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Plastic surgery on women is booming, together with the wealth of the Chinese consumers. On his weblog China watcher Bill Dodson reports about this wife’s visit to a clinic, with queues outside the building, together with their parents, paying for the operation.

“They’re paying for their daughters to have surgery on their faces?”

“And breasts,” she added.

“And breasts.” I could feel a rush of testosterone weaken my knees at the prospect. (Men are such simple animals).

“The parents believe if their daughters are more beautiful they can catch a boyfriend with more money.” Of course, “boyfriend” in China nearly always means “fiancee”. Doesn’t take more than a couple dates to seal the deal. I imagine, as well, a pretty face and shapely figure don’t hurt job prospects, either; especially if one looks at job qualifications for airline attendants, bullet train attendants and secretaries.

The Straits Times reported in January this year about the Chinese cosmetic surgery industry, “About 3 million people had plastic surgery on the mainland in 2010 in an industry worth an annual 15 billion yuan (S$2.9 billion), statistics from the MOH [Ministry of Health] showed. There were also 20,000 lawsuits against clinics in China in 2010 for botched jobs and “lopsided” results.

My wife figures that about 90% of young girls in Suzhou have had plastic surgery of one sort or another. I think her estimate is rather high, though I am amazed at the rapid growth rate in pretty girls with busts locally – where there had been very few of both just a few years ago.

Or maybe, it’s just that Chinese women are drinking more milk and wearing more makeup.


Bill Dodson

More on his weblog

Bill Dodson is a speaker at the China Speakers Bureau. Do you need him at your meeting or conference? Do get in touch.

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