Social media influencer and host of the podcast The Insight, Chantel Sophia, posted a video recently where she answered a question a user asked her about getting the Brazilian butt lift surgery popularly known as a BBL.
Specifically, the follower asked whether Sophia felt peace after getting her BBL. The influencer, in a significantly transparent response, explained that in her experience, getting surgery had only amplified her existing insecurities.
“I always say this to anyone who comes to me with ‘Oh I wanna get surgery, I wanna do this.’ Be prepared to have a focus on all your insecurities times a thousand,” she said.
She continued, “So after I was in my honeymoon phase of enjoying something new, a change in my body, the comedown happens. This happens with every surgery. Every surgery you do, you’ll be happy for a few months because there’s a change. And then you start to think about all the things that you don’t like about it.”
This is a side of cosmetic surgery that isn’t often talked about aside from on shows like E!’s Botched or from the few celebrities, such as K. Michelle who have shared their experience with getting work done for the wrong reasons.
The BBL is pervasive. In 2020, 40,320 individuals got their butts done or had a butt augmentation according to the Aesthetic Society. This included through means of both implants and fat grafting. Despite its popularity, BBLs are one of the riskiest cosmetic surgeries, so much so that one to two out of 6,000 BBLs have resulted in patients losing their lives, per the Aesthetic Surgery Education and Research Foundation via the Aesthetic Surgery Journal.
The surgery is worth the risk for women who feel it may fix their insecurities or help them feel more confident in themselves. This wouldn’t be shocking as a 2020 study in the International Journal of Humanities and Social Science about the effects of women’s body image on self-esteem and happiness found that women feel better about themselves when they think they’re physically attractive. But for Sophia, surgery didn’t fix her self-esteem, instead giving her more things to nitpick.
“In my case, it wasn’t perky enough, it wasn’t round enough, it wasn’t big enough,” she recalled. “Some days it wasn’t small enough. Nothing was enough.”
The podcaster also feels her butt became a huge part of her identity because she was seeking the approval of others. “My character trait became how big my bum was. Like, I know this sounds dumb, but i just needed the outward validation that ‘does everyone like this yeah?’” she explained.
In a world that profits from women’s insecurities and sells the illusion of perfection, it can be difficult to not feel as though you need to alter your body to fit the status quo. Also, seeing some of your faves with BBLs can give you the perceived nod of approval you need if you’re on the fence about it. That said, perhaps it isn’t about peer pressure, but more about the desire to feel confident with your body. Either way, surgery is a very personal decision and every woman has the right to enhance her body in ways that will make her happy. But as Sophia noted, “be prepared” for what may come with making that choice.