Maybe it's the Kardashians or maybe we finally realized Sir Mix-A-Lot was onto something in "Baby Got Back." Either way: big butts have taken over the mainstream and people are going to great lengths to acquire them. Between 2012 and 2017, Brazilian butt lifts, or BBLs, increased by 134.5 percent. In this episode of Plastic Planet, we talk to three women at carious points of their journeys to increase their butt sizes.
We first sit down with 22-year-old Instagram influencer Graciela Montes, who had her first cosmetic surgery on her breasts at the age of 18, after her boyfriend at the time continuously criticized her for having a flat chest. Before she got that surgery, Montes says she "didn't feel like a woman." After successful results with her breasts, she began to look at other plastic surgery options, and eventually decided on a BBL, which normally costs around $4,096 (without anesthesia and other fees). Montes's mother agreed to pay for her butt surgery, but unfortunately, she didn't get the results she'd hoped for. "The doctor botched me," says Montes, who ended up with a life threatening infection after the surgery.
R&B singer Kimberly Michelle, known as K. Michelle on VH1's Love and Hip-Hop, tells us she had a similar experience in her quest to enlarge her butt. "I've always struggled with self esteem," she says. "By any means necessary, I wanted the perfect body." When Michelle heard about an unlicensed man who was giving butt-enlarging injections for far cheaper than a BBL, she thought she found her answer to the perfect body. But after receiving the injections—and the attention that came with her new look—Michelle's health began to decline. Her doctor later discovered that her black market injections were having a toxic effect on her body. Two weeks before we filmed with her, Michelle had surgery to drain the injections. "There's girls still getting butt shots and they think it's all fun and they think it's all play, and that's not the truth," she says. "If y'all thinking about doing anything to y'all self, leave that shit alone."
Danielle Marrone is an aesthetic beauty consultant who's decided to go ahead with a BBL, but unlike Michelle, she went to a professional. Marrone let Broadly follow her on her journey, in which she explains that she was inspired by the Kardashians. Before surgery, Marrone says she's most excited not to have to edit her Instagram photos anymore to make her butt look bigger. Her surgeon, Dr. David Schafer, explains that he'll be redistributing fat from Marrone's lower back and upper thighs to her butt for the effect she's hoping for.
Like Marrone, Montes sees plastic surgery as a way to keep up her social media image. "I'm excited to see how the photos will look on my Instagram page," she says.