Games like Mermaid’s Plastic Surgery and Superstar Face let players slice and dice their patients, performing nose jobs, liposuction and Botox injections to achieve the ‘ideal’ look.
And what’s worse is they’re aimed at kids.
The bright graphics, animations and youthful names do nothing to reinforce the 17+ age restrictions that some of them require.
And despite the gaming platforms removing the offending apps after complaints from parents, they just keep on springing back up.
When I first heard about these games I was baffled that such a thing would even exist. These games normalise the use of cosmetic surgery, and contribute to girls’ already fraught self esteem.
That is, until I heard Holly and Andrew talk about it on our parenting podcast This Glorious Mess.
Could these games actually be helping girls get ahead in life?
“It could be excellent training for your child to become a plastic surgeon one day,” says Holly.
“And plastic surgeons (a) make lots of money, but (b) do good work, plastic surgeons work on burns victims, on children born with deformities,” she says.
And that would indeed be a terrific thing for kids to learn how to do. Helping people heal as a doctor is an incredibly noble pursuit.