By the time Sarah was 17, she had spent £15,000 on 30 cosmetic procedures without having to prove her age. Sarah – not her real name – developed anorexia in her early teens and was treated successfully at an eating disorder clinic. But then her obsession over food changed to one over her looks – her nose in particular. Sarah’s mother Mary, also not her real name, says: “Sarah’s obsession with her nose led her to have all sorts of fillers to ‘fill in’ the bump, and then to try and turn it up at the end.” Mary adds that some clinics then tried to encourage Sarah to have lip fillers done as well.

Sarah did not have her parents’ permission for the procedures, so she used their credit card details via PayPal or apps, and was never asked for a physical payment. She also claimed to be 20, but no-one carrying out the procedures asked her for proof. Sarah had started by going to local beauty salons, but soon moved on to clinics in and around London’s Harley Street. From the age of 16, she had begged her parents for a nose job, but they said she was too young. Then one day, Mary’s husband got a £6,500 credit card bill. “We both immediately knew what she’d done,” says Mary. “It turned out that very next day she’d arranged to have a surgical nose job. She begged; she pleaded to have this done.”

The clinic was well-known and the doctor highly reputable, so Mary and her husband relented and took Sarah to have the procedure. After the surgery, the teenager was “delighted” for a few days – but the feeling wore off. She has since spent a further £5,000 on other cosmetic procedures. “She thought once she’d had this nose job, she was going to feel different,” says Mary. “It was going to be the answer to everything – and it absolutely wasn’t. I think that’s part of why she now feels even worse. Initially I was furious. Now I realise she is really very unwell.”

For read the full text click here:

  • Other similar themes:

Social media pressure is linked to cosmetic procedure boom –

Fashion lookahead: Seven major looks for 2020 –

The peculiar bathroom habits of Westerners –

The benefits of going bald –

Five tech trends shaping the beauty industry –

How much water should you drink a day? –

Why do women live longer than men? –

Skinny genes the ‘secret to staying slim’ –

Why you don’t really have a ‘type’ –

Can social networks help you lose weight? –

Low-calorie shakes and soup diets ‘recommended for obese’ –

Probiotics labelled ‘quite useless’ –

The reasons why women’s voices are deeper today –

The people who cannot smile –

Potential new cure found for baldness –

Five things you might be surprised affect weight –

What is the ‘ideal’ female body shape? –

Is the taboo around male make-up disappearing? –

These are the six biggest fashion looks for 2018 –

Is this what real beauty looks like? –

The secret to a long and healthy life? Eat less –

Why vitamin pills don’t work, and may be bad for you –