Are Beauty Standards Pushing Black Women Into Dangerous Back-Alley Surgeries?
“Buttock augmentation is a serious operation and one of the few procedures in plastic surgery in which there are fatalities every year,” says Doft. To date, over 19 women of color have died from hazardous injection seeping into the body, and those are just the ones that have been recorded. What’s important to remember is that there is no FDA-approved filler for butt augmentation, meaning “there’s no artificial stuff you can inject,” says Rubinstein. A certified plastic surgeon has two options: implants, which have fallen out of favor, according to Rubinstein, or fat transplants, where fat is transferred from one area of your body to your buttocks.
“Unfortunately, in hotel rooms and back alleys, it’s unclear what is being injected. Every week, patients are coming to emergency rooms with infections and tissue loss due to poor injection technique, non-FDA approved injectables, and unsanitary conditions,” says Doft. There have been reports of ingredients ranging from rubber cement, superglue and tire sealant, to industrial grade silicon. In horrific cases — such as the recent incident with Wykesha Reid — silicone caulk entered her veins, traveled through her heart, and was trapped in her lungs. Symone Marie Jones and Ranika Hall also had similar heartbreaking stories.