, I was told to come back if necessary in a month.

I went back. This time he said that he could pump some stuff into the side with the lump to try to fill it in. Not a bad idea. Might as well pump the other side a bit, too, while you’re at it. Because remember the reason it happened in the first place was because I was trying to get them a little bigger? So he pumped them and they blew up again; by this time the Daffy Duck face didn’t faze me at all, but in the end the lump was still there. Come on now, really? You’re supposed to be a legit doctor who can fix this. So I went back and showed him that the lump was still there and he wasn’t trying to hear me. In fact, he said that he didn’t see the lump, and it was fine. Whatthef*ckareyoucrazy?! There is a lump on my lip and you SAID you could fix it! Come on, look again. But he wasn’t trying to hear me and the more he kept acting like I was crazy, the crazier I became. And just when I was about to reach for his neck, the spooky granny came in asking me nicely to leave. So I tried to explain the situation to her, but she was siding with the doctor, and the next thing I knew I was screaming that there was a lump on my lip — I knew it, I could see it — and then another nurse came in with an armed security guard and I found myself being escorted out of the office while screaming to anyone in the waiting room who would listen that the doctor would throw you under the bus so be afraid, be very afraid of his ass. But he did give me another doctor’s info. before things got out of hand.

He was also on the Upper East Side, but his office was much classier. This guy was the real deal, and I liked him immediately. Who knows, perhaps it was because I hated the other doctor so much. But anyway, he said no problem, he could try some shrinking drops. OMG! Shrinking drops! That’s what I needed all along! Why didn’t that other jerk think of that? I tried it, no dice. So his Plan B was making my lips smaller by cutting out everything the others put in with a device that looked like the thing they use to sear crème brule. It literally sounded and smelled like he was cutting through plastic and perhaps that is what was in my lips in the first place. It seemed to do something, so I went back to have him sear my lips one more time. But overall, the lump was STILL there.

And thus began my descent… It wasn’t long before my modeling work suffered because I hated taking pictures. My lips were always there, staring at me in that weird way. And I could never relax because paranoia was my new best friend. One time I was getting my makeup done for a beauty commercial by renowned makeup artist Sam Fine, and instead of being happy I wanted to hide. I kept imagining him saying, “What the hell did she do to her face?” And I couldn’t speak to anyone about it because, one, I felt stupid, and two, people don’t have a lot of sympathy for those who get plastic surgery, let alone models who do. They feel like you’re being greedy. How good do you need to look?

After a few years of straight depression, I realized that nothing was ever going to bring my lips back. It was time to move on. So I started writing my thoughts down on paper and discovered that I enjoyed writing. And I was good at it. I ended up getting published and landed my own relationship column, Bitches Brew, in Trace magazine. It was the first time that I could see a life for myself that had nothing to do with how I looked. It was liberating.

Today, I think about that plastic surgery gone wrong and I’ve learned to forgive myself because I’m not perfect and sometimes that means doing stupid things. I wish I could say that I absolutely love my lips and that I have no regrets about what happened, but that would be a lie. I have, however, made peace with them. It comes from the fact that I don’t give them much energy. Because when I do, I start thinking about fixing them again and I’m right back where I started. So like an addict, it’s one day at a time.

Erickka Sy Savané is a freelance writer and creator of THE BREW, a social commentary blog. Before that she was a model/actress/MTV VJ. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.