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Published 2022-02-18
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Plastic Surgeries In Prison. Women Could Not Resist Them Despite The Risk Of Irreversible Effects!

When thinking of prisons, most people won’t have any good connotations. Many will think of terrible conditions, no opportunities for anything to better themselves but what if that might not necessarily be a reality? Especially in the past. Incredibly, from the 1920s to the mid-1990s, about half a million prisoners in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom opted to go under the knife and undergo plastic surgery and most of all, the expenses were paid by the government. In a book titled Killer Looks, author Zara Stone explores how the emergence of plastic surgery in prisons highlights society’s obsession with beauty and perfection. But how did things look back then? Just what kind of procedures were provided? Read on to find out.

The Prison Life Structure

When it comes to life in prison it is quite structured when certain things happen at the same hour each day. The aforementioned book follows a former inmate known as Nancy Willeford for whom the day of January 30th, 1989, began like any other day in the Texas Department of Corrections prison system. Her days were fairly similar from one to the next. She began her day at 4 am for the daily headcount and the line for showers and then at 5 am it was breakfast time. But how else did her time there differ from what most associate with prison? Read on to find out.

Everyday Activities

Once breakfast is over, the inmates would go back to the dorms for yet another headcount and then they would go to their assigned work. Some would be in charge of folding laundry, others would clean and mop the floors, and some, if they were lucky could go to the workshop or even attend beauty school. In those days, according to the publication, Texas had about 44,022 inmates of which 1,000 were women.

Going To See A Doctor

Though one day was not like any other for Willeford as, led by a guard, she went to see a doctor and soon found herself in a cold white room in the medical wing. There a doctor approached her with a hand mirror, which he held up to her face. As it was described in the text, the woman’s pale skin had a grayish sheen, and her hair seemed dull. In short, she commented that she looked very old, which made her wonder how that had happened, given that she was only 43 years old.

Reason For Being In Prison

As Willeford commented herself, she had grown old within the prison walls. She was serving her third sentence, previously having served time for murder, forgery, and possession of a firearm. At the time the story took place, she was serving her fourth year of a fifteen-year sentence for attempted murder and a robbery gone wrong. As she told her lawyer, she had spent nearly half her life within those walls. It wasn’t how she wanted it to be but her life was not easy.

Life Before Prison

When it came to her life prior to prison, she had owned several cars and could buy all the nice clothes and fancy dinners that she wanted. She wore expensive jewelry with all her outfits and her neck and ears were decorated with sparkling diamonds, certified by her jeweler. As she recalled when she walked down the streets, she received many admiring glances. The former inmate noted that her heroin addiction habit had kept her slim and back in those days she did not look so worn out at the time. However, the lifestyle would take its toll on her and make her look much older than she really was.

Being Pretty In Prison

But going back to Nancy’s time in prison. Survival was more important than appearance than anything. As a result, her appearance became less and less important to her. Willeford felt disconnected from her body, from her “real” lifestyle. Although being pretty inside the compound had its advantages, as according to the woman attractive inmates received more leeway from the guards, got better work assignments, and if they were lucky enough, they got out early on parole. But it was really had to maintain a beauty routine with so few resources.

Makeup In Prison

Contrabands in prison were nothing new. Some people had managed to sell lipsticks, mascara, and hairbrushes inside. Though when those were unattainable, some inmates would use crayons to line their eyes and candy to color their lips. But just how did those women have access to plastic surgery and what risks came with it? Read on to find out.

Doctor’s Plastic Surgery Question

The day that Nancy went to see the doctor he asked her a simple question. “What do you think about plastic surgery to remove those eye bags?” The woman had considered his offer. Although she had no idea that such procedures would be performed in prison, there was little awareness of it. That was due, in part, to the general disdain for women in prisons at the time. Not many of them had even wanted to undergo such invasive surgeries that could leave irreversible effects. On top of that, the surgeons did not have a good reputation to the point where there were accusations of improper behavior on their part. To add to this, women were also worried about how others would respond to a discussion of their defects.

It Was Practice

Given that she wouldn’t be behind those prison walls forever, Nancy had agreed to the procedure, hoping that a new face and a new look would give her a fresh start at life. She still mistrusted the doctors but in the end, agreed. As to why some would do some procedures like that, paid for by the state, it differs. Some surgeons did it for a feel-good moment, helping others. Though in many cases they were still surgical students who were also getting a personal benefit from it by gaining experiences.

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