I came across an article that the British Association of Aesthetic Cosmetic Surgeons has shared on their facebook. Titled ‘Cosmetic Surgery and Teenagers – A Disaster Waiting to Happen’ the Guardian describes the governments lack of regularisation when it comes to plastic surgery, leaving the public in a dangerous position. The age limit of having cosmetic surgery is a grey area, you must be 18 but under that it is allowed with parental consent, however there is evidence to suggest that many practises will carry out operations without asking for proof of age.
‘Born into the sexualised womanhood of Girl Power, the millennials have come of age in a society increasingly inured to the exploits of the surgery-enhanced reality TV stars. Leah Totton, the Apprentice winner who used Alan Sugar’s money to set up cosmetic skin care clinics this year, says she has had to put a blanket ban on procedures for under-18s after one 14-year-old girl came into the clinic with her mother and asked for Botox.
In April last year, a report by NHS medical director Sir Bruce Keogh found that 41% of girls aged seven to 10 and 63% aged 11 to 16 said they felt some pressure to look the way celebrities do. Suggesting that surgery had become “normalised” in pursuit of a “designer” body, hHe called for tougher controls over who can offer treatments and how they can be marketed. The government ignored him.‘ (source: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/womens-blog/2014/apr/28/cosmetic-surgery-and-teenagers-disaster-waiting-to-happen)
This information is truly shocking, there is no doubt that the sexualised world we live in full of airbrushing and cosmetic procedures is effecting young children. It’s an upsetting thought, girls at the age of seven should be enjoying their youth and not worrying about their appearance. I strongly believe that something should be done to protect underage girls and boys alike.
The fact that the Department of Health are so lax on this issue is beyond me. It is technically legal to sell and buy things such as dermal fillers over the internet, and of course these can come from anywhere and go to anyone. In recent years I have seen a number of things on T.V and in magazines that tell the story of someone who has put themselves in a terrifying situation and bought these products, the consequences were devastating. The ignorance of the government is unacceptable, it appears that everyone including large companies and the British Association of Aesthetic Cosmetic Surgeons are aware of the problem that the UK and western world have with the effect of the media has on a childs perception of beauty, but still they are being ignored.
The Dove Self Esteem Fund is a great example of a huge international company that is trying to tackle the problems in modern day society. They have created a series of videos that relate to self-esteem, perceptions and cosmetic surgery, often relating to young girls. These videos are quite hard hitting and powerful.
A dove film – Girls self-esteem https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ytjTNX9cg0
A dove film – Beauty Pressure http://https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ei6JvK0W60I
The beauty pressure commercial hits the nail on the head. It sums up my entire project. It’s one of the most powerful adverts that I have ever seen. The message ‘talk you your daughter before the beauty industry does’ is something that relates directly to what I want my outcome to say/achieve.