How did you decide on the clinic and the surgeon?
I went to four different consultations. It’s important to listen; you trust the doctor who gives you the most realistic expectations. The one I picked was the only one who took a picture of my face and drew what he could realistically do for me. All the other doctors were so enthusiastic, like, “We could do this and that.” But the doctor I chose explained how, due to my face shape, I can’t get a cute little button nose – and I agreed with him. I asked if I can get a nose similar to my brothers, and he said that’s possible. I trusted his experience. He explained everything really well – like how the nose healing process affects its permanent shape. A big mental complication is that you don’t know how it’s going to look like, until it heals – and that takes six months.
That sounds worrying. Were there any complications afterwards?
I had to sleep in the sitting position for three weeks, to reduce the risk of a bleed. Usually, you’re supposed to start breathing normally around the third or fourth day, but I had a lot of blood clots in my nose, and I could only breathe normally around the second week.
So you stayed overnight and the next day you could go home. What were the first few days like?
At the beginning, it was a little hard to distinguish smells. And my face looked terrible – they basically break your nose with a hammer. It is what it is. I had a huge plaster on my face. I looked like a panda from the bruising under my eyes. I also had major bruises around my jaw from where they hold you in place. That only went away in a couple of weeks. And you couldn’t put on too much make-up since the area is still really delicate and I didn’t want to somehow mess up the nose shape.
How did you feel when they finally took the plaster off?
I low-key looked like Michael Jackson: my nose was so high up, I started crying. I was so upset, and so angry at myself – why did I ever think this would be a good idea, this just made it worse. But with time it started growing and healing and becoming a part of my face.
Did it have an impact on the way you looked at yourself?
I remember going to the bathroom and staring at my nose for like a solid 15 minutes. You ask yourself, “Who is this person staring back?” I needed to get used to how I looked like. But in the long run it made me feel less self-conscious, which was a big deal – until then, it was always in the back of my head. I felt care-free. I felt like I was in the state of what I meant to look like since day one.
A couple years have passed since you got your nose fixed. How do you feel about it now?
Honestly, I am so happy with the way it turned out. Like before, I would always take photos from behind, or in a way my nose would never be seen. And I never edited the pictures I posted on Instagram: people knew what my nose looked like, so what’s the point? It’s such a key feature of your face. But now I feel so good every time I take a picture.
How did your family and friends react to your new nose?
My family was happy for me – I remember my grandpa remarking how I looked so much better. My dad was joking around, saying how crazy I was for willingly letting someone operate on my face. And my friends were supportive, saying, “You look better, even though you were fine before.”
Would you say nose jobs are common?
Nose jobs are so common, especially alongside lip and cheek fillers. I was helping my friend with her flat today and I noticed she’d done her lips. And it’s not just nose jobs – a Chinese friend of mine wants to get a double eyelid plastic surgery to get more European features; she just doesn’t like her eyelids. In Korea, parents get their kids plastic surgery as a graduation present – noses, eyelids, shaving their jaws for a more heart shaped face. It’s that common.
Any advice for anyone who’s considering getting their nose fixed?
There’s a huge difference between temporary fillers and plastic surgery, such as a nose job. Nose jobs are permanent. If you’re going through a tough time where everything seems out of control, plastic surgery won’t solve your problems, no matter how much surgery you get. But if you’re sure in yourself, and who you are, and want to do it to help you with feeling more confident within your body, totally go for it.
Thank you so much for opening up to me. Any last words?
Don’t opt for cheap places since your nose might turn out horrible and you’ll have to pay twice as much to get it fixed. So, research, research, research, book different consultations, and find the one you like.