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Reviewed by Jamie Michele for Readers' Favorite
Beautiful Unique Faces: Reveal what's unique and most beautiful about your face by Anita East is a non-fiction self-improvement book where the author, a well-known and highly respected facial aesthetic nurse practitioner, sheds light on the “Pretty Ugly Face” phenomenon. East employs decades of experience in both the medical and entertainment industry, weaving together an anthology of injectables gone wrong to show various patients as case studies. These range from Fiona, a woman with disfiguring facial fillers who comes to East begging for help, but is initially mistaken as a clinic-hopping shopper, to Olivia, who suffers from extensive adult acne but as it clears away, becomes more demanding in what she wants from East. Each case study is supplemented with East's professional guidance and the dangers of pushing these fillers beyond their intended ability to enhance.
Whenever I see a woman with the unfortunate dermal fillers that create a pillow face, I am reminded of Goldie Hawn's character in The First Wives Club. Her lips are stretched to capacity, and Bette Midler's character calls her a 'quilt,' patched together in a way that not only looks unnatural but it also looks downright weird. Fast forward to today, and Anita East covers the body dysmorphia and disastrous fashion of the Pretty Ugly Face and its pervasiveness via social media platforms. The Pretty Ugly Face is the one that has gone way too far. Beautiful Unique Faces is intended to buck the trend and get us all back down to earth where people look like people and not the alien-other that overwhelms a massively filtered feed. My favorite case study is with Cheree, a woman in her seventies who sees facial faults compared to her friends' looks. East emphasizes that comparisons are irrelevant as we all have a special, standout leading unique feature that is different from what someone else's may be. I remember my mother once told me that every woman believes that in her perfected state, she is the most beautiful woman in the world. East is here to reaffirm that we may already be in our perfected state, that minor enhancements are okay, and that it is time to step back and see the beauty of our unique faces.