Style Misdirection: How Celebs Make Bold Changes To Avoid Plastic Surgery Scrutiny

Because of unrealistic beauty standards, many famous — and non-famous — women get plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures including injections. While these procedures are personal choices that we're not for or against, we can all agree that some people are much more open about what they've had done than others. For instance, Ariana Grande is one celebrity who opened up about her experience with cosmetic procedures in 2023. In an emotional video interview with Vogue, the pop star said, "Full transparency... had a ton of lip filler over the years... and Botox... I stopped in 2018 'cause I just felt so... too much..."

On the other hand, some celebrities go to such great extents to downplay any work they've done on their faces that they'll opt for style misdirection, changing details such as their hair or outfit style to make their facial changes appear less noticeable. Believe it or not, these style misdirections happen more frequently than you may initially assume.

The technique explained on TikTok

At first, paying all that money for plastic surgery or injections only to try to downplay it with another, less controversial change, such as a different hair color, may sound like a strange concept. However, style misdirection is a helpful strategy for celebs who want their facial changes to appear less severe or who hope to avoid being a hot gossip topic. Gary Motykie — a board-certified plastic surgeon known as "Dr. 90210" on TikTok — goes into more detail about it in a TikTok video using the Kardashians and Jenners as examples. The plastic surgeon explains how members of this famous family have likely used exciting hair colors, weight changes, social media filters, and new makeup looks to divert from the plastic surgery they've gotten.

Furthermore, "The Skinny Confidential Him & Her Show" shared a TikTok video about the topic. One woman in the video is super honest about getting lip filler and acknowledges how many famous people aren't so truthful, bringing up another name for the style misdirection strategy: the "look over here, squirrel." The idea is to bring attention to a more obvious change — a bold new hair look, for example — so people won't obsess over the facial modification. Think of someone trying to ask you a question you don't want to answer, so you point to a squirrel, hoping that seeing that cute squirrel will distract that nosy individual.

TikTok found many celebrity examples of alleged style misdirection

Some celebrities are allegedly dishonest — or just don't talk about the procedures they've had done to their faces. While we'll never point fingers or accuse anyone of lying, TikTok found some impressive examples of what looks like textbook-worthy style misdirection. For instance, Sarah Louise, a certified aesthetic nurse, posted a video about the beautiful, talented Dove Cameron. The aesthetic nurse points out procedures she believes Cameron has had, such as subtle lip modifications. Meanwhile, the singer and actor made headlines when she swapped her signature blond tresses for darker brown hair. Do you think the drastic hair color change was possible strategic style misdirection?

Another example of a celebrity who likely could be guilty of style misdirection is Hailey Bieber. Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Gary Motykie shared a video explaining why he thinks Bieber has had cosmetic procedures — despite her denials — showing indications of how it appears she's had a nose job for a more defined nose, lip filler for fuller lips, jawline and cheek filler, and other possible work. Plus, we know that Bieber is quick to explore various new hair colors, such as pink, blond, brown, and now the dynamic cinnamon cookie butter look. While Bieber may just genuinely enjoy experimenting with her hair, her ever-changing hair color might be more strategic than we initially thought.