Every so often, it’s important to re-evaluate the “standard” for beauty when it comes to women of color and how it affects us every day. Are our standards healthy? Are they beneficial to young women? Let’s talk!
From the Daily News:
When Ranika Hall, 25, announced she would travel to South Florida for a Brazilian butt lift, her family urged her not to go through with the popular rear-reshaping surgery.
But Hall, a new mother, ignored her family’s advice because she was unhappy with her post-pregnancy body, NBC Miami reported.
“I tried to talk her out of it. I really did,” her mother, Nicole Hall, told the outlet. “Her sisters and her brothers tried to talk her out of it,” she said.
The Missouri woman is the second patient in less than a year to die from a Brazilian butt-lift procedure at the same Miami plastic surgery clinic.
Hall scheduled the cosmetic procedure at Eres Plastic Surgery in Hialeah — the clinic where Heather Meadows died last year at 29 from the same procedure.
When Meadows died, the outfit was called Encore Plastic Surgery, and was under different ownership.
Encore and connected clinics were known to engage in deceptive practices resulting in patient injuries, according to local investigations.
On Thursday evening, Hall lost consciousness and stopped breathing, police said. She was declared dead at the hospital at about 10 p.m. [source]
It hurts to know that this woman was upset about her post-pregnancy body—not because I think that’s petty; I don’t—but because that means that there’s a small 1 year old baby out there without her mother, now.
Now, we can ask the question, “Well, why didn’t she care more about her kid than her body,” and I’ll admit I might’ve asked that question myself once upon a time, but I also wonder—aren’t we the same world that forces newly-delivered women to feel like they must rush to get back into being “hot?”
In a world where so much is based on a woman’s appearance, are we really surprised by the lengths to which some will go to meet the standard? Should we be surprised that this kind of risk was considered acceptable? This is a world that punishes unattractive women—I’ve been blogging about that for years—if anything, perhaps we should be shocked that more women don’t go to such lengths.
I don’t know the circumstances that made her believe this was the path to take, but I do know that I’m sorry this path led to this result.
I’m also so sorry that this happened to a woman who thought she was going about this the right way, instead of doing it in a back alley or a hotel room like so many others.
The Brazilian butt-lift procedure uses liposuction to take fat from elsewhere in the body and inject it into the buttocks.
Meadows died from fat clots that caused her organs to fail by blocking her arteries, Miami-Dade coroners concluded in an autopsy report. [source]
Just in case you were wondering what contributed to the first woman losing her life in this clinic. This basically means they did a terrible job and, considering their reported inability to be transparent and open with their patients, that’s an increased risk.
For the record, that’s two deaths in less than a year.
I’m only left with questions, whenever these stories arise. I remember asking why women make these choices but now, I understand. The need to always be attractive impacts women economically in ways it doesn’t impact anyone else, so of course women fight by any means necessary to get to that ideal. It doesn’t matter that a patient is 20 times more likely to die during this procedure—what matters is that the goal is that much closer to being achieved. That’s truly heartbreaking.
My next question is, how do we stop women from taking the steps that lead to this? Because every time another sister passes away from complications due to this kind of thing, I feel a teeny bit more sick to my stomach.