“Beauty has a Price”, somehow has become a trend nowadays. More and more people tend to seek ways to improve their physical appearance and even try to find desperate ways to make this possible.
Just like in the case of 3 friends namely: Nina Lavadia, Maui Cababao, and Alvina Bernades, all natives of Cabadbaran Town in Agusan Del Norte, who, in search of enhancing their beauties have consented to a PHP 500 worth of “Cheek Enhancement” for them to have a more eye-catching cheekbone.
At first, the three admitted that back then, they were already confident with the beauty that they have but, everytime they see gays who they consider are more gorgeous than them, they feel insecure and somehow felt that they are lacking something.
The standard price for “Cheek Enhancement” ranges from PHP 20,000 – PHP 50,000 on licensed clinics.
In 2009, a Gay offered Albina a “Cheek Enhancement” operation for a discounted price. Her curiosity and desire led her to decide to give this offer a try. The operation was conducted on Alvina’s house, it was also then when she found out that the substance that will be injected on her cheeks, nose and chin is non other than, petroleum jelly instead of fillers. She even saw that the petroleum jelly was liquified through the use of fire.
At first, the operation was apparently a success because it enhanced Alvina’s cheeks and made her more gorgeous and confident. She apparently achieved her dream cheekbone, nose and chin. That is why her friends were also convinced to give the operation a try.
But, after 6 months they all feel that something is wrong. Their cheek began to inflate, redden and it became heavier, they can also feel itchy sometimes. They also said that their cheeks feels hot even after they took a bath.
They tried to contact the one who operated on them but he was nowhere to be found. They can’t also file a crime against hi because they do not know his whereabouts.
The three became the subjects of insult in their town, but despite this, Alvina still manages to join various Gay Beauty Pageants. She believes that optimism is the key, because no matter what she does, people will always say something, either positive or negative. What she considers important is she knows herself more than anyone else.
According to Dr. Henry Claraval, a facial plastic surgeon. It is highly dangerous to use liquified petroleum jelly as fillers and inject it inside our bodies. He further said that the labels on petroleum jelly products state that it is for external use only. The chemical is not accepted by our body and it can be considered a foreign substance, thus, our body reacts resulting to swelling, redness and pain. He further recommends that when we want to enhance our body parts through science, we should seek the help of professional doctors.
However, Hope is still alive in the hearts of the three friends. Together with their other friends, they created a fund raising project through social media. This was led by a Netizen named, Izah Nicole Galvez. Though Iza did not personally know the three, she just wanted to help them.
Luckily, donations flooded for the three, one even offered to sponsor their “Surgical Reconstruction” operation. Izah said that although they do not know each other, what is important is their hearts are one. She added that she wants to help not because she has abundant blessings, but because she knows what it feels like to have none.
Just last August 18, Nina, Maui, and Alvina has undergone with the surgery to remove the petroleum jelly injected on their faces. As of now, doctors are still observing the three.
Nina, Maui and Alvina pervently hope that the suffering that have went through for the past nine years will finally be ended.
In the end, it is not about how you look, what is more important is valuing yourself and knowing your worth.