Asian Eyelid Surgery

By Tracey Christensen

With the increasing popularity of Asian Double Eyelid Surgery comes the inevitable commentary on whether it is a good thing or bad. Over the past 10 years or so, the procedure has become so popular that in some parts of Asia it is almost expected that girls will undergo the surgery when they reach their teens. This expectation has rightfully become a talking point for many, with some people concerned that the procedure may cause a loss of ethnic identity. Those in favour of Asian eyelid surgery simply see the procedure as making the most of their feature and not as a desire to look more western.

The procedure of double eyelid surgery involves creating an eyelid crease which makes the eye appear more open. Around 75% of all Koreans and 50% of all other Asians do not have a double eyelid crease at birth. The process can be carried out in several different ways, some less invasive than others. Recent improvements in technique have seen the development of the durable suture technique which can be done under twilight sedation with a minimum of down time. The procedure involves inserting a row of sutures in the eyelid that are tightened and secured to create the appearance of a permanent crease, or double eyelid.

Asians living in western countries are, ironically, more likely to object to the idea of double eyelid surgery than their Asian based counterparts. Korea and Japan have embraced the procedure to the point that it is considered common place and those choosing to have the surgery are unlikely to come up against opposition. Similar to a Caucasian undergoing a breast reduction or rhinoplasty in Australia, nobody would argue that they are trying to look more 'Asian'. Large, open eyes have been considered beautiful the world over for a long time and both Asians and non Asians aspire to the look.

Well respected surgeon Dr Peter Kim, of Simply Beautiful Cosmetic Surgery & Laser Clinic Sydney, carries out 100's of double eyelids surgeries a year. His philosophy is that he is creating 'more beautiful Asian eyes', not more western ones.

"In all my years of performing Asian double eyelid surgery, I have never been shown a picture of a western person as an example of the finished product a patient wishes to achieve," he says.

Indicated by the general increase in popularity of all forms of plastic surgery across all races and nationalities, it is not only Asians who are wishing to change their appearances. The trend indicates a world wide dissatisfaction with the way we look and is driving the increase in cosmetic procedures. A recent remark by an Aisan girl made on a negative article about Aisan women who undergo cosmetic surgery such as double eyelid surgery sums it up well.

"Western women are having tans, butt implants and their lips made bigger, I wonder which race of women they are trying to look like?"

While many men and women are happy to spend money and time and put up with discomfort and even pain in the name of beauty the debate on its pros and cons will continue. Some would argue that cosmetic surgery is little different to spending money on fashion, shoes, beauty products and make up and ultimately the decision to undergo surgery should be left up to the individual. Surely anything that makes someone feel better about themselves can only be seen as a good thing.

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