China will soon host the finals of the country’s first beauty contest in which every contestant has gone under the knife.
Twenty “man-made” beauties will parade their surgical nips and tucks next Saturday in the hope of taking home the country’s first Miss Artificial Beauty crown.
The contest is the latest addition to China’s beauty pageant scene after Miss World was held in the southern island of Hainan for two years in a row.
Beauty pageants were once considered reviled displays of western decadence but have become big business in Communist-ruled China following more than two decades of economic reforms.
“I wanted to convey a message to society — that the pursuit of beauty is ageless,” said 62-year-old Liu Yulan, the oldest contestant who turned to plastic surgery to smooth facial wrinkles and fill out her drawn cheeks. Another contestant, who did not make the Miss Artificial Beauty finals, spent $36,000 in her quest for the perfect body, according to a Chinese Web site.
Organizers dreamed up the pageant after one woman who splashed $13,000 on improving her looks attempted to sue them for banning her from the finals of a traditional beauty contest in May.
Plastic surgery clinics offering everything from liposuction to eye re-modeling have mushroomed in major cities in China in recent years.