Time magazine has devoted a recent cover story to Mattel's new take on their classic doll, which has Barbie sporting more realistic body shapes. Their new lineup includes tall, petite and curvy body types.
In case you missed the last Saturday Night Live, it looks like Baltimore native "Sturdy Barbie" didn't make the cut, but I think everyone in the greater Baltimore area can appreciate her proper pronunciation of "Balmer" and her cat sweatshirt. Watch the video here.
You might think that the changing attitudes about what the "perfect" female form looks like would concern Cosmetic Surgeons but in fact the opposite is true. Our goal is not to conform women to what society may consider ideal, but instead to make patients feel more comfortable in their own skin.
And never before have we had more ways to be able to do that. For example, when I first trained in Plastic Surgery, there was only one set of breast implants. As the implant got bigger, the base got wider and that was it. Now, for any given implant width, there is at least three different "profiles", which means how far the implant sticks out away from the chest. We also now have teardrop shaped implants, which impart a more natural slope to the upper pole of the breast, as opposed to the traditional round implant.
So now, there are hundreds of implants to choose from so that every patient can get the look she wants, from the petite woman who wants only a subtle enhancement to the woman in her 50's who wants to maintain an age-appropriate look to the 21 year old who wants to get that wow-factor.
Whereas surgeons in the past may have been totally concerned with removing fat, we now have a greater appreciation of the value of maintaining volume. This is especially true in body contouring surgery. When shaping bodies either with liposuction or excisional procedures, I'm careful to consider the patient's desires to either maintain or enhance their curves. Fat grafting is a great procedure that allows us to put to good use the fat that we otherwise would have discarded after liposuction. Adding volume to the desired areas like the hips and buttocks (as in the Brazilian Butt Lift) helps us create the shapes that would make "Curvy Barbie" proud.