Gaming Apps For Kids: What 'Fun' Plastic Surgery, Makeover Apps Are Teaching Young Girls

By Amanda Moore, Parent Herald May 01, 04:00 am

There has been an evolution of gaming apps for kids since "Candy Crush" or "Angry Birds" became popular. As developers got more creative and the options expanded for users, there's one type of genre some experts said raises the alarm bells. Parents, are you aware of this gaming app trend for girls?

Growing in popularity are selections of "fun" plastic surgery makeover apps for kids, such as "Girls Plastic Surgery Doctor," "Mermaid's Plastic Surgery," "Princess Plastic Surgery" and "Superstar Face," as per ABC News Australia. These apps teach young girls how to correct skin imperfections or wrinkles, lighten skin, improve nose appearance, slim down or determine "problem areas" in their body.

The apps also "fix" these imperfections through a simulation. Some apps even ask young girls to upload their photos and change their appearance so they can have prettier images.

The games send out the message young girls need to achieve a perfect appearance and it's easy with a plastic surgery procedure. There are long-term implications, especially when these girls are still learning to gain body confidence and develop self-awareness.

"Cosmetic surgery apps frame major surgery as a game, normalizing the procedures and trivializing their risk," psychologist Sarah McMahon told ABC. "These apps make choosing a new nose look as innocent and harmless as choosing a new outfit rather than the major surgery that it is."

Hannah Houseman, a body-positive advocate, found the gaming apps upsetting. "[The apps] teach young girls to be dissatisfied with their appearance and that beauty only occurs through plastic surgery or doctoring their selfies," she wrote via Illinois State University News.

Experts also said the unhealthy gaming apps promote body hatred in young girls early on. So, where's the fun these games if that's the result?

Do you have young girls and are they playing any of the plastic surgery or makeover apps? What can you say about its potential effect? Let us know in the comments!

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