Permanent Smiles in South Korea – Do You Ever See This Plastic Surgery Trend Taking Off in Utah?

Articles on the Permanent Smile Trend for Plastic Surgery in South Korea are popping up like wildfire on all reputable news sites, articles and in social media since the photo below surfaced on Reddit earlier this week. User anthissomesh*t claims that the unidentified girl underwent a “new plastic surgery in Asia that curls the corners of your lips.”

Sound crazy?! Yes, but it’s really happening. The procedure to permanently plaster a smile on one’s face actually exists in South Korea, the world’s epicenter for radical elective surgeries. According to AONE Plastic Surgery Clinic in South Korea, the Smile Lipt (Lipt = Lip + Lift) “lifts up mouth corners by adjusting muscle balance around the mouth corners.”

In 2012, Dr. Kwon Taek Keun, founder of AONE, spoke about the “mouth corner lift” surgery at an international convention for plastic surgeons, saying that congenitally sagged mouth corners are quite common.

Facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon Dr. Scott Thompson, of Utah Facial Plastics, performs treatments to alleviate sagging areas around the mouth, typically by injecting fillers in the corners of the mouth to push the muscles out and fill in the sagging areas. Dr. Thompson always strives for a natural look that is far from what is happening in South Korea.

Dr. Ritu Chopra, in an article on YahooShine, says “there’s a major difference between surgery in Asia and the U.S.” Stateside, there’s still a stigma ascribed to those who go under the knife (why else would so many of those Real Housewives continue to deny they’ve had anything done?), but in Asia, a woman’s latest enhancement is often proudly showed off like a badge of honor. In fact, one in every five women in Seoul has undergone some type of cosmetic procedure, according to a 2009 survey by Trend Monitor.

Also disturbing is the age of many of the patients undergoing not only the “smile lipt”, but plastic surgery overall. Reddit user hahaz13, a Korean American with peers in both countries, told Shine via email, “Koreans, in my opinion, are a very fickle and superficial, yet proud people. Combined with the relatively cheap options for plastic surgery, it’s not surprising to see it continuing to trend.” Hahaz13 continued, “A majority of my Korean female friends have at LEAST gotten double eyelid surgery, and by majority I mean I can probably count on one hand the number of people who haven’t gotten it. Some even more (rhinoplasties, boob jobs, jaw/cheekbone reduction, the works). It’s like a rite of passage after graduating high school for most.”

What do you think about this look? To me, it looks a lot like the Joker and I don’t know how anyone would want that permanently! We’d love to hear from you on our facebook page and get your input on this new trend in plastic surgery. Do you see this ever taking off in Salt Lake City, Utah? Sorry, but it definitely won’t be happening at Utah Facial Plastics any time soon!

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