OSMEL Sousa (above), head of the Miss Venezuela pageant, has told The New York Times: “I say that inner beauty doesn’t exist. That’s something that unpretty women invented to justify themselves.”
Yep, he really said that.
But of course, Venezuela is renowned as the capital of plastic surgery…and “beauty” competitions. In the past three decades Venezuela has won more beauty titles than any other country – six Miss Universes, five Miss Worlds and six Miss Internationals.
Beauty competitions have become a national pastime – almost an obsession – in a country that buys more cosmetic products than any other.
Venezuela’s longtime leader, Hugo Chávez, who died in March after 14 years in office, railed against the plastic surgery procedures, saying it was “monstrous” that poor women were spending money on breast surgeries when they had trouble making ends meet.
But plastic surgery in the nation has boomed in a nation that has also experienced deep economic downturns.
The beauty queens’ fame helped fuel a fascination with cosmetic surgery and procedures like breast implants, tummy tucks, nose jobs and injections to firm the buttocks.
Osmel Sousa takes credit for the trend. He recommended a nose job for Venezuela’s first Miss Universe, which he says made her victory possible more than three decades ago.