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Are you a beauty pageant nut? You are probably one of the many who skip work and are glued to the TV screen watching your bets, cheering them on and hoping that they get the much-coveted crown.

You see these bevy of beauties strutting their perfectly shaped and toned body, beaming their whitest pearly whites, flawless skin and luscious flowing hair – just the very picture and epitome of a strikingly gorgeous woman. But, has it ever crossed your mind that maybe, just maybe, these gorgeous young women had some work done or had cosmetic surgery? Nobody is that perfect, after all. You think that they must have done something to look as stunning as they are.

Just when you think that these beauty contests take high regard on natural beauty, your idea is shattered when you learn that some had indeed gone through extensive plastic surgery.

Presenting Miss Korea 2013

Controversy struck earlier this year when an alleged photo of Miss Korea 2013 winner Yoo Ye-Bin surfaced. The assumed photo of the beauty queen, who will represent Korea in Miss Universe 2014, showed of a young girl with slit eyes, wider nose and a much rounder face, a stark contrast to the wide-eyed, doll face of the winner. It was said that old friends of Yoo Ye-Bin were the ones who posted the photo. This photo stirred up debates that she had had plastic surgery done. However, there was no confirmation whether the young girl in the photo is indeed Yoo Ye-Bin.

Also, further controversy sparked when photosets of the 20 finalists of the same pageant where Yoo won came up on Reddit’s online community board. The photosets of the before and after transformation of the ladies, showed strikingly similar looks of the contestants especially in their after photos. While the ladies looked beautiful in their before photos, there is a seemingly radical difference between the before and after photos of most of the contestants. This fueled a debate whether extensive make-up skills, Photoshop or plastic surgery brought about the finalists’ similar looks.

The New Miss Universe 2013

It is not just Miss Korea 2013 winner Yoo Ye-Bin who was under fire because of an alleged cosmetic surgery done. In recent news, just a few weeks after she was crowned one of the most prestigious beauty titles, Miss Universe 2013 Gabriela Isler became a controversial figure when a picture of the beauty leaked through the internet. The Venezuelan stunner was shown to have a much wider nose and more plump lips. If compared to an after photo, there is a dramatic difference and sparked speculations that the statuesque beauty may have had her nose trimmed and lips thinned.

On a separate occasion, Donald Trump, owner of the Miss Universe Organization, said that there are no rules on Miss Universe against women who have had plastic surgery done. The only main consideration is that the female contestants must be born a woman.

Venezuela has been known to “breed” and train young girls, as young as four years old, to become beauty queens. Sometimes called as glamour factories, grooming schools in Venezuela teach young girls how to walk, how to pose, the proper ways to eat, have them follow a strict workout regimen and diet and everything in between to prepare them for pageants and win the crown that most of these women dream of ever since they were young. This also means that these young ladies are willing to undergo cosmetic surgeries to achieve a narrow nose, angular jaw line, high cheekbones, flawless skin and lighter eyes, skin and hair. Osmel Sousa, President of the Miss Venezuela Organization, said that: “When there is a defect, I correct it. If it can be easily fixed with surgery, then why not do it?

It is no surprise that Venezuela is the powerhouse when it comes to beauty pageant winnings with one Miss Earth, six Miss International and Miss World crowns and seven Miss Universe crowns, including Gabriela Isler’s recent win.

The Beauties From Around The Globe

Gabriela Isler is not just the Miss Universe beauty who became a subject of scrutiny and center of controversy when it came to the sensitive subject of getting plastic surgery. Miss Universe 2004 Jennifer Hawkins has been accused to have gone under the knife to achieve a perfect look after her reign. But, the Australian model denied the reports saying that, “I just eat healthy and I exercise a lot. Women get better with age, because they are more confident with themselves. It’s all about make-up and health.

Other Miss Universe winners who have been rumored to have gone under the knife to improve their looks are Miss Universe 2006 Zuleyka Rivera from Puerto Rico and Miss Universe 2008 Dayana Mendoza from Venezuela. The 2008 beauty from Venezuela, however, said, when asked if she had had cosmetic surgery, “Asking me that is like asking a woman her age.” On the other hand, Miss Universe 2007 Riyo Mori of Japan has admitted to having lip injections to improve the shape of her lips.

2001 representative of Brazil to the Miss Universe, Juliana Borgess, has admitted having had cosmetic surgery done to prepare her for the competition. She has been candid and open to having a total of 19 plastic surgeries done, including collagen injections on her lips and silicone implants on her breast, chin and cheeks. Borgess, however, did not place in that year’s competition.

Also, Peruvian beauty Maria Julia Mantilla Garcia, winner of the Miss World 2005, was not shy to admit that she had surgical enhancements done on her, which include breast augmentation and rhinoplasty. However, she made the headlines when she considered suing her plastic surgeon Cesar Morillas, a sought-after surgeon in Peru, after elaborating other procedures done on Garcia, like enhancements on the lips, chin, ears and eyebrows. “He has said that I’m his product, the product of Peruvian plastic surgery, and says he molded my body, that he removed fat, and everything. He’s talking about things he never did.”, said Garcia.

Miss Plastic For Real

Unbeknwonst to many, beauty pageants have been staged solely for women who have gone under the knife. In 2001, China hosted its first Miss Plastic Surgery Pageant. A total of twenty “man-made” contestants, aged between 17 to 62 years old, graced the runways of Beijing Opera House to vie for the crown. Feng Qian, a 22-year old beauty from the City of Jilin, won the crown and credited her surgeon for her four procedures, including double eyelid surgery, liposuction, cheeks reshaping and botox injections. While she won the competition, the most number of procedures done goes to first runner-up Zhang Shuang, who underwent a total of 10 procedures.

In Europe, Hungary staged the Miss Plastic pageant in 2009 with women aged between 19 to 38 years competing for the award. The qualifications include that the contestant must be a resident of Hungary and should have at least had one cosmetic surgery in her medical history. 22-year old Reka Urban was declared the winner and won an apartment in Budapest as part of her winnings. Unique to the contest is, not only will the contestants be judged on their beauty, but attention on the surgeon’s work will also be taken into account. Other than the contestants, their respective surgeons shall also receive a price.

UK staged its first Miss Cosmetic Surgery in 2011 with 46-year old Julie Lockwood winning the crown. She used her £3,000 prize to fund her breast augmentation in Tunisia. Julie shared, “I was a size 38A and now I’m a perfect 38C and it’s changed my life.” Linda Briggs, a cosmetic surgery consultant and the show’s organizer, again staged the event in 2012 with the same prize of £3,000 to be used to get another cosmetic surgery done overseas.

Beauty Has A Price

Cosmetic surgery has become a very sensitive issue in the beauty pageant industry. While some beauties dodge the topic, some have been very candid on the procedures that they have gotten to get ahead and be noticed more by the public and most especially the judges.

We always hear that inner beauty is important. But in a field where physical beauty is still the number one consideration, you cannot blame some ladies who will do what it takes to be recognized and awarded with a crown that will solidify the fact that they are the most beautiful woman in the world. In an interview, 2008 Miss Universe Dayana Mendoza said that plastic surgery is a personal choice and the only problem lies when after getting an enhancement done that you do not resemble yourself anymore.

These beauty queens have become a benchmark in people’s definition of beauty. Some even look up to them to a point where you would want to get the same features that have, whether natural or cosmetically enhanced. You may think that if these recognized beauties have admitted or may have gone under the knife to look as beautiful as they are now, then why can’t you do the same?

It is also important that when you do get cosmetic surgery done is to find a credible, reliable and experienced doctor to perform the procedure on you, whatever it may be. You would not want to entrust your body with a surgeon who does not have the skills and proper training, would you?

If you are looking for ways to enhance your appearance, Advance Beauty Cosmetic Surgery in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney offers a range of aesthetic procedures, like rhinoplasty. A free consultation with Dr. Andrew Kim will allow you to discuss your expectations and methods available for you to achieve the look that you want.

In the end, it is your body and it is your choice if you want it to be improved or not. Just make sure that you will be safe and secured in your decision to do so.