Girls as young as eight have become easy prey for plastic surgery apps, according to a report from the Nuffield Council on Bioethics. The report also calls out the concerns over anxiety and self-image issues related to unattainable appearances.
These “fun” gaming apps allow the user to slice, inject, chop, and rip any part of the subject’s body. “Beauty Clinic,” “Princess plastic surgery,” and “Little Skin Doctor,” mimic explicit plastic surgery procedures ー except there’s cute graphics.
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The recipient of the surgery shows up on screen and the surgeon (the user), has to manipulate the face and/or body to look more “beautiful.” A successful transformation can mean anything from liposuction, lip injections, a nose thinning or eyelid surgery. The end result being a stick-skinny, botox-filled woman — a superficial masterpiece that little girls can’t wait to turn into as adults.
Here are a few (of the many) cosmetic surgery apps available on Google Play:
Jeanette Edwards, Professor of Anthropology at the University of Manchester, had this to say:
“We’ve been shocked by some of the evidence we’ve seen, including make-over apps and cosmetic surgery ‘games’ that target girls as young as nine. There is a daily bombardment from advertising and through social media channels like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat that relentlessly promote unrealistic and often discriminatory messages on how people, especially girls and women, ‘should’ look.”
Instagram and Snapchat hold the attention of every kid, and unattainable body types are glorified. Kim Kardashian, Kendall Jenner, and Iggy Azalea are constantly featured half-naked on Snapchat, and FitTea makes thousands of dollars off of girls who will stop at nothing to lose just ten more pounds.
The report also calls for better regulation, but will a warning be enough to keep developers away from monetizing your sister’s insecurities?