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Jennifer Grey opened up about undergoing plastic surgeries to alter her nose.
The procedures changed her appearance so much that she felt “invisible,” especially after the world fell in love with her in Dirty Dancing.
Grey says her mother and plastic surgeons convinced her that the procedures would increase opportunities for future acting roles.
The breakout success of Dirty Dancing put a spotlight on Jennifer Grey for which she wasn’t fully prepared. So, when her mother and plastic surgeons pressured her to get a nose job, insisting that it would improve her chances for future roles, she did. But the procedure had quite the opposite effect.
There were actually two plastic surgeries that attempted to “fine-tune” Grey’s nose, she writes in her new memoir, Out of the Corner, per the New York Times. The second, which set out to correct an irregularity made by the first, left her nearly unrecognizable. In fact, actor Michael Douglas famously didn’t recognize her at a premiere she attended post-op.
“That was the first time I had gone out in public. And it became the thing, the idea of being completely invisible, from one day to the next. In the world’s eyes, I was no longer me,” she recently recounted to People.
Grey’s parents were also actors, and they too underwent rhinoplasties in an effort to boost opportunity in such a narrow-minded business. Growing up with her sights set on working in entertainment, Grey had no plans to follow in their footsteps.
“I was so upset with my mother for always telling me I should do my nose. I really thought it was capitulating. I really thought it meant surrendering to the enemy camp,” she told People. “I just thought, ‘I’m good enough. I shouldn’t have to do this.’ That’s really what I felt. ‘I’m beautiful enough.’”
She continued: “When I was a kid, I was completely anti-rhinoplasty. I mean it was like my religion. I was like, I loved that my parents did it. I understand it was the 50s. I understand they were assimilating ... You can’t be Jewish. You know, you can’t look Jewish. You’re just trying to fit into whatever is the group think.”
After the surgeries, Grey’s career, unfortunately, was forced to adapt to the public’s reaction. She took on more voice acting and guest-starring roles. And in a short-lived leading role in the sitcom It’s Like ... You Know, she played a fictional version of herself that poked fun at her history. Then, in 2010, she won Dancing With the Stars at age 50, and things finally started looking up.
“I believe in my heart that the second half of a woman’s life is the best half. I can’t speak to a man as I’ve never been one, but I will tell you that my experience is the second half is the best half,” she told People. “I’m sure of it. I’ve never felt what I’m feeling these days.”
Grey’s book, Out of the Corner, releases May 3.
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