Korean Plastic Surgery + Body Lines Explained!

Koreans celebrities are known for being beautiful, and yet notorious for plastic surgery.  I used to be completely oblivious to plastic surgery, but after years of watching Korean dramas and seeing the "mom" and "grandma" actresses with ZERO wrinkles -- even in high def, I began to wonder.  I educated myself a bit and now I can spot almost every piece of work haha.

I do have to hand it to Korean plastic surgeons -- their work is beautiful, most of the time incredibly subtle, and absolutely impeccable.  A lot of it is probably due to the fact that Korean culture is so obsessive compulsive and they strive for perfection.  The only problem is, because everybody gets the same kinds of surgeries, more often then not a lot of people end up looking the same!

The types of surgeries performed in Korea are drastically different, and sometimes even unheard of, here in the States.  The most requested procedure is probably the double eyelid surgery.  Many Asians are born with single eye lids that can often look "hooded" and make the eyes "chinky."  A quick slice and sew up can drastically change the appearance of someone's entire face.  This procedure has become so common that most Koreans don't even consider it a plastic surgery -- it's more like getting braces lol.  Caucasian people are all born with double eyelids so this surgery is pretty much never performed for them.

Park Min Young admitted to double eyelid surgery and a nose job -- I'm thinking jaw contouring as well?

Another popular "surgery" is a fat injection under the eyes.  Under eye bags are considered cute in Korea because they cause what are known as "eye smiles" -- crescent shaped eyes when smiling made famous by Lee Hyori.  This is so ironic because many American surgeons perform just the opposite -- blepharoplasty -- for the REMOVAL of eye bags!


While in the States a "nose job" usually means a rhinoplasty -- breaking up the cartilage in the nose and reshaping it for a more delicate nose, a nose job in Korea is actually a nose implant.  A silicone rod is inserted into the nose for a higher bridge.  Koreans are known for their flat faces and features so they covet a sharp and prominent nose.

A tell tale sign is a slight line or outline on the side of the nose bridge where the implant was placed.  Also you can ask someone to push/scrunch their nose up into a "pig nose" which is not possible if tip or bridge work was done.  Nose implants are so popular that almost any Korean woman would choose this over a breast implant.
Yoona had a very tasteful/natural nose job

Also popular is "jaw contouring" surgery.  Sounds super scary right?  Basically the surgeon will shave down the jaw bone for a slimmer face.  This is one of the most dangerous surgeries and most American doctors will refuse to even perform this procedure.

And finally Botox.  So this isn't a surgery, but you can bet your bottom dollar that EVERY Korean celebrity gets it -- thus the wrinkle-less grandmas.  Models, actors, and pop stars have been known to get Botox as early as 14 years old as a "preventative" measure.  Park Min Young admitted to getting Botox injections in her cheeks for her role as Kim Nana in City Hunter in order to have a plumper face.

So I've become pretty accustomed to celebrities and their surgeries -- I mean if it makes them more beautiful, and they have the means, why not?  I find it funny when guys say they hate "fake" or "plastic" girls because honestly, how many of them would actually turn down a date with a gorgeous Korean pop star or actress?

But I will say there are a couple examples of surgery gone HORRIBLY wrong.  These girls are currently top Korean celebrities, and yet I can't help cringing every time I see their faces.  The sad thing is they were naturally beautiful before they ever got work done!

Park Bom:

Here you can see the outline of the implant in her nose

I always wonder what she looks like in person because on camera she CONSTANTLY looks swollen.  She's obviously getting all kinds of injections and what is that -- implants in her eyelids???  She looked so young and innocent pre-debut!

Seo Woo:

When I saw Cinderella's Sister, I would seriously feel uncomfortable every time I watched a scene with Seo Woo.  At the same time I was kind of grossly enthralled and couldn't take my eyes off of her because her entire face looked so plastic.  She does look beautiful from certain angles because her features are pretty much "perfect", but most of the time she just kind of looked like she just got punched in the face!

Seo In Young:

Okay so I'm totally biased on this one because my boyfriend dated her.  When he told me he went out with a member of Jewelry, I assumed it was Park Jung Ah -- who I think is the most beautiful, talented, and from what I can see has the best personality of the group.  But NO -- he had to date the one known for her BOOTY SHAKING and nicknamed "the witch" or "Pinocchio" for her scary nose -- I think she's on her 4th nose job now??  She's also had her eyes done and Botox.

This picture of her when she first debuted looks SO MUCH BETTER.  Now THIS I would be jealous of lol!

Oddly enough, IF someone told me I could get plastic surgery to look like any Korean star I would choose Lee Min Jung or Sandara Park -- who both happen to be completely natural (no surgery, but maybe Botox)!  They are both 27 years old (same as Park Bom and Seo In Young) and yet they could easily pass for 17!  They are so cute and youthful and radiate when they are on screen.

Koreans also seem to have a strange obsession with "lines".  All this talk of S lines, V lines, and A lines can get quite confusing and it's often hard to keep up!

The S Line:
Go Ara

The S Line should actually be called the S CURVE because it stands for the curve of a woman's body from the side view.  Basically the perfect S would be the chest/ass sticking out and a slim waist.

The V Line:
Han Ye Seul
The V Line represents the contour of the lower part of the face.  A perfect V Line would be an oval face with a narrow jaw line that curves into a pointy chin in a "V" shape -- thus the popularity of the jaw contouring surgery.  There are also many creams and tools to "improve your V line" on the market.

The A Line:
Kim Sun Ah
Paris Hilton

The A Line is the ideal body type for runway models.  It is usually a result of good posture and broad shoulders -- Paris Hilton would be a good example.  The A Line basically separates the models from the regular ol people.

My boyfriend modeled for a major agency in Korea and he taught me a towel exercise that they used to make all the models perform daily to perfect their "A Lines".  He swore that it fixed your posture, and even helped some people "grow" a few inches.  I totally didn't believe him until I saw Yoon Baek Hee do it on Dream High lol!

To see more Korean body line descriptions check out: Asianplasticsurgeryguide.com


Sweets said...

Ahhhh! Amazing post! I learned so much and some i was like pssht i know that! I hate my nose but i wouldnt want to change it because i got it from my father. And yes i am daddy's little girl so it will hurt me and him if i got rid of it. Great post, just ahh great post. lol



libbeh said...

Good post... I agree. I see too many guys (and girls) that fawn over these K-Pop/K-Drama stars, and they always vehemently disagree with me when I tell them that all lot of these stars have gone through so much plastic surgery because a majority of non-famous Koreans do not look like these stars (not to mention the "Befores and Afters" of these stars that have had plastic surgery). This doesn't mean that I wouldn't have plastic surgery done. I don't need any of these crazy surgeries, but I wouldn't mind having a higher nose bridge since I am Asian, and I do have a flatter bridge than non-Asians. I don't condemn plastic surgery, but I really hate it when you know someone's had surgery done and they deny it. Why deny something that isn't a natural feature? If they're so ashamed, then why get surgery in the first place, you know?

Sasa skocir said...

Wau! amazing post !! I am caucasian european and have never heard of such drastic precedures or surgeries :/ please do more post as such :)


modniza said...

omg , how difference.. thank you,darling for amazing post!! xooo.Stella

LilyLipstick said...

Really interesting post. It's amazing how appearance and surgery trends vary around the world. Seems like everyone wants to look the opposite of how they were born to look! x

namikad said...

i agree with what you say...if it makes them become more pretty, then let them be...but when others get surgery and it goes wrong....that's it there's no turning back. Another example of surgery gone wrong would have to be Solbi. I'm not trying to be mean to her (although her attitude most of the time eggs me off) but she really did a bad job of plastic surgery. Her nose was fine before but now it just looks way out of proportion to her face.

Anonymous said...

This is an amazing post! I'm so glad that you shared this and tell us more about the plastic surgery ! Thankyou xx

Anonymous said...

Bom never had surgery... Lots of people told me that she developed a skin disease which tensed the muscles in her face and made it swell and hard to show emotion on the face so thats why YG said they kept a lot of water on set, to relax her face. I know its gone now, so idk about the eyelids. Maybe its tape, or glue. Maybe she always had them but her face would swell so much. And she's naturally pudgy in the face anyway D:
...Haven't you ever seen her eating habits? xD

la tía maruja said...

I really liked your post! I love learning about other countries beauty ideal, it is very different from the Mediterranean one! We really like oriental beauty (I'm very curious about how they get such a perfect skin!) so don't go into surgery! You all look so sweet like you naturally are!!

Kisses from Spain!

Lovelain94 said...

Wow! I loved this post, it was great to see the before and after and hear about how it s different in different cultures, Love thia poat! Thanks xxxx

The Vain Girl's Palette said...

Totally love this post, was really interesting to read! I completely agree with what you said about park bom! but seriously... that side view of seo in young's nose is really creepy o_o

siwing said...

what an interesting post! the jaw shaping surgery is wowwwwwwww. crazy !

D.Sadie said...

I love this post, hun! I love k-dramas/korean culture and just recently reazlied that my favorite actress song hye-gyo might've/probably got plastic surgery but didn't really think of it. I remember watching cinderella's sister and when I first saw Seo Woo I though she looks kind of odd...

Anyways, very imformative. Love it.

THT Christina said...

I knew that they did a lot of surgery but the botox news is new to me... I personally don't mind it but just like you said, some go too far when they were already pretty enough! Park Bom is a good example. I think she is cute but... something is just not right like what you said.

This was a good post, thanks!


MeiBelle said...

I was like enthralled with this post. Haha. It's pretty cool that your bf went out with a member of Jewelry though. I have to agree with you, a lot of the celebrities were already so pretty without any surgery.

Park Bom =( She was so pretty before all that crap she did to her face.

Marxie ♔ said...

Very interesting post.
I've been watching kdramas and I also like KPOP. :) I know a lot of celebrities in Korea gets plastic surgery even normal people gets it. It's just sad that most people in Korea are so into plastic surgery. I mean even highschool students wants to get their nose done, have white skin, etc. Beauty to them is having a pointed nose, white complexion and being tall. If you're not like that then be ready to be called ugly. One girl even said that her mom never told her that she was pretty but when she had plastic surgery her mom was like "you're so pretty" I saw it in a documentary. :| Anyway, I agree, Sandara and Lee Min Jung are natural beauties. I saw Sandara before she debuted. :) I hope people will not just look on outside appearance and appreciate what God has given them. :)

SNSD's Yoona pic was here. Did she had plastic surgery too?
The girl with a Pinnochio like nose was scary. :|


Kelly@lipglossloveaffair.com said...

Yoona got a very subtle nose job which I think suits her very well!

Rainy Days and Lattes said...

Omg, excellent post!!!!!!! I enjoyed reading about each of these celebs. I had some idea that Koreans were obsessed with surgery but I didn't know how much they strive for perfection. The before and after pics are the most shocking, esp the first one. And I had no idea about A and V lines... that's really interesting. Paris Hilton's got a model's body for sure, but I hardly see Asians with that broad of shoulders. But Asian faces are so pretty! It's a shame Koreans have to hide so much of it in order to strive for perfection. What's worse is if your surgery went wrong. And your BF dated one of those gals? Is he still a model?

Anonymous said...

I agree with the Anonymous comment up there. Park Bom didn't get surgery. She had some kind of incident that caused her face to be extremely swollen. 2NE1 is not the type of band to be too concerned with looks, anyways, so I doubt that she felt pressure to get all that surgery. Things happen, and though I'm not close to Park Bom by any means and am not completely 100% sure that's what happened, it would be sad to think that she did get in an accident and that everyone is criticizing the way that she looks.

Grace said...

very interesting post!! I dont believe in plastic surgury unless its for a medical condition (like burn victims). but thats their choice, i think people should undergo councelling before they do something drastic like that, because its so easy to get wrong!
Grace xx

Sabrina said...

wow! that's why Korean/Japanese girl look so amazingly pretty! i really adore the soft angelic look of them. but totally disappointed because it is not natural... like dawn yang too. she is do damn pretty man! her face looks like a doll! but she said she never done any plastic surgery.. whatever~

Diana said...

Hi there, thanks for this, I think the jaw plastic surgery is super scary, can't imagine shaving my bones D: Koreans have too much expectation of having double eyelids, not everybody looks scary with them imo :)

xoladiihoneyxo said...

Good post!

Oh em gee... I would of been totally jealous if my bf's ex was like that. lol. I was born with natural "pointy nose" and big eyes but ehh.... I don't get why people like it cause I honestly hate it. I feel like the pointy nose makes you look older. and about the chinky eyes.... I think its pretty cute =] on most people anyways. hehe. but then their personality reflect off how they look to me though so maybe I see things differently.

Jennifer~Vickahh said...

Wow..... I never knew they all got SOOO many surgeries!!! I only thought it was the eyes and nose but I guess not! Lol

Marla said...

this post is so interesting :)
thanks for sharing :)

faye lu said...

great post and pics! a very interesting topic. i'm a for plastic surgery for if it makes that person happy and feel great about themselves but what's really sad is most of these girls are very pretty naturally.
my gosh was so shocked to see that girl from 'jewelry', she doesn't look anything like i remember *gasp*

Rae said...

This is a very interesting post! And you're right, they do look alike.

Miss L said...

Great post! I haven´t even heard about some surgeries that there are.


maly said...

very informative, thanks for posting this.

can you share the towel exercise? :3

Chloe Mia said...

You put so much information in this post! I think I have learnt a lot now I enjoyed reading this. It is strange how korean culture is different to western culture.

PerilouslyPale said...

What a great post! I had no idea any of this was going on. I knew about the eyelid surgery and the fascination with obtaining a lighter complexion as I'm always frustrated by the asia exclusive lighter foundation shades that I'm always wanting to get my hands on. It's amazing how different cultures can be an how we can even be obsessed with completely opposing things.

ChiChi81 said...

*sigh* All of this is just so true. I am a huge fan of Korean Dramas and K-pop and it's kind of a letdown to know that nearly all those Korean stars have gone under the knife. At first, I was so amazed at how luminous and seemingly perfect they were but then I heard about the Plastic Surgery craze among Korean stars. Over there, it's almost like a regular check-up with your GP.

Dara of 2NE1 is, I guarantee, all natural. She was quite the celebrity over here in my country because she won a talent search and starred in a film and did a recording here too. And when she made her debut in Korea with 2NE1, she looked exactly the same ;)

Great post, girl.



Val said...

Amazing post! :D Wow. I learned a lot and I really thought, yeah, though Bommie's cute, there's something wrong with her face. O.o

I agree, Dara is all-natural! She looked the same before and after debut. She was a former celebrity here in the Philippines :D

samantha fox said...

Really interesting, its good to read about other cultures, i have to say one of the best blogs i have read x

MissGennD said...

Thank you so much for sharing this.
I am always havin a jaw dropping moment every time i watch korean series and movies. They all look perfect and flawless.

kimyunalesca said...

Thanks for the insights..the Pinocchio lady's really scary.I'm glad Sandara Park is still all natural and WOW! I didn't even know seo woo got it done :O nevertheless I super love cinderella's stepsister XD

I'm a new follower..feel free to drop by http://kimyunalesca.blogspot.com/

Take care ^_^

BunBun said...

It's a bit upsetting that basically all these procedures are aimed at 'westernizing' Asian features - double lids, higher nose bridge etc :( I'm caucasian and I think that asian features are absolutely gorgous! I hate how my nose sticks out and would love a flatter one!

We always think teh western world has it bad with photoshopped celebrities but being a teen girl in Korea with all this 'fake perfection' must be depressing. Plastic surgery is ok but at least make sure people know you've had it.

rhaindropz said...

i love this post pretty.. and thank you for sharing this.. ^_^

Ling said...

Wow, great post on Korean plastic surgery. I've never really been interested in Korean celebs though..but I know their surgeons are amazing. If I were to get anything done, I'd head to Korea too

Hollie said...

Very interesting topic! I read it twice... and I love the fact that you like Dara's beauty, I'm a big fan..hehe

Melsusu said...

Ah I loved this post. I'm a Korean American so many of the plastic surgeries written about here have been prominent in my life. Although I've never undergone eyelid surgery, I've had people tell me to do so and many friends that have. It really is amazing how a culture can be so enticed with outer beauty, real or fake. Thank you for the information and the insight. This was a wonderful read.

J00CiiEx said...

Nice informative post. I could care less if celebrities get surgery too. surgery is not a big deal. I want it myself. If there is something you don't feel confident about yourself, you can change something to gain that confidence if you can't seem time find it within.

shimmerafterglow said...

Thank you for a very informative post! :) i love sandara park (im from the philippines) :)

Ai said...

Really enjoyed reading through this~


TINGkabelle CHAN ♥ said...

like many things, plastic surgery is a very debatable topic. if they look good after surgery, they either get praised or criticized over it. if they don't look good afterwards, they either receive pity/sympathy or described as "too greedy for beauty". people say seeking surgery reflects lack of self confidence, and others say it's their face and their lives, as long as they're happy. there's no right or wrong answer. as long as nobody is severely harmed by vanity in any way, it's acceptable and welcome. life's too short to dwell on these things too deeply :)

p.s. ur bf dated seo in young!?

Mi_Mi said...

wow amzing blog wow i never knew1

Cass said...

Wow, I found this really interesting.
I've been an SNSD fan for a while, and always wondered whether or not they had plastic surgery. (It wouldn't change anything either way to me, though being naturally born looking like that would definitely be impressive).

kristelnocos said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
krizzy said...

ah~ i thought i was the only one who always notice park bom and that girl from cinderella sister's face. they look swollen.

jaw countoring is dangerous. i watched it in Vitamin and there was a side effect...like also the young singer in China who died during jaw countoring operation. this is scary since girls are more open-minded nowadays. They will do everything just to look beautiful even they risk their lives for it.

I can say that the Medical Industry in Korea is really good and it is world-class too.


Anonymous said...

Can you post the exercise to improve your posture/A line?

Amy said...

I recently googled asymmetrical faces since I'm slowly developing one that's lopsided due to years of nail biting (my assumpiong). Any thoughts about that or plastic surgery you know of that would help someone in my situation?

eja_teke said...

LOL. i'm asian and i had a flat nose and sometimes think of getting PS someday but i know i won't since my religion didn't allow it. but i had double eyelid (almost triple =_=) so my eyes are big enough XD.
here in my country you can see very different facial feature in every main island. the original resident in the current island i live tend to have tanned skin, but in my hometown's island's original resident we had fair complexion and what i called "firm jaw"? LOL. just saying :9

Sophiewantstobesugarfree! said...

Hurra!! Your post is very informative both on the biological, technical and perspective side of the issue.I'm an absolute fan after 10 minutes of reading this article. I do hope you'll have one on how korean celebs keep the scale at the minimum. More power!

rhealyn said...

these women are gorgeous!!! and i completely understand why they opt of cosmetic surgery. Anything enhancement procedures goes to the territory of the career they choose.

Anonymous said...

Very good post . Thank you sharing it. BTW, Can you please write a post about " a towel exercise"? I would love to read about it. Thanks again.

janisj said...

ZOMG...ok so i thought i knew what plastic surgery was till i read this...i can't still imagine the "Jaw contouring"...it just can't be...too shocked...removing the subcutaneous tissue from the jaw i can understand...but shaving off the bone...horrified really!!!

Anonymous said...

There are some mistakes in your blog.

First of all epicanthic surgery (double eyelid surgery) isn't a "slice." The fold isn't made by slicing the skin. The difference with Korean eyes versus a Western, Southern Caucasian (Indian) or African eye is the same difference in the rest of the Korean face. East Asians have more dense fat content in their skin. This is why Korean and Japanese women look "younger" than white and black women. Anthropologically this is thought to be because Asians evolved from Caucasians around 50k years ago in Central Asian Steppes in cold grasslands thus the insulation from the fat helped them. The reason why Mongoloid eyes are "hooded" is essentially because white eyes are "wrinkled" and folded in on itself. East Asian eyes have more fat so the folds are either under the eyelid or do not form.

So "double eyelid" surgery is a manipulation of the fat, skin and folds, not a "slice" as you seem to think. Most Korean surgeons now suture they eyelid without even making an incision.

You have some misconceptions about Korean nose surgery as well. While implants are sometimes used, Koreans have very high noses compared to other Asians. Particularly those in SE Asia, Philippines, Southern and Mid China etc. Rhinoplasty surgery is common for Koreans to get out the Korean "bump" like with Americans. Other Koreans with decent cartilage development in their noses wont get surgery at all but injections to fill out the middle part of the bridge. Injections like this wouldn't work on a Southern Chinese or Viet but it's a common procedure on Koreans who have higher noses.

Finally Koreans do shave down their jawline and they do more radical surgery as well including actually breaking the jaw, breaking their legs to get longer legs etc. But probably more common now than shaving down are injections that break down the bone material in the jawline (still scary)

Overall pretty much any entertainer in any developed country will have had work done. The women considered the most beautiful in the US have all had extensive surgery including Angelina Jolie (nose job, eye job, breast implants) Scarlette Johnason (huge nose job, boobs, eyes), Kardashian, Megan Fox, just about everyone else.

In Korea surgery is very common but the number of surgeries per year are less than both the US and Japan. Obviously though Korea is a much smaller country than those 2 and most women get more than 1 procedure done. Surgeons only track by number of operations done not by number of clients so we dont have hard data on which country actually "has the most surgery" although Koreans have become the world leaders at it and it's reasonable to assume that per capita Korea is higher than Japan and the US. But not established or certain.

Anonymous said...

@Marxie ♔

Quit judging people. I dont understand why people (Asians) think it's their right to judge other Asian people. Do you think it's "sad" that 99% of black women wear weaves because they dont like afro hair? Halle Berry, Beyonce and just about every other "attractive" black artist has had her nose done to get a higher bridge. It is "sad" that white women tan? That Jewish actresses break and shave down their noses? It's like Asians will pick on other Asians but are scared to pick on white and black people who do similar things.

Sad to tell you that it's not just Koreans. If you watch Bollywood, Hollywood or European movies almost every single one of those women (and men) have gotten surgery as well. Koreans are just more honest about it, and they also like to expose other Koreans as well lol

Anonymous said...

loved your post....
sorry to burst your bubble but Sandara DEFINITELY had work done.
double lid and nose

Anonymous said...

I agree and disagree with this post. First of I know that yes a lot of people in Korea and other places in Asia get surgery. People get more surgery there then in America or other countries. But I didn't like how you talked as if you absolutely know that these people got plastic surgery. Like they flat out told you to your face. Some of these people you said yes that they have actually admitted that and I believe you. But I know I would hate it if someone who didn't know me said that it looked like I had surgery when I actually didn't. Yes the majority of Asians have flatter features but that doesn't mean that there aren't some that naturally have different then normal features. And the picture of Park Min Young where you said you suspected jaw contouring, you showed a picture of when she was around 12 or 13 maybe 15. People change naturally over time shed the baby fat which may be just the case with her. Also Asians age way better then people of other races and so that may not be plastic surgery as well. I'm not saying that any of these people didn't have surgery, because I don't know unless I actual knew them well and they told me themselves, except Park Bom because of her condition. It's just it kinda seemed like you came across as all knowing.
Any ways your post was very interesting and I had a nice time reading it. Your a good writer and I wouldn't mind reading more posts from you in the future.
Ps. For some reason I like the way Park Bom looks. I always thought it was kind of cute how her face looked plump.

Anonymous said...

Last time I checked, it wasn't just Caucasians that are born with double eyelids.
You need to address wider range of readers e.g. blacks, indians, etc.

Anonymous said...

sorry to break it to you, Lee Min Jung had jaw and nose surgery

Anonymous said...

you should pick min hyorin for natural between yoona had plasti surgery on her nose

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