Should cosmetic surgery be banned?

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 19 January, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 19 January, 2011, 12:00am

Elise Choi, 16, Sai Kung Sung Tsun Catholic School

Have you noticed that an increasing number of celebrities are having cosmetic surgery? It is because they want a better image to present to the public. But should all of us join in?

I think cosmetic surgery should be banned. First of all, people have different definitions of beauty. We have to accept the fact that everyone is unique. True beauty lies in your personality. If a boy or a girl is considered ugly but has a good personality, people will find him or her attractive on the inside. That beauty is everlasting. Good looks fade with age. Character is far more important.

The cosmetic surgery trend misleads people into thinking that looks are most important. They might copy their idols' looks so they can feel good about themselves and be accepted by the public. This would be bad for society.

Changing our looks is a type of cheating. Our looks are a present from our parents and we should respect that.

More importantly, cosmetic surgery involves risks. Some doctors might not even have a licence. If the effect is not what you expected, you wouldn't be able to do anything about it. Once your face is changed, it's changed.

There's also the problem of hygiene. If cosmetic equipment is not sterilised properly, it could spread disease.

I think cosmetic surgery should be banned as soon as possible, before anyone gets hurt.

Matthew Murchie, 15, St Joseph's College

Cosmetic surgery has gained a bad name in recent years, not only as something against nature but also as a dangerous type of operation that can leave patients with awful, plastic-looking faces.

Many patients undergo plastic surgery only because they need it. For example, people who have facial injuries or were born deformed may require surgery to fit in with society.

Some may say we should allow only those who really need it to have cosmetic surgery and ban it for those who wish to use it to look good. But where do we draw the line? Is it acceptable for someone to, say, correct a harelip? Would we then allow someone to straighten a crooked nose?

More importantly, we are already free to change our appearance in whatever ways we like. We dye our hair, grow beards, pierce our bodies and get tattoos. Just because cosmetic surgery requires a surgeon and pain-killing drugs doesn't mean there is anything wrong about it.

Banning cosmetic surgery would have serious consequences. Cosmetic surgery is performed by qualified surgeons. Once it is banned, illegal providers would arise for those who want it, and the operations would be far more risky.

It doesn't matter whether those who choose cosmetic surgery are making a good or bad choice. All that matters is that it can help people improve how they see themselves. After all, it is our own choice if we want to change our appearance.