More students in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, are taking out loans for plastic surgery as access to the financial service increases.

About one-sixth of the 300 or so students who had cosmetic surgery at Guangzhou Huamei Aesthetic Hospital over the summer borrowed money for the purpose, according to Peng Weihong, assistant to the general manager of the hospital, one of the largest cosmetic surgery providers in the city.

Since mid-2015, a number of lenders targeting cosmetic surgery have tried to grab a slice of the market. Ant Financial Services Group, the online finance company backed by e-commerce giant Alibaba, began offering loans and installment payment programs for cosmetic surgery in March, said Ke Sufang, a senior researcher at Qianzhan Industry Research Institute, a consulting agency.

Loans to students for cosmetic surgery at Peng’s hospital generally ranged from 10,000 to 30,000 yuan ($1,520 to $4,560), he said.

The boom in such loans is attributable to huge demand?the market sector was valued at 796.3 billion yuan in China last year, with annual growth of about 20 percent?as well as the hefty cost of the procedures, Ke said.

The Guangzhou Mylike Aesthetic Medicine clinic saw 40 percent growth in clients aged 18 to 24 in July over the same month last year, as the acceptance of cosmetic surgery continues to increase, according to public relations manager Du Xiuming.

Some students were accompanied by their parents, indicating a more open attitude on the matter, Du said.

Read the full article at