Three women who had travelled to South Korea to undergo plastic surgery were reportedly stuck at the airport on their return journey because they looked too different from their passport pictures.
The trio, said to be from China, were recovering from their operations, as it appears, as they had swollen faces and bandages around their head.
They were said to look nothing like their passport photos and had been stopped from flying home, according to reports on Chinese-language media.
The picture was said to be taken at one unnamed airport in South Korea during China’s National Day holiday, according to Apple Daily.
It’s believed that the three women, who remain unidentified, had taken the advantage of the ‘Golden Week’ and travelled to the neighbouring South Korea to undergo plastic surgery.
The picture was said to be posted by Jian Huahua, a Chinese news anchor, on her social media on October 8. It seems to have be removed by Ms Jian from her account.
One popular account, ‘The Beijing Things Beijingers Don’t Know’, managed to re-post the picture on Weibo, the Chinese equivalent to Twitter.
The post claimed that the three women had been prevented from leaving the airport. They were waiting for their identities to be confirmed.
The post also claimed that they were among the throngs of Chinese tourists who had gone to South Korea for plastic surgery during the eight-day national holiday.
The re-post has gathered over 66,740 ‘likes’ and was shared over 27,800 times.
It has also received 37,860 comments.
While some people found the incident amusing, others argue that the women were within their rights to change their looks through surgery.
It is currently unclear when and if the women were allowed to return to China.
South Korea has become a top plastic surgery destination for Chinese women in the past decade and a half.
Chinese tourists make dedicated trips to South Korea under the ‘Medical Tourists’ visa to make themselves look more westernised.
In China, women with double eyelids, wider eyes and a higher nose bridge are considered beautiful.
According to Ctrip, one of China’s largest travel service providers, more than 500,000 Chinese tourists made overseas medical trips in 2016.
Among them 99,000 were said to have gone to South Korea.
The figure is said to be a third of the inbound medical tourists South Korea received worldwide.