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Makeover Shows May Make Teenagers More Likely to Have Plastic Surgery

Does Reality TV Normalize Plastic Surgery?

A new study out from Rutgers and Villanova research psychologists suggests that it may. Wife-and-husband team, professors Charlotte and Patrick Markey, found that teenagers particularly fond of beauty makeover-themed reality shows were much more likely to seek out cosmetic surgery.

Usually, when we think about the high level of physical criticism young girls often have, it's something we hope they'll grow out of, but Charlotte Markey says that it doesn't work that way. In reality, she says, "what young men and women think of their bodies now will culminate over time and contribute to their overall health."

So here's the question: Do you think watching makeover shows leads to plastic surgery, or are people who are more likely to have plastic surgery just naturally drawn to shows about self-alteration?

Join The Conversation
kaytique kaytique 6 years
I completely find it normalizes cosmetic procedures! Everything is seen to have a "cure," but is presented in a manner of self-improvement and being what people "really want". I really want us all to be able to accept ourselves and each other as we are. We're human, after all.
JanisRae JanisRae 6 years
I never watched a lot of TV growing up. That didn't stop me from noticing that my body was different from other girls in my class and in my family. I wanted breast implants but I knew that my then-very-strict parents would never go for it, much less pay for it. Then I married a guy who stated he hated big boobs. I still wanted the implants but I kept my mouth shut and my desire quiet (this husband is now in jail for child molestation and has an extenstive history of viewing child pornography....this makes me wonder about his ideal body type!). I am now 25, single, and one month status-post breast augmentation surgery, and I couldn't be happier about my decision. I seriously had a harder time recovering from an appendectomy than I did after breast surgery. As with everything in life, it is all about attitude.
Francoisehardly Francoisehardly 6 years
Personally speaking, the more obsessed society becomes with plastic surgery, the more unappealing I can't help but find especially since most people I know get procedures don't get discreet surgeries/injections. It's always really obvious looking and it just looks like plastic to me so for me it's a huge turn off. For other people though, I think some people end up having the "everyone else is doing it, so I should too" mentality towards it.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 6 years
Just so I don't sound too harsh, I should note that I have nothing against adults getting cosmetic surgery, I just don't understand it. To each her own, I suppose.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 6 years
I am somewhat addicted to plastic surgery shows (well, let's be honest, all trashy reality tv). However, at least on a conscious level, they've had the opposite effect on me. Of course, there are occasional procedures to a correct something like a cleft palette, etc., but, other than in those cases I think half of the time the people like worse after the surgery. And I don't understand why you'd want to look like someone other than yourself. Maybe this is just me, but I'm proud of my heritage and close with my family and I like that I look so much like my dad and my grandma. I wouldn't want to change that. However, I'm not a teenager so perhaps I'm looking at this from a different frame of mind than the subjects of the test.
onlysourcherry onlysourcherry 6 years
I think maybe they will, just like repeated exposure to anything normalizes it. At least the shows that I've seen show the blood, gore, and recovery involved, which is not pretty.
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